The Video Game Music Rhapsody: How the Industry Made It to the Grammy

by doli89 | Nov 13, 2022

With the huge impact of video game music on the world, Recording Academy decided to create a new Grammy Awards category for The Best Score Soundtrack for Video Games and Other Interactive Media. The industry experts discussed what will happen next for this billion-dollar market. Since the introduction of the 8-bit Nintendo Entertainment System (NES) in 1985, video game has been an integral part from our daily life.

According to the survey, more than 80 percent of Millenials and 87 percent of Gen Zs play video game music at least once a week. More than fifty percent of gamers say that video game helps them to stay connected with their friends, make connections, and express themselves. With that being said, music in video games has been an important part of the game experience and identity.

Video Game Music Past

Since the beginning, video games have always been able to sustain a great relationship with music. But the way music used in video games has been developed substantially in the last 40 years. The game platform in the early 80s could only play three notes; while NES is a huge improvement, music outputs are still limited. At that time, developers couldn`t produce music and sound effect played together. This forced composers and developers to train their creativity all the way.

How Composers and Artists Collaborate

Video game music needs technical knowledge and a good understanding of how the voice works on a digital or virtual platform. These special requirements push developers and artists alike to navigate a new landscape or creativity.

Video game creates a wave with a new income stream for some time. Uziel Colón, ex-Senior Project Manager of Recording Academy says that there are platforms where people monetize video games, and Metaverse brings more income streams. He is sure that video games and music are going to be a huge deal. Not only in the way how the music is distributed and marketed but also in the way how the music itself is created and how it interacts with fans.

It is important for artists to follow their passion, not what pushes them of what to follow. For a composer like Jonas Friedman, the best way to start is to spend time as much as possible creating music that means something to you and something you can be proud of. Every growing and competitive market needs time and knowledge. It is crucial to understand the game landscape, along with its fan base, because it is going to be yours too.

Global Access to Video Game Music

The game industry has a monumental global platform, providing music in a game that can be recognized internationally which might takes years or decades to develop. According to Deloitte, more than 30 percent of Gen Z discover music from games or are recommended by fellow gamers. According to Schnur, “Video game is far more massive than film and music industries combined. I believe that one of the main reasons is that the game industry is never afraid of technology. We have been embracing technology from the start.”

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