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30 Beautiful Video Game Compositions You Need To Hear

30 Beautiful Video Game Compositions You Need To Hear

Within video games you will find innovative and extraordinary modern music. The highly creative nature of the industry, which promotes unrestricted imagination, has resulted in an exceptional array of diverse recordings over the last three decades.

To celebrate the genre, here are 30 examples of brilliant video game compositions (you can find many of the complete soundtracks on YouTube), and the geniuses behind them.

1 . Donkey Kong Country

David Wise’s Aquatic Ambiance, from the famous 1994 SNES game, begins the list. A British composer, Wise joined developers Rare in the 1980s and has since created a critically acclaimed body of work.

2. Donkey Kong Country 2

The Donkey Kong Country sequel from 1995 improved on the original, with Stickerbush Symphony remaining one of the finest recordings.

3. Donkey Kong Country 3

Wise concluded the Donkey Kong Country trilogy in 1996 with another sublime selection of compositions. Frosty Frolic remains a particularly enduring piece.

4. Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze

After a brief spell away from music, Wise returned to work on Tropical Freeze in 2013. The result is a wonderful soundtrack for the Wii U edition, with Grassland Groove proving a big hit with fans.

5. Okami

This unique title also offered an inspired soundtrack. Infused with Japanese culture, the compositions are mesmerizing. It was such an achievement Capcom won the Best Soundtrack at the 2007 Video Game BAFTAs.

6. Secret of Mana

A role-playing game from 1993, Secret of Mana was not only brilliant, but complemented by an emotive soundtrack by Hiroki Kikuta. The title now holds legendary status within the gaming community.

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7. Rayman Origins

http://youtu.be/efO5kApequ4

Ubisoft’s extraordinarily imaginative Rayman Origins is overloaded with innovative music. Desert of Dijiridoos’ Lost Beats is one of the many highlights.

8. Rayman Origins

http://youtu.be/tNqRRXr3YXY

From the underwater levels on The Sea of Serendipity, it’s clear why Rayman Origins’ soundtrack is so well regarded. This is The Lum’s Dream (Glou Glou).

9. The Curse of Monkey Island

LucasArts hit new highs with this remarkable soundtrack – a popular inclusion at video game music orchestral performances. Michael Land composed the music to this charming 1997 adventure game.

10. EarthBound

An enigmatic RPG from 1994, EarthBound (Mother 2 in Japan) has only just become available to Europeans. The soundtrack was composed by Hiroshi Kanazu, Keiichi Suzuki, and Hirokazu Tanaka.

11. Final Fantasy VII

Arguably the finest moment in the Final Fantasy franchise, VII reached a peak in storytelling and emotional impact. Nobuo Uematsu composed the unforgettable music.

12. The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time

Still considered by many to be the best game ever, Ocarina of Time naturally showcased many mesmerizing compositions. The Forest Temple piece is a highlight – Koji Kondo composed the game’s music.

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13. The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess

Twilight Princess built on the increasingly mature themes of the Zelda series. Toru Minegishi, Asuka Ota, and Koji Kondo were the composers.

14. Halo 2

The landmark Halo series had its critically acclaimed soundtracks composed by American Martin O’Donnell. This is Peril, from the second release in the franchise.

15. The Last of Us

One of the finest games of 2013, The Last of Us boasted some extraordinary musical moments. Gustavo Santaolalla was the composer – he’s the winner of two Oscars for his work on the films Brokeback Mountain and Babel.

16. Assassin’s Creed II

Jesper Kyd is the composer for the series’ much celebrated music. Also employed for the second Assassin’s Creed game was a 35-person string ensemble and a choir.

17. Super Mario 64

A legendary title from Shigeru Miyamoto, Super Mario 64 revolutionized the games industry in 1996. It’s still a classic, and its music is as beautiful as ever. This is Dire Dire Docks, as composed by Koji Kondo.

18. Super Mario Galaxy 2

Nintendo’s composer, Koji Kondo, employed some 60 musicians for what was dubbed the “Mario Galaxy Orchestra,” a symphony orchestra offering new depth to the Mario series. This is a more playful composition, highlighting the franchise’s sense of fun, known as Puzzle Plank Galaxy.

19. Super Mario 3D World

One of the very best games from 2013, the latest Super Mario title offers more inventive takes on Mario’s musical landscape.

20. Bit.Trip Presents…Runner2

This fiendishly addictive platformer boasts arguably the best soundtrack from 2013. A heady mix of jazz and dance, it’s exhilarating stuff. Petrified Productions provided the music – this piece is Superfunk.

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21. Lost Winds

A humble platformer from 2008, Lost Winds utilized minimalistic Japanese music to great effect.

22. World of Goo

This wonderfully quirky soundtrack was created by Kyle Gabler. This track, Brave Adventures, has vocal sections performed by two people – Gabler used a keyboard to amplify the effect. The World of Goo soundtrack was released, free of charge, in 2009. You can download it here.

23. Bastion

Mine, Windbag, Mine is from the highly creative Bastion soundtrack by Darren Korb. What he has dubbed as “acoustic frontier trip hop” makes up the compositions, with the intention to be as innovative as possible.

24. Journey

2012’s acclaimed PS3 game had its soundtrack composed by Austin Wintory. He based the soundtrack around one theme, with heavy use of the cello in order to represent the player. This track is called Reclamation.

25. Shadow of the Colossus

http://youtu.be/UmkRKotTQ9w

This is Swift Horse from the outstanding soundtrack by Kō Ōtani from the 2005 PlayStation 2 game.

26. Skyrim

http://youtu.be/Cmp5fr4wUEA

Jeremy Soule composed the music for Skyrim, relying on a choir of over 30 men for certain sections of the game.

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27. World of Warcraft

For an MMORPG like the World of Warcraft series, a brilliant soundtrack is a necessity. Developers Blizzard have used over a dozen composers since the game’s inception in 2004, with sheet music for the many recordings released in 2011.

28. Jet Force Gemini

Rare’s 1999 N64 classic was home to some of the most advanced music ever heard in a video game. Robin Beanland composed it all – this is Water Ruin. 

29. Earthworm Jim 2

http://youtu.be/8OtrgZ2r2GA

Composer Tommy Tallarico used inspiration from classical music (primarily Beethoven) for a number of Earthworm Jim 2’s distinctive tracks. This is one of Tallarico’s original creations, from the level Lorenzo’s Soil.

30. Metroid Prime

Nintendo’s remarkable Metroid Prime Trilogy featured ethereal music that perfectly complemented its futuristic themes. This is the iconic opening world music, which is remixed from a level in the 1994 SNES game Super Metroid. Kenji Yamamoto and Kouichi Kyuuma created the soundtrack.

Featured photo credit: Video Games Live/Roxanne Ready via flickr.com

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Alex Morris

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Last Updated on November 17, 2019

20 Creative Ways To Say Thank You

20 Creative Ways To Say Thank You

Saying, “Thank you,” can be difficult to do. Some things just demand a little something extra because of the magnitude of the favor or the depth of appreciation involved. But what can you do to say thank you in a meaningful way? Sometimes you have to get a little more creative than just firing off an email. Here are 20 creative ways to say thank you that your friends and family will remember and cherish!

1. Make a gift bag.

A unique, homemade gift bag with a custom label or a note is a simple but heartfelt way to show your appreciation for the wonderful things your friends or family have done for you.

2. Give a toast.

Many people fear public speaking more than death, giving this particular thank-you a little extra meaning. Composing a sincere, eloquent toast and delivering it is a nice way to show appreciation that truly comes from the heart.

3. Write a poem.

“Roses are red, violets are blue…” Uh, you could write that...but why not put a little extra zing in it? Find out what their favorite kind of poetry is: haiku, free verse, iambic pentameter, and so on. (Google them if you don’t know what they are.) Then write one that expresses why they deserve your thanks…and why you’re glad to give it!

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4. Create your own labels.

There are a number of websites that offer custom gift labels. Find one that fits your personality and that of your friends and create a personalized thank-you label!

5. Give a gift card.

Sometimes choosing what to give a friend can be tough. A gift card is a good way to get around this problem. As always, be sure to include a personalized note or card thanking the recipient for their friendship and help.

6. Send a letter.

Snail-mail is a largely lost art form. Don’t worry about how long the letter is, though. What really matters here is that you took the time to put pen to paper and express your feelings sincerely and honestly!

7. Use social media to send a special message.

If someone’s done something you think the whole world should know about, why not put out a social media blast? Use your blog, your Facebook, your Google+ account, and your Twitter to spread the word about why this person’s someone your friends will want to know too!

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8. Make your own digital greeting card.

While an email isn’t always the best way to go when saying thank you, a digital greeting card that you put time and effort into creating can really brighten someone’s day! Make the card reflect the recipient’s personality and compose a short message of thanks for their generosity.

9. Make a YouTube video.

Sometimes, actually hearing someone say, “Thank you,” can make all the difference. Why not take it a step further and create a special video of thanks for your friends, family, and those special people who helped make your day so important…or who helped you through that rough time?

10. Deliver cookies or candies.

Making something yourself is a fun and delightful way to say thank you to someone. Create a sampling of baked goods or homemade candies and decorate them with a simple message, or make them so they form letters! (Think Valentine’s candies, only situationally appropriate.) Attach a thank-you note or label and surprise those special people with the gift of your time and creativity.

11. Make surprise gifts for guests.

There’s no need to wait until “later” to send a thank-you message. Why not do it at the time? Create little gift packets or bags for your guests with surprises inside. This is a great way to say thanks to the people who attended your event, and make sure they won’t want to miss the next one!

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12. Put together a flower basket.

Whether you prefer fresh or artificial flowers, assembling a flower basket with a thank-you note is an excellent way to brighten someone’s day and show you appreciate them.

13. Take a picture.

Sometimes capturing the moment is the best way to put a smile on someone’s face. Have someone take a picture of you receiving that special gift or opening that surprise package and send the giver a copy with a quick but sincere note to say thanks!

14. Repay their generosity by paying it forward.

The best gifts come from the heart, and the best way to repay a gift is to pay it forward. If your friend has a special cause they care about or something they believe in passionately, why not make a donation in their name or volunteer some of your time to the cause? This will mean more than any number of cookies, candies, or thank-you notes because you’re taking your friend’s love and spreading it around to others.

15. Do something special for them.

Take them out to dinner. (See “make a toast.”) Give them that movie they’ve been wanting forever. Cook them dinner and give them a present when they arrive. Any of these are good options for showing someone you really appreciate them and how grateful you are to have them in your life.

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16. Reciprocate their help.

Everyone needs help sometime. Whether it’s holding their hand through a particularly traumatic incident or helping them replace the alternator in their car, being there when they need it shows you remember what they did for you and how much it meant. It also shows that you’re willing to be just as good a friend to them as they were to you!

17. Be there for them.

Not every thank-you gesture has to be a grand public spectacle. Sometimes just giving them a place to come hang out when they’re lonely or showing up to offer them a sympathetic shoulder means the world to a person.

18. Listen to them.

Listening is almost as lost an art as the handwritten letter. When your friend or family member needs to talk, listen to them. Ask questions when appropriate, but just letting them know you’re there and paying attention to them to the exclusion of all else for a little while is a great way to say thank you for the times they listened to you.

19. Say it in another language…or two…

A simple thank you is great…but why not spice it up a little? Instead of just saying, “Thank you,” write or make a video of you telling them thank you in different languages. Some examples might be, “Gracias! Merci! Danke schoen! Spasibo! Mahalo!” and any other ways or languages you can think of. (The ones listed above are Spanish, French, German, Russian, and Hawaiian, in case you were wondering.) If you want to really get tricky about it, say a short phrase in each language that conveys why you’re thanking them!

20. Show them some love.

A simple touch, a hug, or helping out when they need it without being asked may be the most powerful gratitude message you can send. Offer to take the dogs for a walk, sit for the kids for a few hours, or run to the grocery store so they don’t have to. The little things are often the most important and meaningful. That doesn’t mean you shouldn’t still send a note, but sometimes your simple presence and willingness to help is all that really matters.

Featured photo credit: Hanny Naibaho via unsplash.com

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