Music in games has come so far when you think about it. Not only do they accompany the action on screen, but they quite often make up a large part of the gameplay too. Just look at Guitar Hero and Samba Di Amigo. Games that use music in an interesting way to create something that is not only fun, but require a little more than the thumb-twiddling of joypad driven titles.
So music can make for an enjoyable plaything, but it can also greatly complement a cinematic or battle scene for example. From the bone-chilling soundtrack of Silent Hill 2, mainly composed of grinding metallic hits and dull bass, to the uplifting chorus of Halo’s main theme; these soundtracks contribute to the aesthetic pleasure of a title in the same way a piece of music accompanies a movie.
People even love these songs so much that they produce their own cover versions, such as remix community OverClocked ReMix which is bursting with undeniable talent, many of whom only do it for the fun, when they could clearly be working in the business and making money for their work right now.
Music in games has always been of great interest to me as I am a massive fan of rhythm-action titles such Elite Beat Agents and Guitar Hero, but I also enjoy the works of Nobuo Uematsu, of Final Fantasy and Lost Odyssey fame. That’s three very different titles which use music in equally disparate ways.
It was to my excitement then, that I found out the annual Video Games Live tour was coming to the Glasgow Concert Halls on June 26 this year. It’s an event where an orchestra performs covers of classic game tunes, spanning thirty years. The Royal Scottish National Orchestra (RSNO) has the honours this year and will be belting out fan favourites from Mario Bros, Sonic, Final Fantasy, Halo and World of Warcaft. All set alongside a high-tech lighting and visual presentation.
Check out this footage from last year:
There’s something so nostalgic about seeing games like Ghouls n’ Ghosts and Outrun given the orchestra treatment, so like a foaming lunatic I got tickets as soon as i heard about the performance and I’m counting down the days until the show
Simon Woods, Chief Executive of the RSNO, said: “Video Games Live is a breathtaking event both sonically and visually, and the power of the RSNO will really bring it to life. We are very pleased to bring this major production to Scotland for the first time. Symphonic music is pushing at its traditional boundaries and Video Games Live is a fascinating step on the journey, as well as being a phenomenally entertaining evening.”
The show will be conducted and presented by Tommy Tallarico and Jack Wall, the talent behind the soundtracks to some of the most iconic games in the industry, including Prince of Persia and Splinter Cell. Says Tallarico: “It’s a great honour for us to be performing the very first video game concert ever in Scotland and to be playing with such a prestigious and talented orchestra in one of the finest concert halls in Europe will make it even that much better.”
Ready-Up will hopefully be attending the event so you can expect to see us there on the night, tapping our toes and nodding our heads. Expect a review later on in the summer.