Video game soundtracks are highly underrated. So much so, that I felt I should write a little feature about it for the guys over at Thumbsticks. It rants a little bit about Dead Space (which I’m playing at the moment and absolutely loving), so bear with it if you can. As always, all criticisms and honest opinions are welcome. A preview for the article is below, but just click on the ‘more’ button for the full written article.
Exploring the U.S.G Ishimura in Dead Space genuinely frightens me. Not because of its excellent lighting, deadly monsters or sense of desperation, but because the soundtrack is note perfect. Resident Evil 5 and Left 4 Dead 2 offer great opportunities to blast zombies to pieces, but they rarely creep you out or disturb you. After much deliberation, the only video game element I can put this down to is the gorgeous audio present in EA’s space survival horror.
The creaks and groans of the floorboards below force the player to check their footing. Metallic footsteps that dent the ventilation shaft above will leave you apprehensive of an impending attack. The scores as you explore the ship are often delicate and desolate, shifting to incredibly violent and dynamic strings as you empty the few bullets you have left into the limbs of a predator. The shifts occur at the precise moments needed to make them feel reactive and impulsive, also ensuring that they never feel unnatural and jarring. (More)
If you’ve got your own favourite video game compositions, by all means drop me a comment below. I’m likely to do a ‘Top 10″ list in the future that highlights some more of the best in gaming music. As usual, you can find a lot of my video game journalism over at Thumbsticks – otherwise just track my gaming habits with my gametag ‘JetSetNick’ on Xbox Live.