What’s That Sound? The Best Audio in Gaming

Hey, did you hear that? It sounds to me like there might be an article about the best ear candy in gaming coming up. Yep, here it is with a couple of corkers from the archives, stretching back as far as my memory goes. Be warned – you may feel nostalgia hitting you like a steam train though.


We start off with a classic, straight from the opening of the original Sonic games. The pixellated bright blue logo flashes up, quickly followed by the beautiful 8-bit shout of “Segaaaaaaaaa!” If there was anything that summed up what was so great about those halcyon days of the early 90s for Sega, it would be Sonic and you can hear their happiness and ecstasy bleeding through in that wonderfully memorable sound.

First place in Mario Kart


Nothing, and I mean nothing, beats the adrenaline rush of evading all those pesky blue shells, banana peels and cliff-falling (Damn you Rainbow Road!) and finishing in the only position that counts in any racing game: first. Friendships have been forged, shattered and remolded over a good multiplayer session of Mario Kart and anyone who has played it at their friend’s house, at a party or in the comfort of their own living room with a brother or sister secretly loves the sound of victory, especially over someone they know.

Playstation Boot-upPlayStation_2440942k

I could have put any console here but the one that holds special memories for me personally is the Playstation. Turning on the PS1 when getting home after school and hearing the start-up music is like having the perfect bath at the right temperature with bubbles, followed by the deepest and most relaxing massage capable of being given. And the best thing about this particular music is that it will always be there whenever you want it to be; just by pressing that button on top and soaking in the sweet sweet sound of childhood. Truly one of the best noises to hear as a child.

Zelda: OoT Treasure Chesttumblr_lr0cz2CCY01qmmilxo1_400

Finding treasure in a Zelda game is always a big event. Why, you may ask? It’s all down to the jingle that plays when you triumphantly pry open the chest and receive its glorious innards. And even if the treasure is pretty rubbish, the little riff is still reward enough. My favourite jingle of all has to be the one played in Ocarina of Time, Link’s fifth adventure released in 1998, although to be fair you could pick any Zelda game as the jingle stays mostly the same in every one.

Humiliation!quake quake live humiliation 1600x1200 wallpaper_www.artwallpaperhi.com_19

Many a time playing multiplayer games of Quake or Counter-Strike have I heard this noise and it seems every time I hear it, I’m the one who’s just been humiliated. However, it doesn’t depreciate the hilarity factor of hearing that booming voice announcing utter failure like a great death knell for the recipient’s pride. If you can humiliate another player, this is possibly the best sound ever; otherwise, it just becomes depressing to hear it over and over and over… Yeah.

Route 1 on Pokemon Red/BlueTime-Extend-Pokemon-screen-1

You’ve just got your first Pokemon, whether that be a Bulbasaur, Charmander or Squirtle (or maybe a Pikachu if you were cool like me and had the Yellow version). You’ve said goodbye to your mum and Professor Oak and are heading out of Pallet Town, ready to start your adventure. And then you get onto Route 1 and the music starts playing, like a beautiful melody expressing the sheer joy and excitement you feel in your gut at exploring and catching ’em all. This music sums up that feeling fantastically.

Do you agree with the picks in this article or are there ones you can think of that we missed out? Comment below with your suggestions!

Robert Priest


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