Welcome back everyone! I’m happy to say that I have had the opportunity to take part in a new isometric management game called Prosperity. The premise is that you build a tower in the name of the Gods. For this project, the criteria is that we must start feeling one emotion at the beginning of the game and by the end of the game feel another. Apart from being able to achieve this with music relatively easily (emotions are what we do), the gameplay itself must be able to conjure the particular emotions, in the case of Prosperity, going from Pride to Regret.
The word Prosperity has no doubt made a few of you think about the unfortunate passing of the legendary Leonard Nimoy, I would like to just say rest in peace Leonard and thank you for your incredible contribution to our culture.
The best thing about working on the game Prosperity is that the Game-Designer and Programmer, Jack Kuskoff talks the musical language, which takes the guess work out of collaborating and makes my job a lot easier, this is because it is easy to work when there is a clear musical objective. Another good thing is that Jack has done plenty of work in the planning phase and is able to articulate his ideas clearly, making the compositional process flow.
Here is an example of the communication for the musical direction of the game.
In general, the music is orchestral, with a focus on strings and brass.
Bright and cheery. A moderate/slow tempo with uplifting strings. Designed to give the feel of starting out on a grand, new adventure.
Productive and industrious. A faster tempo than the early game music. Driving percussion that emphasises the beat (use of a hammer on anvil clang would be advantageous here).
An eerie, foreboding song. The use of deep, sinister chanting would work well. The song should have an aggressive and dominating tone to it .
A ten second track featuring rising strings and brass, with angelic voices. The track finishes at a climax of the voices.
A ten second track featuring pounding drums and deep chanting. The track finishes with a climax of the chanting.
As you can see, there is clear and focused direction, giving me the opportunity to just write the music, without having to try and elicit responses that are essentially unmusical in nature.
Menu/Early Game Music Concept
If you have been following this blog, then you are aware that I have been researching and experimenting with composing in layers. Layered compositions give the music an intuitive feel and for this project I am implementing this method to enhance the feeling of creation. The basic principle behind Prosperity is to build a tower, and my concept is that as the tower grows in size, the music also grows, achievable by composing the music in layers and triggering them to fade in at certain stages of the building process.
Layer 1 – Snare Drum
Stage of building – Very little or no tower built
Layer 2 – Brass
Stage of building – Base of tower built, starting to take shape
Layer 3 – Strings
Stage of building – Recognisable shape with plenty of progress
Layer 4 – Melody
Stage of building – Near complete for this phase of the game, final layer before the music changes to Mid-Game Music
And finally, here is a mock up of the in-game action with all layers.
Well thats the Early game section, I’m off to compose the Mid-Game Section. xo