Monday, October 13, 2008

publicizing game music

I realized today that I've never heard of game music being on a radio station (aside from internet stations). Assuming that's true, that game music really is confined mostly to the internet, it makes me wonder two things:

(1) Is this due to lack of promotion by game publishers?
(2) Is this an indicator of the game industry's cultural relevance?

It might simply be a case in which marketing hasn't caught up with product advancement. It was not long ago that the production value of game music rarely exceeded MIDI files. The Mario theme is great, but the original recording is clearly dated (and it's really no more than a short ditty). Orchestral scores and CD-quality recordings are still relatively new on the scene. Perhaps publishers have not marketed their soundtracks beyond the internet yet.

If that's not the case, then why do film soundtracks make the radio and XM stations in TV satellite programming while game soundtracks do not? My gut reaction is that the audiences for those stations do not play games and still consider video games to be childish entertainment. Esteemed composer Danny Elfman's works from Fable (most of the music is by Russel Shaw) are not heard on classical radio stations, but his works from films like Edward Scissorhands are. Laura Karpman's work for Spielberg's Taken TV series might have earned her praise, but what about her work on Everquest 2?

To be honest, I'm not sure to what degree this issue is real or imagined, since I have no idea what is being played on the radio outside the Houston area. But here, at least, it seems only hardcore gamers care to hear game music once the controller is put down.

1 comment:

  1. Over here in the UK in late October is a videogames festival & one show is aimed at celebrating videogames & their music -

    I am hoping to go to a few of the events that are being run over that week - will let you know if I attend this one ;)


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