My personal top 50 songs in video games
Posted on Sunday, July 12 2009 @ 16:29:00 Eastern
This is my first blog post so I thought I'd make it somethign nice and interesting...at least something that I find nice and interesting. Like many of you, one of the many aspects of gaming I like is the music. It can really add to a game and when it's missing, it can be quite noticeable. At one point, I had way too much free time and made up a list of my top 50 favorite songs in games and I would like to share them and get some feedback on what you think. I do have some rules to keep this more sane so here they are:
1) Only one song per game franchise. Even if a song I pick is part of a the franchise by name only and most people would not consider it to be an official entry in said franchise. If the games name has Final Fantasy on it, then that's the only Final Fantasy game I can use. This made certain games very though (Sonic, Final Fantasy, Castlevania). This is to make the list more diverse and to prevent it from being the same few games over and over
2) The version of the song has to be from an actual game. No covers or remixes. If a song has a really good remix but the actual song isn't very good then it's useless.
3) Songs will not be allowed on for sentimental or iconic purposes alone. Sure the door unlocking tune from zelda fills me with joy everytime I hear it. That doesn't make it a good song on it's own. Basically the songs have to hold up out of the context of the game. This rule can be slightly bent but I will note it when that happens. This also means don't expect to see many iconic themes on here
4) The song must have been made for the game. Alot of games have great soundtracks that are just collections of good music. This doesn't mean I won't allow music by bands or established artist on, they just need to have composed the music for the game and the game only.
And thems the rules. If you approve, object or are curious about any of my choices, well that's what the comment section is for. Also keep in mind if anything you like is missing, I might not have heard it, or it just might suck.
Also I am aware that there are ALOT of title and boss themes on this list. I just like them alot.
Also my description will probably contain the words epic alot, seeing as I like epic music.
*Please note for songs I know the name of I'll list the name; for those I don't I'll list the where it occurs in game*
Song Location: Speederbike Level
YT Link: http://www.youtube.com/wa...euQMg
I did not here this whole song until about ten years after I originally played this song. Sure the first part is good, but it really picks up after awhile. Really, All I heard was the first part, and then I crashed...over and over again. Which is a shame because the song slowly builds and by the end there's alot going on and it's almost a different song when it loops back to the beginning. It's a great song, even if it is the soundtrack to many childrens trauma.
Game: Zone of the Enders: The 2nd Runner
System: Playstation 2
Song name: Beyond the Bounds
YT Link: http://www.youtube.com/wa...hcPYQ
This song is like the best Anime theme ever. It really gets you prepared for the game ahead. It has electronic enough to fit the mechs, it's exotic sounding enough to make you knwo that it's gonna take you to far off worlds, it's Japanese enough to get you ready for the anime, it's dramatic and fast paced enough to prepare you for the action and it's pretty just like the game is. All that and it's just a downright good song.
Game: Parappa the Rapper
System: Playsation 2 and Playstation Portable
Song Name: Instructor Mooselini's Car Rap
YT Link: http://www.youtube.com/wa...8Vl6o
This slot was originally taken by the Master Onion Rap, which is the most famous song from this classic rhythm game. That was until I actually played the game. In my opinion this is easily the best song in the game. It's just so unusual in so many ways. First off, the honky-tonk piano it features is so contrary to rap, yet it works so well and the melody oddly fits taking a driving test in a way that's hard to put my finger on. This song also features, in my opinion, the best rapper in the game with some of the most fun lyrics to rap along to.
Game: Lunar: The Silver Star
System: Sega CD
Song Location: Grindery Exterior
YT Link: http://www.youtube.com/wa...bWmxY
As bad as the Sega CD looks these days, at the time it had one major thing going for it: the music. Y'see, while the other systems were limited, the Sega CD had, well, CDs. This created a unique era of vidoe game music where they could use high quality instruments, but still wrote music that sounded like, well, vidoe game music. This was one of the first Sega CD games with a soundtrack that blew me away. Part of that was the vocal work, but the music was just so much better in quality then anythign else at the time. This song in particular just rocked. While those guitars might sound a bit cheesy now, at the time it just sounded so awesome. I just love the way this song really sets location. Your in a gaint, rolling, mechanical base and that's exactly what it sounds like.
System: Super Nintendo
Song Name: Corneria
YT link: http://www.youtube.com/wa...Ib8zg
This might sound wrong, but the way I look at this song, it's kind of Starfox's version of the Kenny Loggins song Danger Zone off the Top Gun soundtrack. While that song was cheesy as hell, it was also badass to an almost embarrassing level and really fit the world of flying planes. It's the same for this song. This song is cheesy as hell but it's also really badass to an almost embarrassing level and really it fits the world of flying polygonal spaceships.
Game: Sly Cooper and the Thievius Raccoonus
System: Playstation 2
Song Name: Swamp's Dark Center
YT link: http://www.youtube.com/wa...Ib8zg (video contains gameplay over the music)
Sly Cooper is one of the better platformer franchises and the first one is pure platforming goodness, however the first one did not have good music (which they remedied in the later installments), with the exception of this track. This is one of those tracks that I could just listen to looping for hours and I don't think I'd get sick of it. It is just so overflowing with atmosphere, creepiness and a sense of mystery. It actually makes the level creepier then it really would be without it (not that it's THAT creepy...this is a Sly Cooper game after all).
Game: Earthworm Jim
System: Almost everything at the time but this version is from the Sega CD/PC version
Song Name: What the Heck?
YT link: http://www.youtube.com/wa...NsDkU
This song kind of encompasses all that's great about what was one of the silliest games of the 16-bit era. It starts out with cliche dramatic hell music, which fits the level which looks quite hell like (though really it's heck). Suddenly, the record comes to halt and it's replaced with elevator music and THAT'S when the screaming starts. It really captures the sense of humor of a game that feature such things as a Cat named Evil, A professor with a monkey for a head, an underwater empire ruled by a goldfish named bob, a puppy that transforms into a hideous demon when he gets hurt, a Princess named Princess What's-Her-Name and so much more.
Game: Adams Family Values
System: Super Nintendo
Song Name: Creepy Creatues
YT Link: http://www.youtube.com/wa...CnrHQ (starts around 2:46)
Not all songs on this list are from good games. This game, like most movie tie-ins, was horrible. However it had some oddy good music. This was the boss music I believe. There's something so goth about it and when I say that I mean it sounds like a SNES version of a Bauhaus song to me. And the thing is, is that's perfect for this game, no matter how horrid it is. It's upbeat, yet still manages to have an eerie quality. It also has really top notch use of the SNES synth. Like most good video game songs, it's hard to imagine it being played with other instruments.
Game: Ecco the Dolphin
System: Sega CD
Song Name: Ridge Water
YT Link: http://www.youtube.com/wa...9zRAw
Once again, the Sega CD proves that it was made for making music. The problem was that the Sega CD was just a Genesis with more space, so you could either add FMV or music. Too many chose FMV. But then there were games like this that were exactly the same as their Genesis counterparts, except for the added music. The music in the Genesis version was...not good but as you can see from this track the Sega CD music was amazing. Really this is just so much better than most of what was considered video game music at the time in terms of production values.
Game: God of War II
System: Playstation 2
Song Name: God of War II theme
YT link: http://www.youtube.com/wa...nSVOM
All of this games music can pretty much be summed up in one word: Epic. Really the whole game can be summed up in that word. The music in this game would feel right at home in a classic Hollywood. I think that if you were to swap this music in to LoTR at the right times, no one would be able to tells the difference. This music is just so big. You can really appreciate that the music was done by a real orchestra rather than a synthesizer. GoW II does manage to have more epic music than the original and one of the great things about this particular track is it plays with alot of the themes presented in the score for the first one but kicks them up to the level the music in GoW II is at.
Game: Albert Odyssey
System: Sega Saturn
Song: Airship Music
YT link: http://www.youtube.com/wa...KM7zo (doesn't start until 30:30)
Man...it took me awhile to find this one online. Albert Odyssey was a so so RPG elevated to being amazing by the fantastic translation job done by Working Design. Most of the music was forgettable, so that made it all the more amazing the first time I climbed in my airship and the music started. This song is just beautiful and blows away everything in the game. This could have been ripped straight from a fantasy movie (in fact it reminds me alot of the Neverending Story theme). Really, this is probably the best flying music I've heard in a game.
System: Playstation 2, Wii
Song: Emperor of Eternal Darkness
YT Link: http://www.youtube.com/wa...UFpf0
Okami is probably one of my all time favorite games. Every aspect of it is simply achingly beautiful. This included the music. Now most of the music works better in game then it does when listened to on it's own. Very few songs really rise above, but this song is just so epic that is works all the time. It really captures the feel of the game with all of it's Japanese influences while still being very appropriate as the theme to the boss of the game. Really it has a nice and methodical rhythm to is and what boss of the game music is complete without Organs. It's odd that the organs even work, seeing as the organ really isn't a traditional Japanese instrument (unlike every other aspect of the song) but still it works really well.
Game: Halo 3
System: X-Box 360
Song: One Final Effort (Halo Theme)
TY Link: http://www.youtube.com/wa...YG-ns
Going from and underrated game that I love to a highly rated game that I don't care for. I don't really like Halo 3 (or any of the Halo games for that matter) BUT when I listen to this song it makes me want to like them. It's just filled with so much wonder and emotion, it makes you think that whatever it's attached to must be amazing. Just because of the fact that I considered putting it on my list, despite not liking the game, earns it a spot on my list.
Game: Warcraft II
Song: Orc Battle Theme 2
YT Link: http://www.youtube.com/wa...hJ2gE
Warcraft II is the first game I remember playing with fully orchestrated music (though listening to it now, it's obviously done with a synth) and that was just mind-blowing at the time. To have real music in a video game was just unheard of. The fact that the music was also awesome just made it all the more amazing. The Humans music was very regal and good but it couldn't hold a candle to the orc music which had a tribalism to it reminiscent of old epics. This song in particular, with it's vocal sounds and pounding beat, just got you in the mood to slaughter some humans. It even made mining for gold feel epic.
Game: Duke Nukem 3D (I believe this version was from the Plutonium Pack)
Song: Duke Nukem Theme
YT Link: http://www.youtube.com/wa...FuCFM
Once you hear this song you know that your about to play a kickass game. This sounds like the theme that every action movie in history should of have. This theme screams gunning down alien, blowing **** up, and rescuing babes. This game manages to perfectly capture Duke Nukem and anything that's cool enough to do that belongs on this list. And no I don't have any gum, why do you ask?
Game: The 7th Guest
YT link: http://www.youtube.com/wa...SMaSU (just the first part)
Back when CDs first started to be associated with video games, there were two games that showed them off: Myst and the 7th Guest. In my opinion T7G was so much better than Myst that's it's Laughable to suggest otherwise. Like many other entries on this list, this song just manages to establish the mood of the game perfectly. Like the previous entry on this list, it manages to perfectly encompass the game in a little song. It has a grand quest feel about it but it's also very macabre. Some thing about the song seems like it's setting you up for a grand tale. It helps that it's music with real instruments in an age where having that in a video game was unheard of.
System: Playstation Portable
YT link: http://www.youtube.com/wa...ti-3o
Locoroco is the first game on this list that almost forces you to notice the music. Not only is it unique in a Katamari kind of way but it's also intergrated into the game. Your little Locorocos are always singing and the music you hear in a stage is dependent on which ones you bring. Every color has a them and this is the Pink's theme. It was a toss up between this and the orange theme but, while the orange on is catchier, this one is more unique. It has a very laid back, almost loungish, feel. There's something almost sensual about it with it's smooth female vocals. It just feels good to listen to.
Game: R-Type Final
System: Playstation 2
Location: Stage F-A
YT Link: http://www.youtube.com/wa...lfpzE
Most of the time you think of final stage music, you'd think it should be epic and grand in some way. That's not the path R-Type final took with one of it's final stages. There's something creepy and downright dirty about this song. Listening to it makes you almost feel a little unclean. In the game it makes you feel as if going forward is a bad idea. It doesn't help that it seems to show a silhouette of a couple...er...mating in the background. But despite how odd all this is, it just work. It's a really uniqe song and it's made even more so by the fact that it comes from a Shmup.
YT Link: http://www.youtube.com/wa...25dhg
This is one of those games that I know sucks but I played the crap out of in my childhood, so I have a certain affection for it. While most aspects of this game were quite bad, the music was amazing. Really, I'll put the music in this game up against most of the best of what the NES has to offer. While there are many great songs to pick from, I think the title theme is my favorite. For a song done so simply, it manages to carry alot of drama and it really indicates a better game then you're gonna get. Like many NES themes for movie games, it really has little to do with Godzilla and how the music associated with it work, but who cares, it's just plain good NES music.
Game: Chrono Trigger
System: Super Nintendo, DS
Song: Battle With Magus
YT Link: http://www.youtube.com/wa...FWpEI
In many games, the most memorable and epic fight is not with the boss of the game. This could not be more true of Chrono Trigger. Screw Lavos. He's this giant being with no emotion or chracter. Yes it needs to be stopped but nothing about it is personal. The fight with Magus on the other hand has weight. He screwed up Frog's life. He's an evil presence that must be stopped at all costs. The fight with him in the moonlight is more epic then what most current gen systems can pull off. This epicness is helped a great deal by the music. The music is full of tension and drama. In listening to the music you can almost see Magus appearing in the moonlight, hair blowing in the wind with his hand on his sword ready to draw. It perfectly evokes this amazing scene and makes the battle with Lavos seem a little less special.
System: Super Nintendo
Song: Boss Theme
YT Link: http://www.youtube.com/wa..._DxUk
I will admit that I've never actually played this game. I heard this song through another list of great game songs and it instantly grabbed my attention. Just listen to that rhythm! If that doesn't put you in the fighting spirit, nothing will. What really makes it work so well is the really upbeat, fast rhythm, contrasted with the slower and more downbeat horns. The problem with many boss themes is they just don't evoke a great sense of danger. This music screams that you'd better act quickly or you're gonna die.
System: Game Boy
TY Link: http://www.youtube.com/wa...aNLKM
This might be the only song from a portable from the list. As good as future versions of Tetris have gotten, later version will always be lacking because they don't have this song. Screw song B and C. To me this song IS Tetris. It's just not the same without it. The song is so odd and screams of old folk songs yet in all of it's craziness it's the perfect music to accompany dropping blocks. This is one of the Game Boy's first games and as far as I know, no game on it ever managed to produce a song half this awesome.
System: Dreamcast, Playstation 2, X-box Live
Song: Fear is the Mindkiller
YT Link: http://www.youtube.com/wa...wRggQ
There are only a handful of games where playing them feels like a bit of a religious experience to me. Rez is one of those games and that feeling is enhanced by the music. Rez is a game based around music, so said music better be good. All your shots add to the music and make you feel part of it. For most of the game this is fun and cool. However, there is something special about level 5. The stage takes you through the history of life as we know it and the music starts out low key and builds and builds until it just sort of gets inside of you. It mixes with the message of the level and just fills me with a sense of awe and wonder that I rarely feel.
Game: Super Metroid
System: Super Nintendo
Song: Title Theme
YT Link: http://www.youtube.com/wa...tIrGQ
The original Metroid theme was very eerie. It has this throbbing and repitive bass riff going over with a simple and high pitched beep providing a very ominous memory. After the begining it gets a little less interesting and goes for a more adventurous feel. Super Metroid's remake of that theme gets rip of that and ups the creepiness factor to 11. First the intro uses very horror like high string and it just build and build until it arrives on the already creepy theme. Then your left with the original theme done with better sound and the soft coos of the last metroid to just add to the edge of your seat tension. It's the perfect start to a perfect game.
Game: Ratchet and Clank: Going Commando
System: Playstation 2
Song: Megacorp Armory
YT Link: http://www.youtube.com/wa...AlB94
Ratchet and Clank in general has a great musical style to it. It mixes very futuristic sounding instrument with a retro sci-fi feeling to the composition. Nothing really exemplifies this more than this song. This song is like if 50s sci-fi music had a baby with bond music. There's a great secret agent vibe you get here (which works because in the game you're sneaking into a facility) mixed with really top quality electronica.
YT Link: http://www.youtube.com/wa...2Fp48
Nine Inch Nails are my very favorite band in the whole wide world and I'll be damned if I wasn't going to somehow get them on my list. The soundtrack to Quake was done by NIN frontman Trent Reznor. Most of what's on it isn't really music, it's mainly atmospheric sounds that mix well with the sound effects (which Reznor also did) and manage to scare the crap out of you when your playing this game in the dark on a dark and cloudy night. The only real music in the game is the opening theme, which is very much the type of harsh industrial rock that I love so it easily gets on the list.
Game: Space Channel 5 Part 2
System: Dreamcast, Playstation 2
Song: Ulala's History
YT Link: http://www.youtube.com/wa...tj1dk
Space Channel 5, being a rhythm game, depends on you to like the music to like the game. While the music in the game varies there is a main theme that comes up again and again. If you don't like that, you won't like SC5. I love the games main theme and this is the best version of it. It has a wonderful retro vibe that fits the game like a glove. Other than that it's just a good, catchy theme where, once you've played the game, it's hard not to yell out Chu! Chu! Chu! at the appropriate time.
Game: Fallout 3
System: Playstation 3, X-box 360, PC
Song: Title Theme
YT Link: http://www.youtube.com/wa...RaaK4
This song immediately grabbed and made me. It starts out so stoically and slowly. It really evokes this depressing nuclear wasteland. As it builds, it gains this sense of adventure. This sense of a long and epic quest. Then it fully kicks in and you just hope the game can cash the check that this theme is writing. Something about this really gets into me. Gives me a sense of patriotism for a place that doesn't exist, if that makes any sense at all.
Game: Castlevania X: Rondo of Blood
System: PC Engine
Song: Vampire Killer
YT Link: http://www.youtube.com/wa...qOleU
The original version of this song is great. It's just one of those classic NES songs that gets every note right and makes you realize that you don't need high qualite instruments to have a great song. However, having high quality instruments doesn't hurt either. This rendition really once again shows up how good game music was in the early CD era. Unlike the Sega CD mainly used it's CD capabilities to improve music. Alot of later versions overdo the hell out of it. This version makes it more dramatic, but at the same time retains alot of the charm of the original This game seems to define Castlevania, and considering how awesome that series is, that's saying something.
Game: Descent II
Song: Are you Descent?
It's funny, the Descent II soundtrack had music by Type O Negative but all the best stuff on it was done by people you'd never have heard of. The Type O Negative song was good, but it was just a stripped down version of Haunted and the Skinny Puppey stuff could be pretty odd. The other stuff was just pure awesome industrial rock. Playing the game to this music just enhances to a degree that music should not be able to enhance a game. This song in particular just makes you want to zip around and blast the crap out of stuff. And I love that one soft part. It adds a real sense of wonder to it. The whole soundtrack is great and really stood out as far as far as game soundtracks go and this is the best song on it.
Game: Nightmare Creatures
System: PC, Saturn, Playstation
Song: Sewer Snake
YT Link: http://www.youtube.com/wa...G1FFI
This is a game I had fun with at the time but is almost unplayable these days. The game had good atmosphere and was pretty violent for it's time. Really the only thing that's held up was it's music. It's almost a problem that the best music in the game by a mile was the first boss music. It made all the other boss encounters a bit of a let down. This boss music just perfectly combines a really bad ass guitar riff with a really dramatic church organ. Really, the music is significantly more epic then the boss actually is, ot the point where it makes you more nervous about the boss than you probably should be.
Game: Tekken 5
System: PS2, PSP
Song: Moonlit Wilderness
YT Link: http://www.youtube.com/wa...3rJm4
This song almost makes me like Tekken. I've never been a fan of the series. To much emphasis on dial-a-combos and not enough on anything else. However, any fight to this music automatically feels like the most epic fight ever. It helps that it takes place in one of the best stages to ever grace a fighting game. Just everything about the music screams that this is the most epic fight ever, from the dramatic vocals to the sweeping strings to the fast electronica beat.
This is a game that I'm convinced that only me and one of my friends ever bothered to buy, and for good reason. It sucked. It really sucked. It was a basic and boring 2D shooter. The music was great though. It had a mix of different types of electronica with different level of urgency and danger to them. This track in particular is just so much better than the game deserves. This music sounds like it belongs in an epic ice cave in a great RPG, instead it's stuck in a sterile concrete hallway. The song has a great, slow build with nice and metallic sounding drums which leads to a beautiful Harpsichord riff. If you want to hear it just Google it. It'll turn up.
Game: Super Mario Galaxy
System: Nintendo Wii
Song: Battlerock Galaxy
YT Link: http://www.youtube.com/wa...6xrBQ
I'm not generally a huge fan of Mario music. It gets the job done and it's fitting but music that's fitting for a plumber traveling through a mushroom kingdom doesn't sound very appealing. One of the reasons I think I like this song so much is because it sounds like it doesn't belong in a Mario game. Sure, it manages to squeak by because the majesticness of this track fits the whole space setting but just barely. It really gives this already grand game a much bigger sense of grandness. It has so much dignity and conviction in it that's it's almost off putting to find it in a Mario game.
Game: Gitaroo Man
System: Playstation 2, Playstation Portable
YT Link: http://www.youtube.com/wa...S725w
This was a hard call. Almost all the music is so completely awesome in Gitaroo Man that picking one is nearly impossible. As a matter of fact, I was gonna put Born To Be Bone but changed my mind at the last second, if only because the soundtrack version is slightly less awesome then it is in game. Out of all the songs in this game, this is easily the catchiest. I have found myself humming this to myself on many occasions. It also has a great finalness to it in almost every sense. It really manages to encompass that feeling of a final one on one guitar duel at dawn. Also, being the final song in the game, it has some simply insane guitar work going on. I also love the contrast between the complicated and almost masturbatory guitar diddling and the simple and all too catchy theme that it keeps going back to. It makes it seem like so much more than just a bunch of complicated notes strung together. It gives it structure and depth.
Game: Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time
System: Nintendo 64, Gamecube
Song: Gerudo Valley
YT Link: http://www.youtube.com/wa...zttIY
In a way, this just shows my weakness for Spanish guitar music and shows how little it shows up in games. There aren't many N64 games on this list and for good reason. The N64 was a midi system in a CD age. Most of the music just sounded flat and lifeless and they didn't seem to be trying as hard to make it sound as good as possible given their limitations. Even this song suffers from low quality instruments. Still, despite this, it's such an elegant and awesome tune that the quality of the instruments don't hurt it enough to keep it off the list.
System: Sony Playstation
Song: Lil' Bonus Room
YT Link: http://www.youtube.com/wa...DXRQk
C'mon! Just listen to it! This song is hilarious and to just have it seemingly randomly in all the games bonus rooms is just brilliant. Best thing about this game by a mile.
Game: Katamari Damacy
System: Playstation 2
Song: Cherry Blosson Color Season
YT Link: http://www.youtube.com/wa...-7FhA
The soundtrack for Katamari Damacy is unarguably the most Japanese collection of music ever conceived. The fact that the makers of KD found even one song that perfectly fits the acts of rolling around a giant ball that sucks up everything it touched is amazing. The fact that they have 3-4 games worth of such music is ridiculous. What's even more ridiculous is that my favorite song from the series features a children's choir, something I usually hate. Really this song is so serene and peaceful, yet, once again, it fits the act of rolling up the world in a giant ball perfectly. Just the lack of sense what I just said makes is part of the reason KD is so awesome.
Game: Rocket Knight Adventure
System: Sega Genesis
Song: Boss Theme
YT Link: http://www.youtube.com/wa...uHjAk
Anyone that thinks the Genesis wasn't capable of good music, need to listen to this. This is one of the finest boss themes ever composed and it was done within the limitations of the genesis. While there will be other boss themes on this list and they are better than this, none of them really convey the sense of danger and dread of this song. The opening is just so dark with it's alarm like bass and foreboding tune. Really the only thing holding this back from being higher is the other part of the tune. It's a little dinkier and kind of cuts the danger down a bit and makes it a bit more typical. It's still good but it holds it back.
Game: Final Fantasy: Mystic Quest
System: Super Nintendo
Song: Boss Theme
YT Link: http://www.youtube.com/wa...HkxFk
Yeah, that's right. I can only pick one Final Fantasy song and the one I pick is from Mystic Quest. While Mystic Quest might be one of the worst FF games ever made, in my opinion it had the best music the series has ever seen and the best rendition of rock music on the Super Nintendo. All the music in this game just rocks so hard and the boss theme is one of the best. It has a real sense of danger and a great brisk battle-like pace. It just screams epic battle. Too bad it's connected with a game like Mystic Quest.
Game: Maximum Carnage
System: Super Nintendo (the genesis one had worse music)
Song: Boss Theme 1
This is the first game soundtrack I remember being done by an artist I like. The music for this game was done by Green Jelly and most of it was still not that great. The SNES just doesn't do rock that well. Only a few songs translated well. This was one of the major exceptions. It's hard to even explain why I like this song so much. It just clicks right with me. It has such a smooth and bad ass sound and it gived a good sense of danger but not too much, considering this is the music for the first boss. I would kill to hear this song done with real instruments.
Game: Odin Sphere
System: Playstation 2
Song: End Credits
Odin Sphere has one of the better themes I've heard in a game. It's one of the first things you hear in the game and it is just so stunning that it makes you just want to stare at the title screen for a while and take it in. It appears at a few other places in the game but you don't get the full version until the end credits and beating the game is entirely worth it for that alone. Just like everything about this game, it's just so elegant and beautiful. It really manages to evoke the world of this game quite well and the vocals are wonderful.
Song: Tristram Theme
YT Link: http://www.youtube.com/wa...eyo30
I can listen to this song forever. I have literally kept this song on loop for a good hour and never managed to get sick of it. This might be the best purely atmospheric song I've ever heard. It evokes everything it needs to perfectly. This is town music, so it needs to be peaceful and relaxing and it is. But it's also a town on top of hell so it has an appropriate eeriness and discomfort to it. How it manages to be calming and uncomfortable at the same time, I don't know, but it does.
Game: Donkey Kong Country
System: Super Nintendo
Song: Aquatic Ambiance
YT Link: http://www.youtube.com/wa...Ieb4M
This song is the Zenith of 16-bit music to me. It simply does not get better than this. When DKC came out, I knew that it was graphically far above anything released in the 16-bit generation. What I found hard to believe was the quality of the music. This music was CD quality, yet it was in a cartridge that already seemed to be pushing the limits with it's graphics. All the music in the game was well done but this music is simply beautiful. FAR too beautiful for a game about monkeys fighting a giant lizard to get their bananas back. I mean this song is so sad. Why is it sad? I really can't say. However, fitting or not it's quality and beauty make it special.
Game: Shadow of the Colossus
System: Playstation 2
Song: Demise of a Ritual
YT Link: http://www.youtube.com/wa...0fdwY
In stark contrast to the last song, which didn't fit the game it was in at all, this song perfectly captures the part of the game it's in. SotC is a game full of moral ambiguity and a feeling that you aren't doing the right thing. Every time you kill a Colossi the music envokes a great sadness as Wander is overwhelmed by black gunk. It is impossible to get to the end of the game and to not be having second thoughts about whether you're doing the right thing. This song is just so sad. You are facing the last of these great beasts. You have to kill it. You have no choice in the matter. THe game is just compelling you forward. This music just somehow perfectly captures the fact that you are going to kill the last of these great beasts and there's nothing you can do about it.
Game: Mega Man 2
System: Nintendo Entertainment System
Song: Wily Stage 1
YT Link: http://www.youtube.com/wa...WJ320
Hey look! It's the one song you knew was going to be here. Picking a song from a megaman game is hard. I was almost urged to make it a tie but in the end this is the best song a megaman game ever produced and it comes out of what is probably the best megaman game ever made. Nothing says final stage music better than this song. The sense of urgency and danger are so neatly wrapped up in this cool little tune. What put it over the edge is when the second layer comes in. It just works so well!
Game: Sonic CD
System: Sega CD
Song: Metallic Madness Present
YT Link: http://www.youtube.com/wa...ubbLM
Look, it's the return of our good friend the Sega CD! Sonic CD overall is my favorite game score of all time and I mean the American version. Seriously, if you have a problem with the American score (I'm looking at you Diehard Gamefan) you can just go screw! Sure the sonic boom theme is cheesy but so is super sonic warrior. WHen I first heard this it was so beyod anything I had ever heard in game music. It was sonic music except done with good keyboards. My mind was blown and has never fully repaired itself.
Game: Guilty Gear X
System: Playstation 2, Dreamcast
Song: Awe of She
YT Link: http://www.youtube.com/wa...iVRCw
If you like Metal, Guilty Gear is the game soundtrack for you. Every track is beautifully written guitar metal without those horrid vocals getting in the way. The cream of crop is Dizzy's theme which manages to be dramatic as a boss of the game should be and still so rockin that it almost hurts. There was a remake of this in GGX2 but it was not nearly as good.
Game: Silent Hill 4: The Room
System: Playstation 2, X-Box, PC
Song: Room of Angel
YT Link: http://www.youtube.com/wa...nk2ng
The worst Silent Hill song has to be the one with the best theme. This song is just flat out beautiful. It is the most traditional song on the list yet it manages to perfectly manages to capture the silent hill. This series in generla has fantastic music and the themes are usually good but they don't have the sad, haunted and even a little bit angry aspects that this song has. It's amazing that such a beautiful song fits such a disturbing game but it does. But even if you've never played a video game this song is beautiful and can be appreciated just as much if someone has never heard of Silent Hill
System: PC, X-Box 360, Playstation 3
Song: Still Alive
YT Link: http://www.youtube.com/wa...KRTrI
You knew it was coming. You might be thinking that this is just a cliche choice of a a over rated song but separate yourself from all the internet hype from this song and how played out it's become and see it for what it is. There is a reason for all the hype. This song is wonderful, it's just that gamers tend to ruin wonderful things by overplaying them to death. This song is number one because it actually enhances the game by a significant degree. There could not have been a more perfect way to end this game. I had heard the ending was good when I originally played it but the last thing I expected was glados singing me a song about what had happened in the game from her perspective. It also manages to leave it open for a sequel because it states that she's...y'know still alive. But the song itself is just so catchy and good and the lyrics are so clever and laugh out loud funny that how could anything else be number one other than this.
And that's it. Comment, questions, insult: All welcome!
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