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Cruise Elroy
January 29, 2010 5:32 PM   Subscribe

Cruise Elroy, by mefi's own danb, is a blog about games, specifically video games and music.

In the past, he has covered the music of Mother 3 and its battle system, gone over Ocarina of Time's music in six parts (plus Koji Kondo's favorite cadence and SSBB's OoT medley), described the use of irregular meter in videogames, pointed out the jazzy basslines of Sonic the Hedgehog, and even examined what the 1-up jingle says about the rest of the game.
posted by flatluigi (24 comments total) 35 users marked this as a favorite

 
Is it self-linking when a fellow user links it for you?
posted by clarknova at 5:55 PM on January 29, 2010


It is not!

Wow, thanks for posting this link; looks to have a lot of fun stuff to read!
posted by barnacles at 5:59 PM on January 29, 2010


Now I wanna play some Ocarina of Time. I actually got it on Wii VC not too long ago, but put it down. Video game music is unfairly overlooked - a lot of it is really amazing stuff on its own merits. Chrono Trigger is probably the canonical example.
posted by DecemberBoy at 6:05 PM on January 29, 2010


clarknova: "Is it self-linking when a fellow user links it for you?"

Totally not.
posted by flatluigi at 6:07 PM on January 29, 2010


Also, come on -- if I asked someone to post my site on MeFi I'd at least make sure the caching plugin was configured correctly first. :-)
posted by danb at 6:12 PM on January 29, 2010 [1 favorite]


Hah, I'm sorry! I went here to look for discussion on the OoT posts and was shocked that your blog hadn't been posted even once. At least I didn't tell people to dig through your archives for more excellent posts, right?

(oops)

also I'm still eagerly awaiting some posts on Majora's Mask, which I personally think is the best Zelda game in nearly every way.
posted by flatluigi at 6:17 PM on January 29, 2010


Cruise Elroy has long been in my feed reader. A good site!
posted by JHarris at 6:22 PM on January 29, 2010


Also, come on -- if I asked someone to post my site on MeFi I'd at least make sure the caching plugin was configured correctly first. :-)

That's just what you'd want us to think!
posted by clarknova at 6:36 PM on January 29, 2010


One of my favorite gaming blogs. Deserves as much attention as it can get.
posted by eggplantplacebo at 6:54 PM on January 29, 2010


Although not highlighted by the post, the non-musical posts are pretty great too.

So..uh... do I need to play Earthbound before I try to play Mother 3?
posted by graventy at 7:30 PM on January 29, 2010


Where has this blog been hiding? This is the sort of analysis that I love to read.
posted by Servo5678 at 7:31 PM on January 29, 2010


It always makes me happy to see Mother 3 get recognition, despite its lack of official English release. Tomato's work on the fan translation is still amazing to me.
posted by Earl the Polliwog at 8:20 PM on January 29, 2010 [2 favorites]


I'd recommend playing Earthbound first, for two reasons: first, that Mother 3 does contain some Earthbound references. It could be entertaining in a different way to play M3 and then EB, though. But the other reason is that the battle system is considerably improved between EB and M3 - play EB first, and it'll seem like a nice but overly simplistic battle system, and then you'll move to M3 and go "wow". Going backwards might be a little disappointing.

Both games carry my highest recommendation, whichever order you play them in.
posted by Earl the Polliwog at 8:24 PM on January 29, 2010 [1 favorite]


Wow, this is great! Thanks for this post.
posted by lazaruslong at 8:26 PM on January 29, 2010


I need to go back and finish Mother 3. I'm maybe halfway into it, but got stuck on a boss battle and put it down. It's a really amazing game, pretty much the pinnacle of 2D console RPGs, which are probably my favorite kind of game.
posted by DecemberBoy at 9:10 PM on January 29, 2010


Plus, you'll be able to get the Mother 3 references in Super Smash Brothers Brawl if you play it. You'd think they would have at least released it in the US after characters, music and settings from it appeared in the most popular game of 2008, but no.
posted by DecemberBoy at 9:11 PM on January 29, 2010


Great blog. It introduced me to Don't Look Back, and for that alone I will be forever grateful.
posted by joedan at 10:39 PM on January 29, 2010


So..uh... do I need to play Earthbound before I try to play Mother 3?

Not technically, the Earthbound references aren't necessary to get although the last chapters are rather thick with them. The game takes place in a different world, or the same world after so much time has passed that it is completely unrecognizable.

I would suggest playing Earthbound first, however, because it is an excellent game, and recognizing those bits from it, when they finally arrive, in Mother 3 makes a wonderful thing even better.

The great thing about Earthbound (and in this area it is slightly better than M3) is how it uses the conventions of JRPGs without being enslaved by them. This is the furtherest thing from the excesses of Squaresoft. It is a thoughtful story, goofy in places but knowing that it is goofy instead of asking the player to just ride along with it, filled with wit and wonder. It doesn't have the heavy-handed, leaden bible-reference-loaded, light-against-darkness plot of your typical anime-inspired fantasy quest game. There is no angst. There are no cat-girls. There is no evil analogue for the Catholic Church, lead by Super Mega Pope with Magic Power.

You can have pizza delivered to you while out in the field. You can ride a bicycle for absolutely no good reason. You can go to just about every hotel in the game after every major game event, stay the night, and after waking up the next morning every hotel's complementary newspaper will have a new headline. Your character gets homesick at random moments; cure this condition by calling your mother from any phone. Exactly one if the decorative drawers in all the rooms in the game actually contains an object, an "Insignificant Item." There is a man whose greatest ambition is to become a dungeon; I will not spoil how that particular ambition turns out. You can buy a house. A photographer takes pictures of your party along the way, and they are presented in the background during the closing credits. Once you beat the last boss you can go back to every damn person in the entire game and they each will have a congratulatory message to give you. A dog in the first town gets possessed by the spirit of the game designer, and if you talk to him during the end phase he gives you an address to write to HAL to tell them what you thought about the game. MR. SATURN. There is so much more than what I've said here. It plays like it was made by someone who has done more with his life than play video games and watch anime. It puts other JRPGs to shame. Do not miss it.
posted by JHarris at 1:11 AM on January 30, 2010 [26 favorites]


JHarris, that is the most ringing endorsement of EarthBound I have ever heard, and believe me that I've heard a lot of endorsements.
posted by Servo5678 at 2:04 AM on January 30, 2010


That is a fantastic blog. I'm a pretty casual gamer, but found myself just now reading it for over an hour. Great stuff.
posted by smoke at 3:49 AM on January 30, 2010


You can ride a bicycle for absolutely no good reason.

Other than to listen to the uplifting music that plays all the while.

posted by ersatz at 4:21 AM on January 30, 2010



You can ride a bicycle for absolutely no good reason.

Other than to listen to the uplifting music that plays all the while.
posted by ersatz at 4:21 AM on January 30 [+] [!]



Doot doot doot doot doot doodoo. Doot dooda doot doot dooooo.


I'd recommend Earthbound first though, Mother 3 has the same sense of playfulness but there's also a brutal dark streak running through it. If you don't think it's possible to be unsettled by a game with SNES-era graphics, well, you haven't played Mother 3.

There's also a great deal more freedom in Earthbound, Mother 3 is ultra-linear. Though the attention to detail in both is astonishing. This is an excellent review of Earthbound, it begins:

Shigesato Itoi, producer of Mother 2 and two other games, says in a recent interview that videogames are, at their best, like prostitutes. A prostitute, he is quick to distinguish, is a lot like a lover, only that it requires no emotional input from its momentary significant other.


Also, Earthbound has one of the funniest, cruelest anti-piracy measures in videogame history. (major ending spoiler at the bottom of that link)
posted by Ndwright at 6:57 AM on January 30, 2010 [2 favorites]


I should say about that "excellent review" that it's by tim rogers, who provides some nice trivia about the game but kind of goes overboard with the off-topic stuff in it (as he often does). His piece on Katamari Damacy was what got me interested in that game, but man is it it self-indulgent at times.
posted by JHarris at 12:50 PM on January 30, 2010


About that anti-piracy measure, it actually kind of rings a harsh note in such an incredible game considering that, since the game is nearly impossible to rerelease in English now due to the changed legal landscape in the U.S. (the game does a lot of referencing, especially musically), we're getting to a point where more people may have played it through an emulator than on a SNES.
posted by JHarris at 12:53 PM on January 30, 2010


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