Koudelka was released in 2000, and is a Horror/RPG, one of the first of its kind to blend both classic ‘fantasy’ elements of an RPG with certain ‘horror’ elements akin to the likes of, say, Parasite Eve […].
In a nutshell, it’s a story about three individuals who for one reason (such as Koudelka, a psychic gypsy with magical powers) or another (like James, whose only known endeavour is that of a… professional adventurer: apparently, that’s a career path in this world) end up in a mysterious monastery in Wales, determined to uncover the secrets of the spirits and reanimated corpses wandering all over the place.
As a game, if I’m honest, I didn’t think Koudelka was all that and a bag of crisps. The storyline was engaging (if not just a little bit farfetched), and the design was beautiful, but I was severely let down by the combat system, since you spent a good portion of your combat time just moving to your enemies. And if you’re not wooed by the combat system, you’re going to have an issue playing that particular RPG.
The music, on the other hand, is wonderful and haunting. From the very first cut scene, you get a real feeling of isolation and despair:
The rest of the soundtrack varies from choral melodies, acoustic guitars, and rhythmic drum / panpipe combinations for the fights and boss battles.
Included on the soundtrack itself are studio-recorded versions of the battle songs, which – to be fair – are kind of hit-and-miss for me, but this one in particular is pretty neat:
Music to Write Death Scenes By…
The Koudelka soundtrack is ideal for writing scenes in which you are trying to convey desolation, sadness…maybe a death or two.
More Information / Further Reading
Although rare, you can (currently) get a copy of the soundtrack from Amazon.com
You can find the majority of the music tracks on YouTube. More information on the soundtrack is available here.
Check out the full list of my ‘Music to Write Novels By’ series here, including a spiffy FAQ section, which will likely cover any questions you have.