We are fast approaching the end of what has so far been a rather stellar console generation. We got some truly fantastic games that became much more ambitious as developers grew more confident. And with that we got some incredible music to make the experience so much better.
I personally love me a good soundtrack, and an added OST will often sway me in the direction of a Collector’s Edition. I’m the type of person that listens to the music of the games I love while at work, sitting in traffic, or when get home slightly inebriated after a night out, with the sound system on max and annoying the neighbours.
Here are some of my favourite, and the best we’ve received over the past generation.
Geralt of Rivia – The Witcher III: Wild Hunt
We here at SAGamer really can’t stop raving about The Witcher III. There’s something so complete about the 150+ hours you spend in this world and the music is no different. Marcin Przybyłowicz, the composer of the game’s music, incorporated some older, medieval instruments like the lute bowed gusle in a full blown symphony and topped it off with some of the best Scandinavian chorus you can find. Geralt of Rivia, the song named after the main protagonist of the series, is probably one of the best of the whole OST, as it essentially summarises exactly what you can expect going in the moment you fire the game game up.
Main Theme – Assassin’s Creed Origins
Some might debate which game is better, Origins or Odyssey. I personally preferred Origins, since it signalled the beginning of a changes we would start seeing in the Assassin’s Creed franchise. The music from the series has always been top notch, with the people involved being very good to capture the era with it. The music from Assassin’s Creed Origins is no different and nothing accentuates the more than the music from the main theme that somehow gave it a very authentic and ominous feel.
Restoring the Light, Facing the Dark – Ori and the Blind Forest
Ah man, the emotional ride Ori and the Blind Forest takes you on is something quite special, and just hearing the incredible music by Gareth Coker is enough to stir some incredible feelings. Some of the tracks will bring about feelings of joy and elation, while others will make you ball your eyes out. It’s hard to pick just one, *mild spoilers* but the sound track while climbing the Ginso Tree in a race against time is something that will get your heart pumping and bring back some incredibly mixtures emotions of panic, frustration and ultimately ecstasy.
Main Theme – Marvel’s Spider-Man
Last year’s Marvel’s Spider-Man was one of the best games of the year and probably the generation. It essentially managed to make all our fantasies come true and turn us into Spider-Man. The music from the game is essentially perfect, as it helps you feel like like a true super hero as you swing around the Big Apple. The Main theme once again probably sums it all up nicely, and it’s one of those tracks you can’t help listen to first, before starting up the game.
Apocalypsis Noctis – Final Fantasy XV
One of the things the Final Fantasy games have always been renowned for is the epic battle music it incorporates. This is especially the case when it comes to the boss battle music, and when it comes to Final Fantasy XV, this is no different. Apocalypsis Noctis is reserved for some of the biggest battles of the game, and the way the music builds to a crescendo is enough to give you goosebumps
Life will Change – Persona 5
And now for something a little bit different, as most of the music we hear in our games uses a modern as classical themes. Persona 5 also uses classical music, but it is the more modern pieces that really stand out. From the incredibly catchy battle theme to the normal everyday music, there isn’t a tune you will not find catchy and likeable. My personal favourite is Life will Change, featuring the incredibly vocals of Lyn Inaizumi.
Jump up, Super Star – Super Mario Odyssey
As is the case with most Nintendo staples, we know and love the themes surrounding certain heroes and games all too well. So it was quite welcome when a completely different type of song was introduced into the wonderfully wacky world of Super Mario Odyssey. Jump up, Super Star was also used during marketing for the game and it has in a way, become the unofficial theme of Mario’s latest adventure. It embodies everything we’ve come to know and love about the series, and you just can’t help having a huge smile on your face when you hear it.
A Beautiful Song – Nier Automata
Nier Automata is a game that explores all sorts of deep and thought-provoking themes. Everything in this game is meticulously thought out, with nothing being done just for the hell of it. It is the sort of game that should be studied in universities, and the way it uses music should be a syllabus on its own. A Beautiful Song have you go up against a robot in the form of an Opera singer, and while there’s a much deeper meaning behind the boss and its theme, the way the music is used in the fight is what makes it really impressive. The whole battle is a dance of death, with you learning the rhythm of the fight by listening to the epic music sung by, you guessed it a very talented Opera Singer. I can go on forever about this Nier Automata’s music, but for now, just listen to A Beautiful Song.
Aloy’s Theme – Horizon Zero Dawn
Horizon Zero Dawn almost caught us a bit off guard. It took the open-world sandbox genre that many were getting a bit tired of and revitalised it with a fantastic world and narrative. We also got an incredible new gaming hero to root for in Aloy, who was exiled at a very young age and became a very strong and resourceful woman we cannot help to fall in love with. The game explores strong themes of tribalism, oppression and prejudice, with the music bringing it to the fore. Aloy’s Theme is the best example of the soundtrack, and you cannot help but feel a sense of wonder and adventure when you hear it.
God of War – God of War
The pounding drums, the deep choirs and the roaring orchestra. That is essentially all I can say about this track. It is the opening track of Official OST, and it encapsulates everything that is Kratos and the journey he and his son Atreus are about to go on. Bear McCreary and the team at Santa Monica Studios went to great length to compose God of War’s soundtrack, making sure there’s a level of authenticity to it. If somebody asked you to describe God of War through music, this will be the way to do it.
There are many, many different songs and pieces written and used in video games over the last few years that deserve some praise, so share some of your favourites with us.