Game music of the day: Super Castlevania IV

Welcome to GamesRadar's daily blast of all things pertaining to the ever-growing field of game music. Each post will introduce new sounds, games, composers and fan-made remixes of gaming's greatest aural achievements.

April 9, 2010

Game: Super Castlevania IV

Song: Prologue

Composer: Masanori Adachi and Taro Kudou

Above: "Prologue" from Super Castlevania IV

Last night Konami held its annual gamer's day even in San Francisco, the highlight of which was its extensive demonstration of the upcoming Castlevania reboot,Lords of Shadow. Why does Castlevania need a reboot? Because the series has lost some of its "oomph" over the years and desperately needs a modern take. Shadow looks to be that game that ushers the franchise into 3D, but how did Konami begin its presentation? With a two-minute montage of game footage set to a classic Super NES song from Castlevania IV.

This Prologue track plays while the game's brief story text scrolls across the screen. While it is slow and hardly a "catchy" song, it is entirely indicative of the game'satmospheric soundtrack. The fact that Konami saw fit to playa song from 1991over videogame footage taken in 2010 shows just how powerfulthe musicreally is. Put on some headphones andlet this stuff wash over you.Picture a crumbling, haunted castle overrun with all manner of beasts, and you're in there all alone. Perfect.

Even though Castlevania has a storied history of tunes, like say Bloody Tears and Vampire Killer (which will be addressed later for sure), embedded above is another song specific to Super IV. I adore the depth of these songs, with several layers playing at once, each one memorable and impressive, but as a whole they make a soundtrack that was, at the time, almost unimaginable on a cartridge system. The game's available on Wii's Virtual Console, so if you're not familair with one of the best 16-bit games of all time, download it and see why I've been losing my shit over it for almost 20 years.

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Brett Elston

A fomer Executive Editor at GamesRadar, Brett also contributed content to many other Future gaming publications including Nintendo Power, PC Gamer and Official Xbox Magazine. Brett has worked at Capcom in several senior roles, is an experienced podcaster, and now works as a Senior Manager of Content Communications at PlayStation SIE.