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Game music of the (holi)day: Ristar

Game: Ristar

Song: Ring Rink

Composer: Tomoko Sasaki

Above: Ring Rink from Ristar

Even though 2D mascot platformers were falling out of styleby 1995, Sega's long-armed Ristar still managed to charm the pants off enough people to make his game a minor classic. I personally didn't play much of the game, but upon hearing this delightfully cheery music, knew it had to be shared with everyone else who missed it the first time.

I first came across this song (and game, for the most part) while researching theTop 7... Winter Wonderlandslast year. The combination of frosty visuals with this upbeat, relentlessly happy tune made an immediate impression... and then Ristar built a little snowman! *Swooooon* So adorable, and the song never fails to cheer me up. Just put it on and let Ristar melt your troubles away...

Above: The next level on Planet Freon is called "Ice Scream," which sounds suspiciously likeStreets of Rage

Interesting fact about Ristar - he and Sonic are both said to have come from the sameidea. Sonic creator Yuji NakasaidSonic began as a rabbit withears that could extend outward, but he eventually became a hedgehog that could roll into and jump on enemies. Later, the reachyears thing blossomed into Ristar, whose stretchy limbs enable him to pull and yank himself around the level. It's a cute little game, one that's also on Wii's Virtual Console and various other Sega compilations, so if you've still got a fondness for 16-bit run-and-jumpery, check him out.

Walrus Cove by David Wise

Ice Cap Zone by Brooks, Buxer, Senhoue and (possibly) Michael Jackson

Derezzedby Daft Punk