I’m doing a series where I give recognition to the best video game soundtracks (there’s plenty) and for the first one I decided I would do the Pokémon series. That’s right, I’m grouping all of the games into one because you can’t just pick one. So let’s dive in.
Pokémon, hands down one of the most popular video game franchises of all time that spawned card games, animes, movies, and non stop merchandise. Though the series outside of the video games doesn’t really strive in America anymore (or at least compared to Japan) it’s still a power house series. No longer is it a series enjoyed by just kids. In fact everyone I know who plays Pokémon is an adult now. The fan base that grew up with Red and Blue can’t seem to let it go, and there always tons of newcomers that will continue the cycle when we’re long gone. You’d think we’d grow out of it because it may be considered childish or silly now but it isn’t. The franchise is still addicting as ever though it may need some fresh new ideas when a new one launches for the Nintendo 3DS. But that’s a story for another day.
One of things that has always stayed with me the most in this series is its music. There is just something about hearing the music again from Pokémon Red/Blue that gives a sense of joy and nostalgia. It instantly brings back to a time when life was at its best. 1998. Arguably the best year in video game history. I was a 8 year old wild child hanging out in streets and constantly getting in fights with bad kids around block. But also I would just hang out with my gameboy on my front stoop and trade with the good kids from the other block. Pokémon was a way of life when you’re a kid. Almost everyone I knew had a gameboy on them at all times and if they whipped theirs out, you whipped out yours too (wait, what?). Either it was time to trade, or IT WAS TIME TO BATTLE. I annihilated all of those who opposed me with my Mewtwo and Blastoise.
It’s senses that can trigger even the most hidden emotions and memories. When it comes to video games, music is that trigger. Hearing those old tunes of Pokémon can easily bring my frown upside. It’s catchy, it’s vibrant and it’s happy. Yes, it’s repetitive but that’s just a testament to how amazing the music is because no matter how many times you hear the music looped over and over again it just doesn’t seem to get old. If you don’t live life without occasionally finding yourself humming a Pokémon tune in your head from time to time, you were never truly about that Pokémon life. Nothing like waiting in line at the DMV then suddenly remembering the Pallet town theme and feeling somewhat better about the wait or having Gym Leader battle music stuck in your head during a tough exam to get your blood pumping.
Pokémon composer Junichi Masuda has crafted a consistent tone through each new iteration. He incorporates a sense of upbeat familiarity in each entry but each game has an all new soundtrack (with the exception of the remakes). The music has stayed consistently great through out the series. I feel Pokemon red/blue has my favorite music in the series but that may just be nostalgia speaking. Nostalgia aside Pokemon Diamond/Pearl has some of the best tracks in the entire series. But no Pokéfan can ever agree on the best soundtrack with someone else. Just how we’ll never agree on who the best Pokémon are. Or what the best generation is and so on. But that’s what make Pokémon fans great, we’re all different people with different taste. Don’t be ashamed to be in your 20’s or 30’s to admit you still want to be a Pokémon master. You always gotta stay stay a kid at heart. .
Here I’m gonna post a few a favorite my favorite tracks. May the Pokémon series always be remembered as one of the greatest video game soundtracks of all time! Remember, gotta catch em’ all.
One of the best gym battle themes in the series. This is the music that plays in my head when I’m doing something intense like trying to seduce someone and it’s getting heated.
But the original Gym Battle theme still holds up today. This is that “Oh shit, I’m late. Time to put the pedal to the metal” theme.
My favorite wild battle theme.
But the original battle theme has a great mix between intense and serene.
Personally no Legendary Pokémon music in the entire series has been able to top this track for me. Brilliant, just brilliant. Easily one of the most intense tracks in the entire series. I mean HOLY CRAP!
What is a Pokémon list of music without this track? The track that gave children chills everywhere and afraid to play in the dark. *shivers* But so damn good.
Last let’s not forget the famous song that played when at the end of Silver/Gold we battled Red, the true Pokémon Master. No battle can top moment in the series, agreed?
What are some of your favorite tracks or favorite Pokémon game with the best music? I’d love to hear your opinions in the comments below!