Taps

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Taps
Composer Daniel Butterfield
Released 1862-07-??
Title Origin Official

Taps is a military theme, usually played on bugle or trumpet and used to signify lights out. The song was arranged by General Daniel Butterfield who based it on an earlier song called Scott Tattoo. Gen. Butterfield first ordered the song to be played in July of 1862 during the American Civil War. In addition to a call for lights out, Taps has also been used to conclude military funerals. In video games, it is often used for "Game Over".

Games

Gunfight (A8)

Platform - A8.png
Gunfight (A8)
Arranger Unknown
Released 1983-??-??
Format SAP

Plays whenever a player dies.

Dough Boy (FC)

Platform - NES.png
Dough Boy (FC)
Arranger Hiroyuki Masuno
Released 1985-12-11
Format NSF

Plays at the start of a level.

Street Surfer (C64)

Platform - C64.png
Street Surfer (C64)
Arranger Unknown
Programmer Unknown
Released 1986-10-??
Format SID
Loops No

After you're thrown off your skateboard with no health left, Taps plays and the board keeps rolling and steering by itself (or your ghost?), first with the road scrolling along, and finally into the distance. Unlike the in-game song and sound effects (which use David Whittaker's driver), Taps uses a custom driver, interleaved with David Barbour's game code.

4x4 Off-Road Racing (C64)

Platform - C64.png
4x4 Off-Road Racing (C64)
Output - SID.svg
4x4 Off-Road Racing - C64 - Dead.png
Arranger Unknown
Released 1988-0?-??
Length 0:21.05
Format SID

If you smash your 4x4 into a large obstacle on the road, it will explode, and you'll hear Taps played as your wreckage smolders. It is track 2 in the rip, but starts at 0:02, because the arranger chose to start the song with the aforementioned explosion (not recorded).

4x4 Off-Road Racing (DOS)

Platform - DOS.png
4x4 Off-Road Racing (DOS)
Output - PC Speaker.svg
4x4 Off-Road Racing - DOS - Crashed.png
Arranger Unknown
Released 1988-??-??
Length 0:19.01
Format UNK

Like the original Commodore game, Taps plays when you crash your truck.

4x4 Off-Road Racing (ZXS)

Platform - ZXS.png
4x4 Off-Road Racing (ZXS)
Arranger Unknown
Released 1988-??-??
Format AY

Like the original Commodore game, Taps plays when you crash your truck.

When on a Spectrum 128, the song is played on the internal AY-3-8912.

Wolfenstein 3D (DOS)

Platform - DOS.png
Wolfenstein 3D (DOS)
Output - OPL2.svg
Wolfenstein 3D - DOS - E1M9.png
Arranger Bobby Prince
Released 1992-05-05
Length 1:08
Format IMF

The first few notes of Taps are played in The March to War at about 27 seconds in.

Bugs! (W16)

Platform - W16.png
Bugs! (W16)
Arranger Timothy G. Baldwin
Released 1992-07-??
Format MML
Loops No

Plays after you lose your last life and click OK.

Lyrics

There have been several various lyrics written for the song, but the official lyrics to Taps were written by Horace Lorenzo Trim.

Day is done, gone the sun

From the lakes, from the hills, from the sky
All is well, safely rest
God is nigh.

Fading light dims the sight
And a star gems the sky, gleaming bright
From afar, drawing near
Falls the night.

Thanks and praise for our days
Neath the sun, neath the stars, neath the sky
As we go, this we know
God is nigh.

Links