Music: Top 25 Soundtracks Update

2018 had three huge releases in terms of soundtracks — Celeste, Gris and Smash Ultimate — so I added them all to my Top 25 soundtrack list. I also did some slight rearranging to the list, and crowned Splatoon 2 the definitive soundtrack in that series, so only one game fell off the list (since…

Music – Top VGM STKs #23 – 25: Super Mario 64, Contra, Freedom Planet

Koji Kondo is a legend of video game composition, bringing the Super Mario and Legend of Zelda franchises (among others) its trademark melodies that continue to color their latest chapters today. His last major undertaking for Mario, SM64, is an excellent soundtrack that is full of great tunes; the melancholy “Dire Dire Docks” is my…

Music – Top VGM STKs #17 – 19: Gris, Celeste, Sayonara Wild Hearts

I was very impressed with Berlinist’s delicate, emotional score for Gris. The game had an incredible impact upon me with its amazing visuals and responsive gameplay, but I think the music gave it the masterful edge to win me over entirely. It’s deeply affecting, with a brilliant blend of classical instruments and abstract electronica working…

Music: Top VGM STKs #4 – Super Smash Bros. Ultimate

It’s perhaps unfair to the games below it on this list, but Super Smash Bros. Ultimate is a triumph in video game music conservation and remixing, collecting nearly all of the series’ music into one huge soundscape of audio achievement. While I feel Chrono Trigger, Beyond Good & Evil and Okami are extraordinary examples of…

Music: Top VGM STKs #10 – Secret of Mana

Secret of Mana delivered one of the most evocative soundtracks from the Super NES, full of diverse instrumentation, wild compositions, and tracks dripping with emotion and purpose. Hiroki Kikuta’s video game career as a musician began with this title, and he was given free reign in terms of how to create the soundtrack (with tracks…

Music: Top VGM STKs #8 – Mega Man 3

Mega Man 3 is arguably the first soundtrack I heard that I fell in love with. That’s not to say that other NES soundtracks didn’t leave a mark, but as a child this was the origin of my fandom into the medium as something more than just backing compositions for what was happening on-screen; it…

Music: Top VGM STKs #7 – Splatoon 2/Octo Expansion

  Splatoon has become one of my favorite franchises in the past decade, if not all time. It’s just such a splendidly executed game world, and the music is a huge part of why I have all the emotions about it. I feel this soundtrack is related in spirit to Sega’s Jet Set Radio, but…