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Just curious, what is your "goto" when it's about finding ingame music ? Library ? Composer ? Else ?

Thanks ;o) - Phil

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Most people I know go for composers. Composers in my area are quite affordable. For myself, I'd compose my own for most of the music I need. 

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Thanks for answering ;o) Just to be sure when you say "Most people I know...", you're talking about indie developers right ? (small companies from 1 to 10 people let say) 

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If you need just one track - you could go with a library online. There are literally tons of options if you google "royalty free music" or "stock music." If you're wanting more customized, branded stuff that can have the same, unique personality spread across an entire OST, then you're best bet is hiring a composer. 

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a third option, depending on the style of game you're making, is local musicians in popular genres.

I don't count it as being quite the same as "composers" in the sense they don't primarily compose for video games or films, but excel in their given genre, and you don't need a 'dynamic' score. I was once a part of a project that utilized local electronic musicians and DJs for "nightclub shootout" type sequences and stuff like that, it was cool. The Korean version of Guilty Gear XX hired a band from South Korea to write a unique soundtrack for it, and it arguably turned out to be the best of the series!

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Posted (edited)
On 7/3/2018 at 7:26 PM, PhReyGibbons said:

Thanks for answering ;o) Just to be sure when you say "Most people I know...", you're talking about indie developers right ? (small companies from 1 to 10 people let say) 

They are indie developers. However, many of them are established for many years. I think there were no 'library' back then. So, because they started off having to hire a composer, they continue to doing so until this day I believe.

At the company I had been working with, we even hire an in-house composer. Of course, with the size of the company at at that time (12 staffs), it's very difficult to feed enough work to him. We ended up letting him go (well, he quit). 

Another friend of mine was working as a freelance composer. He mentioned that at one point he quoted 1,500Baht (roughly 50USD) per track, and 300 Baht (9USD) per sfx. That was how low we had back then. Of course now a day the situation is much better than his time.

Anyway, I'm currently running a Game Audio Interested group locally in Thailand. I know a handful of composers and sound designers. We had a discussion about the library and they mentioned that many developers now a day goes for library. 

Edited by mr_tawan

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57 minutes ago, mr_tawan said:

Anyway, I'm currently running a Game Audio Interested group locally in Thailand. I know a handful of composers and sound designers. We had a discussion about the library and they mentioned that many developers now a day goes for library. 

I would be curious to know what motivates their choice to go through a music library though ?Prices ?  Or is it "practical" (they do not have to deal with a real person etc...) ? or both ?

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19 hours ago, PhReyGibbons said:

I would be curious to know what motivates their choice to go through a music library though ?Prices ?  Or is it "practical" (they do not have to deal with a real person etc...) ? or both ?

Well I think the reason is, they know what they are gonna get. Hiring someone means you have to wait until the composer finish his work. If you end up don't like the outcome, most freelancers will allow a few changes without charges. Too many changes make you have to pay extra for further changes. Also it means more time is needed.

Also, some developers (especially new faces) don't know where and how to hire a composer. In the past, these people ended up using illegal copy of another game's OST (for example). Having library make their life easier. 

And many indie developers don't know how to communicate with sound designer/composers. So, knowing upfront how the song/sound is is quite a benefit here.

But when it comes to larger scale commercial game, a custome-made tailored game soundtrack/sfx are still needed. It shows the level of polish of the game. 

Of course, both library and custom-made can be used together (especially in the sfx area).

Edited by mr_tawan

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I see. Thank you for explaining all this. Very usefull information. ;o)

I guess the very large majority of mobile and casual games use music from libraries nowdays.
Of course you can hear the same music in different games, but the chances are still thin, because there are so much games and so much music that are created...

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One benefit of hiring a composer/designer is, some of them can help you with certains thing more than just composing music. For example, I've heard from a composer friend of mine that a company asked him to help troubleshooting a problem where one sound effect does not sound as impactful as it should when it's used in the game. He found that the frequency range of that sfx collides with the background music. After he does some EQ on the BGM, the sound effect sounds great again. This is something in the area of sound engineering which many game developers are not familiar with. 

One another example may be, some composer/designer can help with audio middleware implementation (FMOD, WWISE). If you decide to use one, you can off-load a lot of audio-related tasks to the composer/designer (which would know more than you in this area). Of course you might end up paying him more than just composing, but it might save some cost in a long run. Anyway I think in larger game, they utilize dedicated game audio developer to work on the middleware and let the composer/sound designer focus on the assets only.

Edited by mr_tawan

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