Saturday, 19 May 2012

Streets of Rage 2 - Under Logic (Yuzo Koshiro)

Streets of Rage was Sega's answer to Capcom's Final Fight series; a city-wide crime spree perpetrated by a violent street gang, overseen by master criminal Mr. X, and harkens back to the days of the Sega Mega Drive and home releases in the early 1990s. It spawned two sequels on the platform, re-releases on multi-game cartridges and numerous fan-made remixes.

This was the first Streets of Rage game I got into seriously, which delivered some excellent visuals, a variety of movesets, clearly defined characters (all with unique moves and obvious advantages / disadvantages) and of course, some of the best kicking synth techno that the Mega Drive could produce. Yuzo Koshiro returned to provide a full soundtrack for the sequel of the 1991 hit beat 'em up, which continues in grand fashion by building on the original's classic score of Detroit techno. All this combined, it's not hard to see why these games have such a rabid fanbase.

"Under Logic" is one of the best highlights from Streets of Rage 2's soundtrack, featuring in the fourth level where the protagonists find themselves fighting through a ton of bad guys in a baseball stadium before discovering a hidden lift under the pitcher's mound. The Shamen, a British dance band at the time, had a top 10 hit with "Move Any Mountain" and this track from Yuzo plays an obvious homage to The Shamen in terms of style and progression. Other great examples are "Go Straight" and "Bar Hopping" - go check the rest out on Youtube.

It's a shame that Streets of Rage 3 had such hit and miss music in it, but this definitely sets the scene for beating through the gangs of a fictional US city. If you want more of the same, the original two titles are worth picking up on Steam or for a Mega Drive/Genesis emulator. There is even a total conversion called Streets of Rage: Remake  from Bombergames (despite Sega issuing Cease and Desist orders - good luck with that).

Streets of Rage: Remake