Auto-Staccato, published by STEAKSTEAK Games, has been released on Steam! I had a blast writing music and acting as Audio Lead/Lead Composer for this game. With the help of my co-composer Rene Gonzalez-Slizewski, who wrote the music for multiple levels, we had a challenging yet exciting time trying to write music in a purely rhythmic way. As this is a rhythm-based, music-runner game, we had to keep in mind that there are 20 levels in total, and each one gets increasingly harder: the higher the level, the more enemies and the more frequent they come.
How I approached the score:
First, I started by writing the main theme(heard in the main menu). I chose B minor/dorian mode for the melody as I wanted to represent the time period of the gladiators, and there were many instruments in Roman times that were tuned to D major, which is the relative key of B minor. After writing a vocal-based theme, Rene and I decided to approach the rest of the campaign music structurally: we were to write music that increasingly got faster. For example, level 1 was at a tempo of 78 beats per minute in 4/4 time, and level 2 was at 85bpm, and so forth. We also decided to strip down the orchestra, starting with a string quartet from levels 1 to 10 and moving to a full orchestra by level 10, emitting most brass instruments from the score until later levels.
The cast and other duties of being Audio Lead
As the Audio Lead, I also had the great pleasure of working with two talented voice actors. I originally pitched the idea of having two voice actors, one male and one female, to the developer and creative lead of the game. After auditioning and testing a handful of voice actors, we ended up using the great Amy Saville and Ian Mitchel Pabito – to voice the female and male voice, respectively. They recorded an opening and closing line for each level, as well as multiple lines for stingers and events like “victory” and “death”. This was the first time I acted as audio lead, and I sincerely enjoyed the challenges that came with the experience.
Go check out the game!