It’s Halloween! And there’s only one thing you should always do in Halloween… no not trick or treating, or watch classic B movies of a killer on the loose, in Halloween we should all play video games that make you say “2spoopy4me”. There are plenty of great spoopy games out there, from the Silent Hill series to… Luigi’s Mansion.
But a spoopy game is not all about gameplay, a super spoopy game is accompanied by a great soundtrack. In a move that started during today’s Forgotten Cadence, I decided to create a list with the spoopiest moments and their respective songs I could think of. Now since I rarely play survival-horror games, most of the games in this list are not exactly scary...
Halloween - Animal Crossing
Running around scaring neighbors, indulging in candy and making mischief—all the things that embody Halloween night ! Animal Crossing is not all work and menial tasks made fun but celebrating the seasons and holidays too. Re-creating the ideal pictures of how a happy childhood memories should be aided by the spooky, playful sounds capturing the spirit of harmless trick or treating and everyone’s friend Jack.
Mad Monster Mansion - Banjo-Kazooie
Owls, Wolves and croaking frogs
Dancing Skeletons in the enchanted fog
Ethereal sounds coming from walls
Monsters and bats roaming the halls
These are just some of the things
That make Grant Kirkhope scream...
Shade Man - Mega Man 7
It is 20XX...
An old castle in the outskirts of Robo-Austria,
From the worship of Doctor Wily, rise the plea for the return of the Lord of Darkness.
The first few seconds of Shade Man’s stage evoke feelings of Super Castlevania IV, or you know that other spooktastic Capcom game...
Main Theme - Luigi’s Mansion
Poor Luigi, second best to his brother, originally designed to be just a palette swap for player number 2. He rarely gets a break, that’s until 2001 when finally he gets an adventure of his own. Not only that, he also gets the recognition he deserves by winning a fancy new mansion…
But things don’t turn out as expected, yes he does win a fancy mansion, one crawling with spirits with only one objective in their afterlife, scare the goomba out of poor Luigi.
Ghost House - Super Mario World
And of course once again Mario comes out in first place in the brother’s race… Luigi’s Mansion may be a scary place, but it has nothing on the Ghost House of Super Mario World. It’s so spoopy, that Mario is forced to leave Yoshi behind when entering one of these boo filled contraptions. Few songs manage to capture the atmosphere of a haunted place such as the Ghost House theme from Super Mario World, it is simple, yet crawling with layers upon layers of melodies clashing against each other. Certainly the kind of songs that would make the Green Missile cower in fear for the rest of his life...
Magus’ Castle - Chrono Trigger
If ever there was a time to collect your nerves, and call upon the strength to be brave enough to enter the foreboding the castle where the powerful dark mage awaits...now is not that time. Nope. Turn back now because the minute you step foot in spooky castle, the music lets you know you’re in for a special sort of nightmare. A long drawn out, high-pitched note underscored by something akin to creepy crawlies mocking your every move are the sounds that guide to you the castle’s keeper, Magus. And when you get to him, it’s a fight for your life. One of the best and most recognizable battle songs in JRPG history is led by by a build up of tension that launches into a frenzied but calculated masterpiece. The black wind howls...
The Fairy Queen - The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker
And you thought the Great Fairy from Ocarina of Time was creepy, that mole has nothing on the empty eyes of the Fairy Queen from The Wind Waker. Appearing before you in the form of a small child, judging you before giving you her approval, meanwhile a distorted version of the Great Fairy Fountain theme assaults your ears...
Promise (Reprise) - Silent Hill 2
Composed by Akira Yamaoka this song plays in the apartment complex when James Sunderland encounters a suicidal lady that goes by the name of Angela Orosco. While not the spoopiest song out there, I won’t deny its incredible power... I just don’t want to unleash the rage of the mighty Mira again…
Dance of the Pales - Castlevania: Symphony of the Night
I honestly didn’t want to go for the obvious choice of Vampire Killer or Bloody Tears, while both remain classics of the series, they fail to capture what is to feel inside a XVIII century Eastern European Castle...
Dance of the Pales by Michiru Yamane, does manage to convey that spine-chilling feeling that having too much aristocratic power might give you allusions of grandeur. You know you’ve become a Dark Lord once you start adorning your halls with dancing blades and enchanted armors.
Regenerador - Resident Evil 4
*Heavy Distant Breathing*
When you hear that heavy breathing... you know a Regenerador is waiting around the corner, ready to ambush you. It may be the worst enemy in all of Resident Evil 4 next to the Garrador. Surely they can be beaten easily once you discover their weak points, but nothing beats that first encounter in the autopsy room.
Mother Brain - Super Metroid
You manage to survive the oversized baby Metroid sucking your life away, get across the hall filled with acid and those annoying floating cheerios. At the end is sitting mother brain encased in her glass vitrine, plotting her next plan. A couple of super missiles later and the thing is defeated...
Then... it rises. THE HORROR.
Lavender Town - Pokemon R/B/G
Rumored to get kids to take their own lives when it was first released in Japan. Most of the creepy pastas revolve around Lavender Town, and rightly so. Accompanied by haunting melody with eerie looping frequencies, stories of companions who have moved on to a better life and of course the Pokémon Tower, filled with urns and the haunting ghosts. Lavender Town earned its place in Pokémon lore as one of the saddest locations in the universe.
Final Battle - MOTHER 2/Earthbound
What can be said about this battle that hasn’t been said before? Usually people talk about the setting, and the movie that inspired the dialogue of the battle, and of course the images of baby fetuses floating in the battle background…
Giygas battle is simply unique amongst boss battles. In a game filled with colors and happy stories about four kids trying to save the world, the emotional charge that is Giygas is simply out of place, yet at the same time fits perfectly into the universe created by Shigesato Itoi. And somehow, Keiichi Suzuki and Hirokazu Tanaka managed to create a theme that complements the experience...
Forgotten Cadences examines the less celebrated, but always unusual sounds of video game music.