Since the start of this millennium, Bethesda Softworks has been one of the world’s most prominent games creators. Not only has the company found great success through its in-house developer with its Elder Scrolls and Fallout franchises, it’s also expanded to publish titles by other developers, such as the id Software-developed Rage and Obsidian’s Fallout: New Vegas. For the most part, the only common feature shared by each of the games Bethesda has released over the past decade is that each is a solid example of what most would consider an “epic adventure.” Even Dishonored, which is a comparatively short experience story-wise, offers a huge amount of content for players to explore.
As a result of working solely in the “epic” subgenre of gaming, Bethesda’s games stereotypically feature grandiose, sweeping soundtracks that compare favorably with the sort of music coming from Hollywood composers. The Skyrim soundtrack for instance, varies between mournful solitude and pulse-pounding excitement. Likewise, the Fallout 3 soundtrack does an excellent job conveying the desolation of dystopian Washington, DC. Not that you should take our word for it. Instead, why not go download each of the soundtracks for yourself?
Bethesda announced this morning that it has released soundtracks for its last seven games to Apple’s iTunes music service. This offering represents several of Bethesda’s titles released since 2002, and includes such notable games as Morrowind, Fallout: New Vegas, and Rage. Prices vary, but even the most expensive soundtrack can be purchased for a mere $16. Have a look at the full pricing details, conveniently attached to links that will take you directly to the iTunes music store:
- The Elder Scrolls III: Morrowind Original Game Soundtrack (Jeremy Soule) — $9.99
- The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion Original Game Soundtrack (Jeremy Soule) — $9.99
- The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim Original Game Soundtrack (Jeremy Soule) — $15.99
- Fallout 3 Original Game Soundtrack (Inon Zur) — $11.99
- Fallout: New Vegas Original Game Soundtrack (Inon Zur) — $11.99
- Dishonored Original Game Soundtrack (Daniel Licht) — $9.99
- RAGE Original Game Soundtrack (Rod Abernethy) — $9.99
Normally, video game soundtrack releases wouldn’t warrant this kind of attention (at least not here in America – video game music is far more popular in Japan), but as anyone who’s spent a few hundred hours wandering the wilderness in a Bethesda game can attest, that list of titles reads like a shorthand tally of the best game soundtracks released during the past decade. If you’ve got a snowy barbarian village to assault, there’s no better accompaniment for the raid than the tunes created for Skyrim.
If you have yet to play any of the above-listed titles you should certainly do that before buying these soundtracks, but know that after spending a hundred-plus hours in one of Bethesda’s fictional worlds it’s very difficult to go back to the humdrum drudgery of meatspace reality. Being able to pull up the same epic dirge that accompanied your last dungeon assault on iTunes really helps kill the tedium.