Top 10 Music Based Video Games

Script written by Shane Olivier These games instil rhythm right through to your soul. Join WatchMojo.com as we countdown our picks for the Top 10 Music Video Games. For this list we’re covering a combination of various Music themed games, be it rhythm, dance based or games that try something unique based around music. Special Thanks to our users "Alex Gallo" "spsuperstar" "Mateomac" & "Markus Skogheim Kingsrød" for suggesting this topic on our Suggestion Tool at WatchMojo.comsuggest
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Script written by Shane Olivier

Top 10 Music Video Games


These games instil rhythm right through to your soul. Welcome to WatchMojo.com and today we’re counting down our picks for the top 10 Music Video games.

For this list we’re covering a combination of various Music themed games, be it rhythm, dance based or games that try something unique based around music.

#10: “SingStar” series (2004-)

If you ever felt that karaoke machines weren’t gamey enough, then maybe SingStar is for you. The goal is to sing as on-pitch as possible to get a high score. A worldwide hit, the originalgame has several versions, like 80’s, 90’s and pop. There’s enough to suit anyone’s taste. Clearly built for parties, SingStar features an array of multiplayer modes capable of hosting up to eight players sharing two microphones. The most recent iterations even allow you to use your smartphone in place of a mic.

#9: “Rhythm Heaven: Fever” (2012)

This wacky follow-up to the popular DS title leaves behind the touch controls in favor of a simpler, but more precise, two button control scheme. The game is broken up into individual levels, each with their own rules, and culminates in “remix” stages where everything you’ve done so far is thrown together into huge rapid-fire challenges. Demanding absolute precision, the difficulty comes on pretty strong, but not to worry. Fever’s oddball charm will pull you through. What the hell is going on.

#8: “DJ Hero 2” (2010)

When electronic music was seeing a huge surge in popularity, DJ Hero 2 stepped onto the stage. Going past its predecessor’s mix of hip-hop and rock, 2 decided to weigh heavily on the synthetic. Featuring masterful mixes of various hip-hop and EDM tracks, DJ Hero 2’s intuitive turntable peripheral allows you to scratch and fade with ease. The game also features quite a few ways to tweak your performance and help you get those top spots on the leaderboards, like higher multipliers and better rewinds.

#7: “Audiosurf” (2008)

This is what you get when you take music, match-3 puzzle games, rollercoasters and cram them all together. Audiosurf breaks down tracks based on the dynamics of their sound to create coaster-like highways, filled with colored blocks that you’ll pick up to fill up a grid and make matches. Though that’s all good fun, the real pleasure is seeing how your music collection is taken and transformed and stretched into this sprawling advance for you to go careening down, with every bump and turn falling right in line with the tune.

#6: “Patapon” (2008)

This little god game, named after the Japanese onomatopoeia for marching and drumming, casts you as a deity who must guide their tiny tribesman to battle with the an evil empire. Battle commands are given through rhythmic pounding of four sacred drums, with different combinations yielding different results, like advance, attack or retreat. What gives this game special credit is that it takes a system that could have been rather bland, and decides to theme the entire game around it.

#5: “Elite Beat Agents” (2006)

Every now and then, you just need some encouragement. Cue the Elite Beat Agents, cheerleaders for your everyday life! Dispatched by a government agency tasked with helping those at their breaking points, these agents provide motivation through dance. By following the commands on the touch screen and dancing to covers of popular songs, the agents help everyone they can, from a babysitter struggle with a rambunctious trio of children to celebrity sisters trying to survive on a deserted island. Think these guys do parties?

#4: “Guitar Hero II” (2006)

Next, we have the game that kicked off the plastic instrument craze. Emulating guitar playing by having players hold down “fret buttons” and strumming along with the notes scrolling by on-screen, Guitar Hero launched a multi-billion dollar genre. Markedly more popular than the first Guitar Hero, 2 manages to improve upon everything that already made the first one great. It has customizable characters, more responsive controls and more songs. They’re all so good that it’s easy to forget that just about all of the them are actually covers.

#3: “PaRappa the Rapper” (1997)

Perhaps the first rhythm game, and certainly the first really popular one this PlayStation classic stars a rapping dog who takes kung-fu lessons from an onion to win over the girl of his dreams, who is also a flower. Wait, what? Aaaaanyway, gameplay involves PaRappa matching his teacher’s raps in rhythm. While basic, after completing the game once, you are allowed to freestyle by performing differently from the commands given. If successful, you’ll enter “Cool Mode” where you can earn a massive score boost. Infectious charm and incredible style are just a couple of reasons why this game is so fondly remembered.

#2: “Dance Dance Revolution” series (1999-)

Our runner-up is this arcade sensation. The rules are simple, step on the arrows at your feet in time with the arrows on the screen to a catchy Japanese tune. Though while accessible, DDR can be ruthlessly difficult. On the hardest songs, the patterns are fast, complex and very, very tiring. Some brave players even opt to expand their game over two dance pads. Without that level of challenge, DDR most likely wouldn’t have gained the hardcore following it enjoys today.

Before we reveal our top pick, here are some honorable mentions:

-“Theatrhythm: Final Fantasy” (2012)

-“Just Dance” series (2009-)

-“Dance Central 3” (2012)

#1: “Rock Band 3” (2010)

This is the closest you can get to the band experience without actually being in one. With five instruments to choose from, a career mode that can be tackled single or multiplayer, and dozens of challenges to keep you coming back, Rock Band 3 has it all. Though Guitar Hero also has full band gameplay, Rock Band boasts an absolutely massive DLC catalog. Over 4000 songs spanning every rock genre imaginable ensures your party will never get stale. Behold the reigning king of music games, until Rock Band 4’s release anyway.

Do you agree with our list? What games get you tapping your feet? For more groovy top 10’s published daily, be sure to subscribe to WatchMojo.com
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