The impact of gaming on the music industry

2023-03-28 14:43:003 min. Read time0 Comments

Gaming and music have been intertwined for decades, with games incorporating sound effects, background music, and even licensed tracks to enhance the player's experience. However, in recent years, gaming has increasingly become a platform for the music industry to showcase and promote its artists. Collaborations, licensing, and soundtracks have become integral components of the gaming industry, creating a mutually beneficial relationship for both industries.

Collaborations between game developers and musicians have become increasingly common. The collaboration between American rapper Travis Scott and Fortnite, for example, broke records for online gaming attendance when Scott performed a virtual concert in the game. Similarly, in 2019, Lucasfilm and Electronic Arts aimed to create a distinctive theme song for their game, Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order, which led them to consider using Mongolian throat singing, known for its uniqueness in music. Consequently, they collaborated with The Hu, a Mongolian rock band, to work on the project with Respawn Entertainment. The partnership resulted in a significant boost in The Hu's career, as they rapidly gained massive popularity. The Hu wrote Suugan Essena, which was initially in Mongolian, but the lyrics were later translated into a language invented exclusively for Star Wars.

Take a look at the official music video (press thumbnail):

ITake a look at the official music video

These collaborations have become a lucrative marketing tool for the music industry, allowing artists to reach a wider and younger audience. In turn, the gaming industry benefits from the promotional power of these collaborations, bringing in new players and increasing engagement with existing ones.

Licensing has also become a significant source of revenue for both the gaming and music industries. Licensing allows game developers to use popular songs in their games, creating a more immersive experience for players. For the music industry, licensing generates additional revenue streams for artists and record labels.

One notable example of successful licensing is the use of Queen's "Don't Stop Me Now" in the popular game Just Dance 2019. The licensing deal allowed the song to be used in the game and was also featured in the game's advertising campaign. This resulted in a surge of popularity for the song, with it re-entering the UK charts 41 years after its original release.

Soundtracks have also become an essential component of the gaming industry. Video game soundtracks are no longer just background music, but rather a critical element of the game's overall experience. The soundtrack of the game can help set the tone for the game, enhance the player's emotional connection, and even become a standalone product.

The soundtrack for the game "Red Dead Redemption 2," composed by Woody Jackson, received critical acclaim and won several awards, including Best Score/Music at The Game Awards 2018. Similarly, the soundtrack for the game "The Last of Us Part II," composed by Gustavo Santaolalla and Mac Quayle, received widespread critical acclaim and was a commercial success.

The popularity of gaming soundtracks has resulted in new revenue streams for the music industry, with game soundtracks becoming a marketable product in their own right. Game developers have also started to collaborate with musicians to create original soundtracks for their games. One example is the game "Death Stranding," for which Icelandic musician Hildur Guðnadóttir composed the game's score, winning a BAFTA award for her work.

The impact of gaming on the music industry cannot be overstated. Collaborations, licensing, and soundtracks have become an integral part of the gaming industry, creating new revenue streams for the music industry and enhancing the gaming experience for players. Music is the loyal partner of our leisure activities, whether they are immersive and dynamic experiences that we love to be absorbed in, and which we would never want to be without thanks to their audio effects.

It’s so important to have pride in yourself and have confidence in yourself, but at the same time try to compose thinking of your listeners.

- Yōko Shimomura

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