As an avid gamer with a passion for audio design and music production, the opportunity to compose the music of Momo Ichigo has been a lifelong dream come true. My audio background has primarily been in film, and while the next-gen games being developed today become more and more similar to the medium of film with each passing year, games and films are still vastly different when it comes to music composition and audio design.
When writing music for film, a composer generally already has a "locked" picture or scene to work with, or a final, edited version of the film to compose to. However, when it comes to composing for games, the player is essentially the director of each scene. We, the players, decide how much time we want to spend exploring different levels and interacting with various characters, and we each have our own unique experiences within the game, such as how long it takes to solve a puzzle or complete a boss battle. Even cutscenes have evolved from static, unchanging sequences to partially or fully interactive scenes.
Because player interaction determines what music will be triggered when and how long it will be present, it is absolutely crucial that musical themes cleverly incorporate the use of varying orchestration and layers that grow and change in intensity as they progress. I think we've all encountered a game at some point that relies on two or three musical themes that loop over and over, which can quickly become frustrating and tempt the player to just mute the audio entirely. I will always have a special place in my heart for classic Super Mario-style computer chip loops (ahh nostalgia!), but unless a developer is intentionally going for that classic, old-school style, the music of a game should not only welcome a player into the world in which they'll be playing, but also provide an engaging atmosphere that continually feels new and exciting. Themes that represent specific characters should help to further develop and define those characters by conveying moods and emotions that make us feel as if we know the character and understand where they are coming from.
I am incredibly thankful to be a part of the amazingly talented team developing Momo Ichigo, and I can't wait to see how players respond to the musical atmospheres we are creating for the game. As technology continues to advance and the game industry continues to further embrace diversity in game design, I am very excited to see what's in store for the evolution of video game music and sound design in the coming years.
Lead Audio Designer