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if i wanted to compose music for video games...

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if i wanted to compose music for video games...

Postby Soulgreed » Thu Sep 01, 2011 1:52 pm

ok apologies for the naive post, but if i reckoned i had some music that would be a good computer game soundtrack, is there a standard way to approach this? I'd rather not start sending out unsolicited requests. Am I right in saying this would be a publisher's job?
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Re: if i wanted to compose music for video games...

Postby blue manga » Thu Sep 01, 2011 2:07 pm

Licensing from pre existing works certainly could be a publishers job, yes.
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Re: if i wanted to compose music for video games...

Postby narcoman » Thu Sep 01, 2011 2:37 pm

To license, yes. A publishers job.

Video game music is now as hard - and as big business - to get into as movies
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Re: if i wanted to compose music for video games...

Postby Soulgreed » Thu Sep 01, 2011 3:49 pm

thanks for the replies, guess it's time to look for a publisher then!
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Re: if i wanted to compose music for video games...

Postby jellyjim » Thu Sep 01, 2011 5:17 pm

I wonder if it's easier to get into mobile games (iOS, Android Etc) as it's a younger industry with more virgin pastures than the consoles? Just a thought.
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Re: if i wanted to compose music for video games...

Postby blue manga » Thu Sep 01, 2011 6:28 pm

Yes, as an outsider - licensing for big AAA (etc) titles, is very unlikely ..
The thing is - it's not like u can find a publisher - and wop! - ur track is in a video game ..
It's total potluck ..

Having said that I wrote a tune based on the way a track worked in The Getaway on PS2 .. and lo and behold - it appeared in Heavy Rain on PS3 .. in a similar scenario - which wasn't at all expected actually .. but then - publishing placements are always a surprise ..

Also - unless u are seriously on the writing staff in a big way (for instance - not like me, but like our grand Mr Narco) - general licensing of tracks (unless u are famous) - is really not gonna earn u much dough.
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Re: if i wanted to compose music for video games...

Postby Soulgreed » Thu Sep 01, 2011 7:17 pm

yeah, if i have some success with it i'll be surprised but if i dont try at all the chances are even less! turns out i might know some people involved in game developing so will see how it goes...
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Re: if i wanted to compose music for video games...

Postby narcoman » Thu Sep 01, 2011 8:13 pm

blue manga wrote:Yes, as an outsider - licensing for big AAA (etc) titles, is very unlikely ..
The thing is - it's not like u can find a publisher - and wop! - ur track is in a video game ..
It's total potluck ..

Having said that I wrote a tune based on the way a track worked in The Getaway on PS2 .. and lo and behold - it appeared in Heavy Rain on PS3 .. in a similar scenario - which wasn't at all expected actually .. but then - publishing placements are always a surprise ..

Also - unless u are seriously on the writing staff in a big way (for instance - not like me, but like our grand Mr Narco) - general licensing of tracks (unless u are famous) - is really not gonna earn u much dough.

getting harder though!!! :)

The Getaway ? Awesome ;)
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Re: if i wanted to compose music for video games...

Postby blue manga » Thu Sep 01, 2011 10:14 pm

Soulgreed wrote:yeah, if i have some success with it i'll be surprised but if i dont try at all the chances are even less! turns out i might know some people involved in game developing so will see how it goes...

That's the spirit !
.. yes knowing some people .. even better being friendly with some people, is a defo advantage and should be checked out .. If u manage to license the track urself that way .. all the better ! - and it doesn't prevent you from either licensing again, or later / also assigning the rights to a publisher for them to license again.
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Re: if i wanted to compose music for video games...

Postby onesecondglance » Fri Sep 02, 2011 12:48 am

blue manga wrote:Having said that I wrote a tune based on the way a track worked in The Getaway on PS2 .. and lo and behold - it appeared in Heavy Rain on PS3 .. in a similar scenario - which wasn't at all expected actually .. but then - publishing placements are always a surprise ..

was playing that just the other week. the music is rather good. :)
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Re: if i wanted to compose music for video games...

Postby blue manga » Fri Sep 02, 2011 8:26 am

onesecondglance wrote:
blue manga wrote:Having said that I wrote a tune based on the way a track worked in The Getaway on PS2 .. and lo and behold - it appeared in Heavy Rain on PS3 .. in a similar scenario - which wasn't at all expected actually .. but then - publishing placements are always a surprise ..

was playing that just the other week. the music is rather good. :)

:lol:

I dont have it as I'm on 360 .. but I didn't do the commissioned score ( a case in point with where tha $$$ at ) - it was an extra license for incidental music .. in the scene where they go to Kramer's party at his mansion .. and the cue is filtered down / around by the game engine .. but it works in the same way as a cue in The Getaway when u go to I think like the crack den / party house of one of the gangsters .. (been a WHILE since I played The Getaway!)
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Re: if i wanted to compose music for video games...

Postby onesecondglance » Fri Sep 02, 2011 9:29 am

yep, i remember the scene. nice one!
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Re: if i wanted to compose music for video games...

Postby The Korff » Fri Sep 02, 2011 10:48 am

Me too! I always died at that bit (can't say I was a massive fan of the control system though, I kept accidentally doing roly-polies at armed gangsters, which would probably work better in real life than it did in the game). Cool how you could drive around central London though, I'd really like to see more computer games with 'real-life' environments.

Cheers!

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Re: if i wanted to compose music for video games...

Postby Handlestash » Fri Sep 02, 2011 10:53 am

I haven't owned a games console since the Sega Megadrive. Is there something wrong with me?
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Re: if i wanted to compose music for video games...

Postby blue manga » Fri Sep 02, 2011 11:03 am

Yes Handles, but not specifically related to the consoles bit.
Although you could throw that in there as well, for extra male disfunction.
HTH.
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Re: if i wanted to compose music for video games...

Postby Handlestash » Fri Sep 02, 2011 11:08 am

Oh ha ha.

You love it.
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Re: if i wanted to compose music for video games...

Postby blue manga » Fri Sep 02, 2011 11:12 am

:D ;)
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Re: if i wanted to compose music for video games...

Postby * User requested deletion * » Fri Sep 02, 2011 1:20 pm

I quite fancy trying my hand at computer games BM. I might try and persue this next year or summat.

I'm not in touch with the scene though. I suppose I ought to check out some games eh?

I did attend a rather good talk at PRS towers given by Richard Jaques last year. Very interesting.
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Re: if i wanted to compose music for video games...

Postby narcoman » Fri Sep 02, 2011 1:33 pm

Sue Dunnim wrote:I quite fancy trying my hand at computer games BM. I might try and persue this next year or summat.

I'm not in touch with the scene though. I suppose I ought to check out some games eh?

I did attend a rather good talk at PRS towers given by Richard Jaques last year. Very interesting.



Okay - here's tip 1. Call them video games. :)
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Re: if i wanted to compose music for video games...

Postby * User requested deletion * » Fri Sep 02, 2011 1:42 pm

narcoman wrote:
Sue Dunnim wrote:I quite fancy trying my hand at computer games BM. I might try and persue this next year or summat.

I'm not in touch with the scene though. I suppose I ought to check out some games eh?

I did attend a rather good talk at PRS towers given by Richard Jaques last year. Very interesting.




Okay - here's tip 1. Call them video games. :)


Ahh, that might be a good idea - get the terminology first!

The last one I played was pac man. I take it it's moved on somewhat since then??

Actually, I tell a lie - I did have Jimmy White's Snooker for the Atari.
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Re: if i wanted to compose music for video games...

Postby blue manga » Fri Sep 02, 2011 2:03 pm

I mean obviously with respect to how cues and cue points etc are engineered in games there are generic factors .. but I don't think it takes a genius to work it out ..

For instance - how much time do you think Hans Zimmer has spent playing video games ?
I personally have no idea .. I'm imagining not that much .. but his score for MW was amazing ..

I think being in touch with games AND gamers are assets, but if u look at what is licensed (and often, even commissioned) - not crucial at all ..

I have to say though - on the last number of games I played (including Crysis 2 - which also featured Zimmer) I have had to turn the sound track off .. I sense that funding and sensibility has taken a step back with in game music over the last development cycles .. and it is showing a bit, tbh ..
Although it's probably the same as most other media industries (which I'm more used to) using music - a lot of key decisions which effect the musical outcome are made by people who dont understand or care about the music ..

It's all about what we give the eyes init ?
- which is so not true ..

I think still my favourite game score - is the combination of atmospherics and moods in Doom3 .. which never really became out and out music .. just tonal atmospherics .. & whilst clunky in places Amon Tobins Chaos Theory score was also pretty seminal .. Splinter Cell in general has had a good sound world from the outset actually ...

Look at me rambling ..

:D

Back to work !
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Re: if i wanted to compose music for video games...

Postby * User requested deletion * » Fri Sep 02, 2011 2:07 pm

But could my distinctive style (recorder/ukelele/banjo picking) work in these blockbuster genres?? Or is it all that trailery stuff?
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Re: if i wanted to compose music for video games...

Postby * User requested deletion 2 * » Fri Sep 02, 2011 2:29 pm

When the game of the film 'Deliverance' finally gets made, you'll be top of the list of composers to be rung, Sue. Have you still got that pig living in the back garden? Could come in handy.
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Re: if i wanted to compose music for video games...

Postby * User requested deletion * » Fri Sep 02, 2011 2:43 pm

ex-reid wrote:When the game of the film 'Deliverance' finally gets made, you'll be top of the list of composers to be rung, Sue. Have you still got that pig living in the back garden? Could come in handy.

Handy left the farm last year Reid. We had to let him go due to an unfortunate incident of the type you allude to.

Messy business.
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Re: if i wanted to compose music for video games...

Postby narcoman » Fri Sep 02, 2011 2:57 pm

blue manga wrote:

For instance - how much time do you think Hans Zimmer has spent playing video games ?
I personally have no idea .. I'm imagining not that much .. but his score for MW was amazing ..

I think being in touch with games AND gamers are assets, but if u look at what is licensed (and often, even commissioned) - not crucial at all ..

Zimmer has the luxury of not having to think about implementation. To be honest - I don't believe he did ANY work on MW.

blue manga wrote:
I have to say though - on the last number of games I played (including Crysis 2 - which also featured Zimmer) I have had to turn the sound track off .. I sense that funding and sensibility has taken a step back with in game music over the last development cycles .. and it is showing a bit, tbh ..
Although it's probably the same as most other media industries (which I'm more used to) using music - a lot of key decisions which effect the musical outcome are made by people who dont understand or care about the music .

Yup. Same in films though.... going through that problem today in fact!!
blue manga wrote:

I think still my favourite game score - is the combination of atmospherics and moods in Doom3 .. which never really became out and out music .. just tonal atmospherics .. & whilst clunky in places Amon Tobins Chaos Theory score was also pretty seminal .. Splinter Cell in general has had a good sound world from the outset actually ...

Look at me rambling ..

:D

Back to work !


three game scores that leave me cold!!! Nasty.... could do with someone who knows how to mix to get their hands on them - especially Splinter Cell....
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Re: if i wanted to compose music for video games...

Postby narcoman » Fri Sep 02, 2011 2:58 pm

Sue Dunnim wrote:
ex-reid wrote:When the game of the film 'Deliverance' finally gets made, you'll be top of the list of composers to be rung, Sue. Have you still got that pig living in the back garden? Could come in handy.

Handy left the farm last year Reid. We had to let him go due to an unfortunate incident of the type you allude to.

Messy business.

LOL!!!
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Re: if i wanted to compose music for video games...

Postby * User requested deletion * » Fri Sep 02, 2011 3:03 pm

narcoman wrote:could do with someone who knows how to mix to get their hands on them - especially Splinter Cell....

No probs, tell em to give me a call. I could squeeze it in Monday.
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Re: if i wanted to compose music for video games...

Postby blue manga » Fri Sep 02, 2011 3:38 pm

narcoman wrote:


three game scores that leave me cold!!! Nasty.... could do with someone who knows how to mix to get their hands on them - especially Splinter Cell....

No that's not 3 game scores Mr Narco - that is Doom3 & Splinter Cell:Chaos Theory - with a general nod to the Splinter Cell world.

Firstly - do you suggest that Amon Tobin 'doesn't know how to mix' ? ! :shock:
- And I thought the audio design on Doom3 was exceptional, especially given it is previous generation (well both of the mentioned titles are actually) .. but well .. it's a matter of taste certainly ..

Actually there were some edgy beat trax on the last SC:Conviction which I really dug as well ..
But yeah .. matter of taste ..
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Re: if i wanted to compose music for video games...

Postby narcoman » Fri Sep 02, 2011 10:42 pm

Just not a fan. Best leave it at that!! ;)
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Re: if i wanted to compose music for video games...

Postby Martin Walker » Sat Sep 03, 2011 12:45 pm

jellyjim wrote:I wonder if it's easier to get into mobile games (iOS, Android Etc) as it's a younger industry with more virgin pastures than the consoles? Just a thought.

Probably easier to get into, but I suspect it's difficult to earn any money from it :beamup:

Someone contacted me a few weeks ago to ask if they have my permission to use my Commodore 64 music for the game 'Armalyte' in an iPhone game. I took advice and ended up saying "yes, as long as I get credited as composer", but no money changed hands at all :headbang:


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