Game music of the day: Double Dragon

Game: Double Dragon

Song: Title Screen

Composer: Kazunaka Yamane

Above: Title Screen from Double Dragon

In the mid 80s, there was no beat 'em up more popular than Double Dragon. It was a no frills, walk right and punch everyone in the face affair that somehow captivated millions of gamers, both in the arcade and in the eventual NES and Sega Genesis ports. The gameplay may not hold up to today's standards, but the music, especially the title screen, will be amazing forever.

The embedded track comes from the NES version, and just so happens to be the first game song I remember listening to and thinking, "Man, I love game music." All of these game music articles, all my imported CDs, all my gigs of personally ripped VGM can be traced back to this one song. Sure, there were other impressivetracks (like say the Zelda title screen) around before Double Dragon appeared, but something about this specific song pulled me in for life.

Most of the in-game songs are fairly strong, though Mission 4 tops 'em all by picking up the tempo and just going all out nuts with the NES' limited audio channels. If this ain't face punchin' music, I don't know what is.

Sadly, I bet thousands of people think of this garbage cartoon instead of the actual games. I was a bit too old to even give it a chance, but I'd like to think that everyone hates it as unconditionally as I do.The showled to Double Dragon V, afighting game that more or less finished off the franchise, forever entombing the series in the limitless wastes of '90s animation.

But hey, that old NES music was pretty good!

Ending theme by Ryoji Yoshitomi

Still Alive by Lisa Miskovsky

World Select by Mariko Nanba

Brett Elston

A fomer Executive Editor at GamesRadar, Brett also contributed content to many other Future gaming publications including Nintendo Power, PC Gamer and Official Xbox Magazine. Brett has worked at Capcom in several senior roles, is an experienced podcaster, and now works as a Senior Manager of Content Communications at PlayStation SIE.