ByJay Ricciardi, writer at Creators.co
Senior Editor of Now Loading. I like good games, good beer, and long walks up treacherous mountains shrouded in sinister, whispering fog.
Jay Ricciardi

Music makes a good game great, and transports us into other worlds more than anything else. A game needs solid graphics, good writing, and satisfying mechanics to be playablebut great voice acting and a killer soundtrack are absolute requirements for a memorable game experience.

Below, in no particular order, are 26 of the best video game soundtracks ever made. This was a tough list to put together, so some of your favorites might be missing – add them in the comments! We are only allowing one soundtrack per franchise, so we did have to make tough decisions for big franchises like Final Fantasy, Halo, and Elder Scrolls.

1. Halo 2

  • Year: 2004
  • Composers: Martin O'Donnell, Michael Salvatori
  • Game Platforms: Xbox, Xbox 360, Xbox One

2. Super Smash Bros. Melee

  • Year: 2001
  • Composers: Hirokazu Ando, Shogo Sakai, Tadashi Ikegami
  • Game Platforms: GameCube

3. Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time

  • Year: 1998
  • Composer: Koji Kondo
  • Game Platforms: Nintendo 64, GameCube, Wii, 3DS

4. Elder Scrolls 5: Skyrim

  • Year: 2011
  • Composer: Jeremy Soule
  • Game Platforms: PC, PS3, PS4, Xbox 360, Xbox One

5. Chrono Trigger

  • Year: 1995
  • Composers: Yasunori Mitsuda, Nobuo Uematsu
  • Game Platforms: Super NES, Nintendo DS, PlayStation, Android, iOS

6. Bastion

  • Year: 2011
  • Composer: Darren Korb
  • Game Platforms: PC, Mac, Linux, PS3, PS Vita, Xbox 360

7. Final Fantasy 6

  • Year: 1994
  • Composer: Nobuo Uematsu
  • Game Platforms: Super NES, Game Boy, Wii, PC, PlayStation, Android, iOS

8. The Witcher 3

  • Year: 2015
  • Composer: Marcin Przybyłowicz
  • Game Platforms: PC, PS4, Xbox One

9. Sonic Adventure 2

  • Year: 2001
  • Composers: Jun Senoue, Kenichi Tokoi, Fumie Kumatani, Tomoya Ohtani
  • Game Platforms: GameCube, Dreamcast

10. Donkey Kong Country

  • Year: 1994
  • Composers: David Wise, Eveline Fischer, Robin Beanland
  • Game Platforms: Super NES, Game Boy, Game Boy Color, Game Boy Advance, Wii, Wii U

11. Super Mario Bros.

  • Year: 1985
  • Composer: Koji Kondo
  • Game Platforms: NES, Super NES, Game and Watch, Game Boy, Game Boy Advance, GameCube, Wii, Nintendo 3DS, Android

12. Shadow of the Colossus

  • Year: 2005
  • Composer: Kow Otani
  • Game Platforms: PS3, PS4

13. Pillars of Eternity

  • Year: 2014
  • Composer: Justin Bell
  • Game Platforms: PC, Mac, Linux

14. Pokémon Red & Blue

  • Year: 1996
  • Composer: Junichi Masuda
  • Game Platforms: Game Boy, Game Boy Advance, Nintendo 3DS

15. Katamari Damacy

  • Year: 2004
  • Composers: Yuu Miyake, Asuka Sakai, Akitaka Tohyama, Yoshihito Yano, Yuri Misumi, and Hideki Tobeta
  • Game Platforms: PS2

16. Ace Combat Zero

  • Year: 2006
  • Composers: Keiki Kobayashi, Tetsukazu Nakanishi, Hiroshi Okubo, Junichi Nakatsuru
  • Game Platforms: PS2

17. FTL

  • Year: 2012
  • Composer: Ben Prunty
  • Game Platforms: PC, Mac, iOS, Linux

18. Mega Man X

  • Year: 1993
  • Composers: Setsuo Yamamoto, Makoto Tomozawa, Yuki Iwai, Yuko Takehara, and Toshihiko Horiyama
  • Game Platforms: Super NES, GameCube, Wii, PS2, PSP, iOS, Android

19. Castlevania: Symphony of the Night

  • Year: 1997
  • Composer: Michiru Yamane
  • Game Platforms: PlayStation, PS3, PSP, Xbox 360, Sega Saturn

20. Shin Megami Tensei: Persona 4

  • Year: 2008
  • Composer: Shoji Meguro
  • Game Platforms: PS2, PS Vita

21. Ridge Racer Type 4

  • Year: 1998
  • Composers: Kohta Takahashi, Hiroshi Okubo, Asuka Sakai, Tetsukazu Nakanishi, and Koji Nakagawa
  • Game Platforms: PlayStation, PS3, PSP, Android

22. Metroid Prime

  • Year: 2002
  • Composer: Kenji Yamamoto
  • Game Platforms: GameCube, Wii

23. Civilization 6

  • Year: 2016
  • Composers: Geoff Knorr, Christopher Tin
  • Game Platforms: PC

24. Transistor

  • Year: 2014
  • Composer: Darren Korb
  • Game Platforms: PC, Mac, iOS, Linux, PS4

25. Baldur's Gate 2: Shadows of Amn

  • Year: 2000
  • Composer: Michael Hoenig
  • Game Platforms: PC, Mac, iOS, Linux, Android

26. DuckTales

  • Year: 1989
  • Composer: Hiroshige Tonomura
  • Game Platforms: NES, Game Boy, Wii U, PS3, Xbox 360, iOS, Android

Did we miss one of your favorite video game soundtracks? Post it in the comments below!