SNK’s Neo-Geo game platform was an absolute monster. Designed as an arcade system which allowed fans to purchase identical titles for their homes, it featured an enormous memory capacity, huge, colorful, and well-animated sprites, and some amazing music thanks to its robust YM2610 sound chip. All of this came at quite a cost though; in the US, gamers were faced with a $700 console and over $200 per game!
How did SNK try and increase their market share? By releasing the Neo-Geo CD, a new console with internals nearly identical to the cart-based version, but with games on far less expensive CD-ROMs. It had quite a few drawbacks, but the cool thing about it was the music — most of the CD-based games included new, arranged versions of the original tunes! On today’s show, Ed takes a look at some of the games that the Neo Geo CD had to offer, along with a direct comparison of their arranged soundtracks to the originals. Which versions do you like better?
A huge thank you to Indira J (The Misadventures of Buddy and Friend, Sacrimony) for the amazing VGMbassy artwork and design, and to Trevin Hughes (aka chiptune composer Jredd) for the podcast theme song!
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1 – “Final Stage Theme” from Top Hunter: Roddy & Cathy (1994) Composed by Yoko Osaka, Yoshihiko Kitamura, Shiba Pooh, Akihiro Uchida, Masahiko Hataya, and Toshio Shimizu
2 – “The Melting Point (Stage 4)” from Last Resort (Cart 1992, CD 1994) Composed by Toshio Shimizu and Yasuo Yamate, CD Version arranged/ remixed by Toshio Shimizu
3 – “Just Play Baseball Stars 2!” from Baseball Stars 2 (Cart 1992, CD 1994) Composed by Masahiko Hataya and Kazuhiro Nishida
4 – “Yo! What’s Up? (Slam Court Theme) from Street Hoop/ Street Slam/ Dunk Dream (Cart 1994, CD 1995) Composed by Tatsuya Kiuchi and Masaaki Iwasaki, Lyrics by Steve Miller, Arrangement for CD by Gamadelic
5 – “It’s an Invasion, Isn’t It?” from Ironclad / Choutetsu Brikin’ger (Cart 2009, CD 1996) Composed & Arranged by Hiroyuki Takei
6 – “Katakis (Dark Seed)” from Last Hope (2006) Composed by Rafael Dyll
7 – “Cool Wind” from Top Player’s Golf (Cart 1991, CD 1994) by an Unknown Composer
8 – “Fujiyama Oriental Golf Club – Japan” from Neo Turf Masters (1996) Composed by Takushi Hayamuta