Music is a basic tool that helps you to control your emotions. It is also used to establish the right tone of the story that is being told on the screen. Movies and video games go hand-in-hand when it comes to using music as their background. With the advancement of technology in video games, soundtracks and music have dramatically changed with each passing year and have become two of the important elements of the storytelling process.
Music in Video Games: Why do Game Developers Add Them?
The video game industry has found out that music plays a major role in influencing the players’ state of mind. Video games are more immersive than movies. The players control the actions of the characters rather than watching the incident happening. So it is very important for the game developers to include certain music and sounds to set the tone of the video game. Some of the reasons for them to add music are:
- Music sets the tone of the game.
- Music helps to concentrate.
- Music influences the player to move forward.
- Soundtracks allow the player to get into the character.
- Music helps to captivate the player.
- It makes the player a part of the video game.
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Video Game Music: What is the Power of Soundtracks?
The music used in video games is much more powerful than those used in feature films. Unlike the music or songs that are audibly pleasing, the soundtracks used in video games have the priority to fulfill a wide range of particular functions while the player feels satisfied by listening to it. Composing and arranging the background music and soundtrack for a video game is not so difficult for the game developers, but it should be as good as to transport the player to another world and turn the game into a masterwork. The music used in video games is thus a powerful medium that can change the gamers’ way of feeling and behaving.
Video Game Music: Types and Techniques of Adaptive Soundtracks
Different kinds of music are used in various video games for giving the chance to the gamers to adapt to the sound easily. Adaptive music is a technique where pre-composed pieces of sound and music are placed inside the game for creating interactivity and boosting productivity. Some of the adaptive music methods of video games are:
- Vertical Remixing or Layering.
- Cross Fading.
- Musical demarcation branching.
- Phrase branching.
- Sequencing based on a stringer.
- Bridge transitioning.
Music in Video Games: Advantages of Adding Sound
Game developers like to add music and sound to any video game for giving the players a better gaming experience. Different kinds of music make the players feel in different ways. Music also plays an important role in expressing the genre of the video game. Mentioned below are some of the advantages of adding sound and music to interactive video games.
- Establishing the Atmosphere of the Game
Music is the best way to establish the environment and atmosphere of the game. It is considered as the reflection of a specific culture. The same goes for video games. They are often used to reveal societal truth and culture. Music helps the player to understand the background and setting of the game.
- Helping the Players in Concentrating
Concentration is very important while gaming and music encourage them to pay attention to the game for better control of the character. You might not need music to sell Dota 2 items for real money, but surely need it when using them for winning a Counter-Strike: Global Offensive game. Concentration and attention are most important when it comes to CS: GO games where the player needs to look at every corner and music plays a vital role here.
- Influencing Player’s Behavior
Music plays a vital role in influencing the behavior of the player. Besides setting a particular mood, video game music acts as a secondary system of rewarding and punishing the player that ultimately influences the player’s behavior. When you lose a life in a game, a disappointing sound is given, and on the other hand, when you complete a level, the sound is kind of upbeat and joyous. Music in gaming contributes to the fulfillment and importance of the player.
- Better Gaming Experience
The soundtrack provides a better gaming experience for the player. It helps the gamer to get transported to another level when they hear the background score and other sounds. Though certain games can be played without the sound, players always like to hear the sound to enjoy the game to the fullest.
- Providing a Calm and Relaxing Environment
Music can aid in a calm and tranquil environment so that the player can relax and enjoy every bit of the video game. Gaming is not about spending some hours in front of the screen, but it should be pleasurable. Not all the games are relaxing and some might involve tension and suspense. But if the player chooses to play a relaxing game, he or she should get the right experience.
- Improving the Gaming Performance
Music supports the improvement of gaming performance as well. Gaming is not an absent-minded job. The player needs to have patience and focus. Sound is an important part when it comes to improving the level of performance for the player. The developers always try to add music and soundtracks that will keep the gamers engaged and get the ultimate experience of gaming.
Video Games: The Best Ones in Terms of Music
Some video games can be termed the best regarding its background music and soundtrack. They are:
- Super Mario Galaxy
- Final Fantasy VI
- The Legend of Zelda Wind Waker
- Donkey Kong
- The Last of Us
The next time, before you take initiative to turn off the video game music, think that the propulsive rhythm and driving beats of the music will help you to concentrate and motivate to keep going and easily cross different levels of difficulty.