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Top 100 Greatest N64 Songs of All Time!


GreatGonzales
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Hey all, I thought I'd share a recent project I recently completed - a systematic effort to identify and rank the top 100 greatest Nintendo 64 songs of all time!

It took us about a year of work... :) Hope you guys enjoy it!

Top 100 Greatest N64 Songs of All Time

And for the Megaman fans among us, here is our first video:

Top 50 8-Bit Megaman Songs of All Time

Next up...is a surprise! ;-)

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Nice work guys. I had 72 N64 games as a kid, but I only rented Jet Force Gemini once and played a couple hours. I really want to play through it now.

There's something from Rayman 2 right? I didn't see anything skimming through but I hope so. And Iggy's Reckin' Balls? I would've ranked one or two songs from those in my personal list.

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Glad you like it!

You know we really love Rayman 2's music, but it actually doesn't translate well into a singular mp3, or otherwise stand-alone "song". The music basically blends and builds on itself. The closest song to being included was the Credits theme, which starts out awesomely but kind of loses its energy.

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Mother of God, 72?? Dude the most games I've ever had for a console is like 20 or maybe 25 at the most.

Yeah any other system I've only had 20ish. My childhood can be defined as "Nintendo 64" baby. I can sketch out the level designs of any Rare game by memory.

The 64 is etched onto my soul o_o

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Yeah any other system I've only had 20ish. My childhood can be defined as "Nintendo 64" baby. I can sketch out the level designs of any Rare game by memory.

The 64 is etched onto my soul o_o

yeah dude I've only got like 20 or less N64 games and I still call it one of my favorite game consoles of all time

probably because I just play Wave Race 64, SM64, SSB, MK64, and OoT all the time and that satisfies me hahahaha

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I can't believe you'd call Paper Mario a bad soundtrack. It intentionally uses "toy-like" sounds to fit the look of the game and many of the compositions are very complex. Anyway, it comes down to opinions :mrgreen:

Opinions indeed! But to defend mine: I don't think it's a bad soundtrack, I think what you're referring to is when I said it "isn't a great soundtrack". And I stand firm on that assessment...it ranges from ok to good, but never great. I get what they were trying to do - you're right, a "toy-like" sound. But with the early synth technology of the N64, this is more often discordant than charming. I think people confuse the greatness of the game with the soundtrack. The game is great; the soundtrack is not. #OPINIONS

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Opinions indeed! But to defend mine: I don't think it's a bad soundtrack, I think what you're referring to is when I said it "isn't a great soundtrack". And I stand firm on that assessment...it ranges from ok to good, but never great. I get what they were trying to do - you're right, a "toy-like" sound. But with the early synth technology of the N64, this is more often discordant than charming. I think people confuse the greatness of the game with the soundtrack. The game is great; the soundtrack is not. #OPINIONS

Haha I think it's charming as hell but oh well :-P

Anyway, the list has many great songs. I never played Pilotwings so that has blown me awat!

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Pretty cool! A few questions for ya:

1: How did you come up with this listing?

2: Was it a small group of people or did you do polls to discover the general opinion?

3: How did you factor popularity/familiarity?

1. Basically our methodology was to listen to every song from all notable N64 games, give each song a score from 1-10, average our scores - giving us an initial ranking - and then debates, debates, debates over song order and song inclusion. We were very thorough and methodical, so this whole process took nearly a year to complete (!). We also made an effort to include as many games as possible, so long as their inclusion could be justified.

2. We didn't poll, but as you can see at the end of the video I did data capture from other music ranking lists to see what the general consensus was. This influenced us to an extent, but ultimately we favored our own "science". The masses are often wrong, for example almost zero lists had any Jet Force Gemini songs!

3. I did some data capture on youtube view counts for the top songs to get a sense of popularity. It's tough, for example Song of Storms from Ocarina of Time is hugely popular, but we didn't feel it was worthy of making the top 100. But at the same time, if we were borderline on a song, but the song was popular, that usually made the difference between either inclusion or upping the rank.

Hope that helps! :-P

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I listened through the top 10 and boy have I forgotten Jet Force Gemini. SS Anubis, so good, I can appreciate that song so much more now. Which intrigues me to hear the rest of the list now considering how different things felt back then. Nice trolling at the end btw :P

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1. Basically our methodology was to listen to every song from all notable N64 games, give each song a score from 1-10, average our scores - giving us an initial ranking -

Can that work

i mean for normal music from MTV, yes

but Games Music not for Hear but to Experience, MM2 music will not effect me the same if i didn't play it

and i hate ranking and rating art

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Can that work

i mean for normal music from MTV, yes

but Games Music not for Hear but to Experience, MM2 music will not effect me the same if i didn't play it

and i hate ranking and rating art

We didn't see a better way to eliminate the "nostalgia bias" - if we force ourselves to listen to ALL THE SONGS, and independently give scores, then we're more likely to come up with an objective ranking than had we just gone with our gut, and our fond memories. But I hear ya. Hard to quantify the quality of VGM. We did our best.

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Hey, just finished the video. First off, a big, big THANK YOU for putting something so awesome together. I very much enjoyed listening through this for many reasons, not the least of which were nostalgia and discovering a few new tunes. I think every song that I expected to be on here was, but there were some that I was a bit surprised at. So, some feedback (spoilers below for those who have not yet watched the video - go watch it!)

In no particular order:

#72 - Frantic Factory - Donkey Kong 64. I was pretty floored that you guys ranked this so low! I was expecting top 25. It was such a different feel for a DK song, and at the same time was absolutely captivating. But, at least it was included :-)

A couple of games that I was not only surprised to see on the list, but they even had multiple entries: Blast Corps and the Goeman games. They were decent, but definitely never leaped out at me. Your reasonings in the list made sense, but these just didn't do anything for me...

Diddy Kong racing definitely had at least one or two that deserved to be on the list (albeit in a low placing), but it got way more attention than I expected. Nostalgia playing a factor, perhaps? (And who could blame you. Difficult to be objective with these).

#16 - Slider - Super Mario 64. Uhhhhh...okay. :grin: I would have loved to have seen my face when this popped up. Let's just say I wasn't expecting to see this at all on the list. Memorable, sure...but not in a good way, at least to me.

And finally...so, SO glad to see you guys giving Jet Force Gemini the attention it so richly deserves. I am still impatiently awaiting the day that JFG gets its own album on OCR. So, for some JFG-specific feedback...

Tawfret? Really? Certainly atmospheric, but as you said in your video, barely (if at all) qualifies as a song. Surprised at this one.

Sekhmet at #19? I was expecting a bit higher...

I really do have a major beef with Water Ruins at #12. This probably would have been my number 1. So memorable, lush soundscape, great effects, epic strings...

SS Anubis at #3 was pretty dead-on, and I would have agreed wholeheartedly if not for...Eschebone at #1. Don't get me wrong, Eschebone definitely needed to be included, but I would have put Sekhmet, SS Anubis and Water Ruins all above it, as well as several other N64 tracks. It just doesn't have the 'stick with you' factor that the others do, and is more about the feel of the level rather than an epic track, to me.

But, that's what makes this enjoyable - really being throw into someone else's opinion on something we love so much. You provided a great medium for us to enjoy your opinion, and provided fairly good arguments on why you placed which songs where. Thanks again for doing this! I'm really looking forward to your next videos.

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A couple of games that I was not only surprised to see on the list, but they even had multiple entries: Blast Corps and the Goeman games.

And I was disappointed Goeman wasn't ranked higher with more tracks.

Diddy Kong racing definitely had at least one or two that deserved to be on the list (albeit in a low placing), but it got way more attention than I expected.

DKR music in particular stands out as Rare's most evocative for me, when Rare music typically doesn't do much for me other than attach itself to some nostalgic gameplay memories.

Just goes to show.. floats and boats for different folk.

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Thanks for the detailed feedback Soul Splint! Yup, the main reason I personally wanted to do this list was that JFG doesn't get the respect it deserves. This was a really hard process for us, so I'm not surprised you disagree with many of our choices!

Disagreed, yeah, but in a good way :-) It honestly wouldn't have been fun to watch if it had been scored exactly the way I would have done it. I hope my first post didn't seem critical, I was just pointing out my thoughts and reactions. My overall reaction to the video was one of pure enjoyment. You guys deserve a lot of thanks for doing something so time-consuming for free so that others can enjoy it.

I realized today though that there actually was one song I was surprised wasn't included: Goldeneye's

. This was my favorite Goldeneye track, though the ones that made the list were definitely runners-up. Was Severnaya number 101 by any chance :wink:?
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