VOGONS


First post, by Shreddoc

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I'm slowly making my way through various retro computing experiences, which I could not afford back in the 80's and 90's. I'm in the midst of the Roland SC-55, and also starting to explore the MT-32.

I didn't have many difficulties compiling a Short List (as opposed to Long List) of games to work through, to experience the very best of the SC-55. However, I am finding it more challenging to narrow down a list of Must Have MT-32 Experiences, so to speak.

Initial Starting List

Monkey Island 2: LeChuck's Revenge

This is [was] the one real success for my list, so far. Iconic, nostalgic, and the MT-32 gives the game an incredibly rich sounding set of timbres to play it's well-composed and atmospheric tunes through. Monkey Island 1 is also good of course, though I'd count it as the lesser experience musically. Iirc there are scenes of MI1 which don't have any background music at all.

Indiana Jones and the Fate Of Atlantis

Also on the Lucasfilmarts side of things, I guess Fate Of Atlantis is another given for flagship MT-32 greatness, alongside it's aforementioned SCUMM-iMuse cousin MI2.

Loom (original EGA version, plus Roland patch)

As mentioned, Loom wasn't originally MT-32 - it needed a patch to add support. Still, I can't go past the music of Tchaikovsky, transcribed and arranged for the Roland MT-32/LAPC-1 by George "The Fat Man" Sanger! And in a game based around music. For those reasons it gets special inclusion in my list, but I can see how it's arguable.

Various Sierra titles :

As one might say in the retro confessions thread, "I don't play these much". So, while I'm aware that (until they switched to primarily GM at some stage) they are a rich mine of well-regarded MT-32 soundtracks, it wouldn't be unfair to say that I'm mainly looking to compile a list beyond "all Sierra titles between years xxx and xxx".

Having said that I'd be very happy to hear specific recommendations of "xxx and xxx are typically regarded as the best Sierra MT-32 soundtracks".

The following Sierra shortlist is courtesy of member Spikey - cheers!

Spikey also mentions: "The good news is, for most of the titles I mentioned, you can download digital soundtracks, or MIDI's for the MT-32, if you don't want to play the games".

  • Leisure Suit Larry 3
  • King's Quest V
  • Police Quest 1 (VGA)
  • Space Quest 4
  • Eco Quest 1
  • Willy Beamish
  • Laura Bow 2

More User Contributions

Castlevania (or "Akumajou Dracula", as it's known) - Sharp X68000

leileilol and SuperDeadite* highly recommend this. *"These days, X68000 hardware is insanely expensive, but emulators do support real MIDI output, and it's worth the hassle to setup for sure. Konami truly went all out on the custom patches for this game".
See https://youtu.be/GO2E4U3pkuM

Dune

Pierre32 thinks this is a good 'un!

Falcon 3.0

Pierre32 reports "The score is nothing life changing, but it's a solid military theme that is right at home on the MT-32. In conjunction with SB sound effects and this game being the excellent all-round package that it is, it's a great experience and should be on the MT-32 owner's list."

Legend of Kyrandia
Silpheed

DaveJustDave says: "Definitely silpheed. that was the only reason i've always wanted an MT-32. Thexder 2 Firehawk sounds great on the roland too."

Star Trek - 25th Anniversary, & Judgement Rites

"Both have an interesting err.. "fascinating" musical score. 😀", says Jo22.

TFX

(note: use 2nd generation MT-32 for proper results)

Thexder 2 Firehawk

Spikey says "As for Sierra Japanese imports, they're all pretty great on the MT-32, although Sorcerian has weak points. The other 3, Silpheed, Zeliard and Thexder Firehawk are great. Not in my top 10, but still great."

Ultima Underworld

newtmonkey and Dominus recommend this game : they add that, while it doesn't use custom patches, it shows off a very impressive contrast compared to the OPL music, and that with a CM32 or 64 you get some extra water sound effects.

Ultima VII - Part 1, & Part 2

Dominus is well into these.

Utopia: The Creation of a Nation

Salient reckons: "For 'unmissable' MT-32 experiences I must add TFX and Utopia: The Creation of a Nation."

Partials, a.k.a. specific game sections where the MT-32 experience is awesome

Humans - Main Theme
Nova 9 - Introduction
Silpheed - Introduction

--
What else needs to be on this *MT-32 Absolutely Unmissables Shortlist*???

I will edit this post over time.

Last edited by Shreddoc on 2020-11-23, 01:35. Edited 27 times in total.

Reply 3 of 21, by Spikey

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Loom I actually preferred the Adlib score! I don't think it was composed originally for the MT-32.

As for Sierra, the best MT-32 scores are, in my book:
- LSL3
- LSL5
- KQ5
- PQ1VGA
- SQ4
- Codename: Iceman
- Eco Quest 1
- Willy Beamish
- Laura Bow 2

Other:
- Legend of Kyrandia 1

Reply 4 of 21, by Shreddoc

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Spikey wrote on 2020-11-10, 06:22:
Loom I actually preferred the Adlib score! I don't think it was composed originally for the MT-32. […]
Show full quote

Loom I actually preferred the Adlib score! I don't think it was composed originally for the MT-32.

As for Sierra, the best MT-32 scores are, in my book:
- LSL3
- LSL5
- KQ5
- PQ1VGA
- SQ4
- Codename: Iceman
- Eco Quest 1
- Willy Beamish
- Laura Bow 2

Other:
- Legend of Kyrandia 1

Yeah, Loom needed a patch for MT-32. Still, I can't go past the music of Tchaikovsky, transcribed and arranged for the Roland MT-32/LAPC-1 by George "The Fat Man" Sanger! And in a game based around music. For those reasons it gets special inclusion in my list, but I can see how it's arguable.

Also on the Lucasfilmarts side of things, I guess Fate Of Atlantis is another given for flagship MT-32 greatness, alongside it's aforementioned SCUMM-iMuse cousin MI2.

Cheers for the score recommendations! I mean to go through a few Sierra titles, I don't love point-and-click gameplay as a regular thing, but the special effort and attention put into the music is really something.

I have happy music memories of quite a few Sierra games, some with FM, and some even merely with PC speaker (e.g. Greensleeves playing in one of the King's Quests, iirc).

Reply 7 of 21, by Spikey

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Yeah, Loom needed a patch for MT-32. Still, I can't go past the music of Tchaikovsky, transcribed and arranged for the Roland MT […]
Show full quote

Yeah, Loom needed a patch for MT-32. Still, I can't go past the music of Tchaikovsky, transcribed and arranged for the Roland MT-32/LAPC-1 by George "The Fat Man" Sanger! And in a game based around music. For those reasons it gets special inclusion in my list, but I can see how it's arguable.

Also on the Lucasfilmarts side of things, I guess Fate Of Atlantis is another given for flagship MT-32 greatness, alongside it's aforementioned SCUMM-iMuse cousin MI2.

Cheers for the score recommendations! I mean to go through a few Sierra titles, I don't love point-and-click gameplay as a regular thing, but the special effort and attention put into the music is really something.

I have happy music memories of quite a few Sierra games, some with FM, and some even merely with PC speaker (e.g. Greensleeves playing in one of the King's Quests, iirc).

The good news is, for most of the titles I mentioned, you can download digital soundtracks, or MIDI's for the MT-32, if you don't want to play the games.

If I pare down the list to games I recommend as well as unmissable (in my view) MT-32 music:

- LSL3
- KQ5
- PQ1VGA
- SQ4
- Eco Quest 1
- Willy Beamish
- Laura Bow 2

In particular, LSL3 and Laura Bow 2 stand out, and you don't really need to have played previous games in the series, especially for Laura Bow. Eco Quest and Willy Beamish are "kids" games, but the former has a lot of great art and a relaxing gameplay style, and Willy Beamish, if you click the click events, has satire all the way through it. It can be played at a "kids" or an "adult" level, there's stuff I didn't get even in my teens!

Incidentally, let me know if you're interested in "unmissable" SC-55 Sierra games. 😀

Reply 10 of 21, by Salient

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For 'unmissable' MT-32 experiences I must add TFX and Utopia: The Creation of a Nation

MIDI comparison website: << Wavetable.nl >>
(Always) looking for: Any Wavetable daughterboard, MIDI Module (GM/GS/XG)

Reply 11 of 21, by DaveJustDave

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Definitely silpheed. that was the only reason i've always wanted an MT-32.

Thexder 2 Firehawk sounds great on the roland too.

darry wrote on 2020-11-10, 16:58:

Silpheed intro is one of my favourites on MT-32 .

End credits really shine on OPL2, IMHO .

I have no clue what I'm doing! If you want to watch me fumble through all my retro projects, you can watch here: https://www.youtube.com/user/MrDavejustdave

Reply 12 of 21, by Spikey

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Haven't played it, but I believe TFX was composed on a CM-32L.

As for Sierra Japanese imports, they're all pretty great on the MT-32, although Sorcerian has weak points. The other 3, Silpheed, Zeliard and Thexder Firehawk are great. Not in my top 10, but still great.

Reply 13 of 21, by Salient

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Spikey wrote on 2020-11-11, 07:52:

Haven't played it, but I believe TFX was composed on a CM-32L.

Here I must correct myself a little; TFX won't sound correct on a 1st generation MT-32, but will on a second generation MT-32.

MIDI comparison website: << Wavetable.nl >>
(Always) looking for: Any Wavetable daughterboard, MIDI Module (GM/GS/XG)

Reply 14 of 21, by gdjacobs

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Spikey wrote on 2020-11-10, 15:09:

- Laura Bow 2

I really like the GM (after patch) arrangement of Dagger as well. Comparing the two is really interesting.

All hail the Great Capacitor Brand Finder

Reply 15 of 21, by Jo22

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Star Trek 25th anniversary and Star Trek Judgement Rites.
Both have an interesting err.. "fascinating" musical score. 😀

"Time, it seems, doesn't flow. For some it's fast, for some it's slow.
In what to one race is no time at all, another race can rise and fall..." - The Minstrel

//My video channel//

Reply 16 of 21, by Pierre32

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I want to add Falcon 3.0 to this list. The score is nothing life changing, but it's a solid military theme that is right at home on the MT-32. In conjunction with SB sound effects and this game being the excellent all-round package that it is, it's a great experience and should be on the MT-32 owner's list.

Reply 17 of 21, by newtmonkey

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Ultima Underworld is one of my go-to games for showing the MT-32 off, even though it doesn't use any custom patches. The difference between OPL and MT-32 is like night and day.

Reply 18 of 21, by SuperDeadite

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I will second X68000 Castlevania. These days, X68000 hardware is insanely expensive, but emulators do support real MIDI output, and it's worth the hassle to setup for sure. Konami truly went all out on the custom patches for this game. Here's my ancient vid of the original computer in action. Most Youtube vids are using the prerecorded version of the music contained on Chronicles for Playstation. Also I am using a CM-64 here, but the game is pure MT-32.
https://youtu.be/GO2E4U3pkuM

Modules: CM-64, CM-500, SC-55MkII, SC-88 Pro, SY22, TG100, MU2000EX, PLG100-SG, PLG150-DR, PLG150-AN, SG01k, NS5R, GZ-50M, SN-U110-07, SN-U110-10, Pocket Studio 5, Dreamblaster X2, McFly

Reply 19 of 21, by Dominus

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newtmonkey wrote on 2020-11-20, 15:58:

Ultima Underworld is one of my go-to games for showing the MT-32 off, even though it doesn't use any custom patches. The difference between OPL and MT-32 is like night and day.

Ultima Underworld is one of the rare cases that is even better with a CM32 (or CM64) as it makes use of some water sfx that the Mt32 does not have. But that has nothing to do with the music 😀

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