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The Top Ten Best Menu Themes [top ten]
 
Music in games seems often overlooked, and one kind of theme typically ignored in the background is a game's menu music. These tunes are what we hear when we set up the game, and they vary from laidback to lively as they set the mood for the type of game ahead. Shining a spotlight on these commonly underappreciated compositions, listed here are my favourite themes for when I'm making choices.
Posted: 09/28/13, 23:44:17  - Edited by 
 on: 09/28/13, 23:40:54
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Mario Superstar Baseball - Main Menu
A bit of a strange mix of techno-like beats with classic baseball stadium music instruments, this upbeat tune instills the spirit of the game as played by Mario and crew.

 
The Legend of Zelda Collector's Edition - Game Select
This may just be another rendition of the iconic main Zelda theme, but it's a dang good one that gets me pumped to select a game.

 
Final Fantasy - Pause Menu
A relaxing piece to listen to when outfitting the party and managing inventory, a nice breather before heading back to adventure in the harsh world of Final Fantasy.

 
Rhythm Haven Fever Menu 2
After clearing the main set of rhythm games, the menu theme is replaced with this more energetic one as it comes time to play the extra games and go for perfects.

 
Mario Party 8 Board Tutorial
Most people probably skip the explanations and get right to playing, but sometimes I'll select to read it just so I can hear more of this awesome piece.

 
Tetrisphere - Learn
The techno/trance beats of Tetrisphere can seem a little weird at first, but this fits surprisingly well for the game's tutorial.

 
Mega Man - Stage Select
The original Mega Man still has the best stage select as far I'm concerned, never being topped by its many sequels.

 
Mario Kart Wii Offline Menu
A bassy tune that swells up with more instruments as you select your choices and advance through the menu screens. I only wish it were the same for online, as the one for that mode is kinda terrible.

 
Super Mario 64 - File Select
Like the calm before a grand adventure.

 
Super Smash Brothers Melee - Main Menu
Wild and energetic, just like the game itself. After over 2,300 hours of this game, it still hasn't gotten old.

 
Some more I had considered for the list includes Rush 2, Mario Super Sluggers, Dragon Warrior, and others I forget now.

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Posted: 09/28/13, 23:44:17  - Edited by 
 on: 09/28/13, 23:40:54
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*Checks list*

*Doesn't find Metroid Prime's menu theme*

*Bans Mop it Up*

...just kidding. You have some good ones too, hard to argue too much with Melee at #1. Tetrisphere had such an awesome soundtrack, very good choice! I kind of miss that era of gaming music, there were some pretty non-conventional soundtracks.

Anyway, Metroid Prime had an awesome theme...

Posted: 09/28/13, 23:55:45
@ZeroOh please if there's going to be a Metroid game on there it's gotta be Metroid Prime 3.

Posted: 09/28/13, 23:59:55
@Zero

Hehe, I did a CTRL+F for Metroid Prime as well. Prime 3 was great too.

But really good choices. Melee is probably my favorite as well.

I'd also make a case for Wii Sports' menu music -- really infectious stuff.
Posted: 09/29/13, 00:02:54  - Edited by 
 on: 09/29/13, 00:03:23
All 3 Prime games have an awesome intro theme actually.

And then this... SO GOOD.

Posted: 09/29/13, 00:17:05
I prefer Brawl's version of the Melee theme. So good. For pure nostalgia reasons I guess the original has the advantage.

Posted: 09/29/13, 00:19:06  - Edited by 
 on: 09/29/13, 00:20:03
Mega Man 1's stage select is great, but I think Mega Man 9 tops it. Just makes me wanna get up and DANCE.

I also think the original Metroid Prime's menu music is amazing, don't know how it gets left off a top ten!

But I certainly can't argue with that top three. All fantastic.
Posted: 09/29/13, 01:00:36  - Edited by 
 on: 09/29/13, 01:03:16
Numbers 1, 2, and 7 are my favs.
Posted: 09/29/13, 01:38:14
@Zero

Don't back down, you are right to ban him for omitting Prime.
Posted: 09/29/13, 01:42:30
Nice list! Neat idea, and some good choices. I'd personally include the main theme from the lovely Kid Icarus: Uprising--



And it's mellower version:



So much weapon fusing done to this song...

@Stephen

Ahh, I love this one. The Prime games' menu themes are the only thing I miss from the Trilogy disc.
Posted: 09/29/13, 01:44:43
@Stephen@Zero Those are title screens! That's a completely different category. Also I think Prime 1's file theme plays somewhere else in the game, such as the credits or something. I decided to go for pure menu themes, which is why I took Dragon Warrior off my list as it is also the town theme.

@nate38 Well, at least I wouldn't disagree that MM9's is one of the better ones to come from the series.

@TriforceBun Haven't played it yet, sorry! But I think that first one might be more than a menu theme.
Posted: 09/29/13, 01:58:37
@Mop it up

No those are both the menu music for their respective games. It's just hard to find video of the actual menu!
Posted: 09/29/13, 02:22:02
@Stephen Hm, well I'm not very familiar with Metroid Prime 3, so I may be misremembering on that one, although the linked video is named "Title Screen." But the Xenoblade one is definitely the title screen, but I think it continues playing on the file select as well. But it isn't a pure menu theme.
Posted: 09/29/13, 02:44:38  - Edited by 
 on: 09/29/13, 02:45:47
Prime 3's continues onto the menu theme, but Prime 1's (linked here) is the title screen and has a different menu theme. Both of those KIU ones were from the game's menus though, and it even has several more (similar to SSBB's multiple themes like when you're looking at trophies, etc).
Posted: 09/29/13, 02:58:12
Just an fyi for those who care, I've secured a recording time for Euphonic 003 with Joe. Just been working to schedule that with him but the regular podcast takes priority. We're recording soon though and I'm probably going to whip out the thread for the fourth episode... I love listening and talking about gaming music. This list is awesome and Andrew's addition is essential.
Posted: 09/29/13, 04:18:48
@Brick Him is a her.

@Mop it up @TriforceBun Are you sure? I thought this was the title screen of Metroid Prime...


Also awesome.
Posted: 09/29/13, 04:35:52  - Edited by 
 on: 09/29/13, 04:42:31
@Zero
Whoops, you're right, I mixed those up.
Posted: 09/29/13, 06:05:07
Cool list. Nice picks.

I felt this one was really great. Smooth, relaxing...the perfect "calm before the storm" kind of music. Some parts of it even remind me of Ocarina of Time's title screen music.

Posted: 09/29/13, 08:38:27
@Zero

Silly Zero, don't you know there are no females on the Internet?
Posted: 09/29/13, 08:56:58
Nice choices there, @Mop it up, but Mega Man 2 says hi:


And if you're talking Metroid, how about this one:

Posted: 09/29/13, 09:28:57
@Zero I was referencing Prime 3, not Prime 1.

@sirmastersephiroth Trust me, it was tough to just pick one from the Mega Man series (I didn't want to populate the list with Mega Man). That and the password screen were pretty close to making it instead.
Posted: 09/30/13, 01:00:29
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