Music can make or break a movie scene, which isn’t any different from a video game. Be it in the backing piece to an emotential story beat, or the backing-tracking for beating up enemies, it’ll either invigorate or make the player want to fall to sleep. Thankfully the soundtracks and games we’re talking about today do nothing but improve and build upon the already great games they’re supporting.
Here are our picks for the Top 5 Best Original Score/Music in 2022 Video Games.
– Dylan Blight
5.) Neon White
It is safe to say that Neon White would not be the same without its soundtrack, a full two albums compiled by the electronic duo Machine Girl. The duo delivered a soundtrack that consistently sets the scene throughout the game. Each character in Neon White has a theme that instantly identifies their vibe, whether it is the goofiness of Fist Bump (Yellows Theme) or the mysterious intensity of Mechanical Halo (Green Theme). In the levels, the electronic music is used so expertly to set the tempo that you need to be playing at, driving you to zone in on the speed-running nature of Neon White. The soundtrack elevates the level design and gameplay of Neon White as it sends you into a trance-like state as you tackle the speed-running puzzle.
– Wil James
4.) Bayonetta 3
The music of Bayonetta 3 has always been a big part of the game. The sultry orchestral/pop pieces have always had Bayonetta dancing across our screens and smashing buttons to beat up angels and demons alike. Nothing about that changed with Bayonetta 3, but the music was better than ever. The ‘Main Theme’ is my favourite in the franchise’s history, and then you have the addition of Viola in this game. Her punk roots led her to get her battle song, ‘Ghost,’ with the lyrics performed by Australia’s Mikaila Delgado of Yours Truly.
– Dylan Blight
3.) Horizon Forbidden West
Joris de Man, Niels van der Leest, Oleksa Lozowchuk, The Flight
Horizon: Forbidden West’s musical score is fantastic and majestic. Few game soundtracks transcend their intended purpose, and Horizon Forbidden West’s soundtrack is one of those. Throughout the game, there is always a gentle melody playing in the background, but there is more to this world than meets the eye or ears. The feelings conveyed by the artists can create a deep longing and pull the heartstrings, pump up the adrenaline or allow you to relax in the environment. Guerrillas’ audio team should be proud of their accomplishments with this game’s music.
– Jacob Hegarty
2.) Cult of the Lamb
River Boy (Narayana Johnson)
Cult of the Lambs soundtrack is almost as interesting as the game itself. Covering not just the main game but boss battles, locations, and everything in between. Delightful melodic music plays during everyday tasks while entering the dungeon leans into a faster style, although the real treat is the mini-boss and main boss battle beats that turn up the heat. Cult of the Lambs soundtrack really hit the right beats and kept pace with the game’s stylings, it also never outstays its welcome, unlike some of the more mouthy cult members.
– Jacob Hegarty
1.) God of War Ragnarök
The goal for great video game music, or scores to any entertainment medium, is to enhance what is on the screen, and no game’s score enhanced gameplay moments more than Bear McCreary’s score for God of War Ragnarok.
Much like God of War Ragnarok itself, McCreary’s score feels like a continuation of what he did in God of War (2018). The iconic main theme makes a return but it and many other character themes used in the first game get adjusted to make them more fitting for this game. So many times I found myself amped up as the music kicked in right before a fight or moved at the swelling of a track over an emotional moment. Add on top of that the song “Blood Upon the Snow”, performed by Hozier, which is a perfect song to play over the credits and you can’t help but marvel at what Bear McCreary has accomplished with this game.
– Ashley Hobley