First and foremost, welcome to this new retro feature I’ve had on the back burner for a while. Blast From The Past is geared towards taking a look at awesome stuff from days gone by, whether it be levels, weapons, music, characters or even peripherals – you name it, it could appear here. So, let’s get started…
If you’ve ever played Sonic the Hedgehog before, you probably already know what I’m talking about, especially given my extremely descriptive post title. Before I start rambling further, I suggest you watch the video below to give yourself a not-so-gentle reminder of the music in question. If it’s scarred you for life already, then just hide behind the sofa, cover your ears and go to your happy place. I understand.
By my estimation, upon playing the video around 93% of you started frantically looking for air bubbles, whilst the other 7% ceased all movement and didn’t try to fight the sweet, sweet embrace of watery death. Many will most likely remember this from Sonic the Hedgehog’s dreaded Labyrinth Zone, where you needed to navigate mazes riddled with underwater sections. If you’re under the water for too long then Sonic will start to run out of air, causing this tune to start playing. If you haven’t found an air bubble (or even better, exited the water) before it finishes, it’s goodbye Sonic.
Thus, since 1991, that short, ominous tune has caused gamers all over the World to fear any Zones which contain water, and haunts their (obviously Sonic-related) dreams every night. The moment it plays you know you’re in trouble, and as it gets faster and faster you go deeper and deeper into a state of absolute terror. Your heart is racing and the adrenaline is flowing, and all that’s going through your mind is “I NEED AIR, I NEED AIR, WHERE’S A F***ING BUBBLE!?”.
It’s true that most gamers can play Sonic and experience the tune without adverse reaction and if that’s you, well, count yourself lucky. A number of players have subsequently been diagnosed with PSDD, or Post Sonic Drowning Disorder. I have personally seen a number of great men and women go on the downward spiral with PSDD until they’re reduced to frantic shadows of their formers selves. An early sign to look out for is anyone running from side to side whilst regularly opening and closing their mouth like a goldfish. Blowing bubbles near someone with suspected PSDD is strongly discouraged.
The Sonic drowning music really is one of a kind. Once you hear it you’ll never be able to forget it and it forces your mind into the single track of frantically finding air to survive, and all with just 18 little seconds of Mega Drive music. It’s genius and terror in equal parts and, in my opinion, hasn’t been bettered to this day.
You can come out from behind the sofa now.