Friday, September 16, 2011

Korg DS-10 Synthesizer Plus and playing non-games


Creating music is not an easy thing to do.  Not many people actively play with instruments or synthesizers to figure out what sounds good.  In the video gamer cliche, that number is even smaller.  So, to appeal to gamers a product that demands a full respect of the creative art of music compilation is a very hard sell.  Little Big Planet 2 was probably the most successful game to introduce a music sequencer that everyone was willing to try.  To a lesser extent was Electroplankton, giving DS owners the ability to remix familiar Nintendo sounds and songs.  To an even obscure extent, PSX owners had MTV's Music Generator to create their own beats.  And yes, I was one of the few that actually owned that.

Korg DS-10 Synthesizer Plus, released in February 2010, is the enhanced version of the first software which was released in November 2008 in the US.  In addition to adding some new features, it benefits specifically when it's used in a DSi device, unlocking more features due to the improvements.  And since I had a DSi lying around after my 3DS purchase, I decided to invest in the non-game game.

Make no mistake - the Korg DS-10 Synthesizer Plus has an extremely steep learning curve, steeper than creating a Little Big Planet level or playing a real guitar in Rock Band 3.  There are no "easy on the eyes" interface, no cute character to baby-step you through the tutorials.  This is a emulation of the type of synthesizers Korg actually creates, so unless you DJ part-time, you're going to be pushing buttons left and right.

Fortunately, there are two demo sessions in the "application" designed to give you a sense of how to make music from all the nobs and buttons.  All patterns, beats, and rhythms are pre-made, and just need someone to DJ it up in the house.  I've already got a hookup to an amp and mixing it up!  Too bad it's not my own beats.

But I've been tinkering around with this for a couple of days, and I think I know my way around it better. Who knows, maybe I'll do another Chrono Trigger tribute...
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