EU video game soundtracks
Greetings everyone! Today we venture back into the realm of video games and the Expanded Universe!
This time around I wanted to look, or rather listen, to another aspect of video games in the Expanded Universe, their soundtracks.
To me, video games in general can only truly be great if they excel in two areas. One, the story, is something some video games in the Star Wars Expanded Universe excel in. For examples of that, we can look at the Knights of the Old Republic series including The Old Republic MMO or to The Force Unleashed, or to the Dark Forces series.
The other area video games need to excel at is the soundtrack.
Soundtracks, when done well, are capable of taking the story to a whole other level. This is true for movies, as fans of Star Wars well know. It is also true for Video Games.
Let’s have a listen to this riveting piece from the game Star Wars: Republic Commando
Why yes, that’s being sung in Mandalorian. Not exactly something we’ve heard anywhere else! As you listen to this, can you envision a valiant battle between a group of clone commandos and a battalion of Confederacy droids. It certainly brings the images to my mind and wow does it get the adrenaline pumping! Perfect!
Let’s change up the pace a bit, though, and give a listen to something far more calming. This is a piece originally found in Knights of the Old Republic and later found in The Old Republic MMO. I give you Manaan (Ahto City).
Just gorgeous! I can feel the calm, peaceful ways of the Selkath species, neutral in the Jedi Civil War, and can almost see the beautiful vistas of calm waves seen from the clean streets of Ahto City.
Let’s switch it up a little again and take a listen to another one of my favorites, Shadows Over the Jade Moon from the original Rogue Squadron on the Nintendo 64:
The mission to the Jade Moon is a convoy escort/surprise attack on a secret Imperial Facility on a moon that has little atmosphere. Listening to this puts me back in the cockpit as my wingmates protect the rebel convoy while it approaches the Imperial base.
Let’s give one more a listen, the most recent title theme from the currently ongoing Star Wars The Old Republic:
Can you feel the adventure awaiting you in The Old Republic while listening to this soundtrack? The dueling vocals hint at the renewed conflict recently sparked between the Republic and the Sith Empire. Who do you side with? Listening to this makes me want to fire up my PC to play right away! Finally, let’s give a listen to a remix that a lesser-known Expanded Universe game gave us, the Imperial March Rage Mix: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yCU_6IFc9t0
The soundtrack from this game differs a bit from what we typically hear in the other Expanded Universe games, but it is an excellent companion to the story of Brenn Tantor, Imperial officer, and later Rebel turncoat who struggles to find the truth of those he serves and goes on to help capture Coruscant from the Empire.
Star Wars has always had excellent music. The legendary work of John Williams is iconic and cannot be denied. But many others have contributed to its excellence thanks to their contributions to this, the video game genre. The Expanded Universe was host to so many excellent pieces of music and I would encourage anyone who has not already done so, to sit and enjoy some of the tunes found within these excellent video games!
Thank you everyone for taking the time to listen along with me.
Until next time, May The Force be with you!
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