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hi there im a student studying games computing. im looking to getting into the games industry. what routes should i be looking to take? also im trying to do a final year project on interactive audio, if any of you have any information or contacts that could be of any use id be grateful if you would let me know of them. if any of you would like me to write music for a game or in fact anything, then ill only be willing to help. it builds up my show reel.

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I did a final year project on interactive music. I learnt the basics of C++ and MFC so I could put together a little interface to represent a game and used DirectMusic producer to write the interactive content. To be honest, it was an awful lot of work which resulted in not a lot to show for itself. I wasn''t particularly pleased with the results but I learnt absolutely ****loads of new stuff, and all of it has been incredibly useful.

Looking at the different systems of adaptive/interactive music that games utilise, writing your own examples (to educate yourself and demonstrate their strengths & weaknesses) would make an excellent project.

DirectMusic Produer is freely available, but a bitch to learn.


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thats some good advice man. what do you do for a living now or is that too personal. what would you reccommend me looking at or have you got an example of your final project i can take a look at?

thanks man thats some good help all the same...i will only appreciate more if you have it to offer

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My main motivation is a desire to work creatively with sound. I come from a strong musical background, but I decided against performance and I''ve never really been that interested in musical composition. My music technology degree turned me on to recording and manipulating sound. I worked on a few shockingly bad electro-acoustic pieces and a couple of soundscapes (as in the Vancouver Soundscape Project). I really enjoyed that work, so I started to look for a career which would allow me to get paid to do it. I’m a ludophile if ever there was one, so it was perhaps inevitable that I would want to do sound for games.

My degree was more academic than vocational, which was a good thing in retrospect, so I lacked the experience necessary to get a job. More importantly, I didn’t have any material to show potential employers. I knew this before I finished my degree, and I knew that I wanted to be a “sound designer” so I applied to do a masters degree in Sound Design. I won a postgraduate scholarship from my undergraduate University to do the course, otherwise I probably couldn’t have afforded to be a student for another year.

Doing the MA allowed me to get my demo-reel together, and spend a year studying the industry and the job-market. My profile says that I’ve been a member of these forums since June 2002, so that must’ve been when I started obsessively reading absolutely everything that I could find about game audio and the games industry. There is a lot of crap out there; but when you’re obsessed with something even the crap is interesting. Besides, if you read everything you’ve got to come across those golden nuggets. Every day I’d look at the recruitment agency websites, there are at least 10 serving the UK, to see if there was anything new. Once a month I’d look at the recruitment pages of every developer in the UK, there are at least a hundred, because not everyone uses a recruitment agency. This gives you lots of useful information – how many jobs there are in your field at any one time, who is currently recruiting, who was recruiting – and allows you to investigate further into issues such as why a company is recruiting, why they are re-advertising the same job 6 months later, how many of the jobs were aimed at someone without previous experience etc.

Maxim: research is absolutely key in planning your assault.

Getting into game music is a totally different kettle of fish. Don’t take my word for it – RESEARCH! Answer questions for yourself.

I’m naturally gifted for this work and I’ve worked hard to hone my skills, but I’m also incredibly fortunate. The day I sent off my MA dissertation a sound design job came up which I got. Talk about good fortune. I’m a lucky ****.

You’re already on the right path for your project in that you’ve isolated a topic you’re interested in. I don’t believe in setting a question and seeing it through to the bloody end. I tend to investigate everything and take lots of notes. You’ll either end up with a general overview, which is perfectly acceptable, or you’ll zoom in on something which you found to be particularly interesting. There’s bound to be a few dead ends along the way. If you start with too strict a topic you run the risk of hitting a dead end with no way out. A project is a journey, and travelling takes time; that’s why rushed projects are poor.

Nobody gets to see my project; it’s totally lame and I’d cringe myself to death

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Thank you very much indeed man. thanks for the boost.

Yeah you are right, i havent got a specific question to look at and having a degree in music technology myself the music part of it is something i dont really need to invest too much time on. as a get out clause ive incorporated the "Research and evaluate past audio methods" this will cover the developemnt of sound in games from the 80''s. this will aim to address the ad''s disad''s limitations and improvements of outdated stuff and compare to the next step method as it were.

along with this ive decided to create a few dead basic flash games/intros and have the option to choose a music for each video.

the user will listen to the short music tracks and identify a suitable backing for the game on the screen eg, have a hard rock tune a mario type tune, orchestral sounding(old) tune and something else.

obviously with this ill have intro movies to a puzzle game, platformer, beatem up, medieval wartime strategy and something else. these will be like flash intros of the main game menu screen. the user will chose the music that best fits. These i know i can do and execute well.

the main concept of the project i think is to show the user that interactive audio is the place to be and demonstrate how the music draws the guy in rather than static music as it were.

with this hopefully i can create an example that will show off interactive audio, even if it has to be a bit lame to show the point, the point will be shown off never the less.

thanks for the help man and you have no idea how much i appreciate the help. ill be checking this site very reguarly, ill keep you updated on my project if you like and as music and game buddies we may get some good coversation going.

once again man thanks for the help.

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My advice is to buy, read, and memorize this book: "The Complete Guide to Game Audio", by Aaron Marks.

http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/1578200830/gignews/onyourmarkmus-20/104-4628614-9403121

It covers everything you need to know to get into the biz. Oh, and I am in no way associated with the author, in case you were wondering. I''m just a huge fan of the book.

There is another book, by "The Fat Man" about game audio... but I didn''t find it to be all that helpful. It IS wildly entertaining, but not nearly as helpful as the Aaron Marks book.

Best of luck to you!
TODD

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