It is now common knowledge that many composers originally from traditional media, such as TV and film are now interested in composing music for video games and this has become quite a desirable career route. Writing game music is very rewarding but also somewhat challenging as the music has to be written in a flexible way, so that the tone can quickly change dependent on what is happening within the gameplay. It is not easy to get a job as a video game composer so what can you do to increase your chances of landing such a role?
Learn The Difference – If you have previously had a career in composing music within a different industry you must learn about the differences that you will face in the video game industry. There are many new challenges you will face in composing this kind of music and it is very important to educate yourself on these.
Be Versatile – Key to success in this industry is making sure that you are versatile in terms of what you are willing to create and you are not pigeon-holed into one genre. The spectrum of music within video games really does require a wide array of different types of music and if you are able to provide this it really will give you a better chance of succeeding. Video games can from anything from FarmVille and Pacman to Grand Theft Auto and online video slots machines.
Play The Games – It is of vital importance that you have an interest in gaming and have an awareness of what games are currently out there in the market for all different platforms. This will make discussions with game developers and during interviews for roles run a lot more smoothly and also ensure you know what your competitors are up to. So for example, in the case of video slot games, one only has to visit Unibet or any other established online casino to play hundreds of games; and in so doing gain a true appreciation of the various genres.
Demo Reel – Make sure that if you haven’t already got one that you create a demo reel that showcases not only your best pieces of work but also the variety of what you can do, which will then not only demonstrate your talent but also your versatility. Have your demo easy to access online, making sure you are not creating barriers to getting your work out there. It is definitely worth creating a ‘MOD’ to be a part of your demo reel. This means taking a part of an existing game and pairing it with your music, this enables you to then show that your music really works with video games.
Networking – Get yourself and your name out there in the industry, mainly through attending events and networking, both in person and online. It is worth volunteering to present and speak at different events, putting yourself across as a subject matter expert, as this should help to increase your desirability to employers within the field. Get out there to networking events too, because finding freelance work in this field has a lot to do with who you know. Conferences are a great place to network and meet relevant people but also a fantastic opportunity to learn new things and expand your knowledge.