Meaningful Play 2022 at Michigan State University

Session Information

TitleArticulating a Super Sound: Musical Style and Technique in 1990s Roleplaying Games
Presenter(s)Ryan Thompson
TimeThursday, October 13, 2:30p-3:30p
LocationLake Ontario
DescriptionThis talk explores how modern games aiming to emulate the sonic style of the Super Nintendo (SNES) re-create specific technical limitations, specific orchestration choices, and semiotic domains idiomatic to the SNES console for the sake of presenting an "authentic" retro-aesthetic to consumers. Rather than adhering to the limitations of an in-person orchestra, composers scoring SNES games (and, crucially, composers attempting to recreate that aesthetic) score for the SNES as an electronic instrument despite loading samples from a variety of hardware sources. The talk presents a few select pieces of music in "original" and "processed for the SNES" states to demonstrate how these techniques are applied in a modern paradigm.

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