I am in love with the night. No, I’m not an emo vampire or Batman (although…); I’ve just always appreciated the quiet and peacefulness of a night scene, not to mention the utter transformation it enacts on the world around me. Walking under a starry sky, listening to the crickets chatter, and feeling wrapped up in shadows is a strangely comforting thing.
When you think of MMO music, chances are that the tracks that leap to mind are exciting, bombastic, and above all, bold. Music that belongs in the daylight, in other words. Yet there are plenty of tunes out there that play to the peaceful night, especially in games with a day/night cycle.
When the sun goes down in your MMO world, what music comes out? Today we’re going to explore six tracks that are perfect for a nighttime excursion.
1. “Starry Night” from Aura Kingdom
This MMO’s soundtrack has sincerely impressed me over the past few weeks during my initial listen-through. It’s full of adorable and expressive tracks like this one. While Starry Night is quite short, clocking in at a little over a minute, it manages to pack in a neat little lullaby that perfectly encapsulates a good night.
2. “Dance of the Fireflies” from Final Fantasy XIV
FFXIV has so many great night themes, but I’ve been quite partial to this Gridania track. It’s an absolute earworm; I can hum it on demand for anyone who finds me on the street. It’s also quite a rich tune, packed with emotions and transitions. Maybe you might find it too loud for a night tune, but hey, the fireflies would beg to differ.
3. “To Start a Journey” from Star Wars Galaxies
Does anything make you yearn to explore the stars as this song? Let’s face it, John Williams nailed it right out of the gate in the first Star Wars film, and Star Wars Galaxies was wise to put this track front and center. It’s nostalgic, stirring, and inspirational all in one incredible package.
4. “Palace at Night” from Chronicles of Spellborn
Speaking of long-cancelled games, Chronicles of Spellborn offers up this half-ambient music, half-nighttime sounds track for this week’s theme. It might not be a melody on which you can hang your hat, but it is downright peaceful, belonging totally to the night. Can you imagine adventuring through a zone at twilight while hearing this? I’d be in heaven.
5. “Night Time” from Black Desert
Well, if you hated the last track, you might as well keep on moving, because is a companion piece from a different fantasy MMO. It’s still a mixture of night sounds (owls and crickets) along with a softly playing synth. It’s not one for a main menu track, but then again, not everything has to be in these games.
6. “Nightfall (Theme for Popolion)” from TERA
This is probably the heaviest out of all the tracks for this week’s column, but I felt it should be included for its evocative mastery and the touch of the exotic that it brings to the table. When you look up at the stars, you can see a lot of things — past, present, and future. This track strives to communicate all of that… or perhaps it’s just in my head. In any case, well-done little piece that doesn’t overstay its welcome but goes out on top.