The Menace in the Ambience: Composing Stygian

Greetings Listeners of the Forbidden Melody!

In this update we’d like to share some of the musical compositions you’ll be hearing throughout Stygian and share our composer Asli Kobaner’s thoughts on the process. We’ll also be unveiling more on the production plans of Stygian.

Please note that all the tracks are still work in progress. This means we’re still measuring the sanity levels of the captured subjects while exposing them to Stygian’s music constantly. We will update you on the results.

In the meantime, here are some samples:

Desolate Arkham

This track will be accompanying you through some of the hubs in south Arkham.

The Bank of Lunatics

There is something wrong with the Bank of Arkham.

Combat Theme (Bank)

The conflict is imminent.

Let’s hear what Asli has to say on her work:

“Since the beginning of Stygian, I’ve been closely entangled with researches on game music architecture. I endeavored to develop a general approach by identifying the structural model and its sonic needs through collective brainstorming and individual work. 

In this context, quest flows supply a narrative ground to distinguish different sound types and musical content. Lists and maps specifically serve to track and categorize these materials: a general map for tension and release patterns throughout quests, an inventory of virtual instrument plugins, effects, sound banks and recorded performances, lists regarding the amount of diegetic and non-diegetic material. All these processes aim to bring out the sonic world of Stygian. 

I think the boundaries between what is “music” and what is “sound”- yes, this old issue- is relative, or at best, obscure. Similarly it can also be hard to separate the “musical” composition from the sound design when it comes to Stygian. Even though most of the audio materials are functionally categorized (such as foley sounds, ambiences or leitmotivs), they feed each other blending in various combinations throughout the gameplay. With an assemblage of these echoing, imitating, contrasting, looping, music is adapted to the variability of the gameplay duration. 

 As for the musical grammar, certain stylistic languages are employed:Indian ritual references, period music such as early jazz and late romanticism, and a wider array of musical expressions influenced by the works of Jonathan Harvey, George Crumb, György Ligeti, Alvin Curran, Stravinsky, Gerard Grisey and Fausto Romitelli among others.”

And here we present you the illustration you’ll be seeing at the combat loading screens. With this approach, we aimed to create a more general feeling of terror and ever-shifting, constant sense of danger instead of focusing on individual Mythos entities.

Do we need to say that the figure in the middle of the party represents your character?

Last but not least, we finally have a release date for our special backer demo. You’ll be wandering the uncanny streets of our doomed town in August, this year. We were expecting to land it in June but have decided to share a more complete experience. Expect more than a thirty minute long starter snack…

Welcome to Schmidt’s Antiques. No lighting applied.

As for the release date, we’ve been seeing the possibility of Stygian becoming a more defined and involving game each day as we complete the tools and systems which enables us to create more content efficiently. We believe we can turn Stygian into a longer and more polished experience from a humble indie title with a modest budget.

Let’s see what our extended demo has to offer, then we can talk more about our wicked plans. If we are not satisfied altogether, there is no need to hope for more.

We’re also working on the Dreamlands quest as we promised, along with the new archetype Explorer and her prologue chapter.

We have to go downstairs now. You know, unfinished business in the torture chambers and all…

One Comment, RSS

  1. Bablofil May 18, 2017 @ 9:28 pm

    Thanks, great article.

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

*