Video game music has come along way since the early days of 8-bit grunts and beeps. Not that there's anything wrong with 8-bit grunts and beeps, mind you. If the Tetris soundtrack has taught us anything as a civilization it's that good music can come grunting and beeping in 8 little bits. There is a lot of great video game music out there and more people should know about it; that's the point of this playlist. Music to play video games celebrates video game music in all of its forms. It features some of the most important tracks in gaming history and also spotlights more recent music that has captured the imagination..

The power of music to create meaningful experiences that shape culture and identity has been understood for millennia. While video games are a relatively new phenomenon, designers and developers have learned to tap into that musical power to add depth and color to their games. For a generation of developers and players music has become a crucial storytelling tool for its power to transport a listener to another time and place creating fantastic new worlds and breathing life into old forgotten ones. Where cinema once set the standard for immersive music, the video game soundtrack has arguably taken the throne.

Video game music is also interesting for another reason; it represents a balanced partnership between art and technology. Creative approaches to the composition of video game music have helped to drive innovations in audio and music technology. In turn, developments in these technologies have allowed composers to achieve greater and greater musical heights in their work for video games. Music to play video games showcases some of the pieces that have been instrumental in driving music technology and composition forward.

Video game music crosses the boundaries of genre, from electronic to classical and everything in between. This list reflects that by mixing together a wide range of styles without ever compromising its overall sense of direction and flow. This is a playlist for music lovers as well as gamers and it blends together the songs and instrumental scores of major AAA games with more intimate compositions and experimental electronic productions found on indie game soundtracks. It is designed around a core of tracks from established and familiar artists and is complemented by a wider selection of up and coming composers and producers.

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About The Curator - Stephen Roddy

Stephen is a composer, researcher and music lover from Ireland. His own music encompasses a wide variety of styles and has been described as quirky, odd, heavy electronic instrumental music. Stephen's research is about how sound and music create meaning and how they can be used to represent data and information. Stephen is interested music technology and in the potential of sound and music to create meaning for a listener. His research explores the place of sound and music technologies in representing data and communicating information. Any free time he can find is spent with old-school adventure games like the Myst, Broken Sword and Gabriel Knight series' or more recent indie puzzlers like Dear Esther or the Witness.