Lesson 150: Writing Music for Games
Different Types of Music Needed
Linear Music Vs. Interactive Music
Writing music for games is very different from writing music for theatre/ film/ TV. A piece of music for theatre/ film/ TV is linear, since we know what is going to happen, it has a beginning, a middle and an end. The piece of music may have an apex/ climax at a certain predetermined point.
Game music has to be non-linear. We do not know what is going to happen in the game, so writing game music has to be done very differently. The music has to be able to go up or down in intensity at any given point determined not by the composer but by the gameplay. Game music has to
In order to make the music adaptive, dynamic, interactive and variable you will need to be able to
An Example of Great Game Music
A personal favorite of mine is the music to the indie puzzle/ platform game FEZ. FEZ also happens to be one of my all-time favorite video games with very difficult puzzles and codes to crack and 150 rooms to explore which gives you around 20- 30 hours of gameplay.
Rich Vreeland, also known as Disasterpeace, composed the game's chiptune-esque electronic soundtrack. He worked with soft synth pads, reverb, reduced reliance on percussion and incorporated distortion techniques like bitcrushing and wow to push the score close to an 80's synthesizer sound. This fits the game's retro 80's 8-bit style perfectly. The official soundtrack can be found on Spotify here.
How to Get Started
So, how do you get started in writing music for games?
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