Posted February 20, 2019 by Chris in Features

Facts on How Music Can Affect Your Perception of a Game

Many people all over the world have a love for playing video games. This is because they are specifically designed to give players a sense of accomplishment by finishing stages or by getting rewards after certain tasks are done. There are many components that go into making video games that make players so drawn to them. One of the main components is the music added to it.

Music, whether in a game or in a real life setting, has an effect on the person listening to it. Game makers use that to their advantage when creating these kinds of games, making the experience of the players even better. Adding different genres of music with different tempos and different placement throughout adds many aspects to the game’s effect on the players.

Soundtracks establish the atmosphere

Whatever the game might be, background music always sets the mood for its setting and overall atmosphere. This is an important and very noticeable effect music has on the perception of video games. For example, any horror game you play will have eerie sounding music in the background to amplify the creepiness of the events occurring. Games set in a futuristic time periods will have different sound tracks than those set in older times. Furthermore, action games have sound tracks with more tempo to intensify the overall experience for the player. When there is music that establishes the atmosphere, the player gets more immersed in the action.

Music immerses the player

One aspect that successful games l have and others strive for, is player immersion. Player immersion means that the player enters a state of total concentration on the game, as if he had entered the virtual world set by that game. You’ll find that this will apply to games that can go on for ages or are played live and need concentration. A good example would be casino games, if you do a bit of research you’ll understand why this is so important. A good place to start would be Wunderino, you’ll have a better understanding of what kind of role music immersion plays. When that occurs the player goes on playing for long periods of time, which he does not feel because his mind is fixed on the game and on accomplishing the tasks in it.

The total immersion of a player has been very hard to achieve with just the graphics. Music and sound effects have a large role to play in immersing the player in the game. It sets the mood for the player to let go of his real life setting and act as an active participant in the game.  As mentioned in the examples above, if you are playing a horror game, as a player you would enjoy it even more if the music added to the horror aspect so that it builds up the needed tension and suspense.

It acts as a great reward system

Music placement in computer games helps set up a reward and punishment system. This motivates the player on a psychological level because it urges them to spend more time so that they can hear the positive reinforcing sound. The punishment and reward system can be explained simply in two instances. The first being when you die or lose a level. When that happens, a sad soundtrack plays, which induces a negative feeling in your mind, subconsciously, making you want to play again so that you can give winning a shot at the level that you lost. On the other hand, when a player wins a level or overcomes a task, happy upbeat music plays. This positive reinforcement gives the player the sense of accomplishment he plays the game for. It also motivates him into moving onto the next level and the next task, until he finishes the gameplay.

Video game music enhances concentration

Music in video games is composed to enhance the person’s concentration when playing the game, so that they notice the details and have the ability to win the levels they are playing. Many studies conducted showed that video game music played in the background for people at work or doing various tasks in real life affects their concentration and increases their efficiency exponentially. If the beat in the music is urgent, it makes the player feel the need to do his task faster than if the background track was calm and mellow.

Music’s magical effect

Music has a huge effect on everyone, whether they are playing video games or not. It plays a huge part in how people perceive culture, as well as emotions. Music in video games help the creators dish out great games and give them more depth, as well as encouraging the players themselves to have a more enjoyable experience- which makes it a win-win situation for everyone! Next time you are playing a video game keep in mind the effect that its music has on you.


I listen to and write about music!