Heavy metal music and video games. There’s something about this combination that just works so well, as both entities ooze adrenaline as you wade through an army of undead listening to the most shredding tracks on offer. Sure, there are many obvious contenders with the likes of Dead Space, Gears of War, Borderlands etc. Brutality and heavy metal go together so often after all. But in order to capture that true feeling of “wow, that’s pretty metal” you need a product that goes beyond the music, a visual aspect that accompanies those tracks that blacken your heart and clench your fists throughout.
Kicking off the list, and probably the least likely is the flagship Xbox shooter Halo. The 2001 sci-fi epic focused on the enigmatic Master Chief in a galaxy-wide war, introducing intuitive yet straightforward murderous combat that found its way into gamers and metalheads hearts alike. Particular battle scenes feature high-octane tunage as you shoot down wave after wave of The Flood, with Halo 2 featuring the likes of Steve Vai and Periphery’s Misha Mansoor on its soundtrack.
If you are a fan of the deepest, darkest ideologies of the metal genre, chances are you’ll find Splatterhouse very appealing. A demonic hockey mask that turns you into a brute of a man, deals with the devil, and saving your girlfriend from being sacrificed by a mad scientist? Now THAT’S metal. The game was rebooted back in 2010 with a soundtrack loaded to ripping your face off if the game itself hadn’t done so already, with bands such as Municipal Waste, The Haunted, Lamb of God and Goatwhore all contributing to your slaughterfest of blood and guts. Enjoy!
SSX on Tour
2005’s snowboarding sequel had a soundtrack to suit just about everybody. With the previous entry SSX Tricky being renowned for the Run DMC song “It’s Tricky” as its theme song, and SSX 3 continuing that focus on that music style whilst throwing in a couple of pop punk tracks here and there, it wasn’t until On Tour that headbangers got the chance to race down the highest mountains to their favourite tunes. Heavy metal heavyweights such as Iron Maiden were joined by Motorhead, Def Leppard, Avenged Sevenfold amongst others who rocked their way into players’ ears as they hit the slopes giving an added jolt of metal to accompany them.
Its Doom. Need I say anymore? Probably not, but here it goes anyway. Considered the godfather of first-person shooters, 1993’s sci-fi horror classic saw an unnamed, muted marine armed with an arsenal of weapons fit for taking down whatever the depths of Hell could throw at him. With such graphic violence and a satanic setting, it seemed that Doom would go hand in hand with the heavy metal genre of music. Which it did, with soundtracks in-game inspired by the likes of Slayer and Alice in Chains, all the way up to 2016’s reboot of the game featuring some of the finest thrash riffs you’ll find in the gaming industry.
“DECAPITAAAAATIOOOON!” yells protagonist Jack Black in this, probably the most metal of video games. On his journey from humble roadie to rock icon, Jack interacts with metal gods such as Ozzy Osbourne, Lemmy (R.I.P) and Rob Halford in his quest for supremacy. 2009’s Action adventure/strategy hybrid was accompanied by a hefty (and heavy!) music score combining a wide variety of speed metal, black metal and industrial metal to please every breed of metal fanatic. Anthems from King Diamond, Enslaved, Scorpions, and Testament to name a few showcased a collaboration that would make any fan of both gaming and heavy music grinning from start to finish.
Honourable mentions have to go out to the likes of Guitar Hero for obvious reasons, Devil May Cry (you can chop people up…with a guitar!) and Castlevania, simply because castles and vampires are totally metal. So if your ears aren’t too preoccupied in the multiplayer party chat banter of who fornicated who’s mother last night, then the games given on the list a go, which will hopefully satisfy your hunger for aggressive music accompanying top notch gaming. Rock on!