Weekly Game Music: Big (PaRappa The Rapper 2)

“You wanna be big?” That’s how this rap song — composed by Masaya Matsuura and titled Big — starts. It’s silly line from an equally silly game, PaRappa the Rapper 2. In this song, a pint-sized Guru Ant (Dean Bowman) tries to teach PaRappa (Dred Foxx) to be confident and strong through a simple repeat-after-me session. And, well, there’s several miscommunication in the whole process.

PaRappa the Rapper 2 is, thematically, about growing out of childish selfishness, and becoming a mature person. Still, the whole game is narrated in a Sunday cartoon fashion. It begins when PaRappa, who’ve won a month’s supply of noodles, become fed-up by his girlfriend one day when she served some pasta. She exclaims, “you’re a baby,” and PaRappa…doesn’t take that comment lightly. At one point, he goes back to his father’s (an inventor) office for guidance. Instead, he gets shrunk into a size of an ant by his father’s shrink-ray. Guru Ants finds him scared and frightened, and mistakenly believes that PaRappa’s problem is merely confidence. While calming PaRappa, the guru himself becomes frightened when the shrink ray blows him (“A trick with a twist!?”) and PaRappa up to planet size, then back to an ant again repeatedly.

PaRappa the Rapper 2‘s prequel was a highly popular Simon-says games, and the grandfather of Dance Dance Revolution and Guitar Hero. Like those series, the game had you repeat the button-presses described by the “teacher” with the correct timing. Unique to this series is the ability to improvise the rap, allowing you to score more points. With vibrant paper graphics like Paper Mario, and a completely cartoony lyrics, it’s hard not to smile when playing this comical game.

PaRappa the Rapper 2 was released for the PS2. No other port exists.


Extra!

Title: Prince Fleaswallow’s RAP
Game: PaRappa the Rapper
Composer: Masaya Matsuura, Yoshihisa Suzuki
Vocals: Lenky Don, Dred Foxx
Comments: Prince Fleaswallow is teaching PaRappa how to work in a flea market.

Title: Instructor Mooselini’s RAP
Game: PaRappa the Rapper
Composer: Masaya Matsuura, Yoshihisa Suzuki
Vocals: Sandra, Dred Foxx
Comments: Instructor Mooselini is examining PaRappa for his driver’s license.


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