Today is Pokémon Day! Two new games were announced today: Sword and Shield for the Nintendo Switch. I've been playing Pearl on my DS Lite and Moon on my 3DS lately, so I thought this would be a good time to talk about the impact these games have had on my life and my music.
My first adventure in the world of Pokémon was Pokémon Pearl on the Nintendo DS. I came pretty late into the series. Many of my friends had started on Ruby or Leafgreen. I fell in love with the series and now have 20 of the 28 released games ranging from Blue on the Game Boy to Ultra Moon on the 3DS. Each set of games has a different story, a different region, and different Pokémon to discover, and I've spent many hours throughout the last 11 years playing these games to death.
But what about music? Well it turns out that the Pokémon games have some of the most fun and memorable soundtracks of any video games. Name any of the games and I can sing either an overworld theme or a battle theme because they're just that catchy. Several of my quartet arrangements from high school are from the Pokémon games. Generation 2 (Gold/Silver/Crystal) on the Game Boy Color really got me into 8-bit music, and it really helped me learn a lot about how music and sound on the Game Boy worked.
Some of my favorite music from the Pokémon games are Route 11 from Kanto, Route 27 from Johto/Kanto, the Gym Leader battle from Johto, Professor Rowan's theme from Sinnoh, Route 104 from Hoenn, and the Ho-oh battle from Heartgold and Soulsilver.
Pokémon was a huge inspiration for me both as a composer and as a video game player. I'm so excited for Sword and Shield on the Switch, and of course I'm excited to hear the music. Every time I hear new Pokémon music, it gives me nostalgia, even if I don't know it yet. There's just this feeling of adventure that comes with every game, and to me it never gets old.