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Awesome Music / Ace Combat
aka: Ace Combat 7 Skies Unknown

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Suffice to say, the Ace Combat series wouldn’t be nearly as memorable without the absolutely stellar music courtesy of the Project Aces sound team.

Ace Combat 2

Ace Combat 3: Electrosphere

Despite being awfully chopped up for the non-Japanese market, Electrosphere is no slouch in the music department.

  • "Linkage", the title screen song, puts you in the mood with its catchy electronic bits. It was later remixed to serve as Joint Assault's briefing music.
  • "Physical Layer" mixes classic guitar riffs and drums with an electronic vibe for a pretty badass music. It's used for a training mission in the US/EU version.
  • "Frozen Soul", used for the stratospheric battles using the Blackbird II, mixes slow and low-pitched beats to remind you that yes, you're flying higher than commercial planes and yes, you're halfway to space.
  • "Black Lotus", because nothing says "Go bomb hives of rogue nanomachines that will eat your plane if you fly too close to them" better than slow creepy drums.
  • "Freefall" is creepier than Black Lotus with its permanent alarm sound, but for a good reason: you're on a timed mission to shoot down laser weapons in a space mission, in a plane half-fighter half-space shuttle.
  • "Morceaux" is an eerie track with echoing chords that plays during the fight against the eight Geopelias, giving the impression that you're fighting against angels.
  • "Zero-Sum", an extremely terrifying track with dramatic vibes and scare chords, perfect for the Acid-Trip Dimension that is the Electrosphere.
  • "The Crew", an extremely somber track with techno-beats that is much more melancholic than your typical Ace Combat credits theme.

Ace Combat 04: Shattered Skies

  • "Sitting Duck" has you intercept a squadron of bombers as your introductory mission, accompanied by your first taste of the soundtrack's mix of rocking guitars, sharp violin movements and clever synthesizer play.
  • "Comona", used in the game's namesake mission, is a hard rocking number that goes hand in hand with the epic furball happening over the rocket base. Each replay of the song only seems to heighten its intensity.
  • The explosive and fast paced "Invincible Fleet" plays as you lay waste to the titular fleet. Made even better if you imagine a ship blowing up with each crescendo.
  • "Operation Bunker Shot". Just imagine this playing while flying over a 21st Century version of the D-Day landings.
  • "Farbanti". Another great track for the given level. In this case, sacking your enemy's capital city, and dogfighting with Yellow 13 in the sunset.
  • Though not as famous as Zero or some of the other tracks from this OST, "Blockade" is unanimously considered one of Keiki Kobayashi's greatest works. The song begins with tense, unsteady string stabs before exploding into transcendent triumph with long, sustained violin solos and trumpet chords, signifying the forces of the ISAF finally taking the offensive, underlined by an Uncommon Time signature and a continuous ticking clock motif from the vibraphone that keeps the pulse pounding.
  • "Megalith - Agnus Dei". The first track in the series to use Ominous Latin Chanting was used in the final level where the world was about to end, Deep Impact style.
    • Especially when the intro (known as "Rex Tremendae")note  is included.
    • Now, all themes heard during the mission are included in one video complete with lyrics in Latin and English translations.
  • "ISAF" is powerfully rousing stuff.
  • Two briefing tracks. "Operation" to start off, and later "Second Strike" after the destruction of the Stonehenge railgun network.
  • "Escort", the final part especially. Defending two airliners from Erusean fighters never sounded so frantic and awesome.
  • "Emancipation" is quite calming, but when the bell strikes, it invokes a feeling of uncertainty. In later part (about 3:18), it turns into an awesome rousing theme.
  • "Whiskey Corridor" cannot go by without a mention, especially not with what starts at 2:50.
  • "Deep Strike". For a relatively quiet mission that has you explosively decommission a solar power plant (until Stonehenge begins firing on you), this song will have you bobbing your head to the beat, not to mention the frankly amazing drum riff that begins at the second half of the song (around 1:18).
  • "Stonehenge Attack". Made doubly terrifying when you hurry to obey the sudden order to drop altitude, not knowing why it was given, and watch as half your allies get blasted out of the sky above you.
  • "Aquila", Yellow Squadron's main theme. Made ominous by a combination of drums, cymbals and a chime, all coming together to make a bell-like sound everytime the song moves forward with its violins.
  • "Breaking Arrows" and Breaking Arrows 2. The tension instilled by the music as you race against the missiles will give you the chills. Especially the last (nuclear) one.
  • "Mobius". Get your plane, listen to the base commander give a Rousing Speech, and go destroy the Megalith.

Ace Combat 5: The Unsung War

  • "Hrimfaxi". A reprise of the music from the earlier Scinfaxi fight, but with some insane electric guitar thrown in for effect.
  • "Supercircus". Absolutely perfect for the scene it's pulled on: in the middle of safe territory, the four of you suddenly get Zerg Rushed by 50+ Yuktobanian fighters and what was supposed to be a simple ceremonial flight quickly devolves into a nerve-wracking dogfight for your lives while waiting for reinforcements that turn back and jam the airwaves once halfway there.
  • "Dead Ahead". Perfect music for hurtling at the speed of sound down a long dark tunnel, and no choice to go forward.
  • "First Flight". Yuktobania launches a massive raid on your base, but the Four Wings of Sand Island launch for the first time, and utterly curbstomp the Yukes. It's also an orchestral arrangement of "Blockade" from Ace Combat 4. It speaks volumes that a series with so much awesome music thought this song was worth reusing, and even more awesome when it was played during the entrance ceremony of the 2020 Tokyo Olympics.
  • "The Unsung War" plays over the Final Battle. It can actually be a low-action Puzzle Boss, leaving the music to establish the stakes single-handedly: four Razgriz, four warriors, four ghosts... racing to stop a Colony Drop that will bring about The End of the World as We Know It. In those moments, the Ominous Latin Chanting is not just the legend of the player characters; they are the prayers of every person in Strangereal.
  • "Winter Storm". A sort of prologue to "Unsung War", also deserves mention. It is 6:06AM, New Year's Eve 2010. As millions of people sleep in their homes in Oured, excited to ring in the New Year of 2011 and an end to the war, Razgriz must launch from a highway in the city for one last mission: to stop the SOLG from crashing into the city and causing untold devastation. As you and your squadron fly over the quiet city, the sun is beginning to peek over the horizon and with it, a remnant of the last war hurtling to the Earth.
  • "Ice Cage". Totally sounds like a You Shall Not Pass! moment.
  • "Into the Dusk". A more somber piano version of "The Unsung War". Chopper has just crashed into the stadium, and the three remaining members of Wardog still have numerous Yuktobanian fighters facing them. Choking back their tears, Wardog engages the enemy fighters, their grief giving them almost superhuman abilities as they shoot down fighter after fighter. The Yuktobanian pilots are terrified and quickly retreat as Osean reinforcements finally arrive.
  • "15 Years Ago". Another piano version that you normally hear during Nagase's and Gennette's musings on the Belkan war, but also plays during the final mission if you beat the enemy planes quick enough. This song, along with the ordinarily sappy dialogue, makes those two minutes leading up the SOLG assault practically into a CMOH/Tear Jerker.
  • "Unsung Heroes". A short, yet still magnificent piece, truly befitting your final victory.
  • "The Journey Home". A Tear Jerker, with or without words. If you think this version is powerful, try imagining it being sung by pilots and soldiers from BOTH side of the conflict as they join together and rush forward to stop the true mastermind.
  • "Closure". Apparently, it's an easy-to-miss song.
  • "Lit Fuse". It gets better with every second. A massive Osean ground assault on a Yuktobanian beach,
  • "Briefing 2" mixes the main theme with brass movements, making for an engaging briefing session during the second half of the story.
  • "Razgriz". Listen to this song and tell us you don't want to stand and salute.
  • "President Harling". It may only be just over a minute long, but the last fifteen seconds are truly awesome.
  • "Grabacr". Similar tracks include "Mask" and the apparently unused "8492," which together form a sort of ad-hoc Leitmotif.
  • "White Bird (Part II)" plays during the battle against the sabotaged Arkbird; a determined, yet lamenting-sounding theme that underscores the Arkbird's corruption from a majestic symbol of peace and hope into a tool for prolonging war at the hands of the Grey Men, forcing the Ghosts to put it out of its misery before it can cause further destruction.
  • It might be due to the kick ass trailer, but Puddle of Mudd's "Blurry", which appears in the intro and is overheard in the radio in some cutscenes (being Chopper's favourite song) as well as the end credits, sets the tone well for the game.

Ace Combat Zero

  • "Glacial Skies". That crescendo though. You can practically feel the icy wind on your face, as there's not a warm instrument to be heard, all shimmering violins, cymbals, and castanets, and even the guitar is razor-thin. Gorgeous.
  • "Diapason". A rousing, uplifting piece that plays as you fly over Ustio's capital city, Directus, while driving the Belkan occupiers out of the territory. The piece can be best described as Music to Liberate Fantasy Counterpart Poland To.
  • "Glatisant". The beat gives it an ominous feel as you enter your enemy's home country.
  • "Excalibur", the heavy mix of synthetizers, brass and drums that plays while trying to launch an attack on the superlaser tower that can cut you from miles away. When the theme is reprised in Infinity as your team tackles Excalibur Onslaughts I to IV, the track's first two minutes build up momentum towards the reveal that the revamped tower is protected by a massive laser web connected by reflector drones.
  • "The Inferno". An aptly named soundtrack for one of the most depressing missions in Ace Combat history, that effectively portrays the feeling of absolute dread and terror the inhabitants of Hoffnung must feel at experiencing an all-out obliteration bombing, and the resulting firestorm it spawns. Allied bombers indiscriminately carpet-bombing a civilian city, panicked cries from civilians on the radio, fires raging across all of Hoffnung, it all makes for a gut-wrenching feeling and encapsulates that War Is Hell.
  • "Contact" is absolutely fantastic. It fits the incredibly frantic dogfight against the ace squadron at B7R so well. "B7R", from the same mission, is also awesome.
  • "Merlon", or "How to Make Your Guitar Sound Like a Harp."
  • "Mayhem" is the rocky track that plays during your second foray into Area B7R; this time, the airspace colloquially known as "Round Table" is turned into an immense furball, and there's no better theme to play than this heavy mix of guitars and percussion.
  • "The Stage of Apocalypse". June 6th, 1995. What was supposed to be a support mission for Allied forces in Sudentor becomes one of the most infamous moments in the entire series, as Galm Team is ordered to intercept a flight of Belkan bombers headed for Ustio. Said bombers are loaded with nuclear weapons. If you played Ace Combat 5, you know what happens next.
  • "Briefing II". Tetsukazu Nakanishi should be scoring Cold War films.
  • "Sortie III", the second to last hangar music that plays for Missions 15-18. You are not mercenaries anymore; you are Galm Team, the Demon Lord of the Round Table. Man your plane and charge into the hellfire that awaits you where the Buried King sleeps. No one else can do this, and no else should; this burden is yours and yours alone.
  • "The Round Table". If the massive dogfight inside Area B7R (AKA The Round Table) wasn't hectic enough already, a squadron of enemy aces enter the battle to ramp things up even more and try to take you down.
  • "The Demon of the Round Table." Brilliantly illustrates the theme of corruption.
  • "The Valley Of Kings" perfectly portrays the feeling that you're going to the enemy base to finish them off once and for all... somehow.
  • "Avalon". The enemy is preparing to launch nuclear missiles, you have limited time to stop the launch AND you have to fly through a tunnel to stop it. The first part of the song catches the tension of the moment, but the second part gives a heroic feeling.
  • "Zero" is perhaps Keiki Kobayashi's magnum opus. Combining the flamenco motif and the signature orchestral chorus for a perfect mix that's applicable for so many final fights, it is hailed as a masterpiece even by non-Ace Combat fans. A final battle between two former friends and squadron mates on December 31st. As the snow falls, the fate of the world hangs in the balance and one final battle to decide whose philosophy rings true will be waged: is there a place for borders and nations in the future? Or is the world doomed to repeat the cycle of war and death with them? Can peace exist so long as borders do?
    • This 8-bits remix is as awesome as the original.
    • Even better, someone made an 11 minutes long, digitally remastered HD-quality version. Here it is.
    • GaMetal's cover takes this further.
  • "Galm 2/Epilogue". A calm and sorrowful accompaniment to the final cutscene. Your buddy has realized the error of his attempt to rid the world of borders and moved on, and has a message for the interviewer, just in case you ever see the video. Cap it off with a speech from the interviewer to just remind you how awesome you are, and the curtain falls.
  • "Epilogue (Near the Border)". In case you forgot how good the flamenco is in this game, you're given one last reminder as the credits roll.

Ace Combat X: Skies of Deception

  • "Alect Squadron, Armada". Whether you're intercepting the enemy's top pilots to stop them getting their hands on their advanced super-fighters, or sinking a massive convoy of warships carrying new weapon parts for said super-fighters, a blaring electric guitar makes sure you're going to feel unstoppable doing it.
  • "End of Deception" accompanies the assault on the enemy's last fortress, and a tense, fast and frantic dogfight with their advanced super-fighters that can stop in mid-air, and even turn invisible.
  • 'Skies of Deception" backs up a fairly simple bomber interception for the game's first mission, and introduces the game's recurring melody.
  • Even two "unknown" tracks that don't have a title are good. The first one plays during second part of missions "Ice Bound" and Wild Card", while the second one plays only during the raid on Sachana Air Base in "Blitz" and includes a portion of the game's main theme.

Ace Combat 6: Fires of Liberation

  • "The Liberation of Gracemeria", and "The Limit", a remix by Brandon Strader. You've fought long and hard, but at last you're fighting to take back your capital city in the largest mission yet. For Ace Combat's 25th anniversary, Mitsuhiro Kitadani made an official remix featuring all the jingles and grooviness of a funky dance mix.
  • "Siege on Silvat" greatly emphasizes the race against time to save Emmeria's mainland forces from being overwhelmed by the numerically superior Estovakians.
  • "Selumna Peak". A soothing orchestral song for a mission in the snowy mountains.
  • "Chandelier", the final mission's theme. Moody, but still uplifting, being a choir of the children back at Emmeria singing for the hope that the war finally ends.
  • "Ragno Fortress" for the eponymous mission is underlined by frequent use of cellos and percussion, great for an extremely complex siege mission. Fans of the series will also find that they repurposed the main melody of "Glacial Skies".
  • "A Brand New Day", sung by a children choir, is an Award-Bait Song reaching out for hope even amidst the Estovakian occupation, and becomes the rallying song for Emmeria within the story.
  • The dreaded "Malebolge". Just when you thought all threats were grounded after retaking Gracemaria, Pasternak shows up in his CFA-44 Nosferatu and, accompanied by countless UAV drones, provides one of the most intense One-Man Army moments in the series.
  • "San Loma Assault" at first seems run of the mill for Ace Combat, until the brass comes in and turns the song into a heavy bombardment of tubas; exactly like how you're taking back San Loma with a lot of Emmerian forces involved.
  • If you'd already played AC 4 and 5, you probably knew something bad was going to happen the moment they told you your last mission was a peaceful patrol over Gracemeria. When "City Lights" starts playing, those suspicions are confirmed.

Ace Combat: Joint Assault

  • "Sound Embrace"note , a heroic track to accompany your fight against the recurring rivals of the game, Varcolac Squadron. This time, they're going down for good.
  • "In The Zone", one of the few songs in the series, is a power metal anime-esque theme praising every Ace Pilot's dream of defying the laws of physics and gravity.
  • "For Us All", the ending track that sings literal heartfelt praises from every being in both Strangereal and real-world alike, directed towards every Ace Pilot that has fought for causes greater than themselves.
  • During the last third of your final confrontation with Sulejmani, the man drops all pretense of restraint and declares his intention to shoot you down and accomplish his goals, with the elegance of the duel enhanced by the sweeping orchestra of "War-Torn Radiance"note .

Ace Combat: Assault Horizon

  • "Beyond the Canal", the low-key riff that encourages you to mow down enemies with a gatling gun on a Black Hawk chopper.
  • "Dogfight", which is exactly fitting of its name.
  • "Release", the supremely intense piece played on the final mission, features Ominous Latin Chanting for starters. After an awesome startup with a rising choir, the frantic tone offers a mere couple of soft moments before diving back into the chaos. Once Markov is down for the count, the final segment of the song plays in a chilling crescendo as you realize that the Trinity warhead he was carrying is still active and you scramble to shoot it down before it destroys the White House.
  • "Rush", the rocky theme for your trip over Dubai. Slowly opening up with a faint Middle-East woodwind, the song builds up momentum for 50 seconds until it breaks out with Orchestral Bombing, angelic choirs and wild guitar riffs.
  • The main theme, "Gotta Stay Fly", featured heavily in promotional trailers and making up the overarching melody of many tracks. Unfortunately, it only plays during the ending credits.
  • "Fighter", the instrumental version of "Gotta Stay Fly", which picks up once Bishop and his wingmen start turning the tide around during the battle on Miami, interceded with a speech from the President of the United States no less!
  • "Keep Alive". A near-perfect blend of militaristic drums, electric guitar and electronic music samples, creating one of the most amazing songs ever conceived for a 21st century aerial battle.
  • "Shall Defend". Starts with an almost tragic set of piano keys, but quickly hits you with a rolling thunderhead of tense strings, powerful riffs, and a snare drum that simply will not quit.
  • "Decisive Battle", the brief motif that flares when Bishop goes face-to-face with Markov over Miami in a cinematic joust.
  • "White Devil", an intense combination of orchestra and rock for an intense battle in the snow, defending an airbase from ground attack and protecting transport planes from swarms of enemy fighters.
  • "DEJA-VU", a watered-down version of Markov's theme without the actual lyrics and with frequent rock bouts. A truly chilling piece of music.
  • "Naval Warfare" is an unrelenting maelstrom of metal, sounding as though each instrument is going every which way doing its own thing. It's rather fitting for the one level where you get to use the Attacker planes and blow an entire naval fleet. Rio Hamamoto would revisit the track for the game's tenth anniversary and put a rad dubstep take on it.
  • "Launch", the theme that plays during Razor's bombing run in the eponymous mission, making heavy use of percussion that echo the unrelenting series of nighttime explosions Janice leaves in her wake.
  • "Eyes", where the orchestra slowly replaces the percussion heard in "Launch" and makes way for the game's main motif as Bishop rushes to shoot down an ICBM before it flies out of range.
  • "Mrs. Krista Yoslav", the Final Boss's theme, is Markov's dirge for his titular wife's death, sung in Russian. It mourns his inability to cope with it, and how he wishes it was all a dream; how everything should have been a dream. Bonus points for playing over the game's most intense dogfight sequence as a case of Soundtrack Dissonance.

Ace Combat: Assault Horizon Legacy

  • "Gravity". The Ending Theme with some pretty cheesy, yet absolutely epic lyrics, serving as an extended Badass Boast in honour of Scarface One. note 
  • "Fighter's Honor". It's been an established tradition for Ace Combat protagonists to get an awesome orchestral song singing their praises for the final battle, and now Scarface One gets his own.
  • Every ace squadron gets its own Leitmotifs:
    • "Skyburn", Lancer Squadron's theme, and sure to bring back fond memories for Zero veterans.
    • "Grey Wolf", Beast Squadron's theme. Absolutely ferocious.
    • "Locked", Cocoon Squadron's theme; a fast-paced rap number meant to rival Assault Horizon's "Gotta Stay Fly". "Gravity" is a remixed version of this combined with "Fighter's Honor (Flying Mix)", this time with a rump-shaking Eurobeat style and rhythm.
    • "On the Verge", Albireo Squadron's theme; a hard rock/thrash metal tune fit for the rebel forces' top fighter squadron.
    • "Zone of Endless", Z.O.E's first of three themes, and the one used most often. Notable for the lack of melody, yet it still sounds ominous with the periodic electronics spike and the percussion.
    • "Intruder", the second Z.O.E. theme, ditches the periodic use of electronics altogether and goes for a relentless percussion number.
    • "Tyrant on High", the final Z.O.E. theme. Everything comes to a head in this terrifying organ-filled track as you face four Z.O.E. at the last bonus mission within the ADF-01 FALKEN air frame toting the powerful Tactical Laser System, and this time, they are playing for keeps.

Ace Combat: Infinity

  • Despite Ace Combat Infinity reusing many great tracks throughout the Ace Combat Series, it also has a fair share of remakes that are well enjoyed, including:
    • "Comona Remix", played during Mission 2 of the campaign. Though less rocky than the original track of Ace Combat 04, it still gets the job done with a dubstep rhythm.
    • "Stonehenge Remix", played during the Entirety of Mission 4, and has also been used during all the Multiplayer runs against Stonehenge and the Second and Third Multiplayer runs against Moby Dick/Agaion. Unlike the original "Stonehenge", this remix incorporates tense guitar riffs.
    • "Invincible Fleet Remix", played during the first third of Mission 5, is a throwback to Ace Combat 04's similarly named track, except this one builds on the melody with intense strings and brass.
    • "Blue Skies (INFINITY Remix)",a brillant rendition of Ace Combat 04's own ending credits song, more heroic and dynamic than ever. Played on the second part of Operation Bunkershot as to give you and your allies a Heroic Second Wind as you tear apart the USEAn forces even when they previously had you cornered with the helps of OLDS.
      Collins: We got nothing to be afraid of! Not with the Grim Reaper haunting the skies!
      Bertz: You said it! On the ground and in the air... We can do this! [Cue rallying cries of "Let's go!"]

Ace Combat 7: Skies Unknown

  • "Drag Racer" accompanies Avril's opening monologue. It starts as a slow country western piece, fully evoking a dusty desert, bygone days, and the rust and abandonment of aircraft hulks in an aircraft boneyard... and then at 2:51 it seamlessly shifts into an orchestral piece, the game's leitmotif triumphantly underscoring Avril's takeoff, and Ace Combat's return.
  • "Charge Assault" is a song that fits well for the first mission, especially what fans could argue as Ace Combat's return to form, and the Strangereal setting. Whether you are a newcomer to the series, or a veteran ready to spread your wings once more, the drop at 1:43 will blow you away. It also, true to form, introduces the Leitmotif for the Lighthouse War, which is reprised a number of times throughout this soundtrack.
  • "Dual Wielder" mixes rock with bongo drums of all things and yet still manages to fit greatly in the mission.
  • The track that follows "Two-Pronged Strategy" fits with the enigmatic and soulless nature of UAVs as you engage in battle with a swarm of UAVs and their mothership, the Arsenal Bird, for the first time.
  • "Friendly Fire", a Dark Reprise of AC5's signature Leitmotif closing off a huge Tear Jerker Wham Episode guaranteed to leave a first-time player who played the previous games neck-deep in a mixture of shock and horror with just a single Wham Line: "Oh my god! Mother Goose One has been shot down!" It also happens to be a slower-paced version of the PSX 2015 reveal trailer's track. There, the reprise at the start is replaced with only a meager few piano notes of "The Unsung War", but still declares one thing: Ace Combat is back in Strangereal.
  • "444". Unlike the rest of the soundtrack's sweeping orchestra, this piece is a hilarious mess of guitars and trumpets, with the inherent discord keeping in line with the mission's surreal context (read: the flying circus that is the 444th penal squadron).
  • "Long Day" is a tribute to AC04's "Deep Strike", mixing hard rock with orchestra as you blast scores of ground targets into oblivion across the Roca Roja desert.
  • "Faceless Soldier", played during the mission of the same name. It starts off slow, only to enter a Triumphant Reprise. Fitting, as it's played during the final parts of the mission; ambushed by Erusean drones spoofing IFFs, Spare is left in shambles. Thanks to the quick thinking of Tabloid, though, they quickly reorganize, tearing through the drones with the efficiency of a proper squadron, all the while dodging through the Arsenal Bird's Helios missiles.
  • "New Arrows Air Base Hangar" is a fitting track for preparing for a very important mission, especially one deep in enemy territory. Which is the purpose of the Osean Air Force's LRSSG (Long Range Strategic Strike Group).
  • "ADFX-10", the theme of the titular aircraft that ambushes Trigger and Count at Bulgurdarest, features an oppressive drum beat with an electronic undercurrent that sets the mood of the frantic dogfight against one of the fastest opponents in the game. Quite fitting for the predecessor of Hugin and Munin and the next evolution of the Zone of Endless project.
  • "Siren's Song" starts out with a choir rendition of the main theme, then delves right into a mix of guitars and electronic beats, keeping you good company as you frantically scramble to destroy a massive Erusean fleet and their docking points.
  • Mission 12 features a two-part soundtrack composed by Tetsukazu Nakanishi (who happens to be only one out of many composers working on 7's soundtrack as opposed to previous entries featuring only one or two) that's bound to turn the heads of AC04 veterans by the title alone: "Stonehenge Defensive", played in a similar key arrangement as AC04's "Stonehenge", albeit modernized with electronic undercurrents and swift movements from the orchestra. The second half of the mission features "Dragon Breath", where the orchestra is revving up for a roar as the final Stonehenge cannon is ready to fire at the incoming Arsenal Bird. The melody then stops dead in its tracks when unforeseen complications compromise Stonehenge's accuracy, before Trigger fearlessly charges towards the flying behemoth to slow it down, bringing along with him the game's main motif.
  • "Magic Spear I", an upbeat and groovy track that makes you almost forget that you're on a dead-serious mission to prevent the launch of ballistic missiles. The second half of the mission gives us "Magic Spear II", downplaying the upbeat riffs from "Magic Spear I" in order to give you more time to focus on intercepting ballistic missiles at high altitude.
  • "Battle for Farbanti". The spiritual successor to AC04's "Farbanti" theme, it's a brass-heavy theme that takes the leitmotif and keeps escalating it again and again into a triumphant tour de force, a musical statement that your victory is assured.
  • "Sol Squadron" starts off with Mihaly's signature monastic choir, before diving into a dynamic violin movement punctuated by guitar riffs and the recurring male chorus. It's an intense piece that heralds the fight against the eponymous squadron, with Mihaly as their leader. The dark reprise of the Battle for Farbanti melody is just icing on the cake, your assured victory now in question.
  • "Last Hope", the low-key mix of electronics which plays during the aftermath of a literal information blackout and the beginning of a vicious Civil War. With nighttime settling on Anchorhead and everyone fighting each other in confusion, this track really sets the tone for the true meaning of the game's title. "Last Hope II" follows the same melody down to the instruments, but adds a cymbal for extra intensity as you are forced into defending a civilian transport from squadrons that were previously non-hostile.
  • "Homeward", the frantic orchestral movement that plays during Mission 17, which is easily the darkest moment of the war. In spite of the horrors your allies witness on Tyler Island, this heroic track presses you to rescue them and put an end to the madness.
  • "Lost Kingdom" is an appropriately somber piece considering the mission objective of raiding a small country for food and supplies. Combined with the enemy soldiers’ cries for help as you bomb them, it will leave you feeling like a complete bastard.
  • "Archange", featured heavily in 2017 promotional trailers, is Mihaly's boss theme during Mission 18. Unlike "Sol Squadron", the starting monastic choir has a longer melody, before giving way to a succession of solemn male and female choruses that clash with each other, the combined mix of which is underlined by electronic beats and violin riffs imitating the roar of an aircraft taking off; the perfect setup for a fight between an old ace (Mihaly) and a rising one (Trigger).
  • "Lighthouse". The uplifting orchestral piece with a very catchy leitmotif that plays in the penultimate mission of the game: the iconic "furball" large scale air-to-air combat between aces in the blue sky, with the stage being the International Space Elevator itself.
  • "Daredevil", which has been used in several trailers, including the Gamescom 2018 Reveal Date trailer. It starts out with an oppressive feel, as if the enemy is itself imposing its will on the music. Then, the game's main theme is sung through a serene One-Woman Wail, offering some respite before it too is buried under the oppression, building up a cascade of emotions that stops altogether at 3:13, with the music purposely holding its breath there. A single second of pause is all it takes for the main theme to rally and counterattack with the One-Woman Wail, this time backed up by a chorus and soaring to unprecedented heights. That particular moment is deliberately put to triumphant use once Rosa Cosette shuts down the Arsenal Bird's shields permanently, becoming one of the most beloved climactic sequences in the franchise, right up there with "Agnus Dei" and "Zero". According to an interview with Kazutoki Kono regarding the game's development (translated in English here for convenience), the song was added long after the mission itself was fully fleshed out, mainly because the director in charge of radio comm lines wanted to sync the dialogue, drama and music into an explosive climax. Using that particular moment as a wedge, the dev team decided to gradually rework the final direction of the story and its soundtrack to give more goosebumps to it. Fittingly, such a risky endeavour earned the track its "Daredevil" namesake. In short, they rushed like madmen to make this masterpiece a reality.
  • "Hush" will make your skin crawl. Kobayashi's magnum opus of the entire soundtrack, it stands among the legendary final battle themes of Ace Combat 04 ("Megalith-Agnus Dei"), Ace Combat 5 ("The Unsung War") and Ace Combat Zero ("Zero"). It is an epic combination of several pieces, with piano echoes playing alongside a march rendition of the main theme, both intermittently supplanted by Scare Chords and an oppressive brass, before the choir step in to counter with the main theme once again, as the layers ramp up and up without ever letting go, topped by the One-Woman Wail resurfacing amidst the chaos. All the while, the oppressive percussion keep driving the song forward, encapsulating the battle the player is waging — the Final Battle of the Robot War, the strings and choir struggling to Hold the Line as Technology Marches On in the form of brass and drums. Its alternate mix is used during the flight up the Lighthouse, and is more intense yet also more hopeful, reflecting both the uncertainty of performing a massive vertical ascent inside a tower, and also the beacon of light Trigger represents by his exit.
  • "Space Elevator" serves not just as the tense backdrop of this game's offering to the series' signature Airstrike Impossible tunnel flights while you try to stop the aforementioned threat's final attempt at getting their way, but the heavy amount of futuristic synth tones also make a veteran player realize that the series is closer than ever to Electrosphere's timeframe.
  • "Sentry's Brunt", an arrangement of AC04's "Blockade", is the perfect track to show off the VR mode trailer, with a palpable sense of urgency and purpose, and then it kicks into the main melody, building up into a triumphant crescendo punctuating the VR campaign's mission statement: Mobius One is back.
  • "Enchanter I", which blares as soon as the eponymous SP Mission 01 begins, is a grand orchestral piece befitting of a massive dogfight completely exempt from drones. Midway through the battle, the mysterious Mimic squadron sneaks in, altering the music with their own drum-heavy variant, "Enchanter II". As soon as they retreat, the music goes back to normal as you fend off the remaining stragglers that try to attack your fleet.
  • "Sighthound" is an extremely intense soundtrack that charges out of nowhere when Captain Torres engages the Alicorn in "Unexpected Visitor", and his first act is to immediately launch four planes with a WMD cruise missile on a suicide mission to kill one million people. Trigger is forced to abandon all other missions and immediately engage in a frantic chase to shoot down all four planes, while Captain Torres announces his manifesto to kill one million to save ten million. This single track immediately establishes Torres as an extremely dangerous figure, and shows just how mad he and his men have become.
  • "Anchorhead Raid", composed by newcomer Yusuke Yamauchi, is the engaging theme that plays as you conduct an all-out fleet destruction over two separate harbours in the second SP mission. Combining electronics with successive solo setpieces from the orchestra, this track easily hammers in the intensity of the carnage over Anchor Bay and Dakiouk Bay. Within the game, the Alicorn abruptly interrupts the music with guided railgun projectiles, shortly before the track resumes with the latter part of its melody as Wiseman reminds everyone that a 100% survival rate is necessary, strengthening Strider Squadron's bonds.
  • "Mimic", composed by Mitsuhiro Kitadani, serves as the boss theme for the final encounter with Mimic Squadron at the end of SP Mission 02. The track, described as "perverse drum beats" by the composer, is a hard rock piece emphasizing electric guitar, drums, and synthesizers, reflecting the punk rock aesthetic of the van Dalsen siblings and their various wild tricks to mess with Trigger and Count. It also has two remixes depending on which of the Mimic siblings is shot down first in the battle that doubles as musical storytelling.
    • The Scream Version (played after Rage is killed) sees the drum line of "Mimic" devolve into wild incoherence, reflecting Scream's complete emotional breakdown after her brother's death.
    • The Rage Version (played after Scream is killed) sees the drums quickly overpower the other instruments in the band in a frantic, but still focused, intensity, reflecting Rage letting his anger get the better of him over his sister's death.
  • The conclusion to the Alicorn saga as depicted in SP Mission 03 has its work cut out for it with an epic Latin hymn that's split into three versions, with each successive version gaining in intensity as you progress through the fight against the super submarine.
    • "Awakening" blends Ominous Latin Chanting, fast drumwork, an orchestral rock arrangement and a continuously escalating melody that evokes Ace Combat 04 memories; there is palpable uncertainty in the melody as you're searching for the Alicorn in the middle of nowhere while having to protect several patrol aircraft from a variety of drones and fanatical SACS pilots.
    • Once you force the submarine into surfacing for the first time, the soundtrack ups the ante with "Alicorn", the choir and orchestra coalescing into a solemn military march that heralds the terrifying menace as it prepares to engage Osean forces.
    • Once Torres shows his true colors by revealing he never intended to surrender and plans on firing the nuke on Oured at all costs, the music switches tracks yet again, this time into the fast-paced spiral of madness that is, in an ironic sense, "The Hero of Comberth Harbor" as Trigger and his friends race against time to end the threat this madman poses to Strangereal once and for all.
  • "Danger Zone (Remix)" reworks "Danger Zone" with guitars. At first, the intro is reimagined using acoustic guitar. It then substitutes the vocals with an electric guitar riff which meshes together with the other instruments perfectly. Blending Ace Combat 2 with Top Gun, this track is the perfect companion for the Top Gun: Maverick DLC.


Alternative Title(s): Ace Combat 7 Skies Unknown