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ClassicRadar: 23 amazing game soundtracks you don't remember

Doom 64 (Nintendo 64)

Although not considered a canon entry, Midway's cranked up reworking of Doom is one of the best games to sport the title, not least because of its approach to sound. Dropping the musical approach and taking a line more similar to the ambient industrial of Trent Reznor's Quake score, the game has unearthly coldness which nearly broke my mind when I first played it many years ago, alone and jetlagged after a transatlantic flight. I still tremble at the word "Pinky" to this day.


Earthworm Jim (SNES/Mega Drive/Mega-CD/PC)

Everyone loves Earthworm Jim for its slick platforming and Python-esque lunacy, but Tommy Tallarico's confidently eclectic set of music is just as important an element of the game's greatness. Whether upbeat, atmospheric, mellow or just plain stupid, there's a slick and original depth that made EWJ sound unlike any other platformer from the 16-bit era. The music was reworked in higher fidelity for the Mega-CD version, but we can't help preferring the original arrangements overall.


Ecco the Dolphin: Defender of the Future (Dreamcast/PS2)

Tim Follin is a legend of games music. For two decades, pretty much everything he touched turned to sonic gold, and there are few finer examples of his talent than his ambient score to last generation's Ecco game. Words are pointless in summing it up. It's just sublime. Listen to it. Now.


F-Zero GX (Gamecube)

I've been over this before, but I'll say it again. Nintendo and Sega's co-produced Wipeout-beater has a staggering soundtrack. Gamey without being cheesey and downright listenable in its own right, it's an essential playlist from an under-rated game on an under-rated machine.


Final Fantasy Mystic Quest (SNES)

Noob-friendly black sheep of the FF family Mystic Quest might be almost universally derided by hardcore fans, but one thing it does have going for it is its music. Composed by Ryuji Sasai and Yasuhiro Kawakami rather than series regular Nobuo Uematsu, it's a noticeably more bright and brash affair, and the strident, balls-out rock of the battle themes is frankly just badass.


Freedom Fighters (PS2/Gamecube/Xbox)

Jesper Kyd’s ‘Battle for Freedom’ piece is the perfect accompaniment to all the Ruskie face-shooting in IO’s excellent squad shoot ‘em up. Mixing powerful electronic beats with a soothing but bass-filled choir, it blends industrial and natural tones to brilliant effect. Stirring and evocative, it shows Kyd can score more than Hitman’s slaphead-sponsored cheese-wirings.

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42 comments

  • FanofSaiyan - May 3, 2011 1:55 p.m.

    Wild Arms had an incredible soundtrack. The opening theme was beautiful.
  • Nintygameplayerperson - May 3, 2011 1:38 a.m.

    Panzer Dragoon?
  • InternetHobo - May 3, 2011 12:04 a.m.

    I am so glad that Plok and Gremlins made it on this list. I really love Plok.
  • Spybreak8 - May 2, 2011 7:55 p.m.

    Nice, my fav soundtracks have to be; Forza 3, Gears of War 2, Command & Conquer, C&C Red Alert, Mass Effect 1&2, Bioshock 1&2, Unreal Tournament 3, all the Doom games, Bionic Commando: Rearmed, Super Meat Boy, Company of Heroes, GTAIV and the trident of Mario, Zelda and Metroid.
  • The_Tingler - May 2, 2011 7:55 p.m.

    Shadow of the Beast has always contained some of my favourite music. Also see Hero Quest on the Amiga.
  • suicidali - May 2, 2011 7:31 p.m.

    Wow, I feel like grabbing my Die Hard Trilogy game disk and copying all the music off of it... Also, Ridge Racer Type 4's soundtrack is pretty damn underrated
  • QWERTYCommander - May 2, 2011 4:53 p.m.

    Snowboard Kids 1 and 2 for the N64. It's a shame that barely anyone knows these games. The soundtracks are amazing.
  • fireworks - May 2, 2011 3:40 p.m.

    shadow of the beast....YES
  • Seabread - May 2, 2011 3:12 p.m.

    Great to see Blast Corps getting some love. I miss that game. But where the fuck are Duck Tales and Batman (NES) ? For shame GR.
  • einhazard - May 2, 2011 2:32 p.m.

    I feel like 'The World Ends With You' should be on here.
  • celticwhisper - May 2, 2011 2:19 p.m.

    I really love that the Doom 64 video is 7:06 in length.
  • philipshaw - May 2, 2011 1:55 p.m.

    I remember most of these but I really care about game music
  • Martfish - May 2, 2011 12:42 p.m.

    Turrican 2 baby!!!
  • Y2Ken - May 2, 2011 9:12 a.m.

    Solid article Dave, personally I've always been a big fan of Earthworm Jim's soundtrack. Gotta love Bioshock, Secret of Mana and Shenmue too.
  • reaperman22 - May 2, 2011 6:16 a.m.

    My favourite soundtracks would have to be all the god of war games, but if we are including licensed music then it would be brutal legend and gta vice city
  • Yaro - May 2, 2011 6:12 a.m.

    Yeah the Jesper Kyd ost to the batman is really amazing. I remember being blown away by that with my bro when we were little. The TV was always so fucking loud we had to yell at each other....not that we wouldn't yell at each other normally....
  • Flashinthepan - May 2, 2011 4:56 a.m.

    I'd still take Sasha's Xpander over the F-Zero GX music, but it was a nice try.
  • Fuzunga - May 2, 2011 4:51 a.m.

    F-Zero GX is one of the best games on the Gamecube.
  • juliocruz - May 2, 2011 4:11 a.m.

    Bet nobody's even heard of this one. Still better than at least 5 of these http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eRVtVmtUuAE
  • dragonblade1214 - May 2, 2011 3:48 a.m.

    On this list, I've only played Blast Corps and F-Zero GX and they both bring back great memories. Though unfortunately, I only faintly remember Blast Corps. Also, I'm sad to say I only played Atelier Iris 2, not the first. But I loved the soundtrack in 2. :)

Showing 1-20 of 42 comments

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