Wednesday, February 18, 2015

Song of the Day #125 - Animal Crossing OST - Two Days Ago (Aircheck)

70 Hours Ago...

Perhaps you didn't know that history is unfolding around you at every moment. Perhaps you realized this, but chose to ignore it, because being aware of the monumental events that are taking place every day but being unable to witness and understand them all is frustrating. I don't know. But I do know that something happened in the last few days that everyone needs to know about:

0xA101 speedran Animal Crossing 100%!!!!

It took her almost 71 hours, including an 8 hour sleep. This was the fourth time the route had been adapted. Now, between this and the previous attempt (made by Forstride about a week ago), some concessions were made on the rules that I found a bit disappointing. Before, item codes were only allowed for certain unobtainable things, but now, item codes are allowed by default (I think she wasn't allowed to use them for certain event items, like the Spooky or Holiday sets). Seeing as she took about 20 hours to just enter in all the codes, which is hands down the fastest way to get items, and the only guaranteed way to get specific items, this run would easily have been several hundred hours if every item had to be gotten the "traditional" way. It's potentially indefinite, as you'd just have to advance the day over and over, hoping for the store to sell the items you're still waiting on. Completely insane! But I still wanted to see it!!

The idea of the AC100% run - both my ideal indefinite "pray to RNGesus" hell and this actual implementation - really appeal to me. Same with the legendary 600 Star Super Mario 64 races, Super Mario RPG low-level, the bizarre in-progress Baten Kaitos 100% run... Hey, someone's running FF7 100% right now! they all have this feeling of the game taken to the extreme, of a love for the game that transcends reason, of doing basically anything one can think of that remains to be done in the game. Plus, the sort of cosmic humor where you jokingly propose something, someone else jokingly expands on it, everyone now just joking about the possibility, until, somehow, the possibility becomes more and more real, just via jokes, and then suddenly it's happening, someone's actually doing it, the meme is alive!

Also I really love things that take a long time and have some sort of community feedback involved. Like, she isn't just doing this by herself, she's hanging out with a bunch of people in twitch chat, talking to them, answering and asking questions, receiving encouragement... there was probably at least a few dozen people active in chat at any time through the run, and at hype moments it would spike to hundreds - at the end, there was around 2000, all cheering her on! It sounds pretty fun, in some ways! And yet it's also an insane challenge of endurance and dedication. So many frustrating moments, so many tedious sequences repeated! But again, the community was there for her - the celebrations when she caught whatever rare fish! The relief when some especially grindy section was completed! And I love these sort of lengthy challenges, where you can tune in when you think to or leave on as background entertainment, and pop in and show your support during hype moments. Like TwitchPlaysPokemon, or charity marathons... just the very sense that these sort of things are happening on the internet, that passionate people are working away on these things as we speak, it's very comforting, I think.

Okay uhh let's look at the song itself. So the final thing to do in the run is accumulate K.K. Slider songs, which you can't get through item codes. I think the last 3 hours or so were spent advancing to Saturday night, requesting a song, tossing the aircheck on the ground, and then advancing the clock again. The final challenge - typing in the song names with all the right spacing and accents and stuff, having been up for like two days straight! This was the final song she did, and I can't think of a more fitting ending to the run. The name already is a sorta nice meta-commentary, maybe. It has a very nostalgic feeling to me, a feeling of looking at the past with satisfaction, but a little longing. It's one of the three "secret songs" that you have to request - he'll never play them randomly. I have no idea how someone is supposed to learn about these in the game... it feels like, to someone ignorant of the internet, this might be among the most difficult things to get in the whole game!

The other two secret K.K. songs both have something obviously "special" about them - "I Love You" is a strange little children's melody that's unlike anything else, and "K.K. Song" is the famous Totaka's song. But "Two Days Ago" doesn't have anything like that... the specialness that makes it secret must come from the music itself. Maybe it's like, K.K. himself has something special he associates with it? I dunno but like... doesn't listening to that with that in mind feel really plausible? Like some meaning is lying just out of reach?

At any rate, it's a very lovely song. It was my favorite as a kid, first because I thought having this "secret" song was pretty cool, but then because I just liked it so much. It's sort of Beatles-y, eh? Especially around 0:50, that "riff", and that organ sound. I remember having this playing in my house, lying on my bed, and also lying on my bed in real life, and feeling very melancholy... I think sometimes Animal Crossing can be a very melancholy game... I'd get into this more but this post is already way too long. Anyways, it made me happy that she ended her run with this song, and that she said "the meme was worth it", and that people are doing things like running AC100%.


Anonymous said...

I like how it went from russian humor to cosmic humor

Keatsta said...

ahahaha, at first I was gonna call it "Russian humour" and then explain what that meant and stuff but I figured I was trying to do too much in this one post already.