10. Midna’s Desperate Hour
The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess
I think we can all agree that Twilight Princess‘ rendition of Hyrule Field is a pretty great track, but stick it in a minor key with a few liberal injections of Midna’s Theme and its power suddenly increases tenfold. Bizarrely, I actually ended up listening to this before I got to the moment where it plays in-game, but I was instantly captivated by its haunting, melancholy tone, and it made me all the more eager to play through the game and hear it in its rightful context– and boy, it certainly didn’t disappoint!
Now I’m a sucker for all things piano, but when Link had to rush a pale, barely-breathing Midna all the way across Hyrule Field to Zelda’s aid, I don’t think there could have been a more apt instrument to express the sorrow and sheer desperation of her situation– especially since we’re so used to hearing the same tune being belted out by an entire brass and string section. It’s easily one of the most fraught moments in the game, and the way each track melds together– one representing the light of Hyrule, the other reflecting the gloom of the Twilight– fully encapsulates the uneasy tension that exists between each world. But even though Midna’s Desperate Hour is a kind of musical re-enactment of the moment when Zant forced Midna from one reality to another, the result is a surprisingly harmonious one, hinting that maybe, just maybe, there’s hope for our impish companion yet.