P-Vock's Music Box: Tipping the Scales
Hello and welcome back to P-Vock's Music Box, the weekly blog in which I try to use incredible tunes to fire you up for the weekend. I've talked about all kinds of video games. From platformers, to action games, even to shooters. I like to think of myself as open-minded and would say my tastes are pretty diverse. So that means it is time to talk about a genre I have yet to really get into. Strategy games. I don't love them as much as action-packed slugfests or challenging platformers that make me feel pain, but I love strategy games. Whether turn-based or tactical, I just find them a wonderful mix of intense and therapeutic that I can never tire of. So for this entry, I'll talk about my favourite series of strategy games.
Fire Emblem is the greatest example I know of a media franchise that the heavy majority of people who have ever heard of it have never actually experienced an entry from it. Since Fire Emblem has more representation in Super Smash Bros than franchises like fucking Zelda (yes that angers me more than a little bit), it's very fair to say that most people know of this series because it gives us most of the hot anime characters in Smash Bros.
Fire Emblem is all about growing your army together and strategically using each of them to destroy your enemies and eventually kill God, who is usually a dragon. Also, there are sometimes dragons on your team that are sometimes people that many fans want to have sex with.
But actually, Fire Emblem isn't the most challenging strategy game, but it can still absolutely wreck you and make you want to throw your controller out the window. Luckily, one thing that always calms me down is good music. Fire Emblem ALWAYS delivers on this front. Let's start off simple.
Fire Emblem Awakening is one of the most beloved entries in this wonderful series for many fans. Some other fans really cannot stand it as it introduced some of the more controversial elements into the series. One thing that is absolutely not controversial, however, is the music. Conquest is one of the most perfect early-game battle tracks I've ever heard. It maintains a steady beat that motivates the player and prepares them to destroy their opponents while remaining somewhat subdued and relaxed, reminding the player to stay calm and think things through. It's good that keeps the player calm, because a carefree player moves their dream Dragon girl named Tiki one square too far and she gets killed which makes them cry. Not that I know what that's like...
I will die for her.
But alright, enough of that fun stuff. Let's get a little bit more fire up.
Coming from the most recent entry in the series, Three Houses, is Chasing Daybreak. This is a track that plays later in that game's story and certainly feels much more grandiose and epic. By this point in the game, you're invested in the plot and the game, and this kind of music elevates that desire to keep leaning forward as you carefully move your units and work to eliminate the opposition.
That's some damn epic music, but we can go further. We can go, even more epic.
OH HOT DAMN! There are few pieces of music that feel more fitting for a final boss than Twilight of the Gods from Fire Emblem Echoes: Shadows of Valentia. The intro is straight fire (emblem, not sorry). The choir makes the hairs on the back of your neck stand taller than they've ever stood. And then, the piano kicks in. I didn't think it was even humanly possible to hit piano keys that fast, but good golly I will not complain. Add to this in the actual game that your entire squad begins this battle by just verbally dunking on the villain before they begin moving and you've got one of the greatest moments of spectacle this stupid medium will ever have.
Shadows of Valentia is a downright cruel game. It has so many infamously punishing and often unfair missions for you to just barely make it through. But if there's a piece of media where I'd say the finale makes the whole journey worth it, it's this damn game. This is how you do a final boss theme.
Alright, now that I'm fully erect and ready to stab a god in the face, I would say it's about time we end this. I hope your weekend is as incredible as any of these pieces of music, and I'll see you right back here next week with another suggestion from my Music Box. Stay Brutal!