Early Video Game Soundtracks

Early Video Game Soundtracks
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The Best Gaming Music of the 1990’s

Video games in the 90’s where the starting point of some brilliant gaming music that has appeared in the industry today. The games themselves were an innovation using more colors and pixels to create wonderfully colored worlds. It also introduced the first time 3D gaming came about and with it, recorded music instead of computer sound bytes. Here are some of the most known early video game soundtracks and what they represent.

Street Fighter II (Super Nintendo, 1991)

Being of the first fighting games to get the most North American recognition, Street Fighter II had some heart pounding invigorating music that pumped up many players as they fought off their opponents. The soundtrack consisted of the character’s themes for each of their stages, each one being incredibly catchy. The main theme of Street Fighter has always been Ryu’s stage, a Japanese themed track with some epic sound blares that announce the start of a journey. When Super Street Fighter came out, the new challengers had some amazing music as well such as Cammy and Fei Long’s stages. Most of SF II’s music has been remixed over and over and can be heard in the latest Street Fighter games with punch to them.

Donkey Kong Country 2: Diddy’s Kong Quest (Super Nintendo, 1995)

Donkey Kong Country 2

Not often put onto gaming music lists, Donkey Kong Country 2 was arguably one of the best in the series, with memorable tunes that emphasized on a more ambient approach. While playing as Diddy and Dixie Kong, it is their duty to rescue Donkey Kong from the evil pirate King K Rool. Going pirate ships, jungles, amusement parks, and even giant bee hives, each piece of music fits the stages correctly. Some of the best tracks include Forest Interlude, Disco Train, Bayou Boogie, and Lost World Anthem.

Final Fantasy VII (Playstation, 1997)


Although many gamers state that the game is overrated and others find it a masterpiece, there is no doubt that FF VII brought some great music to the RPG table. Of course, as with many RPGs, the game does have its share of filler music, but also brings about many classics such as One Winged Angel, the main theme for the villain Sephiroth, featuring some devilish chants. The battle theme of the game is surprisingly catchy for using computer sound bytes and it adds suspense to the turn based battles. Fortunately for those with an orchestral ear, the game’s music was released as a special edition in 2004 including rock and piano tones.

Metal Gear Solid (Playstation, 1998)

Metal Gear Solid

Selling over seven million copies, the original Metal Gear Solid featuring secret agent Solid Snake and his infiltration into an Alaskan base was an instant hit. The game’s main theme has been reworked a couple of times and featured in future MGS games featuring film music composer, Harry Gregson-Williams. All the songs recorded feature a suspense tone to them, especially when the player gets caught by the enemy. The ending musical score is a soft vocal piece entitled The Best Is Yet to Come, which is sung purely in Celtic. Metal Gear Solid’s music has been one of the most inventive of the decade and stealth games in general.

How it Formed Gaming Music Today

Early video game soundtracks are truly the soil that sprouted what music in video games sound today. Without all those different genres of action, suspense, and whimsically childish, it would be assumed that gaming music would be much more dull and dry.