8 Amazing video game composers that show the best gaming has to offer

9 of 10

Koji Kondo

Super Mario and The Legend of Zelda

Games like Super Mario Bros. and The Legend of Zelda have been considered video game masterpieces ever since their beginnings in the mid-eighties. It is therefore only fitting that these masterworks be scored with equally masterful music. Koji Kondo has been employed at Nintendo since 1984, and in that time has composed music for over thirty games while contributing to over a hundred others.

Like the video game technology around him, Kondo’s musical style has evolved with his games. When comparing the 8-bit ground theme from the original Super Mario Bros. to the fully orchestrated Gusty Garden theme from 2007’s Super Mario Galaxy, it’s clear that Kondo’s ability to adapt his musical genius to the technology available to him is nothing short of divine. Endearing, empowering, reflective, symmetrical, pure – there can be no doubt that Kondo’s works will forever be held as some of the greatest to grace this medium.

Published Nov. 28th 2015
  • Fuzunga
    Just so you know, Gusty Garden from Super Mario Galaxy was composed by Mahito Yokota. Koji Kondo only composed four songs for that game. He doesn't do a whole lot of composition any more.
  • Joe DeClara
    Featured Contributor
    Hi there! Any chance I could get a source on that? I've done research, and have only turned up the two collaborating, nothing on either specifically being accredited with writing Gusty Gardens (I don't have a hard copy of the OST myself). Definitely don't want such misinformation in my work.

    Thanks for pointing it out!
  • !Xabbu
    Great list.

    And since you included Beethoven, I'll feel free to mention Joe Hisaishi, who did the wonderful soundtrack for Ni No Kuni (couldn't be a Studio Ghibli production without him!).
  • Venisia Gonzalez
    Featured Columnist
    I love Jeremy Soule!
  • GameSkinny Staff
    I'mma let you finish, but Transistor is the greatest soundtrack of all time. OF ALL TIME.

    Ok, not really, but it's damn amazing and worth a mention whenever Darren Korb pops up. Bastion was phenomenal and Korb somehow managed to top it, in a different genre, with Transistor. Feast your ears: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-zA1jRmAYfU (And major props to Supergiant for making it so easily accessible on YouTube.)
  • Venisia Gonzalez
    Featured Columnist
    Yes, Transistor is fantastic.

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