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Thursday, March 6, 2008

The Best Video Game Music of All Time

posted by on March 6 at 11:23 AM


Over on Slog, I reviewed the Richard Powers reading last night at Benaroya Hall. The story that Powers read was all about music, and it featured a composer who was touring the symphony halls of the world with classic video game theme music.

It occurred to me during the reading that the best video game music of all time is the original Kid Icarus game for the original Nintendo platform. I don’t play many video games, never really did, but I was totally obsessed with the soundtrack of Kid Icarus. Only the original Legend of Zelda comes anywhere near it in terms of catchiness, relative complexity, and all-around thematic satisfaction. From the title theme to the triumphant underworld score to the spooky fortress music to the reggae-like sky world music, it’s just a phenomenal soundtrack.

All music links and the image come from The Kid Icarus Shrine, which is a truly weird, wonderful place.

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my all time fave NES. these tracks rule.

Posted by sparkrobot | March 6, 2008 2:27 PM

i liked the soundtrack to Punch Out & Ghosts N Goblins better

Posted by lar | March 6, 2008 3:50 PM

If you like this soundtrack, try "Kid Nikki: Radical Ninja." It is the best damn NES game I've ever encountered. Not for any great video-game-geek reasons, but purely for the music, and the fact that the main character is a child in a ninja outfit that has a red rat tail. Fantastic.

Posted by cat | March 6, 2008 5:08 PM

you never played castlevania 2 i take it?

Posted by nonose | March 6, 2008 6:17 PM


Posted by zgjdxk | March 6, 2008 7:15 PM

All your base are belong to us.

Posted by rk | March 6, 2008 7:54 PM

Wow, Paul.

Great call writing about this. Early videogame music is such a guilty pleasure for me. It's so immediately familiar, and yet always sounds so fresh. Maybe it's because I like to date myself.

I almost thought about sending my parents this link. Just so I can say "Remember when I played this over and over?"

Why did they never make a sequel?

Posted by godsactionfigure | March 7, 2008 2:38 AM

Chrono Trigger hands down without a doubt.

Posted by Pecknold | March 7, 2008 1:49 PM

YOU'RE ALL CRAZY!!! It's Mega Man 2!!! HANDS DOWN!!! In Japan, people are writing songs BASED ON THE MELODIES from that game. Look!!!

Everyone's entitled to their own opinions but sometimes opinions are just plain wrong.

Posted by Dumpsterpaste | March 7, 2008 5:41 PM

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