Thoughts on Video Games Live Level 2 DVD

I finally got my hands on it!

If you always wanted to see Video Games Live but you couldn’t make it out to their performances, and are a fan of video game music, then this Blu-ray or DVD is a good starting point. I never got a chance to see the PBS special on TV but I was so happy to hear that it was going to be released on DVD and Blu-Ray. I got it from Amazon ( Blu-Ray + DVD combo) for a mere $14.99 + shipping.

Shout Factory put some annoying promo trailers at the start of the Disc, but you can hit the menu button to skip to the main menu.

DVD Main Menu

There’s motion on this menu, displaying scenes from the concert. Short audio samples play in the background.

Song selection page 1

Song selection page 2

It’s a really good setlist. Halo, Sonic, World of Warcraft, God of War, Zelda, Mario, Megaman, and Castlevania. The pieces are performed by the Louisiana Philharmonic Orchestra and members of the Video Games Live team. I just wish that the short interviews were optional additions like a popup. The Guitar Hero and Tribute to Ralph Baer segments were a nice change. I’ve read reviews that find it strange to have such material but I see this DVD like a promotion for you to go see the show live. The Dolby Digital 5.1 audio during the main show sounds great! The Blu-Ray version must sound amazing with the DTS HD Master Audio track

Bonus Material

This is where you can turn the commentary track by Tommy Tallarico on or off. He even mentions, how due to rights issues (with Square-Enix) Chrono Trigger and Final Fantasy videos could not be included on this disc, even though they were performed and recorded.

I sure hope this gets cleared by the time the next DVD/Blu-Ray release happens. I’ve been following the developments on the Video Games Live website and they made significant progress with getting the rights for these songs. The VGL Level 2 CD is a big step in the right direction.

Interviews menu, found under Bonus Material

Interviews with some VGM composers and a few other individuals

Behind the scenes

Tommy’s Guitars– Being a Spidey fan myself, nice to get a closer look at the guitar

Joystick podium– short video with Jack Wall and his podium for the show

Behind the scenes tour- Tommy show us around the pre-show prep. Goofy and informative

Composers party- If you ever wanted to know what some of your favorite composers looked like, then  this should be interesting. Very informal and fun.

Teasers, Trailers & Game Making

The screenshot should be more than enough info

Additional Info:
Video Games Live official site
Video Game Live Wikipedia Entry
Blu-Ray/DVD combo amazon page
Shoutcast Factory DVD page

-Tony

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