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#1 Posted by sparky_buzzsaw (8784 posts) -

I've been on a deep dive today looking up older video game music from games I haven't played in a long, long time. It's got me thinking about all the video game music that's out there I haven't heard of. Sure, we all know the Zeldas, Marios, and Halos, but what's some of your favorite music from obscure or forgotten games?

Here's one I'd never heard today from the Genesis version of Shadowrun. I kinda dig that main theme.

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#2 Posted by JadeGL (1406 posts) -

I always think of Arcanum: Of Steamworks & Magick Obscura when people ask about video game music. Of course, I never see anyone else bring it up, so that makes me think that it is a bit obscure or underappreciated.

All of the pieces are memorable, but the main title piece is just phenomenal.

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I also really love the music in Amnesia: A Machine for Pigs. It's either hauntingly beautiful or horribly discordant but it really elevates the game from mildly scary walking simulator (I hate the term but it fits in this case) to often scary horror experience. My picks for music are These Hands are Bleeding, Mors Praematura, and Dieses Herz, but it's all good.

Oh, and all of this music is on Spotify so it's easy to find and listen to. :D

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#3 Posted by sparky_buzzsaw (8784 posts) -

@jadegl: I forgot how good that Arcanum score was. It definitely fit everything about that game.

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#4 Edited by BeachThunder (15106 posts) -
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#5 Posted by Rejizzle (1068 posts) -

Uniracer music is pretty alright.

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#6 Edited by sparky_buzzsaw (8784 posts) -

@beachthunder: I'll bet this falls under the Law of Gerstmann, which states that any obscure game you can think of, he had his hand on a copy just two weeks ago or less.

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#7 Posted by Wraithtek (426 posts) -

One could say it's not that obscure (it did appear on UPF and got an Unfinished video, and I think the OST got a brief mention during GOTY that year), but I'll say Robot Roller Derby Disco Dodgeball. It's one of my most listened to game soundtracks, up there with more widely known games (Skyrim, Stardew Valley, Celeste, Chrono Cross - still the GOAT).


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#8 Edited by nutter (1813 posts) -

All the Shadowrun Genesis music is pretty great.

I always loved all the bar songs in Shadowrun. This one was always one I dug most, but it might be in part because it’s the one played at Trent’s bar...

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I’m also super partial to this one from River City Ransom:

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#9 Posted by nutter (1813 posts) -

Hell...just skip around this video for a whole bunch of amazing Genesis cyberpunk riffs. Shadowrun was amazing in every way.

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#10 Posted by TMart (28 posts) -
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Super Hydlide on Genesis is mostly bad, but the OST is great.

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#11 Edited by Ares42 (4239 posts) -

Nothing gets you hyped like the main theme from One Must Fall (also, a great game).

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#12 Posted by TMart (28 posts) -
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I'm in my 40s, so while I personally don't consider Actraiser to be obscure or forgotten, it never really got much exposure outside of the SNES and is arguably Yuzo Koshiro's best work. If you've never played it, the game is amazing too.

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#13 Posted by Efesell (4258 posts) -

Icewind Dale, the infinity engine games that are perhaps rightfully buried by the other more successful outings but it does have this

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#14 Posted by warius87 (10 posts) -

I always liked the Alien Trilogy soundtrack. And the game is OK too!

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#15 Posted by ArbitraryWater (15650 posts) -
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I've always been an advocate of Temple of Elemental Evil on these forums, and that extends to the soundtrack. Atmospheric synth probably isn't the first thing you think of when you think "Dungeons and Dragons music" but it totally works for the sort of tone they're going for.

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#16 Posted by nutter (1813 posts) -

How ‘bout that Daggerfall shop music?

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#17 Posted by FrodoBaggins (1936 posts) -

@efesell: sweet lord that is some nice rpg music.

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#18 Posted by NPCDi (583 posts) -

I always loved the music in Chuck Rock. I used to just leave the theme song running when I was a kid. I think Tommy Tallarico was involved in this somehow.

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#19 Posted by fisk0 (6829 posts) -

I've posted this in every one of these threads over the last 10 years, but I still stand by Blair Zuppicich's music for the kinda mediocre 90s RTS "7th Legion".

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The F-29 Retaliator soundtrack also comes to mind, the intro and main menu music still gives me chills:

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#20 Posted by stantongrouse (151 posts) -

I played so much Starquake - this song was burned into my head in the 80s.

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#21 Posted by sparky_buzzsaw (8784 posts) -

@npcdi: Chuck Rock's music was so good.

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#23 Edited by nutter (1813 posts) -

I’ll also add just about anything from Silent Hill 2. Since it’s forgotten, not the main theme, but anything else.

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#24 Posted by interlude (13 posts) -

@nutter my man! Akira Yamaoka is probably the only thing I'll listen to on a rainy day. his work is pretty well known compared to other soundtracks on here but I would put his work on Shadows of the Damned on here. There's a perfect mix of chunky guitar riffs in there that really reminds me of Graeme Revell's work.

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#25 Posted by nutter (1813 posts) -

@interlude: Yeah, I think I have some Hotline Miami and Rez stuff on my phone, but I have a whole lot of Yamaoka’s stuff. Silent Hill 2 is my favorite, but SH1 and Shadows of the Damned are pretty damned great too.

I don’t listen to a lot of game music, but Yamaoka is the big exception.

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#26 Posted by cikame (2652 posts) -
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#27 Edited by MiserableLittlePileOfSecrets (18 posts) -
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I always think about the title track from Solstice when asked this question, it doesn't sound like much and then all of a sudden it is everything

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#29 Posted by klaettermus (3 posts) -

Title track for Pictionary for the NES is a banger. https://youtu.be/SJwh3erQlyE

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#30 Posted by mems1224 (2480 posts) -

Run Saber has a really good soundtrack and don't often hear people ever talk about it. Its a pretty good Strider rip off

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#31 Edited by Hellfire2750 (1 posts) -

1993s Japanese exclusive Battle Mania Daiginjō or Battle Mania 2/Trouble Outsiders 2 by Vic Tokai.

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Star Cruiser's Genesis/Mega Drive home port has something like half the music as the computer versions, but the better drums carry it really far.

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#32 Posted by mavs (374 posts) -

@jadegl: That Arcanum theme is some very intense music. It kind of reminds me of Everybody's Gone to the Rapture:

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They both seem to have a little (or a lot of) English polyphony in them, which I can't get enough of.

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#33 Edited by SnideJackal (2 posts) -

I have so many good memories of the soundtrack for Lotus II on the Mega Drive. All the Lotus games have great music, but II is the one I remember best with all of its filthy, pumping synth lines. The track at 14:08 is an absolute banger.

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#34 Posted by pekoe212 (531 posts) -

Ar Tonelico series. The music in these games is just stunning. Appropriate for a world where music is central how its technology functions and "hymns" are sung to execute programs. I also can now identify an Akiko Shikata song instantly.

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#35 Posted by sonatar (43 posts) -

Raptor: Call of the Shadows, specifically wave 4.


Lego Rock Raiders


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#36 Edited by NTM (11541 posts) -

I don't think it's obscure, or forgotten really, but one soundtrack that I feel doesn't get enough praise was The Division. In part, but probably not solely because Doom 2016 came out the same year I'm guessing. It's my favorite 2016 soundtrack though, and one of my favorite in general really. Another one, and it's another Ubisoft game, is Far Cry 5. The game had a surprisingly great soundtrack through and through in my opinion, and I haven't seen a lot of people talk about it aside from on YouTube. I'm guessing that has more to do with the game than the actual soundtrack though.

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#37 Posted by squigiliwams (94 posts) -

@sonatar:Thank you for reminding me to buy that on GOG. I only had the shareware as a kid. Time to actually finish it.

I don't know if its 'forgotten' but i know a lot of people won't hear it because its part of a subscription MMO, but the FFXIV OST continues to have serious bangers every patch and expansion. The composer even has a Guinness record for most number of tracks (at 400ish now?) https://www.inverse.com/article/37691-final-fantasy-xiv-music-music-a-realm-reborn-masayoshi-soken-guinness-world-records

The best part is that it started out as your generic high fantasy FF bullshit (it was still GOOD but you know), then they very obviously got bored and started goin places with it; off the top of my head, theres a Danny Elfman ripoff/homage, lots of bitchin pipe organ in the Hevansward expansion, and a boss theme so industrial Powerman 5000 actually tried suing Square Enix. The music in this game is very much a part of why i recently started putting it as my favorite game of all time.

Early fantasy stuff that i liked:

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They started branching out near the end of A Realm Reborn, in high fashion. The final 'primal' fight of the original game starts with high fantasy, then when shiva does the trademark snap limit break it turns into japanese girl pop punk outta freaking nowhere:

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The next expansion introduced even more crazy mechanics, like a final raid boss who is very obviously a Voltron reference, and has its own Satuday Morning Cartoon ass theme:

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I could go on and on. So many bangers.

Heres one more that i just love.

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#38 Posted by Pezen (2361 posts) -

Shadowrun, now there's a game I haven't thought about in a while. Great music that generated a really nice atmosphere in that game. As for myself, here's a few;

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#39 Edited by Efesell (4258 posts) -

@squigiliwams: I really wasn't sure about FF14 as obscure but honestly I could post themes from that for the next month.

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#40 Edited by David (207 posts) -
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#41 Posted by nutter (1813 posts) -
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#42 Posted by Efesell (4258 posts) -

Gust has settled comfortably into building The Madden of JRPGs in the Atelier series and they've always secretly had really incredible music. But I've always been the most partial to a short offshoot called Mana Khemia

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Or more recently the happiest music you'll ever kill a monster to.

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#43 Posted by Goboard (290 posts) -

Net: Zone was played on the Waterfallvoyeur stream and now I feel obligated to share the only good thing about it, the soundtrack. I also went down a dumb internet rabbit hole that led me to learn that Iron Galaxy's own Kraig Kujawa reviewed Net: Zone for Gamespot.

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#44 Posted by wollywoo (220 posts) -

Arcanum was pretty great. Too bad the combat was so frustrating I never got very far.

Remember Wetrix? I loved that game. I demand an HD Remake on Switch.

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#45 Posted by wollywoo (220 posts) -

That Chuck Rock tune is pretty rockin'. So is the Pictionary one. But... why... would anyone play pictionary on NES...?

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#46 Posted by soulcake (2569 posts) -

Robocop for gameboy?

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#47 Edited by mattclassic (506 posts) -


And Gimmick's spiritual predecessor Trip World has probably the best Gameboy OST ever (which shouldn't be too surprising considering the composer did the soundtracks for Megaman 1, Megaman 10, and contributed to Shovel Knight's soundtrack):

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#48 Edited by jagerxbomb (38 posts) -

This is it. This is the one. Such a banger, man. I love this song.

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#49 Posted by sparky_buzzsaw (8784 posts) -
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I've brought this one up in previous years, but holy hell, the Always Sometimes Monsters OST is so good.

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#50 Posted by JasonR86 (10225 posts) -

I don't know if it's obscure, but I was always fond of this song from the adaptation of the Dune movie. Also, the game is awesome.