Sound effects rarely get the credit they deserve for how important they are to video games. Sound effects alone can help give a game atmosphere and personality. Can you imagine Mario grabbing gold coins without that delightful little “bling” sound? Or trudging through the deadly realms of Dark Souls without the heavy clanging of your armor? It just wouldn’t be the same, would it?
2018 saw many games with terrific soundwork, but only one could stand above the rest for the deep immersion its sound gave it.
Winner: Red Dead Redemption 2
It’s only fitting that Red Dead Redemption 2 – a game that builds its world with with as much attention to detail as humanly possible to make every inch it feel believable – would feature the best sound work.
Much like 2017’s The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild, Red Dead Redemption 2 utilizes its sound design to add a sense of life to every facet of its world. Whether it’s something as big as a train in the distance, or something as small as a card dealer shuffling a deck of cards in a game of Poker, Rockstar North went all out in making Red Dead Redemption 2 sound as true to life as it looked.
Not every game can build its world so meticulously through sounds alone. And even fewer can do it as well as Red Dead Redemption 2.
Runner-up: God of War
2014: Dark Souls II
2016: Dark Souls 3
2017: The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild