40 Amazing Video Game Soundtracks

Deus Ex: Human Revolution - 40 Amazing Video Game Soundtracks

Deus Ex: Human Revolution

Michael McCann's resume in video game music isn't broad, but his skill is clearly evident when he composed the critically acclaimed Deus Ex: Human Revolution. Nestled firmly within the genre of epic electronica, this soundtrack is crammed full of deep bass beats and haunting choruses, a more than perfect fit for the game.

Game intro: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XIqJaT3cvf8
Soundtrack: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tyG6YMLEWus
Darksiders 2 - 40 Amazing Video Game Soundtracks

Darksiders 2

Death travels to realms of angels and demons and several in between in his quest to redeem his brother in this sequel, and the music matches his every step. There is huge variety to be found here, such as the Celtic-inspired tunes of the Maker's Realm and the dark melodies of the Kingdom of the Dead. The scores that follow Death on his journey are epic in their scale and quality.

Sample: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=O4lwpYLlVvM
Soundtrack: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IYEZTeH4AHU
Halo series - 40 Amazing Video Game Soundtracks

Halo series

I think we're all familiar with the hauntingly engrossing choruses that grace the title screens of the Halo series, but I was generally too busy plastering the walls with alien guts to pay attention to much else. Behind all that satisfying slaughter is in fact an enthralling soundtrack of military orchestral scores and vocal pieces perfectly suited for the game's space war theme. Unfortunately, someone keeps hunting these soundtracks down and knocking them off Youtube; get 'em while they're still kicking.

Halo 2: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rVGnkEoLgL0
Halo 3: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eIyQVP3IUyg
Halo ODST: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=a33iI6xfld0
Halo Reach: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aRh1cZbwc4M
Halo 4: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=a97UuT3PQ1w
Red Dead Redemption - 40 Amazing Video Game Soundtracks

Red Dead Redemption

Rockstar really outdid themselves when they produced the soundtrack to their revitalization of the Red Dead franchise. It is chock full of southwestern influence featuring guitars, violins, that iconic whistling, everything you'd expect. What amazes however is the sheer production quality; it can easily stand on its own, destined to please fans of classic western music gamers and non-gamers alike.

Far Away: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7IkvAb6THQY
Soundtrack: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=S6tcs0_NAUI
L.A. Noire - 40 Amazing Video Game Soundtracks

L.A. Noire

Rockstar once again proves their incredible mettle with period music with L.A. Noire. With jazz dripping from every speaker hole, it contains copious trumpets, saxophones, drums and pianos, and effortlessly captures the spirit of 1940s music. They even toss in a few songs original period songs near the end of the album with a lyrics by Claudia Brucken.

Soundtrack: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kbrhuUFjCII
Batman: Arkham series - 40 Amazing Video Game Soundtracks

Batman: Arkham series

Since his current tone was set in the 1990s animated cartoon and cemented with the help of Christopher Nolan and Rocksteady, Batman has adopted a brooding, serious theme that few if any popular superheroes can match. This has translated directly over to his musical ensembles with excellent examples coming from his video game outings. Dark yet insistent, the full orchestral scores of the Arkham series matches the mood of the Dark Knight perfectly. While Arkham Asylum is merely okay, the composers hit their stride in Arkham City and carry on well into Origins.

Arkham Asylum: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XN0Gr4ttd5M
Arkham City: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gYz7_PiJ-MM
Arkham Origins: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AAEtp19qIpk
Assassin's Creed series - 40 Amazing Video Game Soundtracks

Assassin's Creed series

Nearly everything about the Assassin's Creed series is unique and new, and the soundtracks are no exception. The core of the music throughout the series leans heavily upon choruses, violins and drums, but from there it changes with each entree, incorporating elements of the musical themes prevalent during the periods when each game takes place. The Altier arc features Middle-Eastern choruses, Ezio's adopting heavily from Italian ars nova, you get the idea.

Assassin's Creed 1: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4c2gL18xawk
Assassin's Creed 2: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uH1wfrOcvHg
Assassin's Creed Brotherhood: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IyH5NvmjxeY
Assassin's Creed Revelations: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=c7tc0VfZwtk
Assassin's Creed 3: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3QByfthwPYU
Assassin's Creed 4: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eXZ6pWh19mI
Borderlands series - 40 Amazing Video Game Soundtracks

Borderlands series

The Borderlands series is best known for its insane co-op fights and hilarious characters, but behind all that gunfire and dialog is a surprisingly enjoyable, fast-paced soundtrack. The music touches on and blends a number of genres, incorporating classic guitar twangs and electric guitar riffs, across the board percussion, some electronica influence, and many more. Nearly all of the songs evoke a sense of hasty progression, making it a superb soundtrack for car drives or work outs.

Borderlands 1: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=d59yEy6gydQ
Borderlands 2: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=87e4SihVogs
Metal Gear Solid series - 40 Amazing Video Game Soundtracks

Metal Gear Solid series

You can't just pick one of these games as the superior soundtrack; they are all superb. Orchestras dominate these albums, not only evoking suspense and action, but bringing other emotions to bear as well. And the tunes that deviate from the formula prove themselves surprisingly touching and evocative, even if you don't know the context to which they were matched in-game.

MGS1: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fKt_-_wfSiY
MGS2: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NshGqbYcM6U
MGS3: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yZ_KNLRCl3U
MGS4: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yzgpY9Fx2xE
Peacewalker: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2nPJqczHYZo
Ground Zeroes: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1guQjLQ4rHg
Metal Gear Rising: Revengence - 40 Amazing Video Game Soundtracks

Metal Gear Rising: Revengence

Revengence is separate from the rest of the MGS series because it is a very different animal. Its vocal soundtrack is dominated by a techno-metal blend in a vein similar to Blood Stain Child (before they joined Pony Canyon and completely changed their style.) Electric guitars shred harmoniously alongside synthesizers to a pulse-pounding beat. The music itself was produced with a metric load of talent, among them Logan Mader and Ferry Corsten.

Sample: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=N3472Q6kvg0
Soundtrack: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=19vQPM5u904
Mirror's Edge - 40 Amazing Video Game Soundtracks

Mirror's Edge

Mirror's Edge was adventurous in a number of ways, a first-person parkour game taking place in a bright world, released right in the midst of the 'gritty' trend popularized by Gears of War, and its soundtrack plays a perfect companion. Filled to the brim with electronica beats both rapid and slow, this OST evokes feelings of tension, haste and freedom, culminating in the tranquil score of Lisa Miskovsky's Still Alive.

Still Alive: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TERyxFfMqDk
Soundtrack: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Y05wiQQbFLU
Portal 2 - 40 Amazing Video Game Soundtracks

Portal 2

Segueing from Still Alive (a completely different one, mind you,) the original Portal spawned that splendid song but did little to accompany it. Portal 2 gave a musical soul to the series that is as incredibly apt as it is harmoniously jarring. Consisting of traditional scores and procedurally generated music, this soundtrack assails the ears with a waterfall of bips and boops that fit perfectly with the game's theme. It also makes unexpectedly good driving music, just don't get pulled over.

Science is Fun: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sER1rSv5bd8
Soundtrack: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y_gknRMZ-OU
Half-Life series - 40 Amazing Video Game Soundtracks

Half-Life series

The music of Half-Life certainly has no qualms about being unique. Though it contains heavy synth and some techno elements, I'm at a complete loss to even classify this soundtrack. There are sounds presented as music here that you've never heard before, and not only does it work spectacularly, but it paints the Half-Life universe an audible color all its own.

Half Life 1: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AaXsb5kS31s
Half Life 2: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Xt2sbtvBuk8
Journey - 40 Amazing Video Game Soundtracks

Journey

It can arguably be said that the soundtrack of Journey is the very core of the game; without it it's just a marathon at a walking pace. And rightfully so, the music of Journey is an ambient Kit-Kat bar for the brain. A full assortment of stringed instruments evoke senses of both tranquility and discovery, making this an incredibly relaxing listen, perfect to unwind at the end of your day. And did I mention it was nominated for a Grammy? Yes, that happened.

Soundtrack: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=M3hFN8UrBPw
Flower - 40 Amazing Video Game Soundtracks

Flower

Thatgamecompany tapped the talent of Vincent Diamante to produce the music for their second, interestingly engrossing game about, well, flowers. Featuring flutes, piano, and string, the Flower soundtrack is remarkably simple yet incredibly deep. It oozes with tones of relaxation and serenity, making it the perfect music to play during a picnic or while lounging on your back porch.

Soundtrack: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=25RC2PX_EZI
Bastion - 40 Amazing Video Game Soundtracks

Bastion

Fusing southwest stylings with fantasy and synthetic elements, the soundtrack for this award-winning indie game presents an unique and incredibly enjoyable experience. Acoustic guitar, violins, cellos, synthesizers and chorus blend together into a single album. There's no doubt that the music alone was a vital contributor to this game's success, quite a testament for a soundtrack that was recorded in the composer's closet.

Soundtrack: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oLA0vB9LCTM
Risk of Rain - 40 Amazing Video Game Soundtracks

Risk of Rain

There's something to be said for the sounds of those games of eras before. Risk of Rain pays homage to the games of past not only in visual style but also in audio, adopting a sci-fi score reminiscent in composition to games of the early 2000s, a simple yet soothing mix of electric guitar and synth, but updated to modern sound quality. The result is a relaxingly fresh hit of nostalgia that's superb for easy listening.

Soundtrack: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2ypzpl02Rps
The Unfinished Swan - 40 Amazing Video Game Soundtracks

The Unfinished Swan

The Unfinished Swan is a delightful little game, full if simple beauty. It's soundtrack adopts this theme as well, capitalizing on its elementary nature yet making full use of what it has. Mixing basic synths with a live string orchestra, it seems to channel a high-class Victorian vibe. Its tunes are great to listen to yet fail to distract, making it perfect background music for studying.

Soundtrack: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0jsGkbK-kL4
Hotline Miami - 40 Amazing Video Game Soundtracks

Hotline Miami

Remember how arcade cabinets used to say “winners don't do drugs?” Clearly the pair at Dennaton Games didn't follow that advice when they composed the soundtrack for their brutal game. Hotline Miami's musical score consists of two elements: simple club dance beats and distorted Floridian beach tunes. By their powers combined they make a musical experiment that's both relaxing and disturbing. Just remember that drugs are bad, mkay?

Soundtrack: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oKD-MVfC9Ag
Advent Rising - 40 Amazing Video Game Soundtracks

Advent Rising

Advent Rising was an ambitious sci-fi project, slated as a trilogy and written by such big names as Orson Scott Card. And then if failed so hard that its publisher pulled out of big consoles and its developer pulled out of everything. Despite the game's flaws however, its soundtrack is a superb piece of work. Chock full of epic orchestral songs, it makes heavy use of choruses and brass. I dare say the music of this game is one of the few things it did very well.

Sample: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BEk6YYrCfV0
Soundtrack: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DSbTviFhHI4&list=PL58881C6E1C972FBA
Wet - 40 Amazing Video Game Soundtracks

Wet

Otherwise known as Kill Bill: The Game, Wet draws a metric ton of inspiration from Quentin Tarantino's duology, blending just a little Japanese swordsmanship with a 1970s Southwestern feel. This translates quite obviously into the music, filled with acoustic guitar, bass, and percussion. It's really a bit of a shame that the game didn't make quite a splash on the market.

Soundtrack: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ncshVfG4Znw&list=PL554F1AEAD68D1649
Katamari series - 40 Amazing Video Game Soundtracks

Katamari series

Are you really surprised to see this here? The truth is that this list simply wouldn't be complete without Katamari. The music of this video game series matches the premise and gameplay perfectly: serendipitous, silly, upbeat and frequently nonsensical. And let's not forget catchy as all hell. Ecstatic trumpets accompanying seemingly random lyrics and fanatical bongos pump you up, and that's merely the opening fanfare.

Playlist: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ekOqgknkVN4&list=PLBB7D6D0650A7FA4B
Civilization series - 40 Amazing Video Game Soundtracks

Civilization series

Civilization 4 set an important milestone for video game music; it's opening song was the first from a video game to win a Grammy. The rest of the soundtracks blister with equal talent, a vast assortment of musical scores inspired by and composed to match the various countries you can control in-game. It plays as a sort of global snapshot of musical influences.

Baba Yetu: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IJiHDmyhE1A
Civilization 4: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5e0Qelqp-Cc&list=PL148A567BB5EB0821
Civilization 5: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rH-Qw2pbrNk
Anno series - 40 Amazing Video Game Soundtracks

Anno series

I only found out about these games recently, but after some digging I discovered a spectacular pair of soundtracks. The two most recent games in the series are Anno 1404 and 2070, taking place roughly in the years indicated. The former is chock full of music of classical west European influence with some curious Middle-eastern thrown in, while the later contains chorus and percussion heavy orchestras with aesthetics differing wildly between the two factions.

Anno 1404: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t_AUZVS5LP0
Anno 2070: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DDihK7YFa7o
Mass Effect series - 40 Amazing Video Game Soundtracks

Mass Effect series

The Mass Effect series is arguably the best video game rendition of a multi-species galactic adventure, painting an entire universe for its soundtrack to follow. The music within touches on nearly every form you can imagine as suitable for its futuristic setting, ranging from epic orchestral scores and choral pieces to electronica of numerous genres. Often these different sounds find themselves intertwining, producing even more complexity and depth.

Mass Effect 1: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xAohBlseBN0
Mass Effect 2: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TlJIXPHN2YY
Mass Effect 3: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PbiNjOhClpk
Elder Scrolls series - 40 Amazing Video Game Soundtracks

Elder Scrolls series

The music of Skyrim, particularly it's titular anthem, is stuck in many of our heads more prominently than we'd like to admit, and for damn good reason. But the series has had a long history of orchestral scores going back to the now arguably visually dated Morrowind. You know how these sound and they've done nothing but mature and improve with time.

Morrowind: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xULTMMgwLuo
Oblivion: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SpqSdORmCX4
Skyrim: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aQeIYVM3YBM
Warcraft series - 40 Amazing Video Game Soundtracks

Warcraft series

Warcraft, what can I even say about this series? Everyone knows what it is and, love it or hate it, an amazingly tremendous amount of work went and still goes into these games. This aesthetic extends to its soundtracks which touch on numerous genres and adopt just as many influences. Just like Skyrim, you know these sounds, and they translate pretty darn well into out-of-game listening.

Warcraft 3: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xPoSAo7YFsw
Frozen Throne: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=90H-ARdf1dw
World of Warcraft: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gQFOLOur1jM
Burning Crusade: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=I-JiHKVjgLs
Wrath of the Lich King: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EuKGNGZjUJI
Cataclysm: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=k4Pberbn2po
Mists of Pandaria: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WZDmbz6ZXHI
Starcraft series - 40 Amazing Video Game Soundtracks

Starcraft series

Blizzard really doesn't screw around when it comes to their games. As stated above, it's blindingly obvious that they try to polish and perfect every facet of their work. This extends to Starcraft and continued with Starcraft 2, where they take the musical themes established in their first game and hammer them out into fully-realized scores. Each faction's soundtrack is firmly iconic, and it all wraps into a universal brass-heavy musical set piece of enormous magnitude.

Starcraft + BW: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Yrvly0aHRFQ
Wings of Liberty: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=G0PXaQv41Wc
Heart of the Swarm: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y-HR7kVl4vc
Rez / Lumines - 40 Amazing Video Game Soundtracks

Rez / Lumines

Pick most anything from a game by Tetsuya Mizuguchi and you'll find your ears deluged with uplifting techno-trance music. Rez and Lumines led the charge with rapid synthetic beats that motivate and innervate, drawing elements from 1980s techno and layering it upon an early 2000s base. The combination of older and what was once new is both fresh, familiar, and harshly enjoyable. Unfortunately, it's tough to find the music from these games all in one place.

Rez: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8wJgMzIw88Y&list=PL1050931551ECD3D7
Lumines: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_FI-Cf26zFo&list=PLF20B1E326A8DB43E
Child of Eden - 40 Amazing Video Game Soundtracks

Child of Eden

Child of Eden mixes the formula up from Q Entertainment's other works (see above) completely, presenting a more tranquil, serendipitous progressive trance-based soundtrack with clean vocals and a modernized sound. The result is topical and in-line with the current tunes out there of the genre, a superb treat for your eardrums. There is no official soundtrack for Child of Eden, but all of the music from the game is by the Genki Rockets and can be found on their two CDs.

Playlist: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=I1YtczzWoHE&list=PLBE7A4DE98C7C582B
Final Fantasy series - 40 Amazing Video Game Soundtracks

Final Fantasy series

Final Fantasy is a long-standing series of games that has had its highs and lows, but musically it has done little more than improve over its lifetime. Though the composers have come and gone the fantastical qualities have remained, and only the known limitations of the hardware at the time of each games' release could hold back the sound flowing from their disks. While I only personally consider FFX and up to have shaken the last bits of "video game" from their scores, memorable tunes trace back through the series all the way to its roots.

FFVI: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sLpjPht5mvg
FFVI Balance and Ruin: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RgB-GyWJeXM
FFVII: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bMtlLpYcCAQ
FFVII Remastered: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rr1MUgu_qWI&list=PL02A7E62FBA1D3981
FFT: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Bs7jIyQR-Gk
FFVIII: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JJnsw8qMKLk
FFIX: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AePhn9HPxag
FFX: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Fpf-dD4atHw
FFXII: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Tgd9ajyAiIs
FFXIII: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Flk42tkoV4w
FFXIII-2: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=c7xT6rBvzOo
FFXIII-3: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZebmtGCJDfo
Full Series Orchestration: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LiAWP_mcIzY
Kingdom Hearts series - 40 Amazing Video Game Soundtracks

Kingdom Hearts series

Yoko Shimomura composes like a spiteful child genius. Tell her exactly what to do and give her strict guidelines and she'll only put forth C effort, but give her the keys to the kingdom and her incredible talent shines forth brilliantly. Heavy on piano, the soundtracks to the Kingdom Hearts games also tap strings, brass, and synthesizers to produce their memorable tunes, bringing forth senses of mystery, friction, and hope. Just keep in mind that the songs were composed to loop, and feel free to skip over the parts where Disney had their hands on the leash.

Passion (KH2 OP): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kWoJLdXJt0E
Kingdom Hearts 1: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3d2ngbo1mJ8
Kingdom Hearts 2: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LD10-ijIOII
KH: Birth by Sleep: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gMYaI3nSLWE
Okami - 40 Amazing Video Game Soundtracks

Okami

And now for something completely different. As a game, Okami is absolutely drenched in Japanese folklore, and the soundtrack follows suit completely. Spanning a full five hours, it immerses the listener in music of classical Japanese inspiration, composed with a ton of instruments half of which I don't know the names of. This sound may not be for everyone, but for those with an ear for the style this album is a real treat.

Sample: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ya3yxTbkh5s
Soundtrack: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1N0EX6jZsfA
Shadow of the Colossus - 40 Amazing Video Game Soundtracks

Shadow of the Colossus

You don't hear a ton of music while playing much of this game, being left instead to enjoy the tranquil surroundings as you speed about the open world. But when appropriate the soundtrack kicks in, and damn if it isn't amazing. A full classical orchestra chimes in to accompany your journey, every string and horn imaginable wrapped into an incredible series of scores. Mystery, joy, harmony, this soundtrack evokes a broad plethora of emotions.

Soundtrack: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pmoYLtObCtY
Guilty Gear series - 40 Amazing Video Game Soundtracks

Guilty Gear series

When Arc System Works created Guilty Gear they wanted to try something different, and they achieved it by putting a heavy priority on hard rock. With all the vigor of Judas Priest, electric guitars shred across the majority of this fighting game assaulting the player with invigorating musical scores to match the action on-screen. It makes fantastic driving music, or have it in the background while playing a different game that lacks notable music. *coughWarframecough*

Guilty Gear XX: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=V9khT_IUXUk
Guilty Gear Isuka: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6qeKycCtm20
BlazBlue series - 40 Amazing Video Game Soundtracks

BlazBlue series

As the spiritual successor to Guilty Gear, BlazBlue carries over its ancestor's iconic musical legacy. Whereas its predecessor stayed largely within the confines of traditional hard rock, BlazBlue experiments with broader musical aspects, adding greater variety and helping to differentiate its characters. The next game in the series just recently released State-wide changes everything up, replacing old music with equally-great remixed versions alongside new stuff to match the near-doubling of its cast. But be warned: though rock dominates, there is a smidgen of less-desirable Japanese “stuff” in there. Skip as necessary.

CT through Extend: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vcflGXfuPeU&list=PL2CEB12C16BDA4B59
Chronophantasma: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=H7j9pb4E11M&list=PLHT1-au03SvV2uyRiCfmZBqehbtKDpjuo
Neir - 40 Amazing Video Game Soundtracks

Neir

Neir broke many RPG conventions: the main character is spurred on his journey by the plight of his daughter, there's a ladyboy in the party, and the soundtrack is anything but conventional JRPG fare. It's filled to the brim with melodious choruses to the tune of acoustic guitars, pianos, violins and percussion. The music is mostly melancholic and downbeat, perfect for casual listening. There's a reason the music of Neir gained more praise than the game itself (which wasn't THAT bad.)

Sample: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oUn-kezLzeY
Soundtrack: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QGmhtFgoAGA
Xenoblade Chronicles - 40 Amazing Video Game Soundtracks

Xenoblade Chronicles

This past console generation has been a poor one for JRPGs State-side, but Xenoblade Chronicles slipped through on the Wii to prove that the classic formulas aren't dead yet. The game's soundtrack is as deep and engrossing as its plot. It eschew the newer trends in RPG game music, instead throwing back to classical JRPG stylings while updating its sound to modern quality and complexity. What you get is a soundtrack that is both incredibly familiar yet fantastically new, and thankfully devoid of any heropons.

Sample: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nNR-wsFAfiU
Soundtrack: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bl9dP0CJfbQ
Eternal Sonata - 40 Amazing Video Game Soundtracks

Eternal Sonata

Do you want pulse-pounding electronica or face-melting guitars? Nope. Here comes Eternal Sonata to tell you to chill out. Inspired by the pianist Frederic Chopin to the point of making him the main character, the game's entire score is centered around the piano, supported occasionally by choruses and strings. Got a classy office? Toss this into the sound system. It's perfect for the setting and nobody will know its from a JRPG.

Soundtrack: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1GYgWy1nqXs
Xenosaga series - 40 Amazing Video Game Soundtracks

Xenosaga series

Xenosaga is an odd piece in that there is a ton of variety to be found here. Soft piano songs, electric guitar riffs, church-themed choirs, violin solos, synth loops, and full orchestral compositions permeate these soundtracks, all in superb quality. Though the songs do have a habit of being composed to loop, they are all pleasing to the ear without bogging the listener down into a single genre.

Episode 1: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5rT_Ny5J26I
Episode 2: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9ECG1mdw0jQ
Episode 3: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6CzbKLp2VyM
In closing (for now) - 40 Amazing Video Game Soundtracks

In closing (for now)

Is there a soundtrack you love but didn't find on the list? First, check to see if it's in part 1 (http://imgur.com/gallery/NZJCi) and if not, say so in the comments. Though I try to steer these collections to games that translate well to outside listening, the list is in no way exhaustive and is always expanding. I'll do my best to listen to your suggestions and possibly include them in future lists.