So you’re thinking, “what the heck is this?” It’s a bonus CD promo item, given out with preorders of the game and the OST. According to the scanty bits of packaging, the CD is probably published by Suleputer, as the disc’s inside label has a small “CPCA-10119” written on it. As the front cover reports, this album is “not for sale”, so you’re not going to be picking it up at online shops.
Of course, these bonus soundtracks are rarely hunting down on their own, and this one is no exception. The best song on the album is without a doubt the opening vocal track, “Brave New World.” Though listed as the “short” version, it is actually the game size version, the same as disc 1 track 01 of the OST. Written by Yuzo Koshiro, this song is a techno-pop masterpiece. I was completely taken by it the first time I heard it, and I think it’ll be one of my alltime favorite J-Pop songs.
After the glorious opening track, the rest of this “special” soundtrack is made up of 14 authentic, original, unarranged songs from older games (w/ characters featured in Namco × Capcom). The first seven are from Capcom, and they include songs from the Famicom era (Ghouls and Ghosts) up to our current generation (Dino Crisis 2). Note that none of these songs are originally from RPGs: as a reviewer who generally focuses on RPG music only, these were a treat for me: especially the Chun-Li tune, which is absolutely classic.
The Namco songs, on the other hand…well, they’re all classic arcade and Famicom era, and they’re pretty bad if you ask me. The best song I could find was the Berabo Man theme song, and you’ll notice that this song just sounds…well, listen to the sample. I certainly wasn’t impressed.
For fans of these classic Namco and Capcom games, I’m sure this bonus CD was a neat little trinket. As for me, I don’t care for it all that much. I much prefer the arranged versions of these songs found on the NxC OST.