Friday, September 21, 2012

Random Shots: The Music That Sold Me An N64

  • In 1996, I somehow found myself in grad school at UCLA. A good friend of mine from high school was also attending, so we ended up rooming together. This guy was a genuine, no questions about it, Nintendo fanboy. To each their own. For instance, I'll be buying the new Xbox as soon as I can, but have never bought a Playstation unless it was used and approaching the end of its life cycle.

  • So that summer between terms, he bought a Ninentdo 64 and what is arguably its best game, Super Mario 64. I was enthralled. Platforming in 3D (from back when that meant something different) was finally down right and I loved it.

  • My favorite level in Super Mario 64 was, without any hesitation, Jolly Roger Bay. The level involves swimming around an underwater stage wherein, at one point, you lift a sunked ship from the ocean floor. The best part of the stage, though, is the music.

  • I remember turning the game on, jumping into the world, and then letting the music play. Even now it brings back memories of a simpler time. If only all game music was so evocative. When we went our separate ways (a story for another day), he took his system and I needed my own. And that's how I ended up with an N64.

  • A few years ago, I found this remix that is ridiculously amazing. Enjoy!

© 2012 Marty Runyon. All rights reserved.


  1. Super Mario 64, one of the best games ever. That and Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time. 10 years after my first N64, I bought another one for cheap off ebay while I was in college, for reliving those two games alone.

  2. The density of good games on the N64 wasn't very high, but the good games it did get were fantastic. In addition to the classics everyone has heard of (SM64, Zelda, Goldeneye, Perefcet Dark, ect.) it also had some less well known games that were just as good. Blast Corps (from Rare pre- Golden Eye) was incredible. Body Harvest is another obscure game I really liked. It played sort of like GTA meets a RTS. I was also a big fan of the first Turok game (the later ones slightly bit), though I know opinions of it were mixed. It had good music, really fluid gameplay, and the later guns felt butch. You don't likely want to sit through the whole thing, but you can see some of the more berserk weapons at around the 3 minute mark:

    It's a shame that the foggy graphics of the N64 have held up so poorly. I still find mine fun enough to fire up once in a blue moon.