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Sonic 2: alternate zone music experiment!

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While I am sure this is a niche topic/concept, I have tested it enough times now to feel that it would be of interest to some other board members! 

Recently I had read on Retro some speculation that Aquatic Ruin's music may have been planned for Mystic Cave, and tried that out via the method i mention below.  At that point it felt to me that Mystic Cave's music might actually merge well with Casino Night. 

I wondered if to bring about a series of new experiences, all of the available music in Sonic 2 can be rearranged between the zones to provide different, highlighting new aspects of both the music and zones by creating a new context for them. 

The one way that I can recommend to try this yourself is to use whichever version of Sonic 2 you have available and play the "extended" versions of the specific music tracks from youtube, when entering each new zone.  This requires muting the game audio, but, I am hoping at some point that this could be made into a slight ROM hack so that the gameplay sounds can still play, either hard coding the specific tracks to be different or allowing personal selection similar to for example Knuckles' Emerald Hunt.  The following list is what I have tried and found to be effective and interesting!  ^_^:)

I'd say if you want to try just one, go to level select and try Metropolis with Chemical Plant's music!

 

Emerald Hill (Mystic Cave 2P)

Chemical Plant (Casino Night 2P)

Aquatic Ruin (Hidden Palace)

Casino Night (Mystic Cave)

Hill Top (2P competition results)

Mystic Cave (Aquatic Ruin)

Oil Ocean (Metropolis)

Metropolis (Chemical Plant)

Sky Chase (Special Stage)

Wing Fortress (Death Egg)

Death Egg (Egg Walker music)

Special Stage (Sky Chase, Emerald Hill 2P, Emerald Hill or Casino Night)

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While I do love mixing and matching Sonic soundtracks for various playthroughs  in a cross-game fashion (like playing a classic game with a modern game's soundtrack) like, A LOT, this is a bit niché even for my tastes.  To be honest like... I don't hear it.  The latin influences of Aquatic Ruin are a really weird choice for Mystic Cave as oppose to Aquatic Ruin, and Mystic Cave's spooky "oooooooo-OOOOOOO-ooooooooo-OOOOOOOO" seems way too intimidating for Casino Night's cheerful atmosphere.

 

Hell to be honest I never even REALLY understood why 2P mode got a different soundtrack when the original zone themes were so perfectly fitting, with the exception of Mystic Cave the 2P themes aren't even particularly race-y, but anyway.

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Actually I have a good one based on the Long Edition hack regarding Genocide City:

I just fits with the urban jungle setting that the future Metropolis Act 3 was rethemed to, although it somewhat clashes with the visuals of Hyudoros and skeletons that appear in the background

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I believe that Craig Stitt (one of Sonic 2's level artists) said in an interview that he remembered a circus level being designed for S2 very early in the game's pre-production stage. Depending on whether the level was scrapped before or after the music was composed for the game, I sometimes wonder whether Mystic Cave's theme was originally intended for the circus stage. It would explain the "Entry of the Gladiators" riff present in the tune, especially if the developers were going for a "creepy circus" motif.

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On 4/20/2017 at 4:41 PM, Rexeljet said:

I believe that Craig Stitt (one of Sonic 2's level artists) said in an interview that he remembered a circus level being designed for S2 very early in the game's pre-production stage. Depending on whether the level was scrapped before or after the music was composed for the game, I sometimes wonder whether Mystic Cave's theme was originally intended for the circus stage. It would explain the "Entry of the Gladiators" riff present in the tune, especially if the developers were going for a "creepy circus" motif.

I remember that interview as well!  I glad he remembered that as it finally answered the question of what the 18th zone of Sonic 2 was supposed to be.  (Yuji Naka stated in the Sonic Jam strategy guide that 18 zones were originally planned.  We knew 11 of them from the finished game, 6 scrapped zones via Hidden Palace, Wood, Genocide/Cyber City, Dust Hill, Rock, and Winter Zones which left one unaccounted for the longest time!)

 

He also stated in the interview that " I know the forest and desert levels were all but finished when they were cut.", which leaves me to believe that the original music placement looked like the following:

Wood Zone (Emerald Hill Zone 2P)

Oil Ocean Zone (Casino Night Zone 2P) - Evidenced by the Simon Wai prototype

Dust Hill Zone (Oil Ocean Zone Final)

Hidden Palace Zone (Mystic Cave Zone 2P) - Evidenced by the Simon Wai prototype and its placement in the 2013 rerelease

Super Sonic Transformation Cut-scene (the unused Track 10) - The Masa Demo lasts about a minute and doesn't loop.

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