Top Indie Games with Memorable Soundtracks
Stunning graphics can truly elevate a game. But music plays an equally instrumental part in building up an immersive atmosphere. When it comes to epic soundtracks, such triple-A franchises as Final Fantasy, The Legend of Zelda, and God of War arguably reign supreme. Some of the most famous tracks in history, like the Mario theme tune, have even become proper anthems known and loved beyond gaming circles.
Yet, just as many indie titles boast their fair share of terrific scores. With fewer funds to work around, several independent games have found inventive ways to bypass their budgetary limitations to devise musical scores that leave an inedible mark on players' imaginations. So, if you're looking for new tracks to add to your playlist, let's dive right into some indie games with remarkable background music.
Undertale is considered by many gamers as one of the best RPGs around, which is no small feat considering it was single-handedly developed by the American indie creator Toby Fox. Outside of character designs and artwork, courtesy of freelance illustrator Temmie Chang, Fox created this unique 2D role-playing game entirely on his own.
And as a self-taught musician, he composed the game's soundtrack by drawing inspiration from retro Super NES titles like EarthBound. To capture the essence of the many eccentric characters the player-character meets along his adventures, Fox made extensive use of various leitmotivs. These short musical themes set the tone for the narrative journey experienced by players, but they also evoke a sense of nostalgia for classics from the past.
And from melancholic melodies to catchy tunes, Undertale is an absolute treat for music lovers. The game's musical legacy lead bands and orchestra groups to perform its tracks on stage, while Polygon reports that reinventions of themes like Megalovania are still going strong on TikTok.
Classical music goes a long way in the gaming medium. From Resident Evil to Kingdom Hearts, countless blockbuster franchises have complemented their stories with a classical touch. While there's no arguing that Bach and Beethoven never go out of style, turning to master musicians provides another sizeable advantage since their works are free of copyright. And the developers of the indie visual novel Aviary Attorney got the message loud and clear.
Inspired by Capcom's iconic point-and-click adventure franchise Ace Attorney, this lawyering game takes you to 19th-century Paris. Playing as a bird attorney navigating the intrigues of a French capital on the verge of revolution, you're tasked with defending wrongly accused defendants. Your mission entails looking for clues and interrogating witnesses before taking your case to court.
A period-accurate soundtrack guides your investigation, as developers sprinkled their game with compositions by 19th-century French musicians like Camille Saint-Saëns and Claude Debussy. Adding yet more historical charm, the artwork for the game's anthropomorphic animal protagonists stems from French caricaturist Grandville.
Recently released on PC and Nintendo Switch, Sunshine Shuffle is an indie narrative adventure that embarks players on a steamship alongside animal passengers sharing a criminal past. Players unlock extra conversations by playing Texas Hold' em poker to delve deeper into their opponents' backgrounds.
An original ska soundtrack orchestrated by acclaimed musicians RJ Lake and Skatune Network adds much flair to these poker sessions. A precursor to music genres like reggae and rocksteady, ska boasts jazzy undertones that suit the neo-noir style of this inventive title halfway between Animal Crossing and Poker Night at the Inventory.
For all its vibrant soundtrack, the game may feel slow in the gameplay department. Hence, seasoned players might want to turn to online casinos to scratch their poker itch. Top websites listed on platforms like CasinoBonusCA even reward users with offers like no deposit bonuses. These bonuses without deposit allow prospective players to test out a new platform risk-free. Gamers can specifically look for such deals thanks to advanced sorting systems. Better still, casino offers are updated regularly for players to find the right pick with just a click.
Cuphead is an independent run and gun title developed by Canadian brothers Jared and Chad Moldenhauer. The game follows an anthropomorphic cup on a quest to repossess the souls of runaway debtors on behalf of the Devil to make up for his loss at the Devil's casino.
Up to two players take control of both Cuphead and his brother Mugman, who eventually grow so powerful they might threaten their devilish creditor. Drawing inspiration from the golden age of Hollywood animation, Cuphead also plays out on its 30s aesthetics musically.
Recorded by an entire jazz ensemble, the game's soundtrack is a work of musical genius that landed a BAFTA Games Award for Best Music. Cuphead also set a milestone for gaming soundtracks, topping the Billboard Jazz Charts in unprecedented fashion.