Sunday, September 25, 2016

Soundtrack September: Metal Gear Solid

Game: Metal Gear Solid (1998)
Platform: PlayStation
Composer: Muraoka Kazuki, Iwase Tappi, Togo Hiroyuki et al

Judging from the list of games showcased in Soundtrack September, 1998 was quite a year for game soundtracks.

Metal Gear Solid was a milestone in what had been a hitherto-ignorable franchise of covert action games that began on the MSX2. For many, this first step into 3D graphics and dramatic storytelling makes MGS stand head-and-shoulders above any other Metal Gear title, especially in terms of nostalgia.

Perhaps continuing the Cold War flavor established by the first Metal Gear games, Solid’s “sneaking” music sometimes emulates Soviet mens' choirs and spy movies, while the “evasion” music uses motifs borrowed from the main theme. The main theme is the crown jewel of the soundtrack, wrapping intrigue, military tension and cathartic triumph into one epic (however synthesized) package.

I’ll also always have a soft spot in my heart for the “game over” theme, which plays overlaid with the voice of one of the supporting characters trying in vain to contact an already-deceased main character.

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