Famed video game composer Hiroki Kikuta has two new albums, but no art for their covers.
Under a newly-announced contest hosted by “RPG Maker” developer Degica Games, one artist will earn their work’s way onto the boxes of Kikuta’s latest albums – “The Fury” and “The Calm.”
— ゲームクリエイター@デジカ (@degica_game) December 16, 2016
Kikuta won international acclaim for his score of 1993’s “Secret of Mana,” and has since composed the soundtracks for more than two dozen AAA video games. His newest albums will appear as downloadable content for “RPG Maker MV.”
“This exciting collaboration will bring two of Kikuta’s incredible music albums to RPG Maker,” reads a Sunday press release from Degica. “Inspired by both classic and modern fantasy, the two albums feature Hiroki Kikuta’s memorable style and flowing melodies.”
Kikuta’s resume includes work on titles like “Soul Calibur V” and “Shining Hearts,” but his partnership with Degica will put his music in the hands of amateur game developers for the first time ever.
Kikuta himself is on the panel of judges to decide which artwork will grace the front of “The Fury” and “The Calm’s” physical copies.
The top artist will take home Kikuta-signed copies of both albums and $100 cash, plus bragging rights. The contest’s second- and third-placers will earn $50 and $25, respectively.
By Sunday – just two days after the competition’s announcement – gamers’ enthusiasm to be featured alongside Kikuta was already sky-high.
“Of my God. Hiroki Kikuta!!! This man is my hero,” “RPG Maker” forum member Vexed wrote Friday. “Koudelka was and still is one of my biggest inspirations when it comes to personal creativity. It was so unique and dark and deliciously twisted with a truly original sound track that I still listen to today.”
But like in any competition, not everyone is sure that they’re up to snuff.
“Too bad my art abilities make spaghetti thrown at a wall look like fine art, so I’ll just have to watch this one,” forum member bgillisp wrote.
The gaming community’s advice: who cares? “There’s no harm in entering, and the potential payoff is a monumental chance to earn a big boost to your gaming portfolio,” seems to be the consensus among Degica’s fans.
“Just try – can’t hurt to give it an attempt,” forum user mlogan wrote.
The competition’s submission guidelines are relatively lax – drawings only have to fit either album’s overarching theme, and each artist gets three entries.
The deadline to enter the contest is Jan. 17.
More information about Kikuta, the artwork compeition and “RPG Maker” is available on the Degica website.