I’m looking for good examples of action games which specifically adjust
their music according to the level of action onscreen. So as the action
ramps up, and you’re shooting/whacking more badguys, the musical
likewise also ramps up to become more dramatic, etc.
I’m looking for games that do this particularly well and in an
artistically tasteful way.
Please log in or register to post a reply.
In response to my post, someone just recommended me this game:
Anyone else know about it?
Yes, Journey has been getting quite a lot of rave reviews lately and is
being hailed as an art game. I’m not sure how much it adjusts its music
to what you’re doing. Most of the game is pretty scripted; there are not
really any “bad guys” per se.
One game that comes to mind is Portal 2, which has some sections where
the music responds to your actions. Beyond that, quite a lot of
action-adventure or shooter games have some form of dynamic “music
tension”. Far Cry comes to mind, although it was fairly unsubtle there.
Infamous and Infamous 2 did some amount of dynamic music tension stuff
as well, and I’m sure plenty of other games.
Mirror’s Edge comes to mind. They have several strips of audio that they
piece together to form sort of a dynamic music experience without
actually creating megabytes worth of music files. They had several audio
files for ambient, combat, and puzzle music for each level. I believe
they cross-fade between tracks when it comes time to switch things up.
Take a look at FMOD’s webpage. I’m pretty sure
most games built using their audio library follows the same pattern
since they have supported dynamic audio for quite some time. You can
download their SDK and check out their tools to see how it’s done.
Fairly simple to setup.
So how exactly is this kind of thing accomplished? Is it mainly an
artistic challenge, and coding is really secondary to that? Or is it
primarily a coding issue?
The way I picture things, is that you’d have some state variable that’s
calculated from how much action is going on. Then depending on how high
the value of this state variable is, then it will cause the extra action
music to be played. So that seems relatively simple and straightforward.
It’s the way you integrate this pieces of music that’s the main
challenge, and that seems to be primarily an artistic issue.
Yes, I think on a technical level it’s mostly just crossfading. Another
way might be to have predefined branch points within a music track where
it can switch over to another track with an authored transition that
makes it sound natural. But then you’d have to have branch points all
over the place or the system wouldn’t be responsive enough. (On the
other hand, maybe a slower response would be good for this sort of
thing.) In any case, the challenge seems more artistic than technical to