Vagrant Counting Song of Retrospection

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Vagrant Counting Song of Retrospection
Clip of the "Vagrant Counting Song of Retrospection" theme.
Details
Debut appearance Kirby: Planet Robobot (2016)
Last appearance Super Kirby Clash (2019)
Other appearance(s) Kirby Star Allies
Composer(s) Hirokazu Ando
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While including all excerpts of the song, maybe also include the beta versions, maybe?

"Vagrant Counting Song of Retrospection" is the name of a musical piece which first plays during the third phase of the battle with Star Dream in Kirby: Planet Robobot.

Composition[edit]

"Vagrant Counting Song of Retrospection" builds upon the original song of "Bright Spinning Planet", the title screen theme, and remixes it to use more intense, machine-like, computerized instruments and expanded, fast melodies. It also arranges excerpts of "Milky Way Wishes: Shooting", to signify Star Dream's similarities with the Galactic Nova. Finally, at the end, it takes a part of "Haltmann Works Co. HQ", played with an electric guitar, and near the end, an erratic arpeggio finishes off the intense melodies. Then it transitions to a calmer version of the song with calm and chiptune instruments, with almost to near silence, before looping again to the main part of the song.

Notably, the song shares commonalities with "Soul 0 System" (a remix of "Milky Way Wishes: Shooting") and "Vagrant Keepsake of Oblivion" (a variation on the song itself that starts at the "Haltmann Works Co. HQ" motif and quickly transitions to the main song), both of which are used in Phase 4 of Star Dream Soul OS.

Game appearances[edit]

Kirby: Planet Robobot[edit]

In Kirby: Planet Robobot, at the beginning of Star Dream's third phase, the Access Ark's front covering falls off, revealing a cat-like face resembling Galactic Nova. Once its eyes start to flash at the Halberd, "Vagrant Counting Song of Retrospection" starts to play for the remainder of the final battle.

This music can be found as Track 95 in the Kirby: Planet Robobot Jukebox.

Kirby Star Allies[edit]

A partial remix of both "Vagrant Counting Song of Retrospection" and "Vs. Star Dream" plays when P1 fights Morpho Knight as Susie in Guest Star ???? Star Allies Go! and Soul Melter (EX) of The Ultimate Choice. This medley is named 幼き日に視たデウス・エクス・マキナ (The Deus Ex Machina the Child Saw) in Kirby Star Allies: The Original Soundtrack.

The remix is also arranged by Hirokazu Ando and can be found as Track 183 in the Star Allies Jukebox as of Version 4.0.0.

Super Kirby Clash[edit]

A remix of "The Deus Ex Machina the Child Saw" plays during the Super+ Party Quest against Pres. Parallel Susie.

Development[edit]

The song's first prototype was created with the idea of "existence beyond the human knowledge of the galaxy". For the second prototype, composer Hirokazu Ando made the second half more exciting to make it feel more like a "decisive battle with a countdown in progress". Then feedback was given, asking to make it "more intense, then quiet to almost oblivion, to revive it with a loop", and so a third prototype was made. After that, further improvements were made until the song was completed.[1]

Etymology[edit]

"Vagrant Counting Song of Retrospection" may appear to be a confusing title at first glance, but each term within the title relates heavily to the boss fight with Star Dream. To begin, "counting song" refers to the actual fight, where Star Dream counts down from 5 to 1 for the "Fatal Error" attack; Galactic Nova also counts down from 3 to 1 when granting wishes, suggesting it to be a common trait between them. "Vagrant" is used to describe a person who does not have a proper home and instead wanders and begs for their livelihood. It is also used to describe something with an inconsistent nature, or that has fallen "off course". As Star Dream is described in its pause screen as having "lost its master and purpose", this is an also an apt description of the machine. Finally, "retrospection" refers to looking back upon past events and situations, especially with one's own life. This likely refers to President Haltmann himself, who by this point has merged his mind and soul with Star Dream, and—as shown by Star Dream Soul OS's second phase pause screen—is reflecting upon his life in his final moments of consciousness.

In other words, the title refers to a being which has lost its purpose in life, and is reflecting upon the past decisions it has made.

"Vagrant Keepsake of Oblivion", while more straightforward in comparison, is not an exact translation of the Japanese title, 回歴スル追約ノ忘レ貝. While based on the same structure as the Japanese title of "Vagrant Counting Song of Retrospection", 回歴する追憶の数え唄, it varies subtly in that it uses katakana rather than hiragana. Katakana is often used to denote robotic speech in Japanese, including that of Star Dream itself, giving the title a more robotic tone than the original.

回歴スル Kai-reki suru, meaning "vagrant", remains the same from the original title. 追約ノ Tsuiyaku no means "from a supplementary contract", i.e., a contract used to extend an existing contract. 忘レ貝 Wasure-gai is the most complicated; it means a "forgetting shell", and refers to a Japanese folktale about a seashell that allows one to forget the pain of lost love when held. The title seems to refer to Haltmann's backstory: he lost Susie during an experiment gone wrong and made a "supplementary contract" with Star Dream in order to get her back, but gradually lost his own memories in the process, eventually becoming unable to recognize her or remember his lost love. It could thus be translated as "Vagrant Forgotten Love from a Supplementary Contract".

Names in other languages[edit]

Vagrant Counting Song of Retrospection[edit]

Language Name Meaning
Japanese 回歴する追憶の数え唄
Kai-reki suru tsuioku no kazoe-uta
Vagrant Counting Song of Retrospection
回歴する Kai-reki suru means "vagrant"; somebody who wanders from place to place without a proper home.
追憶の Tsuioku no means "of retrospection"; reflecting upon the past.
数え唄 Kazoe-uta means "counting song", referring to Star Dream's countdown.


Vagrant Keepsake of Oblivion[edit]

Language Name Meaning
Japanese 回歴スル追約ノ忘レ貝
Kai-reki suru tsuiyaku no wasure-gai
roughly Vagrant Forgotten Love from a Supplementary Contract
回歴スル Kai-reki suru means "vagrant".
追約ノ Tsuiyaku no means "from a supplementary contract".
忘レ貝 Wasure-gai refers to a folktale about a shell that causes one to forget lost love when held.


References