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Stone Age Countdown: Top 5 Pause Music Themes

Stone Age Countdown: Top 5 Pause Music Themes

Kris Randazzo
4 minute read

Video game music is a wonderful thing. But the TRULY special soundtracks also feature dedicated Pause music! Today, Kris counts down his top 5 favorite Pause Music Themes!

Game footage:

Retro Longplays

Longplay Archive

World of Longplays

Transcript of the video

Hi there and welcome to Stone Age Countdown.

Video game music can often make the game its attached to, especially when it permeates the unexpected moments with particular levels of greatness. Most of he time when you pause a game you either get silence, or the game just keeps playing whatever it was playing in the first place. But sometimes, just sometimes, you’re treated to musical magic.

This is my top 5 video game pause music.

#5 - Psycho Fox 

The Sega Master System is known for a lot of things, but great music isn’t one of them. With a standard sound style that can best be described as “screechy” , great Master System music is few and far between. But that’s not to say the system wasn’t capable of some great tunes when used properly, and in fact Psycho Fox here is a game with a genuinely great soundtrack from top to bottom. And wouldn’t you know, when you pause, you’re treated to this delightful little tune.

Good job, guys.


VVVVVV can be a very difficult game, especially when you want to tell your friends about it. Hey! Have you tried 6 vs? VVVVVVvvvvvvvv? There's no way to say the name of this game out loud and make it sound cool. However, that small deficiency is more than made up for by the game’s exceptional soundtrack, complete with a fantastic pause tune.

It not only matches the overall tone of the game, but it doesn’t drop the intensity level in the least. It keeps you feeling ready for action, even when you’ve paused to take a break. Classic.

#3 - Stunt Race FX 

Another game with an overall great soundtrack, Stunt Race FX’s pause music works on a couple of levels. One, it’s a goofy little tune that just can’t not make you smile. But two, it's accompanied by the single greatest piece of animation on the Super NES!

Hyperbole aside, this tune is fantastic, and really makes pausing the game fun. You can even use the controller to change the speed of the animation! Cool!

#2 - GoldenEye 

I have to admit, I’ve never been the biggest fan of GoldenEye. Why? Because I’m terrible at it. I’ve never won a single multiplayer match in my life. So that’s on me. However, my complete lack of FPS skill didn’t stop me from enjoying the killer tunes found in this Nintendo 64 classic. This pause music though, is just the smoothest music in the entire Nintendo 64 library.

Sure, Perfect Dark had a similar pause theme, but this was always going to be impossible to top. Well, except for the one pause tune that tops it.

#1 - Battletoads 

David Wise has composed some absolute masterpieces in his career, but I don’t think he or anyone else has ever topped the pure unadulterated perfection of Pause Beat from Battletoads. What can be said? Just listen to it!

If that doesn’t leave you ready to continue battletoading all over the place, I don’t know what will.

And there you have it. The top 5 pause music themes of all time. Obviously this list is in no way comprehensive, so if I missed anything, please please please let me know! I’m always happy to discover new and exciting pause themes from video games.

Thanks for watching everyone. If you liked what you saw here today please comment, like , subscribe, share, do all those wonderful things that we love and of course, let us know what you think! Have you listened to the 10 hour version of Pause Beat and maintained your sanity? We’d love to hear about it. Thanks again, and on behalf of all of us here at Stone age Gamer, keep playing games. 

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