Designing Music NOW

Dedicated to the Craft of Creating Music for Video Games and Interactive Media

Studio Time with JunkieXL – Season 2 Tutorial Episodes

Studio Time with JunkieXL – Season 2 Tutorial Episodes

Introduction Designing Music NOW is honored to be bringing you Season 2 of JunkieXL’s online tutorial series, Studio Time.  Thanks so much to Tom Holkenborg (JunkieXL) for sharing his immense knowledge and experience. Season 2, Episode 1 – Composing for...

Team Building in an Indie World

Team Building in an Indie World

The traditional division of labor in the scoring process has eroded completely. Composers used to be one player in a fairly large music team. They put notes on paper, attended recording sessions, and bore few other responsibilities. As our industry has evolved our responsibilities have steadily increased. Today’s composer is responsible for every step of the music team’s process, and very often a lone guerrilla composer replaces the entire team of yesteryear. The support network which used to be built-in has evaporated.

We don’t have the luxury of being specialists any more. As scoring budgets shrink, our responsibilities move towards infinity. Today we must have a thorough balance of artistry, craft, and business, wearing all of the hats and managing many disparate tasks single-handedly. We are expected to own and operate our own studios and do a huge number of other tasks not expected of us ten or twenty years ago. We’re not composers, we’re the CEOs of small music businesses and we’re responsible for every aspect of music production.

Networking The Right Way

Networking The Right Way

The question “What is the best way to network?” is one that can baffle even the most successful artists. The music industry has become extremely diverse and the work is spread out extremely widely, so Guerrilla tactics are needed more than ever before. Any industry relating to the arts is whimsical. Styles change, tastes change, the personalities of the creators and consumers change, and the arts themselves change. It can be very difficult to pinpoint a need and position yourself to fill that need. Even if you’re able to do that, it can still be difficult to monetize what you have done. The methods of networking are constantly changing, and the type of networking that pays off is changing just as fast. No matter how long your music career lasts, the difficulty of building and rebuilding your network will persist throughout for all but a lucky few.

Creating Music for Robots: Interview with the Composing Team for Cozmo

Creating Music for Robots: Interview with the Composing Team for Cozmo

Cozmo is a table-top robot released last October by Anki. Recently, DesigningMusicNow got to interview composers Brian Trifon and Brian Lee White of Finishing Move Inc. and award winning composer Gordy Haab about the music behind Cozmo. Gordy Haab is a GANG award winning composer whom has also scored such game titles as Star Wars: Battlefront, Star Wars: The Old Republic, Kinect Star Wars & The Walking Dead: Survival Instinct. Brian Trifon and Brian Lee White of Finishing Move Inc. have worked on many of the award winning games including Halo Wars 1 & 2.

The following interview questions for the Cozmo music team were prepared by Michael Sweet’s advanced interactive video game scoring course at Berklee College of Music. The student composers included Ross Alexander, Dominic Delore, Kaela Fanelli,Timothy Przybylinski, and Ian Silver.

As an introduction to Cozmo, and to help acquaint you with some of the audio aspects of Cozmo, we’ve included the music and sound diary post from the Cozmo development team below:

Designing a Music System for a VR Shooter (ROM: Extraction)

Designing a Music System for a VR Shooter (ROM: Extraction)

Introduction – About ROM: Extraction ROM: Extraction is an arcade-like shooter for VR set in a fictional futuristic world that has you taking on the role of an extraction specialist. As a soldier assigned to harvest little orbs harnessing immense amounts of...

NEWS: Indiecade Awards 2016

NEWS: Indiecade Awards 2016

INDIECADE HONORS THE YEAR’S MOST INNOVATIVE INDEPENDENT GAMES AT 9th ANNUAL FESTIVAL AT UNIVERSITY OF SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA

Complete List of Winners

Rand Miller (pictured above receiving award), creator of Myst recognized with the 2016 Trailblazer Award for his accomplishments and contributions to gaming.

LOS ANGELES—OCTOBER 17 – IndieCade, the premier international festival of independent games, honored the winners of the 2016 IndieCade Awards at an event last night at the Norris Theater on the campus of the University of Southern California.

The IndieCade Festival has distinguished itself for providing a platform for identifying the best, brightest and most inspired independent games in the world. This year’s festival was held on the campus of The School of Cinematic Arts at USC in downtown Los Angeles.

“The IndieCade Festival is a celebration of the innovation and creativity that distinguishes the world of indie gaming,” said Stephanie Barish, Indiecade’s chief executive officer, “Independent developers are essential for the progress and advances of the larger game industry and we’re proud to provide a home that celebrates and honors their talent, dedication and important works.”

Soundstage Wins Audio Design Award

One of the most interesting Audio VR projects to come around is this year’s Audio Design Award winner, Soundstage. You can learn more about them at their website: Soundstage VR. For a complete list of all winners and links to the games, head over here.

Soundstage
Soundstage VR – The First VR Synth
Disasterpiece’s Score Propels Hyperlight Drifter to the Jury Choice Award

Disasterpiece’s far out score for Hyperlight Drifter helped the game win Jury Choice Award. For a more in depth story behind the music, check out Level with Emily Reese’s interview of Disasterpiece here.

Interview with Dr. Seth Horowitz- Auditory Neuroscientist

Interview with Dr. Seth Horowitz- Auditory Neuroscientist

  Introduction I have always been fascinated with the neuroscience behind our craft – making music and sounds for games.  To really tell a story with music and sound,  I believe we need to have a great curiosity about this subject.  At Designing Music NOW,...