Percussa micro super signal processor

Matt Ganucheau and I got to sit down with Xeni Jardin of Boing Boing Video during the Game Developer Conference to discuss some of the potential for interactive music in games. Matt is a composer, sound designer, and educator, talking about how he’s encouraging his own students to think about adaptive music in new ways, combining Max/MSP and a Space Invaders clone built in the Unity Game Engine. (See our story from earlier this week.)

I talk a little about my sense that new tools could expand the range of possibilities in game music. Right now, the two major game engines are the AudioKinetic Wwise and Firelight fmod engines, each of which do have potential of their own – and continue adding features for more interactive sound scores. Each got some significant, flashy new features announced at GDC. But I was especially impressed by the use of Pure Data (Pd) in a custom implementation inside the game Spore. That allowed the compositional team to produce a truly generative musical score (led by legendary composer Brian Eno, with EA’s Kent Jolly and composer Aaron McLeran). I hope we see more of that in the future. Starting of students doing it themselves (with Max in this case) is not a bad way to start.

Boing Boing has more video of us they’ll be posting soon – including the embarrassing but diverting footage of us dancing around in Katamari costumes.

I’m new to this speaking live thing, but hope you enjoy. My favorite part was getting questions going. Livecasting is something we’ll try here soon.

A big thanks to Xeni and the talented Boing Boing TV crew for inviting us on and running a great show! And thanks to those of you who came on the chat rooms to talk to us – actually a lot of terrific questions and comments we weren’t able to address.

Music in Video Games, a conversation with Peter Kirn and Matt Ganucheau [Boing Boing, with lots of download options for YouTube, MP4, iTunes, etc.]