Eight bits of great, weird game music

Bio-Hazard Battle – Untitled Stage 2 & 6 BGM

Electro-prog! The Megadrive’s sound hardware falls in this sweet spot where it can do just enough polyphony and produce a wide enough range of noises to support relatively complex pieces like this while still sounding gorgeously grimy and artificial.

Ridge Racer 6 – Valley of the Mind

Probably the rudest original beat ever to feature in a major video game. If this doesn’t make you want to drive sideways down a mountain at 280kph I don’t know what will.

Drakengard – Exhausted

I’ve heard this game’s soundtrack described as ‘unlistenable’, so I knew I’d probably be into it. I can imagine its glitchy dissonant orchestral charms wearing pretty thin over the course of a 40 minute mission so I guess it kind of fails at its job as a video game soundtrack but man is it cool.

Street Fighter IV – Indestructible

I never knew I wanted a sassy boyband version of Ghostface’s the Champ but my god this is unironically perfect. Stop being an edgelord and embrace it.

Evergrace – Buying goods at Palmira

If you’ve ever wondered about From Software’s corporate culture you should know the man who made this is their chief composer to this day.

Pulseman – End Traceback

The loop should probably cut off at 2:30 instead of noodling on for six minutes plus but man that’s some percussion. Sounds like an EL-P instrumental at 1.5x speed. One of GAMEFREAK inc.’s pre-Pokemon games.

JSRF – Grace & Glory (BBMH Mix)

Who knew the end of the world would be so funky?

BoF Dragon Quarter – Power Building

BoF is a game about relentlessly clawing your way upwards and outwards out of hopelessness and this, some six hours in, is the very first time it ever seems possible you might just actually make it to the surface. Note how heartbeat-like the bass is when it finally melts through the icy industrial intro.

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