Berklee Today: Inside the Game

Mark Small
September 10, 2008
Norihiko Hibino '97

In a contemporary generational disconnect, millions of young people spend hours daily playing video games while their parents fret that it's all a huge waste of time. But if a young person aspires to a career in the gaming industry, all that time spent might be well spent after all. Video games have become the hottest commodity in the entertainment industry. In the United States last year, sales of video games totaled $18 billion and a whopping $38 billion worldwide. PricewaterhouseCoopers predicts even greater growth in the coming years. Recently electronic game sales surpassed revenues for music CDs, movie box-office receipts, and DVD sales. The growing demand for video games has brought new developers into the marketplace, along with opportunities for lucrative careers for those involved in all facets of game development and production.

After studying jazz composition at Berklee, Nori Hibino '97 of Tokyo got into the business upon his return to Japan. At the time, the PlayStation 2 game console was being developed, and Hibino found that few Japanese musicians were enthused about working in the video-game industry. Young and hungry for work that involved writing music, Hibino took a job at Konami Digital Entertainment, a leading Japanese game developer and publisher. "I actually joined Konami because they were able to buy all the gear I would need to write music," he confesses. "I just couldn't afford it on my own. I was unaware that their Metal Gear Solid game series was already famous all around the world. I worked continuously on that series after I started with Konami."

Read more about alumni video game composers in Berklee Today.