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First post, by DeadnightWarrior

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Hello everybody,

I hope I'm not going OT here.

I was thinking about the many times I got hooked to some videogame themes over the years.

So here's my question to you: what are the best in-game soundtracks according to your experience? It can be a proper song, a hook, a theme or just a background track.
My personal picks:

ARCADE:
- Tokio Scamble Formation
- Bubble Bobble
- Super Mario Bros
- Out Run
- Hang-On
- Pac Man
- Ghosts N' Goblins

NES:
- Castlevania
- The Legend Of Zelda
- Metroid

PC:
- Monkey Island ("theme")
- Doom (nearly every track is a killer but I'll go with Doom II's "Into Sandy's City")
- Quake II ("Descent Into Cerberon")
- Lords Of The Realm II (3 of 5 "scroll themes", however the whole OST is great)
- The Elder Scrolls theme ("Morrowind", "Oblvion", "Skyrim")
- Gothic 3 (a great soundtrack, i find "Welcome to Varant" the most interesting part)
- Might And Magic VII ("main menu")
- Duke Nukem 3D ("theme")

There would be many others but I'll leave it to you!

Reply 1 of 21, by MAZter

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Doom
Transport Tycoon Deluxe
Indycar 2
Theme Hospital
Warcraft 2
The Need for Speed
SimCity 2000
Duke Nukem 3D
Aladdin
Little Big Advanture 1,2
Wolfenstein 3D
Lotus III: The Ultimate Challenge

Doom is what you want (c) MAZter

Reply 2 of 21, by DracoNihil

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I don't really *have* any favourites.

But I tend to listen to things from obscure or otherwise terrible games:

Island Peril
H20
Forbidden Forest 3
Dark Vengeance
Severance: Blade of Darkness

Though, alot of what I listen to isn't really from games but rather from the demoscene. Some of it ends up being used in a few games anyways, like Unreal and UT99.

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Reply 3 of 21, by Errius

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https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=icXcc3u4Po4

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Reply 4 of 21, by ntalaec

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For PC-DOS only:

Soundtrack:
Warcraft II (with expansions)

Themes (in no order):
Monkey Island (Main theme)
Pinball Illusions (Menu)
Raptor (Wave music 1)
Lotus (Main theme and Miami ice)
One Must Fall 2097 (Main theme)
Duke Nukem 3D (Menu - Gragbag)

Reply 5 of 21, by SirNickity

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This would be a long list for me. Some highlights though:

DOS: Hocus Pocus, Dune II, Loom, WarCraft II, Mech Warrior II, Terminal Velocity, Epic Pinball
Post-DOS PC: StarCraft, Myst (Riven, Exile, ...), Diablo, Fury3, Bastion, Transistor
Nintendo: Mega Man 2, Contra, Super C, Castlevania III, Gremlins 2 (Game Boy)
SNES: Castlevania IV, Donkey Kong Country, Final Fantasy 4 + 6, Chrono Trigger
PSX: Chrono Cross, Castlevania SOTN, Wipeout XL, Legend of Dragoon, ... this could go on for a while.
one more...
PS3: Journey

Reply 6 of 21, by foil_fresh

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pc - jazz jackrabbit, the blood theme, monkey island, xcom, command & conquer, red alert
playstation - ridge racer

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Reply 7 of 21, by badmojo

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The opening tune in the floppy version of System Shock is awesome on both OPL3 and GM: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fz1wlcZnhv8

And I regularly fire up my C64 to play this SID tune: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=q0CNak8vfbQ

Not much of a game but it's a great track 👍

If it's broke, then fix it!

Reply 8 of 21, by Wolfus

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PC:

Realms of Arkania trilogy (german Star Trail 2-CD edition the most)
Alone in the Dark 2 CD
Witcher trilogy

Amiga:

Ishar trilogy
Universe
Jaguar XJ220

C64:
Last Ninja trilogy
Golden Axe
Iron Lord

Reply 10 of 21, by Cyberdyne

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NES Power Blade and James Bond jr.
DOS Jazz Jackrabbit and One Must Fall 2097
Windows Quake 4 and Plant Versus Zombies 😂

I am aroused about any X86 motherboard that has full functional ISA slot. I think i have problem. Not really into that original (Turbo) XT,286,386 and CGA/EGA stuff. So just a DOS nut.

Reply 12 of 21, by jesolo

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One that comes to mind is the soundtrack of the PC game, The Dig (Lucasarts). But, you have to have a taste for orchestral music to enjoy it.

And, two of my other personal favourites are At Doom's Gate (from Doom 1 E1M1) and Space Quest 3's intro song (as played back on an MT-32).

Reply 13 of 21, by bristlehog

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Here's game soundtracks I like the most. I'll provide some examples for each game.

Arcade:

Golden Axe (1989) [You Takada] - Wilderness, Boss fight

Sega Genesis (Megadrive):

Golden Axe III (1993) [Naofumi Hataya & others] - The Vast Field, The Bloody Street

Sharp X68000:

Akimajou Dracula (1993) [Shin-chan & others] - Vampire Killer

PC (DOS):

MIDI:

Codename Iceman (1989) [Mark Seibert] - Bar theme 1
Duke Nukem 3D (1996) [Lee Jackson, Robert Prince] - Grabbag, Stalker
Dune II (1992) [Frank Klepacki] - Rulers of Arrakis
Heretic (1994) [Kevin Schilder] - The Dungeons
Highway Hunter (1995) [Serge Shishkin] - Prologue
Magic Carpet 2 (1995) [Russell Shaw] - Main Menu
Ski or Die (1990) [Rob Hubbard] - Main theme
Space Quest V (1993) [Timothy Steven Clarke, Christopher Stevens] - Starcon Academy, Cleaning the Academy Crest
Time Commando (1996) [Philippe Vachey] - Ending Titles, Rome
Tyrian (1995) [Alexander Brandon] - Gryphons of the West
UFO: Enemy Unknown (1994) [John Broomhall] - Intercept, Geoscape alternative
Warcraft II (1995) [Glenn Stafford] - Orc 2, Human 2

Tracker modules:

Another World (1992) [Jean-François Freitas] - Ending
Epic Pinball (1993) [Robert Allen, Joshua Jensen] - Menu theme
Jazz Jackrabbit (1994) [Alexander Brandon] - Main Menu, Bonus
One Must Fall 2097 (1994) [Kenny Chou] - Menu
Vanguard Ace (1997) [Björn Gustafsson] - Alone

PCM or CD Audio:

Baryon (1995) [unknown Korean composer] - Stage 1, Stage 4
Carmageddon (1997) [Lee Groves & Fear Factory] - Zero Signal
Command & Conquer (1995) [Frank Klepacki] - Act on Instinct, Industrial
Descent 2 (1996) [Type O'Negative & others] - Haunted
Dungeon Keeper (1997) [Russell Shaw] - The Horned Reaper, Soft Flute
Dungeons of Kremlin (1995) [unknown Russian composer] - Intro
Heroes of Might and Magic II (1996) [Paul Romero] - Swamp, Battle Theme 3
Little Big Adventure 2 (1997) [Philippe Vachey] - LBA Theme
Lords of the Realm 2 (1996) [Keith Zizza] - Setup, Scroll 1
Redneck Rampage (1997) [The Beat Farmers & others] - Baby's Liquored Up, Gettin' Drunk

PC (Windows):

Tracker modules:

Fury 3 (1995) [Kyle Richards] - Terran, Fog
Unreal Tournament (1999) [Michiel van den Bos] - Run, Foregone Destruction, Botpack #9

PCM or CD Audio:

Beyond Divinity (2004) [Kirill Pokrovsky] - Crystal Cave
Civilization V (2010) [Geoff Knorr & Michael Curran] - Askia peace theme
Darkwood (2014) [Artur Kordas] - Morning theme, Menu theme
Diablo (1997) [Matt Uelmen] - Tristram, Catacombs
Diablo II (2000) [Matt Uelmen] - Sisters, Docks
Disciples II (2002) [Philippe Charron] - Battle 2, Ingame 3
Divine Divinity (2002) [Kirill Pokrovsky] - Stones and Trees, A Wind of Aleroth, The Song of the Wind
Divinity 2 (2009) [Kirill Pokrovsky] - Here be Zandalor
Evil Islands (2000) [Andrey Fedorenko & others] - Kania, Ingos
Frostpunk (2018) [Piotr Musiał] - The Last Flame, The City Must Survive
Heroes of Might and Magic III (1999) [Paul Romero] - Rampart, Combat Theme 4
Heroes of Might and Magic IV (2002) [Paul Romero] - Sea, Hope
Icewind Dale (2000) [Jeremy Soule] - Kuldahar Theme
Icewind Dale 2 (2002) [Inon Zur] - Skeleton of a Town
Mass Effect (2007) [Sam Hulick] - Map theme
Might and Magic VI (1998) [Paul Romero, Rob King] - Moonlit Journey - Snow, The Hive
Neverwinter Nights (2002) [Jeremy Soule] - Main Theme
Paradise Cracked (2002) [Alexander Shukaev] - Title 01, Skytown 01a
Power of Law (2004) [Alexander Shukaev] - In The End, Megapolis
Quake II (1997) [Sonic Mayhem] - Descent into Cerberon, The Underworld
Starcraft (1998) [Derek Duke, Glenn Stafford & others] - Terran 1, Zerg 1
The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion (2006) [Jeremy Soule] - The Watchman's Ease, Wings of Kynareth
The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim (2011) [Jeremy Soule] - The Streets of Whiterun, Ancient Stones
The Witcher (2007) [Adam Skorupa, Paweł Błaszczak] - The Dike, Ominous Place
The Witcher 3 (2015) [Marcin Przybyłowicz] - Outskirts of Novigrad, The Nightingale, King Bran's Final Voyage
The Wolf Among Us (2013) [Jared Emerson-Johnson] - Office theme, Woodlands
Total Annihilation: Kingdoms (1999) [Jeremy Soule] - Song of the Siren
Warhammer 40000: Dawn of War (2004) [Jeremy Soule] - Force Commander theme, Fallen City, Chant, Acid

After I compiled everything I thought that there are many Russian composers on the list. My overall top of game composers is:

- Jeremy Soule (US) - incredibly immersive orchestral music
- Marcin Przybyłowicz (Poland) - very immersive medieval music
- Piotr Musiał (Poland) - incredibly immersive orchestral/ambient music
- Matt Uelmen (US) - incredibly immersive and atmospheric music, with rock elements
- Kirill Pokrovsky (Russian but migrated to Belgium in 1991) - very immersive music but he lacked mixing skills, at least by the times of Divine Divinity (2002). He was a keyboard player and songwriter in several Russian rock bands (Aria, Master) before his emigration, so his lack of sound engineering skills is explainable.
- Paul Romero (US) - incredibly immersive orchestral music, often with female choirs
- Philippe Charron (France) - very immersive and catchy orchestral music
- Andrey Fedorenko (Russia) - immersive music but lacks mixing skills, at least by the times of Evil Islands (2000). He is a leader and a vocalist of Russian power metal band 'Archontes' existing since 1993, example: Archontes - Lullaby.
- Alexander Shukaev (Russia) - electronic dreamy music. He is not much of a gaming composer but he runs an electronic project by the name 'Sensorica'. Example: Sensorica vs. Jin Key - Only One. Actually, I know him personally, and we even had a collaboration track: Sensorica & Geryon - Euphoria.

Last edited by bristlehog on 2020-04-02, 18:35. Edited 45 times in total.

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Reply 14 of 21, by Joseph_Joestar

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From the DOS era, I think Heroes of Might and Magic 2 was the first game that had a soundtrack which completely blew me away. Those opera-like CD audio tracks sound amazing even to this day. Some samples:

I still remember the first time I heard those epic vocals kick in. Never thought music of that quality could be found in games.

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Reply 15 of 21, by ZellSF

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bristlehog wrote on 2020-02-02, 03:39:

Little Big Adventure 2 (1997) [Philippe Vachey] - LBA Theme

I was curious if this ever got a soundtrack release so I looked it up and found something interesting:
https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/wayo/lit … symphonic-suite

Reply 16 of 21, by svfn

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(copyingbristlehog's format)
Probably have a lot in common but my favorites are stuff from Eric Brosius, NIN, Stéphane Picq, Matt Uelmen, Jeremy Soule and Paul Ruskay..

Double Dragon 2 - Title

MegaRace 1 - NewSan / NewFac
Dune Spice Opera
Jill of the Jungle - Funky
Tyrian - Savara, the return
Wacky Wheels - Spacey
Warcraft II - Intro / Orc 1
Raptor - Wave music

Jazz Jackrabbit - Diamondus
Fury 3 - Ares / Sabek (the tracker version sounds better imo)
Hellbender - Theme
Time Commando - Title
Duke Nukem 3D - Grabbag / E1L1

Outlaws - Sanctuary / Sanchez the Outlaw / Two Feathers / The Last Gunfight
Tomb Raider 1 - Theme
Megarace 2 - Loading Music
Mechwarrior 2 - Track 2 / 9 / 11
Quake 2 - Gravity Well / Descent into Cerberon / Operation Overlord / Quad Machine

Unreal Tournament - Foregone Destruction / Mechanism Eight
System Shock 2 - Ops 2 / Med Sci 1 / Engineering / Hydro 1
Ballistics - Curver / Fat children deluxe / DeLeo is the man
Dungeon Keeper - Soft Flute, Intro / Mystic Tunnels
C&C Red Alert - Workmen / Mud / Hell March
Starcraft - Terran tracks
Dark Colony - Track 1 / 2
Diablo - Tristram / Dungeon / Caves
Diablo II - Wilderness / Desert / Harem
Homeworld - Adagio for Strings
Homeworld 2 - The Pride of Hiigara / Captain Soban / The Bentusi Arrive

Icewind Dale - Easthaven in Peace
Icewind Dale 2 - Skeleton of a town
Morrowind - Nerevar Rising / Peaceful Waters / The Road Most Travelled
Oblivion - Harvest Dawn / Wings of Kynareth / Watchman's Ease
Skyrim (never played it still 🤣) - Far Horizons / From Past to Present / Kyne's Peace

Quake 1 - Persia Inversion / The Hall of Souls
Thief Gold - Intro / Credits / I just Saved the World
Thief 2 - Blackmail / Trail Of Blood / Shipping and Receiving / Accingite Vos (Credits)
Thief 3 - South Quarter

Guild Wars Factions - Theme / Kaineng
Guild Wars 2 - The Silverwastes / SAB: Sunny Glade / Fear Not This Night
Ruiner - Paranesian Circle / Ritual / Memory / Underwater Sun
Devil Daggers - III (Remastered version)
Brigador, Up​-​Armored EP - Solo Nobre
This War of Mine - No Good Choice / Still Alive Inside
Ashes of the Singularity - PHC Battle 4 / PHC Battle 5 / PHC Ambient Gibbs 1

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Reply 18 of 21, by foil_fresh

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jesolo wrote on 2020-02-01, 19:07:

One that comes to mind is the soundtrack of the PC game, The Dig (Lucasarts). But, you have to have a taste for orchestral music to enjoy it.

And, two of my other personal favourites are At Doom's Gate (from Doom 1 E1M1) and Space Quest 3's intro song (as played back on an MT-32).

last night i learnt that the music from space quest 3 was mainly made by the drummer of supertramp (logical song, give a little bit). love that intro song to bits but i've never played the game at all.

i got a question about the dig. i loaded it up for the first time and chose "play the dig for windows 95", it plays all the speech and FMV audio correctly but i have no music in the puzzle levels. does it use windows direct sound or does it auto detect a sound card's address/port etc?

would be very helpful to know. thanks bud.

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Reply 19 of 21, by bristlehog

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svfn wrote on 2020-02-04, 13:05:

Probably have a lot in common

Actually I'm shocked about how close our musical tastes are. I never played neither TES series nor Baldur's Gate or Icewind Dale, but now I see that I missed lots of beautiful music there, like 'Skeleton of a Town' by Inon Zur or 'Wings of Kynareth' by Jeremy Soule.

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