How to Write Music for Video Games


This is a blog about the music composition process.

I have been composing music for video games professionally for a long time now, and I have learned a lot of tricks and techniques along the way. This blog is an opportunity for me to share what I know with others who are interested in composing music for video games.

I will be posting general tips, as well as specific examples from my own work, and tutorials on how to make specific sounds or do specific things.

The purpose of this blog is to serve as a behind-the-scenes look at the music composition process, from start to finish. I’ll be covering topics and elements that go into writing music for video games, film, and other types of media. This is not a blog on how to compose music with a specific program or software, but rather a series of articles on the fundamentals of music composition.

For those of you who are new to my site, my name is Scott Buckley. I’m a composer and producer based in Melbourne, Australia. I’ve been writing music for video games and film since 2009 (see my portfolio here) and I am the founder & CEO of Score Draw Music – a boutique production music library that provides high quality instrumental tracks to creative professionals around the globe.

My background in music began at age 6 when I started learning the piano; it has since developed into an obsession with all things musical (and geeky!). After studying composition at university, I began working as an in-house composer/sound designer for game developer Halfbrick Studios. While there, I learned much about music composition as well as sound design and audio engineering. Since then I have continued composing over the years with independent game developers around the world.

I work as a freelance video game composer, which means that I get to write music for a living.

If you are a fan of electronic music and video games, you may know some of my previous work. For example the Far Cry 3: Blood Dragon soundtrack, which is a synthwave album inspired by 80s action movies and video games.

If you are interested in learning more about the process of writing music for video games, I’ve created this blog where I will share my observations on how to write music for visual media.

Hello! I’m Adam Kramar, a composer for video games and other types of media. I have several years experience composing music for the gaming industry and I’ve worked with some of the best developers in the world.

In my blog posts I’ll write about the composition process from different perspectives (including technical and creative) and give you tips on how to do it yourself.

I’ll also write about my own projects, including commissions, original albums and other stuff.

If you have any questions or feedback feel free to contact me 🙂

I write music for video games. I’m a composer, arranger, orchestrator, producer and sound designer. You can find out more about me here.

This blog is about my experience writing music for a video game. The project is called “Project Natalis” and it is a roleplaying game. The game features eight different races (elves, dwarves, humans, orcs, goblins, etc) , several cities and dungeons and a large amount of quests and sidequests which are combined in an interesting story. The development of the game has already started and we have already had several meetings in which we discussed the music requirements for the game.

Videogame music can be a very tricky thing. It is created to be heard in the background and looped over and over again. A lot of times the music has to fit into the background and not take away from the game, but at the same time it has to provide an atmosphere that the player can enjoy.

Over the years I have learned a few tricks which have helped me make my music more effective, as well as make my life easier as a composer. Here I will list some tips on how to make your composition process easy and enjoyable.

1. Start with a theme

It doesn’t matter what type of game it is or what genre of music you are writing. The first step should always be to create a theme (melody) for the game. Every section of your level or game can use this theme in some way and it will really tie everything together musically throughout your game. Most importantly, you want to make sure this melody is catchy and can be looped effectively without getting boring after five seconds. This will also help with branding your game when you are done. People will remember this melody and associate it with your entire game without even realizing it!

2. Sample yourself

I own a lot of libraries for creating sound

In the early days of videogames, music was an afterthought. You had a few guys who spent a few days banging out tunes on the keyboard for a game and then it was packaged up and launched. As videogames have evolved and become more sophisticated, so has their music. Game composers now spend months writing and recording expansive scores with live instruments, orchestras and choirs. Some of the best modern game music is better than what you’d hear in a movie theater or concert hall.

Some of the most memorable compositions from the golden age of videogames were created in only a few days (or less) by a single composer working alone in his basement or garage studio. The 8-bit classics featured repetitive melodies because they had to be short enough to fit into tiny memory chips. I think their nostalgic appeal comes from this simplicity, combined with the fact that they were composed with real instruments instead of the MIDI programming that dominated the PC market at the time.

The NES didn’t have much computing power–only 2 kilobytes of RAM–so you couldn’t do much at once. If you put any effects on your music, such as reverb or echo, you’d have to turn off the background graphics or sound effects to make room for them in


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