Listen and download:
This is a sort of a sequel/companion to the Victoria’s Gift OST album, made for the same VVVVVV mapping contest (but scoring my own work this time instead of someone else’s). The map was initially meant to release in summer (hence the name), but due to judging taking longer than expected it was delayed to October (when it’s probably more fitting anyway). The music is inspired by Carpenter Brut, Mick Gordon, and vague memories of silly Halloween displays.
- Into the Graveyard: An introduction! I wanted to create a sort of “horror for the whole family” haunted house atmosphere, though the silliness is mostly toned down for now so I can ramp it up in “That’s How You Get Ghosts, Man”. This track ended up sounding like “Escape from Midwich Valley” by Carpenter Brut, if that track was somehow on low battery.
- Safe Experiment: A short jingle for when everything goes wrong.
- That’s How You Get Ghosts, Man: oooOOOooOoOoOOo don’t get scared!! It was a tricky balance to try and make this sound funny without seeming grating or condescending (after all, this plays when the level starts getting really difficult).
- All Hell Breaks Loose: This is the track I put the most work into, and the one that I started work on first. I actually made most of this before doing any of the tiles or level design for Hell, and tried my best to match the other elements with the music’s intensity level. There’s a lot going on here, it’s kind of a lame synthy version of Mick Gordon’s DOOM 2016 soundtrack.
The star of the show here is the growly bass synth, which is probably the most needlessly-complicated synth patch I’ve ever made. The input is just a sine wave, but tons of effects are applied in different parallel send tracks, like distortion, amp sims, lots of exciters, and weird sidechained reverb to fill in the gaps. A lot of the “knobs” are automated by a couple LFO’s for good measure, to make it sound less stale and more analog-y. I put “knobs” in quotes because none of this is analog hardware. It’s all digital! This thing is the primary Mick Gordon influence; it’s kind of my own spin on “the DOOM array”, which was a similar concept but with real hardware.
The other part of the track that really stands out is the choirs in the last third. These aren’t nearly as fancy (just a soundfont with reverb run through some light distortion and sidechained to the kick) but I’m really happy with how much they add to the track. They really make the setting feel like the most hellish fucking metal place imaginable. I don’t think I was able to capture this as closely with the tiles and design, but there wasn’t really much hope of accomplishing that in VVVVVV. I approximated it about as well as I could have, so I’m pretty happy with it.
There are two easter eggs hidden in this track. One’s pretty easy to figure out, the other is more difficult to uncover. Can you find them?
- I’d Like to Speak to Hell’s Manager: This basically just uses the same instrumentation as “All Hell Breaks Loose”. It closely scores a cutscene with lots of huge, comedic jarring ups and downs, so it sounds pretty weird outside of that context, haha.
- Let’s Never Come Back Here: This ending track is super weird and I’m not totally sure why I went in this direction? I guess it brings in some of that John Carpenter-ish synth horror music that isn’t really present elsewhere in the soundtrack. I remember being vaguely influenced by “IV” from the Devil Daggers soundtrack.