World of Warcraft Soundtrack - Soundtrack Review

Not Just a Great Game

Track Listing
Disc 1
1. Main Title: Legends of Azeroth
2. The Shaping of the World
3. Legacy
4. Song Of Elune
5. Echoes
6. A Call To Arms
7. Intro Movie: Seasons Of War
8. Stormwind
9. Orgrimmar
10. The Undercity
11. Thunder Bluff
12. Darnassus
13. Ironforge
14. Elwynn Forest
15. Duskwood
16. Dun Morogh
17. Burning Steppes
18. Shimmering Flats
19. Felwood
20. Stranglethorn Vale
21. Tanaris
22. Teldrassil
23. Tavern
24. Moonfall
25. Ruins
26. Temple
27. Lurking
28. Sacred
29. Graveyard
30. War
Total Playtime: 76:36
Jason Hayes
Tracy W. Bush
Derek Duke
Glenn Stafford
Jason Hayes
Tracy W. Bush
Derek Duke
Glenn Stafford
Blizzard Entertainment

   Since World of Warcraft was first released in late 2004, the game has been a global phenomenon. Demolishing records and absorbing awards like a magnet run over iron filings only barely scratches the surface of World of Warcraft's accomplishments. The game dwarfed sales of long-time, more popular franchises such as Everquest and Final Fantasy. It also redefined the MMORPG genre by showing the world how it should have been from the beginning. Needless to say, this game is the quintessential game of its genre. So it follows that the soundtrack which breathes life into the game should be just as good. The music should at the very least do the main game justice or risk losing something in the translation. Is there something missing in the World of Warcraft Original Soundtrack, or is the the translation complete? Here is the answer.

   The soundtrack is resoundingly good. As the roughly five million WoW subscribers in the world already know, the game's score sports a sophisticated, heavily orchestral sound, and it is gorgeous. Beautiful orchestrations not only set the mood of the story, but they paint the world of the game as well. The music weaves an aural culture ripe with flavor and color. The music is done so that it supports the game in a way that allows the game to support it in return. This reciprocity is the key to what makes the music, and thus the entire game experience, so memorable. They go hand-in-hand.

   If the soundtrack can be faulted anywhere, however, its in the diversity department. Throughout the entire album, the composers maintain the similar instrumentation and orchestration. There are no surprises in what is heard from one track to the next. The listener can always expect to hear the same heavy, orchestral melodies as they go through the CD. Though each piece is a joy to listen to, the blatant lack of diversity is something the veteran RPG soundtrack connoisseur may have trouble adjusting to. Some may say that this is a different type of RPG, so the soundtrack should be expected to be a bit different, but this isn't about gameplay, nor comparing music to gameplay. This is just about an RPG soundtrack and how it compares to others.

   The musicianship of the composers is top-notch. The craft of the music is brilliant, rivaling that of any modern movie score. The way instrumentation and orchestration are used together to weave a tale using only sounds is truly a testament to the skill of these musicians. Not only this, but the fact that these are three different composers with three different backgrounds is also remarkable. How they were able to seamlessly integrate their styles into one is wonderful.

   The sound quality and production values are also excellent. Listeners should be sure to take note of the choral sounds, which are simply beautiful. The instruments are great and the singers are brilliant. No expense was spared in the production of this album.

The World of Warcraft soundtrack is a great piece of work. Though it may lack diversity here or there, those who buy it for what it is will not be disappointed in the least. The music of this game should stand as an example for all future games and game composers to follow. Just as World of Warcrat the game set the standards of MMOs, so should its soundtrack set its own standard. And judging but what it has accomplished, it looks like it will be remembered for a long time.

Sound Quality
Production Value

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