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Video game soundtracks: The 100 best themes of all time (Part 1)

Put on your headphones, crank up the volume, and go for a trip down memory lane

Page 5 of 5

41. Forza Motorsport 4 / "Theme Song"

Year: 2011 / Composer: Lance Hayes

This sounds like it belongs in Mass Effect or Deus Ex or something. A super cool, contemporary theme for the best racing game on Xbox 360.

42. Turok 2: Seeds of Evil / "The Port of Adia"

Year: 1998 / Composer: Darren Mitchell

An epic orchestral track that builds and builds, pushing the Nintendo 64's sound chip to its limits. Who remembers the Cerebral Bore?

43. Final Fantasy VIII / "The Man With the Machine Gun"

Year: 1999 / Composer: Nobuo Uematsu

A lively track that served as the theme tune for troubled hero Laguna, who favoured a machine gun in combat. Some of Uematsu's best work can be found in Final Fantasy VIII.

44. Hitman 2: Silent Assassin / "47 Makes a Decision"

Year: 2002 / Composer: Jesper Kyd

Jesper Kyd composed one of gaming's best cinematic scores for Hitman 2, the best of which was this rousing number that really captures the tension and drama of Agent 47's line of work.

45. Duke Nukem 3D / "Grabbag"

Year: 1996 / Composer: Lee Jackson

This heavy duty track was covered by thrash metal legends Megadeth. It's exactly the kind of theme tune you'd expect a guy like Duke Nukem to have.

46. The Legend of Zelda / "Overworld"

Year: 1986 / Composer: Koji Kondo

The insanely talented Koji Kondo wrote this, which has become the Zelda series' theme tune. If we could sum it up with one word, it would probably be 'adventure'.

47. Mega Man / "Level Start!"

Year: 1987 / Composer: Manami Matsumae

This fanfare plays whenever you select a level in Mega Man. The NES had a lot of great, catchy little 'fanfares'. Why don't games have them anymore?

48. Ridge Racer Type 4 / "Urban Fragments"

Year: 1998 / Composer: Namco Consumer Software Sound Team

We had a hard time choosing just one song from this peerless soundtrack, but decided on "Urban Fragments", which features vocals by American singer Kimara Lovelace.

49. Okami / "The Sun Rises"

Year: 2006 / Composer: Masami Ueda, Hiroshi Yamaguchi

Capcom's dazzlingly pretty adventure game had a soundtrack inspired by traditional Japanese music, to match its beautiful art style. This track is brilliantly uplifting.

50. Shenmue / "Shenmue (Main Theme)"

Year: 1999 / Composer: Takenobu Mitsuyoshi

Shenmue tells an incredibly sad, tragic story, and hero Ryo Hazuki is always having a hard time. This somber theme tune reflects this, and features traditional Chinese elements.

Ready for the next 50? Continue to part 2!

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