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If you're like me, you usually turn the music off while playing video games. I like to be able to hear the audio cues clearly, like when an enemy is approaching from behind. And, of course, the satisfying sound of an enemy's head being removed. ( Hey, he was trying to kill me. It's justified.)

Lately, though, I've been taking time to listen to some of the music that I'd been intentionally ignoring. Surprise - some of it's really good. And even more surprising, a lot of it is being created by amateurs who do it solely for the joy of making music.

Here's an example, from an upcoming mod for Skyrim. The composer is a Swedish fellow by the name of Fredrik Jonasson. Poke around his Bandcamp page and be inspired.

 

 

 

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I always loved the Elder Scrolls music.

The music from the Amanita Design games (Machinarium, Samarost) are also wonderful.  The soundtrack from Superbrothers Sword & Sworcery was another standout for me.

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1 hour ago, bitflipper said:

And even more surprising, a lot of it is being created by amateurs who do it solely for the joy of making music.

I hope they get paid something if it's used

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Posted (edited)

Jeremy Soule did some of the Elder Scrolls scores and I believe he is exclusive to Guild Wars, but definitely no amateur, since he "has been described as the 'John Williams of video game music'"

https://wiki.guildwars2.com/wiki/Jeremy_Soule

[Just read that through and he signed an exclusivity agreement with EverQuest... found that odd.]

Edited by mettelus

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15 minutes ago, mettelus said:

Jeremy Soule did some of the Elder Scrolls scores and I believe he is exclusive to Guild Wars, but definitely no amateur, since he "has been described as the 'John Williams of video game music'"

https://wiki.guildwars2.com/wiki/Jeremy_Soule

[Just read that through and he signed an exclusivity agreement with EverQuest... found that odd.]

I believe his exclusivity agreement with EverQuest was for EverQuest Next, which was intended to be the sequel to EverQuest 2. It was cancelled in 2014.  I think his EQ work came to an end, at that point. 

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Jeremy Soule was involved with first Gulid Wars games and at the start of Gulid Wars 2, later when he commited to EQ ANet replaced him with inhouse staff. One of the songs that he did is Fear Not This Night, it is still popular and frequently comes back in form of various covers.

 

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18 hours ago, antler said:

I hope they get paid something if it's used

I was referring to those who create music (or other content) for free mods. Some of the more ambitious mod projects involve dozens of people, all unpaid volunteers, working for months or even years. Of course, some of them are building a portfolio in hopes of landing a paid gig, but the majority do it just for the fun of it.

You can, for example, replace all of the original music in Skyrim (which is quite good), as well as sound effects, with third-party content. For example, I use one that improves ambient sound, such as applying reverb where applicable (e.g. in a cave) or low-frequency rumble from distant lightning.  Someone figured out that the PS4 version used wave files that sound better than the PC version's lossy codecs, and extracted the better-sounding PS4 audio so PC users could use it.

Here's a fan-made soundtrack that can either replace or augment the original game music.

 

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