game score

Soundtrack review: The music of The league of Legends volume 1 (2015)

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„League of legends” is an online battle arena video game which apparently is very popular. It’s developed by Riot Games and inspired by a mod from „World of Warcraft”. The music of „World of Warcraft” has always been extremely exciting and adding to that the fantastic year we’ve had for game music in 2014, the premises for this one are good. A team of composers is behind the score and they call themselves „League of legends”. I’m not sure which composer wrote what. Usually these team efforts, especially for games, work very well.

When a score opens with a cue like “Demacia rising” it might as well end there because I don’t need more than that. This is powerful music right here…Epic string work, choral plays both male and female all dancing together in a composition that fills me with joy. This is trailer music multiplied; this is inspiration, motivation and strength bottled up in four minutes of melodic goodness. One more surprise waits in the final minute of the cue when a somber, almost religious choir quiets down the storm. The tornado leaves and suddenly as it came.

“Tidecaller” starts with a renaissance sounding piano and continues with a divine flute. There’s warmth in this cue and I feel the need to protect whatever fragile notion it brings forth. I wonder what imagery plays when this cue comes up. I imagine a room hidden somewhere in a castle where I find a child who needs saving. There probably aren’t any kids or innocent beings in “League of legends” but the music makes me dream.

“Tiny masterpiece of evil” is just a bonanza of choral work and valiant orchestral music. This cue is rousing and chilling in the same time. “Quinn a Valor” sounds like a theme fit for a knight. Or two. It’s melodic and heroic without being exaggerated. After that introduction it slowly raises its pace and motivational factor. I am more and more impressed with this score. I can see myself picking up the page in the middle of a marathon while listening to this one.

“Braum” and “Tales of the rift” slow down a bit but are still very exciting. “Lulu and Shako’s quirky encounter” is just as fun and weird as the title suggests. It has that downward spiral sound and instrumentation that make me think of carnivals and freaky circuses. “Freljord” returns to the inspirational goodness I’ve already gotten used to and I chalk down another 5 star cue. I’m almost getting a wish to try this game when I hear such brilliant music. “Frejlord” has those precious moments when you think it relents but instead picks up again and keeps the momentum going.

“Rise of the ascended” is an interesting title for a cue but I got more rise out of the ones before. “Daylight’s end” brings a female voice which sends me back to my favorite Celtic ballads. It has the effect of a curse or a premonition that warms and chills in the same time. When the voice fades away we get an almost mournful string driven cue. Enough sadness, because “Challengers” returns to the motivational trailer music sound, only less synthetic and more melodic. Just awesome. We also get a crazy rock anthem / synth arcade game track in “Super galaxy rumble”.

“The music of League of Legends volume 1” was a brilliant and surprising score. I can’t wait for subsequent volumes. Chalk this up to my list of the best surprises of 2015. With a music this awesome, I imagine the game must be great.

Cue rating: 92 / 100

Total minutes of excellence: 29 / 45

Album excellence: 64%

Highlights:

  1. Demacia Rising
  2. Tidecaller
  3. Tiny Masterpiece Of Evil
  4. Freljord
  5. Daylight’s End
  6. Challengers
  7. Super Galaxy Rumble

 

 

 

 

 

About the author

Mihnea Manduteanu

I have been listening to film music for 25 years and writing about it since 2014. I've written over 1000 reviews and I can't imagine myself doing anything else. I am also a member of IFMCA (International Film Music Critics Association).

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