Game Audio Research

Early video game music was once limited to simple melodies of early sound synthesizer technology. This inspired the form of music called Chiptunes which combined both complex patterns and traditional music styles, and became the most popular sound of the first video games.

Things that made up early pieces of music :

  • Pieces designed to repeat indefinitely, rather than having an arranged ending or fading out.
  • Pieces lacking lyrics and playing over gameplay sounds.
  • Limited polyphony. Only three notes can be played simultaneously on the Nintendo Entertainment System. A great deal of effort was put into composition to create the illusion of more notes playing at once.

Many games now allow people to insert their own music where it could be inserted. There is two types of sounds when it comes to games (Non-diegetic and diegetic). Non-diegetic sounds are sounds that originated from the real world and Diegetic sounds is sound that has been electronically created and  made on a piece of software, normally on a computer.

Many games like Dark Souls had a lot of sound effects due to the large scale of its gameplay: ranging from hitting stone walls to hitting things with a sword. Rolling through wooden things that you shouldn’t be able to, for example wooden carts, and picking up something. All these need different sounds. The punching effect is of someone punching a melon and the picking up sound was created using software.

Many games also have a soundtrack that silently plays in the background. This is normally not very noticeable, as it might distract from the gameplay.

In the game GTA V while driving a car, you have the option to choose, if  you want to listen to music while you are driving. This adds to the atmosphere as many people listen to some sort of music when driving. There are many radio stations to choose from and this is a big part of the experience. However it doesn’t overpower the noise of the engine of the car you are driving.  Nonetheless that isn’t the only sound that exists while playing the game. In one of the most recent updates for the game, heists were brought out, where players would be given missions or objectives to complete. While on these heists a semi loud piece of music would be played. Here is an example of GTAV Music  . This added a new layer to the game, not only in gameplay, but also to the sound in the game of GTA V. Many players like the new addition, though some don’t.

Also in addition to the engines and the heist, the gun sounds in GTA V mustn’t be forgotten.  GTA V as we probably all know, has a mass amount of guns and weapons to wreak havoc on Los Santos. With lots of weapons comes lots of sounds.  The awesome thing is most of the guns are not similar sounding in any way. Then if you add in all the reloading sounds, you have a ton of sounds to make. All the gun sounds are different and take into consideration how the gun or weapon would sound in real life.

Sound: 8 Bar Beat

In our lesson with Richard we were given the task of creating a short 8 Bar beat in GarageBand. I used mostly the loops in Garageband and it turned out okay. However I would improve it by not using loops and actually inputing the notes myself to create a piece of music that i feel was my own and not loops. Many of the loops were not to the style i wanted as i wanted something that had a hard hitting bass. I couldn’t find anyones I like so I found 3 pieces of music i liked and that went together and this is what it created.


Sound is a very important aspect of games and a game without sound can be most times very boring, as many people while gaming love to listen to the awesome soundtrack that they eventually buy. In the lesson we learned how some soundtracks of games are made using Software and actual musical instruments. Many of which the instruments where then plug into a PC to distort the sound. Many Games use Sound as as vital part of the game ans not only is it nice to listen to, can it also give the player the scene of something. For Example Playing very Low Dark type music can create an eerie feel and then add to the effect the actual game play the game is trying to make. In the start of game soundtracks many were made on a music sheet. And now are created on Computer on “high tech software”.