Final Digital Artefact

On the 30th of December, myself and two friends of mine, Jacob Sundgren, and Jared Woodham got together to finally complete the long awaited Podcast. This Podcast went for approximately 50 mins as we did get side tracked, therefore I uploaded a 12 minute Highlights Reel for a a more concise and digestible Digital Artefact. We talked about the three planned games being Alien: Isolation, Pokemon, and a change from Battlefield to Halo. For each game we talked about to strong points of the games music, and more specifically it’s importance and what benefits it provided the game.

Firstly we discussed Alien: Isolation, and its immersive, eerie soundtrack that keeps you on your toes the entirety of the game. We specifically discussed the different types of sounds present and how they created such an immense atmosphere. To illustrate, sounds sources heard include orchestration in minor key with suspensful timbre, Foley Sounds (Footsteps, falling furniture, screams, music various SFX etc.), and very importantly; silence. These sounds were used in the game, as mentioned in the podcast, very precisely. Specific scenes with very well timed build up and climaxes, to drop to nothing but silence when you know the alien is nearby. Thus, without these cues of music, silent moments, and intense foley sounds such as the alien “crackle” made out of a bag filled with rocks and garlic; the game wouldn’t be anywhere near as terrifying as it is.

For Pokemon, we mainly utilised the game to discuss battle adrenaline, as well as importantly the evolution of music in video games and the impact it brought upon us as gamers. Pokemon was released in 1998 with Pokemon Yellow, and featured nothing but a static, midi keyboard riff. As mentioned in the 50 minute podcast, during the scene that is playing whilst this Atari style music is present, Pickachu is seen riding a wave. To communicate the point a bit more clearer, the music was not a great portrayal of the emotion and atmosphere of the game. And with this example, we can now further see how the evolution of the music in video games has increased portrayal of specific emotion in video games. To illustrate with Pokemon, various instruments were added to the soundtracks such as lead guitar and drums. And therefore, the more intense, thought out technicalities of the music has made the game more hype, and enjoyable, such as the music during the battle against champion Cynthia; Pokemon Diamond/Pearl.

Finally, we shortly discussed Halo, and its battle/war themed orchestration, that helps the game achieve such a high level of a “grand/triumphant” nature. Everyone knows the classic halo menu theme song that is so catchy, as well as thrilling to the player as they become eager to play the game. This type of music is constantly portrayed during the whole game and a sense of heroism, and excitement to come out on top of the war that you fight in. This is portrayed in so many other war/first person shooter games such as medal of honour, battlefield and call of duty, as it is such an effective technique for the style of gameplay. Other points about Halo were made in comparison with the other two games and their points. For instance the foley Practice of the space like guns, as well as the grand space sounds created to portray the amazing atmosphere that we in reality can’t comprehend.

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