The new year has dawned upon us, but there's no reason to stop the list wars fun. For today, I'll list what I believe were the most remarkable video game soundtracks of the year 2009. In no particular order....
7th Dragon is a game I've been mentioning for a little while, and it's a truly brilliant JRPG that's stuck in Japan without a publisher. Yuzo Koshiro composed for this title, and once again shows why he's one of the best composers in the industry.
Featuring a score reminiscent of Hollywood blockbusters, Uncharted 2's sweeping orchestral suites provided a powerful backdrop to many of the memorable action and story scenes through the game. Truly a wonder to listen to.
Resident Evil 5
Speaking of Hollywood blockbusters, something Resident Evil 5 did right was capture that American action film vibe. Several roaring tracks by full orchestras accompanied some thrilling boss fights and moments, and it was definitely a high point in audio for 2009.
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Beautiful and haunting, Demon's Souls evokes a powerful sense of adventure; yet at the same time keeps you on your toes. The game does not frequently play its music, but it picks its battles wisely (as its players should!). From the main menu, the music gives you a feeling that you're about to enter a world far different than what you've known.
Assassin's Creed 2
Jesper Kyd. That's really all I need to say. The composer is famous for his haunting orchestral scores from the Hitman titles, and he delivers on all fronts for the sequel to Ubisoft's parkour killer-thriller. With the setting of renaissance Italy, he implements beautiful guitars to further mellow out the haunting themes.
A rhythm game's gotta have a good soundtrack, and Rhythm Heaven certainly brings a battalion of quirky, endearing tunes to the party.
Finishing the list is a unique blend between rhythm game and shmup. Bit.Trip.Beat's most powerful asset is the ability to give the player to make music, which progresses from simple chip-tunes up to truly jamming techno mixes.
I'm a big fan of good music, and a game's soundtrack often plays a part of how I judge it. 2009 had a good selection of games which featured impressive soundtracks, and they deserved some credit.