I wanted a means to express the feelings that I wanted our game to portray in a way other than text or visuals so I looked into putting together a music playlist to do just that. The way I went about it was by adding existing video game soundtracks into a playlist that I thought at least somewhat fit the theme and then filtered out any songs that didn’t. Some key examples are the Kingdom, FEZ and Monument Valley soundtracks. Below is the playlist:
Once I had finalised the list and had listened through it properly, I was able to deduce some things about what type of music followed the feelings I was aiming for. Generally all the songs are a low tempo, evoking a relaxed nature through the use of extended notes. I noticed that piano and synths worked well as they could create soft sounds while a lot of the songs with prominent string instruments ended up feeling too fantastical and full of energy. I kept in a couple songs that slightly deterred from the rest just as a point of reference for the limits of the overall feeling.
I tried to encourage my team to listen to the playlist in the background of our discussions to subtly guide our ideas on a more streamlined direction. Feedback was that a lot of the songs felt natural and calming which helped with our theme but not all of them kept to these standards. I would say that this playlist has certainly helped me to embrace our theme better and I feel that it will definitely be useful for inspiring sound for the game or demonstrating our theme to others easily.