Game music of the day: Batman

Game: Batman

Song: Level 1

Composer: Naoki Kodaka, Nobuyuki Hara

Above: Level 1 from Batman

Most of us agree Arkham Asylum is one of the best games of the current generation, and easily the best Batman game there's ever been. But what held that title prior to Rocksteady's expertly handled blockbuster? In my eyes, that honor goes to the aptly named "Batman" for the NES, which was based on the 1989 Tim Burton film. Naturally the game has almost nothing to do with the movie, but Sunsoft still delivered a strong side-scroller with uncannily good music.

Right there. Level one. That's the first thing you hear, and it's already among the best tunes the NES ever cranked out. Sunsoft has a great track record (some of which are linked at the bottom of the page) but this has to be its most impressive collection. Every single stage is exquisite, blood-pumping stuff that makes you want to punch every vagrant, hoodlum and mask-wearing criminal straight into prison.

Above: Level three's jam

Above: Level four, even more fast-paced and intense

Above: A nightclub-ready remix from OverClocked submitter Stephen Kennedy

Think there was a better Batman game prior to Arkham Asylum? Well, we did run through Bats' entire videogame career back in 2008 when The Dark Knight hit theaters, so maybe give that a look and see if anything jogs your memory. And even if you manage to argue one game's worth over this lovely NESterpiece, I bet Sunsoft's 21-year-old score is still on top.


Game music of the day: Gremlins 2
Level 1 by Hara, another Sunsoft specialty



Game music of the day: Blaster Master
Final Boss by Hara, Kodaka and Marumo



Game music of the day: Dark Wizard
Armer IX's theme by Jun Senoue


  • smikey1123 - November 16, 2010 8:28 p.m.

    Love the music, damn I am old.
  • elpurplemonkey - September 18, 2010 7:28 p.m.

    I'm really liking the inclusion of the OC Remix versions, they add a lot of depth to the article.
  • MassSaber - September 18, 2010 12:15 p.m.

    I still list this tune among my all time fave game level tunes it would be in the top 20 at least
  • CaptainIcyHot - September 18, 2010 3:24 p.m.

    Great choice Brett. One of my favorites. Thanks!
  • wharcraff - September 17, 2010 10:17 p.m.

    Finally some appreciation for one of my Fave Nes games. Don't forget to show 'Journey to Silius' some love when you get around to it. Nice tunes in there as well. reCAPTCHA: 'hordisan neighbors'
  • philipshaw - September 17, 2010 11:47 a.m.

    I think I played this even though I wasn't born when it came out, the music definitely sparked a memory. Talking of Batman: AA, that should be game music of the day some day because the music is as good as if not better than the soundtracks in the most recent films
  • AnthonyGalindo - September 17, 2010 6:34 a.m.

    I was pretty young when we had the NES, so I don't remember very many game soundtracks, but Batman's music has definitely stuck with me through the years.
  • Alroos13 - September 17, 2010 6:33 a.m.

    Oh hell yes this use to be the best batman game... Thanks brett this is some memor joggIng music for sure
  • slimjim441 - September 17, 2010 4:15 a.m.

    I do remember this game, but I would also like to point out that Arkham Asylum was NOT, by any means, a satisfying Batman game. LEGO Batman was better. Think about it, -the combat was almost the same -the puzzles required at least some thought in LEGO -LEGO followed a lot closer to the comics (besides AA's inclusion of random low-rate bad guys, which LEGO included more for comic relief) -and LEGO actually had boss battles, not just fighting the same enemies until you win But yeah, Batman on the NES. Good times.
  • enlargedhousecats - September 17, 2010 3:21 a.m.

  • BishopofHippo93 - September 17, 2010 3:11 a.m.

    WHY WAS THIS NOT CHOSEN SOONER?! Seriously, though, excellent choice. This is one of my all time favorite NES games,
  • batmanboy11 - September 17, 2010 1:25 a.m.

    Good stuff. Don't really remember the game though...
  • batman5273 - September 17, 2010 1:24 a.m.

    I approve of this article!
  • juicenpancakes - September 17, 2010 12:24 a.m.

    Oh wow. I've always secretly hoped that this would be a GMotD someday. Great choice.
  • BoondockSaint54 - September 17, 2010 12:10 a.m.

    This game was great
  • KREATIVEassassin - September 16, 2010 11:46 p.m.

    "This could be Batman..."
  • 8bitBaby - September 16, 2010 11:23 p.m.

    FWOAH! this is a game i haven't thought about in a loooooooong time. wow... that level one music... now i have to go get the music for this game.
  • WonsAuto - September 16, 2010 11:14 p.m.

    Damn, this is fantastic stuff. I had no idea this had such great music -- I just wrote the entire game off as "meh". Gracias, Senor Elston. @sixboxes -- I went as movie Batman for Halloween that year, lol. I was only two, but still!
  • Tenfey - September 16, 2010 11:13 p.m.

    I loaned my copy of this to my cousin 18 years ago, and he lost it. At every family gathering I give him the cold icy stare of a man who has had everything taken from him.
  • ventanger - September 16, 2010 11:05 p.m.

    Can't mention NES Batman without linking to Duane & Brandos excellent song

Showing 1-20 of 21 comments

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