The sound room of Wario Land 4 still bothers me

Twenty years after its release, GBA Classic Wario Land 4 Still a fascinating artifact. It is not only a mature platform game comparable to any 2D Mario outing in the same era, but also a clear commitment to develop aesthetics for Wario games, which provides information for many of Wario’s subsequent appearances. There are many factors that contribute to this texture, such as Wario’s iconic vulgar charm or Charles Martine’s vocal performance. However, what makes the biggest impression in 2021 is the strange audio experience in the game. Wario Land 4The soundtrack, especially the unforgettable “sound room” unlocking function in the game, conveys a unique sound for Wario, which is still related to the character decades later.

In order to understand Wario Land 4, You just have to look at it’s Introductory cutscenes And the title screen. When Wario started his car and began his journey, the small speakers of the Game Boy Advance rumbled, listening to an energetic funk song whose lyrics were illegible due to the heavy compression of the audio. When Wario drove through the endless desert landscape, the same track would sound on the main menu until you finally pressed the start button to prompt him to move forward. This intro sequence has a sense of rhythm, no matter how many times you experience it, you will not lose energy.

Image: Nintendo

In the gameplay, the soundtrack covers an impressive variety of genres, accompanied by Wario’s frenetic nature of jumping between different worlds. Most of these tracks are fascinating loops without lyrics, they try to complement the place they are used, from the optimistic romantic pop music to the visceral avant-garde rock that accompanies each level of timed escape.

However, the game’s sound room is where the audio experience is Wario Land 4 It’s strange things. There are 16 brand new tracks in the sound room, unlocked by finding hidden discs in the secret passages of each level. Each of these tracks will stimulate you with ominous abstract titles such as “About that shepherd” or”Blood pressure tomorrow. “If you think you have suddenly accessed the soundtrack of another game, that’s forgivable, especially when you click play and play a strange audio sequence.

When you listen to it for the first time, you may try to establish a connection between the track names and the sounds they mark. The first song “About That Shepherd” is just a few dogs barking in a windy field, and very few sheep barking. certainly, You might think, A sort of The life of a shepherd possible Sounds like that“Tomorrow’s blood pressure” has a heavy, industrial feel, a series of buzzing and discordant notes conveying a sense of imminent danger. This is in line with the idea of ​​tomorrow’s blood pressure, it will inspire anxiety, because it is a future event, forcing you to consider all the dangerous possibilities of the upcoming blood pressure while waiting. Although the names and sounds of the two tracks have the closest connection, there is still a trace of ambiguity, which is the key to the core weirdness of the song. Wario Land 4 Sound room.

However, the two tracks above give a false sense of security because of the connection between them Wario Land 4′The studio tracks and their titles will only become more obscure. For most sound room audio, there is no obvious connection between titles, sounds, and the few visual effects that accompany them. “Lamppost of the moon“Simply reversed the melody of the most optimistic lyric in the game,”Palm tree paradise, “To create something more whimsical and weird.”Short futon“It can only be described as a concise, whispered communication with potential musical accompaniment: this is a very normal thing, but it is Wario Land 4 Combine it with music. These disturbing sounds take advantage of Game Boy’s limited audio capabilities, vague titles, and rough premises to create confusing and even scary sound bytes.

Wario Land 4The sound room is a virtual music box, both fun and disturbing. When I first played this game when I was a kid, it interested me a lot, and it continues to fascinate me today. Although many games today have unlockable bonus content, there are few experimental works of art that can inspire the search for collectibles so you can giggle (and maybe think nervously) any strange discs that will be unearthed next. . In hindsight, being part of Wario’s game felt like at home.The sound room is a set of strange and satisfying musical disturbances, centered around low-key strangeness Wario Software The title has become everything.

Although we may never get another game in Wario Land series, All aspects of its charm are reflected in the WarioWare experience. The WarioWare series likes peculiar audio, Wario Land 4 most Keep isolated from this sound room, embrace the fusion of ordinary and music, and create some very alternative micro-games. Through its audio, Wario Land 4 feel like The development of Wario has become a key evolutionary link. The sound room is an essential part of it, even if it is still disturbing.