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Our Top 5 Game Sound Samples in Popular Music

You’ve probably been listening to gaming soundtracks and samples for a while and didn’t even know it. It’s no secret that the world of rap, hip-hop and gaming converged very early on. But gaming samples can be found in almost every genre, and once you hear them, you’ll start noticing them everywhere. Here are our Top 5 game sound samples in popular music. 

1. Charli XCX — Boys (2017)

Named as Pitchfork’s ‘Best New Track’, Boys was critically acclaimed from launch. What makes it unique is the ingenious use of the iconic Super Mario Bros. Sound Effects by Koji Kondo. The coin sound effect is unmistakable in the track and, along with the album, helped propel Charli XCX into the PC-music scene. 

2. Fatboy Slim — Champion Sound (2006)

Fatboy Slim has been sampling for a long time. Still, in Champion Sound, the Super Mario 64 sample can only be described as ‘meta’. 

3. Lil Wayne She Will f/ Drake (2011)

The entire album Tha Carter IV is full of gaming samples and references. Still, our favourite has to be in She Will featuring Jim Guthrie’s The Cloud from Sword and Sworcery LP: The Ballad of the Space Babies. 

4. Zombie Nation — Kernkraft 400 (1999)

Featuring a sample of Star Dust from Lazy Jones by David Whittaker (Commodore 64, 1984) Kernkraft 400 was a crossover success. Peaking at number two on the UK’s Single Charts when it was released, it is widely used in stadiums around the world for sporting events. Once you hear it, you will immediately recognise it. 

5. Burial — Archangel (2007)

From the critically acclaimed album, Untrue, the track Archangel’s main string sample is from Metal Gear Solid 2: Sons of Liberty (Playstation 2, 2000). The mood, attention to detail and overall innovative sampling make this track one of our favourites.

If you liked this article, read about The Greatest Gaming Soundtracks of All Time written for us by Ryan "Mayor" Reynolds or our interview with Ben Lukas Boysen on gaming sound design.

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