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Dreamland Wanderer

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This is for NG's Video Game Music Challenge. The theme is "8-bit Wandering." In case you're interested to know more about this challenge, here's the link to the NG forum thread: https://www.newgrounds.com/bbs/topic/1459468/1

I restarted this from scratch probably about 7 times lol. Anyway, here's what I got for the 8th attempt. Thanks for listening. :)

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VGMC, 8-Bit Wandering: "Dreamland Wanderer" Review

I'm really blown away by this entry!! There are so many details scattered throughout it, particularly in its sound design. Even from the first sounds alone, there's so much to unpack: the swelling bitcrushed chords, the mega-distorted synthesizer lead, and the bitcrushed pluck fading in alongside it are already filled with so much sonic depth. You also utilize a ton of different timbres of bitcrush across all the instruments in this song, somehow managing to consistently make them sound great, even at their most crushed. The section at 1:35 and its eventual fusion with the second chorus is particularly stunning, the glitchy top loop and murky percussion blend together so well with the vast, sweeping chords you employ here. Everything else about the piece (its structure, composition, etc.) are interesting enough to carry the song through its 3 minute run-time, but simple enough to allow all the wonderful sounds in this song to have their spotlight.

If there's one thing I have to critique, it would be how you convey the chords of the two choruses. Specifically, I think you need more bass during these sections - right now, without a reliable presence of the chords' root, it's harder to decipher them than it should be. I know this was probably a tricky thing to try and balance, with the kick being so bassy, but I think you could pull it off with the right amount of sidechain. Also, I kind of wish the section at 1:35 were a bit louder, or crunchier, but that might be passing the threshold of personal preference.

Overall, really phenomenal work! This is a super evocative piece, and a definite favorite of mine from this event. Keep it up! :)

FateModified responds:

Thanks Stardew! I was excited to see your prompt of "8-bit Wandering" in this challenge, because I LOVE that type of video game music, with "Hyper Light Drifter" being one of my favorite vgm soundtracks, actually.

Thanks for all of the great feedback, and I'm really glad you like it. :)

Hello FateModified,

The beginning is a rare "hip hop" rythm I'm able to listen too and it's the first good point, the melody is good, good useful of elements of repetition, the instruments give a good strange ensemble without being to weird, you have a good attention of what to do when and how!


FateModified responds:

Thank you! :)

The first couple instances of bit crushing surprised me a bit, but then it quickly started to fit well with the rest. I love the otherworldly voices, the really fit well in an environmental setup. I really dig the drums, so smooth and easy to bob your head at.

Well done : )

FateModified responds:

Thank you so much! :)

Dang, really a fan of this one. Not sure I can explain why very well, but first of all Im super impressed by how much bitcrush you managed to use ( thats a lot of bitcrush ) while still making the track sound so good
I can't find anything to complain about, every part feels like it's slowly transitioning to the next which I guess really helps with the "wandering" sensation
I've listened to it like 6 times already while trying to write this so yeah, not even boring, good job

FateModified responds:

Wow, thanks! I’m glad you like it. I’ve been falling in love more and more with the bit crush effect, so I’ll probably have more overly-bitcrushed stuff in the future lol. Thanks for the comment! :)

I like it a lot. It reminds me of something from an area in Mechonis in Xenoblade Chronicles. Only thing that bugs me a little bit is how the snare is panned out to the side. I think it just feels wrong to have the strong beat of the track not be in the center. Regardless, I think this was very good. Good work!

FateModified responds:

Thanks very much! The snare sample I used came that way. I actually tried panning it more to the right but then it just didn’t sound good to me. To my ears the initial transient of the snare hit is pretty much center but the reverb tail is panned left, but I could be wrong.

I’ll check out Xenoblade Chronicles, I’m not familiar with it. Thanks again for the comment.

Credits & Info

3.99 / 5.00

Jan 31, 2021
9:59 PM EST
Video Game
File Info
7.4 MB
3 min 14 sec

Licensing Terms

Please contact me if you would like to use this in a project. We can discuss the details.