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The best retro video game soundtracks

Music and gaming tend to go hand in hand these days, especially with there being so many iconic game soundtracks that have perhaps been remixed for the dance floor or a big pop track. On top of this, plenty of games tend to be judged on a number of factors and music is one of them. With the advancement in mobile phone technology more and more of us have become gamers, whether we’re catching Pokemon on the bus on the way to see a gig, playing various games such as video poker here https://www.casino.com/uk/videopoker/ or attempting to crack a puzzle or a brain training exercise, we’re gaming more these days. Why sit on bus listening to the latest number one track, when you can sit on the bus and listen to latest number one track whilst playing a game instead?

So, with music and gaming forming an obvious link, we thought we’d go through some of the best retro game soundtracks in history. They aren’t quite up there with Niall Horan’s latest track and certainly sound different to the pop music we all know and love today, but they certainly added to the gaming experience at the time and – like all music from the past – laid the foundations for the music in the games of today.

Super Mario World
Composed by Koji Kondo, this unforgettable track from Super Mario World still lives on today. Mario music in general does (see the video below). Kondo was able to replicate a vast array of instruments with the help of SNES sound chip technology – which, at the time, was deemed revolutionary – and enabled the likes of steel drums and ukuleles to form part of what is an iconic soundtrack.

Space Channel 5
Before the likes of Rock Band and the hugely popular Guitar Hero came Space Channel 5 in the rhythm action genre. Composed by Naofumi Hataya and Kenichi Totoi, this soundtrack was upbeat and uplifting with its jazz feel, but also with a hint of latin music and spy themes. It’s certainly an interesting track and helped add to the fun feel of the game.

Chrono Trigger
Composed by Nobuo Uematsu and Yasunori Matsuda, the soundtrack for Chrono Trigger was essentially a collection of melodies for what was – at the time – a much-loved 16-bit RPG. It should come as no surprise as to why this soundtrack was so perfect, as composer Uematsu had previously worked with the Final Fantasy saga and Matsuda worked on the likes of Mario party. They knew what they were doing.

Street of Rage 2
If you know, then you know. The Streets of Rage 2 soundtrack wouldn’t sound out of place on most dance floors which is hardly surprising given the composers love of electronic dance music. Yuzo Koshiro is clearly partial to a rave or two judging by this absolute masterpiece, which not only aided the game in particular, but it is also said to have influenced techno artists like BT and Danger.

Metal Gear Solid 2: Sons of Liberty

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A hugely popular game when it was released in 2001, Metal Gear Solid 2 also had a soundtrack that certainly got players switched on and fully engaged ahead of the mission ahead. Composed by Harry Gregson-Williams – an English composer drafted in by the game’s Japanese creators – this soundtrack captured the essence of the game rather beautifully and set the tone for what was to come perfectly. Gregson-Williams is clearly a talented man, which is probably why his previous work included the likes of The Rock and Enemy Of The State.

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