Okami

One of the smartest things I’ve ever done was leave my gaming systems behind when I moved from California to Florida.  Yet it was also the hardest.  But that’s what being it adult means.  It kinda sucks actually.  Gaming for me is the perfect escape. Depending on what I’m playing it is very easy for me to get lost for hours in an epic adventure and forget about my troubles.

On game that I wish I could play now is Okami.  That game was the definition of epic.  Within a week of playing it this game entered into my top 5 favorite games of all time.  And it’s placing is well deserved.  Perfect balance of excellent, innovative gameplay, interesting characters, storyline and of course, the soundtrack.

The music in this game is fantastic.  The music style is inspired classic traditional Japanese.  Which I absolutely loved.  I’ve always like the sound of Japanese instruments.  The way they play the flutes, strings, drums is so distinctly theirs and it’s breathtaking.  No one else can pull off their traditional sound and make it work.  Like with music from anywhere you have to really feel it.  And that’s only possible if you love it, live it, believe in it and own it.

They only released the soundtrack in Japan as they always seem to want to do.  But of course I did not let that stop me from obtaining it.  And so in all of its five disk glory, I uploaded it to my ipod and just let the beauty of the music suck me in.  Before I got the soundtrack there were a couple of spots in the game where the music was just so awesome I would stop and just let the music play.

One of those is my favorite “Ryoshima Coast” parts 1 and 2.  The game was already sweeping and epic, but when I got to this part of the game, it got even more epic.  Part 2 is the best part simply because that’s when the drums kick in and that reed flute becomes more prominent.  Whoever composed this piece, my hat is off to you good sir or madam.  You are a genius.  This tune did not do wonders for my total game time, but who the heck cares!

Another one that I’ll never forget how I felt when I first heard it was still pretty close to the beginning of the game.  “Confronting Ushiwaka” was intense and it wasn’t even that long.  It got the point across very quickly, being ‘Oh shit! It’s about to go down!’ Put this music before any conflict and you have already improved upon it 100%.

Speaking of conflict, “Red Helmet’s Extermination” was fun.  I actually allowed myself to get my ass handed to me on a plate just to get this music to keep playing.  Hearing this even out of context, you can still understand that you are in the midst of a battle of serious magnitude.

The only song with actual lyrics is “Reset”.  Which after I learned the name I accused the game makers of putting in subliminal messages cause that’s exactly what I did when I finally beat the game.  Reset and start all over again, but this time for my 100% completion cause that’s how I roll.  The instrumental version of this song played around the final battle of the game.  I freaking cried!  I cried like a newborn at the beauty and majestic message that was unfolding before me.  It is that powerful.  I had no clue what the song is saying or talking about.  Thanks to whoever translated it.  But the music is so soothing and beautiful.  I actually have it on my playlist for when I’m doing my yoga.

For anyone who hasn’t experienced this epic masterpiece I urge you to try to find it.  It’s a very rare game nowadays though, so finding it may very well be a challenge.  If you have played it and didn’t like it, something is very wrong with you and you obviously don’t know a good game when you see it.  As for myself I love it.  It’s everything that a game should be and in some cases a little more.  My next move is to obtain the sequel so that I can see if they were able to create the magic one more time.

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