Still Alive (Theme from “Mirror’s Edge”)
Still Alive (The Theme From Mirror’s Edge)- The Remixes
I hope it’s not too terribly boring for you folks when I talk about how I came across a certain song. I confess that it’s terrible interesting to me. There are so many vectors for music discovery.
“Mine is a mind forever journeying, always exploring, hungering, thirsting, yearning to push against the boundaries of the familiar and to stride boldly into a larger and more satisfying world” — good stuff, but all that pushing and striding! It just seems like a lot of work.
“Recommendations from friends whose taste you respect” — I have friends. But if they had taste, would they be hanging out with me? It’s a flawed algorithm.
“Major publishers work extremely hard to cultivate new talent and market them effectively” — which means that I can probably get more satisfaction from being part of the movement to turn all of that into a colossal waste of time, money and effort. I get all of the satisfaction of Sticking It To The Man without having to Occupy anything other than my warm, cozy bed.
All of this is by way of saying that I discovered “Still Alive,” the major song from a popular video game, and liked it enough to buy it, a couple of years ago when I searched for another song called “Still Alive” that was the major song from a popular video game.
Good Lord, that must drive the music industry absolutely batty. Or at least the middle-aged ones. I suspect that the younger set understands that modern marketing is less about promotion and more about discovery. And I imagine that the ones near retirement don’t care why someone bought it so long as the product’s moving, and if there’s a way to sell things without having to work very hard, well, so much the better.
This version of “Still Alive” comes from a game I liked well enough to actually buy, a while back. “Mirror’s Edge” is like “Canabalt” in 3D. You’re running, running, running and trying not to fall, fall, fall and die, die, die. If you play it well, it’s like the parkour/free running chase scene from “Casino Royale”:
[Link to a YouTube clip. I just want to take this opportunity to say that if you take a clip from a movie and post it onto YouTube without the copyrightholder’s permission and then fail to make that clip embeddable…you are a blot against everything positive and aspirational about the human animal.]
If play it poorly, it’s like an episode of “Jackass.” I really don’t want to be responsible for your seeing Johnny Knoxville’s spice rack bouncing off of the bottom of an empty swimming pool so instead, I shall embed the parkour/free running scene from “The Office.”
In the game’s story, your character is running all across a city. Neat, but as a game designer, how do you implement that? Actually allowing the player to free-run anywhere they want means an obscene amount of work in building out the city model, and it’s boring for the player, too. “You kids go out and play” isn’t really a game; it’s a way for your parents to get you and your siblings out of the house so that they can wax all of the floors, either literally or figuratively.
Solution: a simple red/blue user interface. Things that are blue (buildings, streets, objects) are set dressing. Things that are red (pipes, ropes, paths) are significant to you. Easy and very pretty.
And today — Friday, December 9 — “Mirror’s Edge” is very cheap. The iPhone and iPad editions are a free download from iTunes.
I should have included the link for the song before mentioning the free game that I really like.
You’re not reading this part, are you?
Blah blah “Try or buy ‘Still Alive’ from Amazon MP3, here’s the link” I get a small kickback in Amazon credits if you buy anything, yadda yadda, whatever.
I should really take some sort of seminar in marketing. I kind of suck at this.