Castlevania: Lords of Shadow has impressed the International Film Music Critics Association (IFMCA). Spanish composer Oscar Araujo is nominated for the "Breakout Composer of the Year" award -- notably alongside French duo Daft Punk, who pounded cinemagoers into Grid-grout during Tron: Legacy. The Lords of Shadow soundtrack is also one of five nominated in the "Best Original Score for a Video Game or Interactive Media" category.
It's up against some stirring competition in the form of James Bond 007: Blood Stone (featuring Sega legend Richard Jacques) and Dark Void, which isn't usually written about unless it's in praise of Bear McCreary's distinguishing soundtrack. Legend of the Guardians: The Owls of Ga'Hoole earns a nomination, thanks to Winifred Philips, as do the themes of Lego Universe, assembled by Brian Tyler.
Though the majority of awards focus on film soundtracks, the IFMCA's sentiment seems just as applicable to video games. "The IFMCA strongly feels that a film score's strength lies in the combined impact of two important elements: the effectiveness, appropriateness and emotional impact of the score in the context of the film for which it was written; and the technical and intellectual merit of the composition when heard as a standalone listening experience." Winners will be announced on February 25, 2011.