The nominees for Best Original Soundtrack of 2010 are...
And the winner is...
Final Fantasy XIII brought forth many changes to the series' traditional formula when it launched last March — including a change of head composers. The venerable series veteran Nobuo Uematsu composed only the two Chocobo themes for the game, while Final Fantasy XII composer Hitoshi Sakimoto was ousted by the talented Masashi Hamauzu, who co-composed Final Fantasy X. Despite Square Enix's wildly inappropriate pick for XIII's main theme song — the British singer Leona Lewis' pre-existing song "My Hands" from her album 'Echo' — Hamauzu's score absolutely astounded, featuring the remarkable depth and diversity we've come to expect from the talented composers at Square Enix. Its wandering piano solos and somber string arrangements were complemented by riveting orchestral pieces from the Warsaw Philharmonic Orchestra, resulting in one of the most rousing and compelling scores ever to emanate from our sound system.
And the Community Award goes to...
The community had a tough time selecting the Best Original Score of 2010, and rightly so; the category was jam-packed with five brilliant contenders. Ultimately, users plumped for the wonderfully desolate twangs of the old west, catapulting Red Dead Redemption's score into the #1 spot with 27.9% of the votes. Kratos' booming orchestral backing followed right behind Red Dead with 26.0%, with Final Fantasy XIII's score hot on the God of War's heels with 21.2% of votes. Norman Corbiel's evocative soundtrack for Heavy Rain commanded a sizable following with 17.3% of the votes, while the nostalgia-inducing score for 3D Dot Game Heroes rounded up the rear with 7.7%.
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Our unbiased editorial team selected all PlayStation Universe 2010 Game Award nominees and recipients. The PSU.com community voted on each group of nominees to determine the Community Award(s) for each category. Only games available on a PlayStation platform (PlayStation 3, PlayStation Network, PlayStation Portable, PlayStation 2) were eligible for a PlayStation Universe 2010 Game Award.
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Because this award article felt a bit lacking without the music itself, we've embedded one song from each nominee below. Enjoy!