Video Game Music Enhances the Story and Experience
(2 min read)
Do you remember the first time you played Super Mario Bros? It doesn’t matter which system or decade it was. The main theme has remained virtually the same and is unequivocally the sound of two plumbing entrepreneurs trying to find a princess who was captured by a demonic dragon-turtle and his minions. Traversing worlds of forest, ice, water, desert, and inexplicable flying ships made of wood and cannons, these brothers may die, but they always come back.
Mario Bros is an example of what it’s like when a story has its own unique sound. You can’t hear the music without immediately identifying its source.
Could you hear the music in your head as you visualized the immortal Mario Brothers? Those themes were so perfectly created amidst the constraints of the first NES. With new music when you go underground, reach a new world, fight a boss, or jump to the top of the flagpole, sliding down and receiving a proportional amount of fireworks, the music is familiar and ingrained in us.
Video games have come a long way and the accompanying music has also become more and more complex and prominent, but it has always been memorable. There’s more than one reason why symphony orchestras have concerts dedicated to the music of Zelda, Final Fantasy, and countless others. (And why Pac-Man’s music has been sampled more times than you’d think.)
Mario Bros is an example of what it’s like when a story has its own unique sound. You can’t hear the music without immediately identifying its source. It’s all about finding the right music to accompany and enhance your story. Let’s find the sound of your next quest.
For a closer look at the history of Video Game Music, check out this extremely well-done podcast: https://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/m0002t4b