Over the last two weeks of December, we are announcing the winners of the First Annual SwitchRPG Awards. We’ll be announcing new winners every weekday, leading up to a final announcement on January 1st for RPG of the Year!
Today we come to one of the categories our staff had the best time debating – best music. Few categories gave us the opportunity to do a comprehensive tour of the nominees, but spending hours at work with excellent RPG tracks playing in the background proved to be one of the most rewarding parts of these awards. Each of these nominees have a unique and engaging soundtrack, whether it be the orchestrated mastery of Octopath Traveler, the heavy metal-inspired scores of Ys VIII and Xenoblade Chronicles 2, or moody and atmospheric sounds of Transistor. It was an absolute pleasure to honor and evaluate each of these nominees.
Xenoblade Chronicles 2
Ys VIII: Lacrimosa of Dana
And the Winner Is…
One of the hardest decisions the staff had to make in these awards – but Octopath Traveler walked away the winner of Best Music. Octopath’s soundtrack won based on its varied and emotional soundtrack, able to stir our emotions with quiet character tracks, get our blood pumping up in battle, or create a sense of atmosphere in cities, caves, and the wilderness. Through this meticulously designed soundtrack, the composers were able to combine the strong and memorable melodies found in classic JRPGs, while also harnessing the full power of an orchestra, with a variety of instruments at their disposal. It stands as one of the best soundtracks not just among SwitchRPGs, but of this console generation as a whole.
Community Pick: Octopath Traveler
Octopath Traveler walked away not only with the staff pick, but also handily won the community poll, taking 54% of the total votes. Xenoblade Chronicles 2 ended up with a strong number two slot (37%), but ultimately couldn’t keep up the popularity of Octopath’s tunes. Both Transistor and Ys VIII lagged behind in the single digits, but our staff would highly recommend that if you haven’t given those soundtracks a listen, you do so. All four of these games’ scores are a total delight.
Have you listened to all of these amazing soundtracks? Do you have a favorite track from these or other RPGs? Let us know in the comments below. And come back tomorrow to hear our pick for Best Vocal Performance!