Video Game Scoring

Note: This minor is open to contemporary writing and production majors, film scoring majors, and electronic production and design majors only.

The student minoring in video game scoring will gain the knowledge, commitment, and practical, professional skills for a successful, sustainable music career in the video game industry. The minor provides a framework of courses that comprise a survey and history of music in video games, a working knowledge of the video game industry, and interactive scoring techniques applied to the composition of video game music. This minor will focus on modern approaches to music in video games, professional opportunities and development, business aspects, evolving technology, and creative development.

This program is focused on collaboration, not only within Berklee, but also with universities offering the top video game development programs. These collaborations allow Berklee students to experience real-world game development and to learn by directly working on actual games designed by other students. This minor allows students to further explore and cultivate career opportunities, relevant technologies, compositional techniques, aesthetics, historical perspective, self-discipline, musicianship, and storytelling.

Annually, video games represent a more than $20 billion revenue stream in which many composers, sound designers, and related audio professionals can participate. Many Berklee alumni have gone on to work in audio for video games, and it represents a great opportunity for future students. The video game scoring minor emphasizes the opportunities for growth for musicians in this industry.

Entrance Requirements

Major in Film Scoring, Electronic Production and Design, or Contemporary Writing and Production OR permission of chair with demonstrated skills in both composition and electronic music production at the level of one of these tech-heavy majors.

Learning Outcomes

1. Demonstrate a broad knowledge of video game history as it applies to interactive musical advances

2. Compose and produce scores using the most common interactive composition techniques for video games

3. Describe the business of making video games and the development process of modern games, including types of industry jobs, budgeting, scheduling, and networking

4. Implement music in a game using a middleware engine

5. Collaborate with game developers using technology tools and interpersonal and organizational skills

6. Use sample libraries, sequencers, and samplers to create convincing orchestral mockups as well as synth sounds.

7. Conduct a recording session for an interactive project.

Department: 
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Requirements

11 credits (5 classes) for the minor:

  • LHUM-P433: Digital Narrative Theory and Practice
  • PW-365: Orchestral Mock-Up Production
  • FS-271: History and Analysis of Video Game/Interactive Music
  • FS-371: Interactive Scoring for Video Games
  • FS-471: Advanced Scoring and Implementation for Video Games 
Assessment Evidence

1. Senior portfolio. The portfolio must include a demo CD and scores, as well as a resume and a website.

2. Temp scores. Faculty meet one-on-one with students to critique temp scores.

3. Electronic evaluation sheets. These sheets document the specific preparedness and leadership/rehearsal proficiency of each student during his scoring session. This document is sent to the teacher who reviews and comments on the session evaluation during a private screening session the following week(s).

4. Written midterm and final exams.

5. Essays and oral reports.

6. Public screenings/performances of student compositions.