A big thanks to everyone who contributed. You all helped to make this first playlist something special. One of the things that I love the most about crowd-sourced projects like this is that I really get exposed to music that I have either forgotten about, or that I have never heard before! Below you can find the finalized playlist, along with the members of the TAY community to contributed to it.

Exploration Playlist

  1. City Ruins - Nier Automata (submitted by @Dark Aether)
  2. Hyrule Field (Orchestral Arrangement) - The Legend of Zelda Ocarina of Time
  3. Great Plains - Fantasy Life (submitted by @Narelle Ho Sang)
  4. Crossing Those Hills - Final Fantasy IX
  5. Fossil Falls - Super Mario Odyssey (submitted by @Dark Aether)
  6. Distant Horizons - The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim
  7. Secret of the Forest - Chrono Trigger (submitted by @Optional Objectives)
  8. Ruins of the East - Lost Odyssey
  9. Dreams of a Shore Near Another World - Chrono Cross
  10. Emotions - Xenogears
  11. Atmosphere I - Horizon Zero Dawn
  12. The Farthest Land - Shadow of the Colossus
  13. Threshold - Journey

Challenges of Assembling Tracks

One of the challenges with a playlist like this is that many of the tracks are a bit more low-key, which is to be expected of overworld/exploration based music. It’s mostly meant to provide a benign accompanying track that supplements the task of exploring a world without being too bold or overpowering. In most cases I found that it was a step above silence/white noise, and while far more pleasant than either of those two options, I didn’t want the entire playlist to put the listener to sleep. So, I tried to break up the longer stretches of the more subdued tracks with the brighter submissions so that the ebb and flow of the playlist is mellow-mellow-bright, mellow-mellow-mellow-bright as you get towards its center.

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There were some beautiful tracks that I really felt lended themselves to the opening and closing of the playlist, and as such, they were the tracks that I placed first before arranging the middle layers of the album.

Another Idea

In addition to arranging the playlist, I thought that another fun thing that we could do for this project is to collaborate on unique album titles and cover art for each arrangement. I went with the vanilla title this week (Exploration) as I was stretched for time, but I would love it if you all could suggest potential album titles for future arrangements. The title can be as abstract or concrete as you would like, but just see if you can tie it to the theme, and if you find images that inspire you for album art, feel free to submit them as well (I can do some Photoshoping to either modify them or make a new cover based off of them). Additionally, if you are handy with Illustrator or Photoshop, feel free to take a stab at this as well. My goal here is to eventually have it where we as a community are creating artwork, album titles, and playlists together.

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New Playlist Theme Incoming

I have decided that in the new format of this series, I am going to mimic what Kotaku has done previously with Photoshop Contests. It will essentially flow in the following format:

  • New Theme post => gather submissions
  • Completed playlist post => present album artwork, title, and finalized playlist
  • New Theme post => gather submissions
  • Rinse, wash, repeat

That being said, keep an eye out for an incoming post sometime tomorrow with the new theme for our next playlist.

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Thanks for reading, listening and participating!