.hack R1 vs R2: Best Music

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k-su
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.hack R1 vs R2: Best Music

Post by k-su » Thu Feb 03, 2011 12:58 am

Just as the title suggests, let's talk about which season of .hack we think has the better musical selection as a whole?

My opinion:
As much as I love R2's tracks, I'm leaning more towards R1. The music had such great atmosphere and strong sense of unity, despite the varying media. There was also a nice contrast between the lighthearted and more serious tracks, to where they'd smoothly flow like a wave. I can honestly say there are few tracks from my R1 collection that I skip on my ipod. With R2's music, the shift between media was jarring. Many of the subtle nuances from R1 were lost and despite Lien's unique sound, they get repetitive to the point where a lot of tracks could have been one song, instead of a dozen. Imo, their incredible vocals many times undermine most of their other tracks, so I usually find myself skipping around just to get to certain vocals, ballads or uptempo battle themes I like.

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Kuukai
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Re: .hack R1 vs R2: Best Music

Post by Kuukai » Thu Feb 03, 2011 11:20 am

Between the two I'd say G.U. The best leitmotifs from the original were reworked into better songs for G.U., in addition to other great themes, and then they had a triad of amazing vocal songs, and wacky robot music. I miss the Puchiguso theme and Macha's theme, but most of the other themes, as great background music as they may be, don't seem too good to me as standalone songs. I find myself skipping them on my mp3 player.

Link wasn't given as an option but I think it's the best hands down if you include stolen songs, and maybe the best even if you don't. Liar's Smile was reworked into an amazing theme for Atoli. Klarinette, Orgel, Cello, Haseo, Sora, AIKA, almost everyone in the game is accompanied by a memorable theme. Most of Link's "cutscenes" have very little movement and are highly dependent on the music to be effective. Xth Form is introduced by an amazingly stoic, powerful vocal piece. The game easily features four of the best original vocal songs in .hack (on top of stealing all the others), more than any single game series.

It shouldn't be that surprising that as Chikayo Fukuda gets more experience, resources, and internal company emphasis put on her work, the better that work will be. Not that she wasn't amazing to begin with, I just think she's even better now.

I don't think it's fair to talk about it "across media," if you mean comparing SIGN+Liminality+Infection+Mutation+Outbreak+Quarantine+Lotb+ZERO to Roots+Rebirth+Reminisce+Redemption+Online Jack+Trilogy to Link+Quantum+2024. It's just too varied, in many cases it's apples to oranges composerwise, and in addition just the amount of material in each season has gone down significantly. I guess if I had to distinguish them I would say R:1 is folk, R:2 is avant-garde and dystopian, while R:X is theatrical, but at that point it's more a matter of personal taste between those three dominating influences. And the change also reflects the direction of the story. On one end of the journey you have Yuki Kajiura, and on the other you have Ko Otani. Both famous, award-winning composers. I find it hard to choose a favorite between them, though I would hesitate to say Walking Party is Ko's best work.

Anyway those are my thoughts, I'm sure we'll see a lot more.

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Re: .hack R1 vs R2: Best Music

Post by k-su » Thu Feb 03, 2011 9:13 pm

Truly a clash in tastes, lol

I'll admit I was a bit more occupied with comparing the medias as a whole, but I see where you're coming from about their differences. I appreciate that insight, Kuukai.

As far as Link goes, I didn't wanna touch on this season, since there's still more of it to go, but I do think Link's has some of the best, though some of it may be my nostalgia from the throwbacks, but I enjoyed their selections and for me, it felt a bit more versatile. Even the variations of the menu music felt fresh, which isn't something I easily say in a lot of cases.

I usually don't mess around with narrowing down and comparing vocal songs across the board since I tend to go "OMG I LUV ALL U SO MUCH!", but I think the better mostly fall opposite R1. It's hard to pick between Link and GU on account of the difference in the amount of material they have, but I'll say I loved all of Link's vocals.

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