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Top 20 Videogame Soundtracks Of All Time

As a compliment to Freddie's list, here are my choices for top 20 video game original soundtracks of all time, ranked. Be sure to check out the song I linked in each description!
1Yoko Shimomura
Xenoblade OST


Very few games have music that put you directly into the world like Xenoblade does. It's not just that these themes sound good, but each area's theme matches perfectly with the environment, and manage to give you a real feeling of what it's like to be there with the characters. Gaur Plains makes you want to run forever. Snow Valek Mountain gives the impression of a bleak, icy wonderland. And The Phosphorescent Marsh (night) is the perfect compliment to the visual symphony you're treated to every time Satorl lights up at night. For how much it meant to me while playing one of my all-time favorite games, it's become my favorite of all time. You've all heard Gaur Plains and You Will Know Our Names, so check out Satorl Marsh's night theme: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=75YyJ9FQnMI
2Yasunori Mitsuda
Chrono Trigger Original Sound Version


The timeless soundtrack. 8- and 16-bit music is said to be more memorable because the melodies are simpler, and Chrono Trigger is probably the best example of that. I don't think there will ever be a time when this isn't considered a top-10-of-all-time soundtrack, and it's certainly earned its place, with songs like "At the Bottom of Night," "Corridors of Time," and the theme song being among the most memorable ever. For one of my favorites, check out Schala's Theme: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ih14mJzKzKM
3Darren Korb
Bastion Original Soundtrack


Bastion (and by extension, Transistor) is a game that is built as much around aesthetic experience as it is gameplay. The narrator's soothing voice, the surreal, crumbled world, and this incredible soundtrack make you come back to the game just as much as hacking and slashing those stupid spine-shooting cacti do. Of course, "Build That Wall" is incredible, but I also really enjoy "A Proper Story": https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RCQmQwKEEOM
4Soundtrack (Video Game)
Metroid Prime and Fusion


Oooh, Metroid Prime. Atmosphere, atmosphere, atmosphere! And subtlety--these songs may not get stuck in your head like some other entries, but damn if you won't remember how they made you feel! Crossing those icy Phendrana Drifts...nothing better than listening to this: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZbbUv1hz6mE
5Koji Kondo
The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time OST


I don't really need to write a blurb about this. There are concert tours that sell out across the country just to play this soundtrack. Some of the most memorable songs in video game history appear on here, from the bouncy "Lost Woods" to the flamenco-tinged "Garudo Valley," but my favorite is actually the "Song of Storms": https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=43IPAGw01IY
6Shoji Meguro
Persona 3 Original Soundtrack


This is basically a hip Japanese pop and rap album. It fits the theme, considering this might be the type of music that would be floating around actual high-schoolers in Japan, but it's this high because it's one of the catchiest video game soundtracks I've ever heard. I love "Mass Destruction," "Iwotodai Dorm," and "When The Moon's Reaching Out Stars," but the one that gets stuck in my head the most is the opening theme, "Burn My Dread": https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=O5NgX5fGhgU
7Linked Horizon
Bravely Default: Flying Fairy OST


From the composer that gave the world "Guren no Yumiya" (that anime opening song with the word "jaeger" in it a thousand times) comes an entire incredible soundtrack that stands among the best on the 3DS. It's as varied and artful as the game's hand-drawn backgrounds, ranging from the loud and energetic "That Person's Name Is..." to the calm and peaceful "Sunlight Filtering Through The Trees," and adds an incredible amount of appeal to an already aesthetically-pleasing game. Those two aeformentioned songs are among my favorites, and so is "Boat Soaring Through The Heavens": https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mEcIVD157Hc
8Yasunori Mitsuda
Chrono Cross Original Soundtrack


I love that people can't decide whether Chrono Trigger or Chrono Cross has the better soundtrack. It's an almost impossible argument because of what I mentioned in CT's description: while these songs are more arranged and complex, Chrono Trigger's soundtrack is more memorable simply by virtue of being 16-bit. Still, this might be the best soundtrack of all the first generation of 3D games. I also really love that it throws back to its predecessor in songs like "On The Beach Of Dreams - Another World" and "Fields of Time - Home World," but the stand out has to be "Scars of Time": https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Hj4FnVABiN8
9David Wise
DK Jamz: Original Donkey Kong Country ST


I put DKC1 over DKC2 because I've never actually finished DKC2, and I also just really enjoy DK 1's soundtrack. I never expected to like it as much as I did, but unlike a lot of the other Super Nintendo platformers of the time, DKC's soundtrack hit a sweet spot of being fun and bouncy (unlike Super Metroid) while not being too whimsical (like Super Mario World). You can check out "Aquatic Ambiance," "Gangplank Galleon" or "Fear Factory" to understand it, but I think you'll get it best with "Jungle Groove": https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uPTm-8YqJfw
10Toby Fox
Undertale Soundtrack


The soundtrack that took over the internet. If you've ever watched a YouTube video of anyone performing covers of video game songs (perhaps acapella or using kazoos), then you've already heard at least 5 Undertale songs, and that's if you haven't even played the game. But it's this high for a reason--along with the game being an emotional ride, the songs are just out and out as catchy as chlamydia. Don't believe me? Check out "Death By Glamour," "Bonetrousel," or...well, y'all know the one (fun fact: Toby Fox puts this in all of his video game projects somewhere): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=B2jVbSI9H4o
11Soundtrack (Video Game)
Katamari Damacy soundtrack


Na-naaaa na-na-na-na-na-na-na na-Katamari Damacy! Dear goodness, it's catchy! SO FUCKING CATCHY! There's the theme song, "The Moon and The Prince," and also "Lonely Rolling Star": https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7_QydNXI_ok
12Shadow of the Colossus
Shadow of the Colossus


Much like Metroid Prime, this one is all about the atmosphere. No tracks to get stuck in your head, but every track is art, crafted by Kow Otani to gorgeous perfection. The feeling of riding across the plains looking for the next of the colossi to slay with these songs playing in the background helps give this game a grandiose atmosphere without needing to keep the volume at 11. If you LIKE the volume that high, though, check out "The Opened Way": https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZWB8P4jbsAA
13Masashi Hamauzu
Final Fantasy XIII


Say what you want about the game--no one can deny that it looked and sounded absolutely gorgeous! The soundtrack was varied, switchting between J-Pop, industrial, choir chants, and soft, piano-driven melodies. I think more than anything, it'll be the soundtrack that this game is known for (other than the huge amount of long-time fans that were let down by it. I love "Will To Fight" and "Test of the L'Cie," but I think the one that really gets me is the battle theme, "Blinded By Light:" https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xfu0XBf8kmk
14Falcom Sound Team jdk
Ys Origins Original Soundtrack


Ys is a series that is really popular in Japan, but is still very niche here in the states. The game is made by Falcom, who also make other popular RPG's like the Legend of Heroes: Trails series. They do all of their music in house, and all of thier soundtracks sound incredible. Out of all the games I've played by them, Ys Origins is the most power-metal-centric, and for much of the game, the soundtrack is all you hear as you explore the tower for 8 hours. My favorites include "Genesis - Beyond the Beginning," "Scarlet Tempest" and "Water Prison," but I think it's the boss battle theme "Scars of the Devine Wing" that really encapsulates the sound: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=d-s3RjdO8pY
15Austin Wintory
Journey Original Soundtrack


Journey is a game you experience rather than play, and the music is one of the most essential pieces to that experience. Composed by Austin Wintory, it's a single flowing soundtrack rather than individual pieces, and its controlled by what your character does in the game, very much like the narrator in Bastion (who never repeats dialogue). It's also the first video game soundtrack to be nominated for a Grammy (for whatever that means to you). It truly is a masterpiece, and deserves to be listened to in its entirety: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=M3hFN8UrBPw
16Jun Senoue
Sonic Adventure 2: Multi-Dimensional Soundtrack


This is a completely selfish choice. I could have put Sonic: Generations on here to cheat, but I didn't for the same reason I didn't put Smash Brothers on here...so choosing only one Sonic game, I chose this one. There are songs on here that bring about nostalgia almost on command. And some of those are genuinely good in their own right. I adore "Escape From the City," "Live and Learn," and "Metal Harbor," but if you want some true, gut-punching nostalgia, check out the terrible Pumpkin Hill theme: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tGAvaUZOqXc
17Koji Kondo
Super Mario 64 OST


Well...talk about nostalgia! This wasn't the first 3D game I'd ever played, but it was my first N64 game. I played it for days upon days, even after I'd gotten all 120 stars, and I heard these themes over and over. I liked that they had remixes of older songs, too (this was the first time they'd done so)--"Hazy Maze Cave" remixes the old underground theme from the original Super Mario Bros., and "Wing Cap" is a remix the Star theme from SMW2: Yoshi's Island (which is itself a remix of the original star theme). But proably the one that is most remembered is "Dire Dire Docks": https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RRfHbyCQDCo
18Solar Fields
Mirror's Edge Original Soundtrack


Mirror's Edge was one of the most unique gaming experiences I've ever had. I greatly enjoyed the stark white glass city with random streaks of color, and I loved the parkour gameplay. The soundtrack is composed by ambient artist Solar Fields, and true to nature, even the tense songs are fairly subdued when compared to other games tension themes. The ending song, "Still Alive," is one of my favorites in all of gaming (I wonder if every ending credit song called "Still Alive" is destined to be iconic?), but one of my other favorites from the game is "Kate (Puzzle)," which accompanies one of the toughest puzzles in the game: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TbdBNMTR8mM
19Junichi Masuda
Pokemon HeartGold & SoulSilver OST


Because Pokemon has some of the most iconic game music of all time, because Gold is the first one I ever played and includes most (if not all) of the tracks from the original game, and because Heart Gold updates all the music into some incredible melodies AND includes the original game's MIDI versions of all songs. Really, I think it's the best soundtrack of the entire series. It includes some of my old favorites like the original "Goldenrod Game Corner" theme, the new Violet City theme, and who could forget the Radio Tower Takeover: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-WahRHnRLcs
20Soundtrack (Video Game)
Mega Man 2


The best soundtrack on the NES, hands down. I really think that this game one of the reasons people remember 8-bit so fondly today, because it exemplifies just how much you could do with the soundcard of the NES. I could link Dr Wily's stage, or Metalman's theme...but really, you feel it right when you start the game up: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZT9DST_M_g8
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