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Ben Pope

The Role Of Sound In Games

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  For this discussion topic I went out and researched sound in video games to find out what the views are on its importance to game production. The first article is from Renegade Sandwich on GamerDino here:

  In the article he goes on to talk about how far sound and audio technology has come and how early music in games used a thematic approach to cue players as to what they could expect in different situations. This meant having relaxing music during exploration to fast-paced soundtracks when in a fight. The importance of music is stressed by the author because he feels it elicits visceral reactions and makes people feel "something". Tied with context immersion becomes even more possible than in past days of old music technologies.

  Sandwich discusses how audio has changed to include more of an emphasis on voice actors as key players in the voice of characters that draws in immersion further. Motion capture tech combined with audio recording and integration add to the importance of audio in games to him. Voice acting is said to have been a field that received smaller praise than the musical scores, and sound design is another discussed in the article. I like how he states that sound design is used to create a living world in games and is only focused on when done poorly. Designing sounds adds tiny details that make the gaming world more believable-and have a range of uses depending on the game they are made for. The author states that good sound design demonstrates a caring developer.

  I would love to hear reactions to the article on sound in video games discussed above. Also, I want to hear about your own reactions and experiences with video game music that truly changed your life. Games that had superb soundtracks that you will never forget and sound designs that immersed you further in a series.

  One of my all-time favorite soundtracks is found in the Mass Effect Trilogy. The soundtrack to the first game can be listened to here:

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