While the retro trend is still going strong and the market for older consoles and games is nowadays not limited to a few collectors, the main trends in music for games have always been classic music (usually composed for the game) or electronic music. Well-known composers were hired to write orchestral soundtracks, famous DJs and electronic producers dropped the bass on shooter players.With the release of Fallout 4 – and its predecessors – another trend emerges: Music from times long ago build a very special atmosphere.
Old times and atmosphere
The Cold War may be over, but the popular music of the era still reminds us of the looming threat of a nuclear war of that time. A lot of the songs of the 50s and 60s revolve around an underlying topic of mass destruction and the end of the world through World War 3.
Games like Fallout especially draw atmosphere and underlying tone from the lyrics of that time and although the music is very different from what we have today, it is that break in how music is played and how the singers perform that makes the soundtrack so special. It’s not retro, but another era, another time. This obviously needs to fit the gameplay and with games like Fallout, once well-known hits and songs resurface and become part of our gaming life.
If you had told The Ink Spots that their songs “I don’t want to set the world on fire” or “It’s all over but the crying” would be the atmospheric backdrops to the most popular video games of modern times, they would have asked: “What’s a video game?”
Different trends in gaming
It’s refreshing that different trends in gaming change how we perceive and play video games. The players themselves decides what they want to experience. This can be retro games, classic orchestral soundtracks, EDM or other electronic music or – like mentioned above – music from the era the game is set in. And all this without even mentioning custom playlists and soundtracks, which are always an option.