Referencing – Guinea Pig


The aim of this blog is to curate relevant information about the genre and styles of game audio/game music that best suits this project. Furthermore, to critically analyze the elements of the music in regards to;


  • Does it adhere strictly to a predefined genre?
  • or is it perhaps a fusion of sub-genres?
  • What elements of the music define the genre?


  • What emotions are conveyed through the music?
  • Are they obvious?
  • Do the themes of the music apply to the style of music you wish to create for “Game”?

If able to; research and include tutorials/videos/articles about critical techniques that will absolutely used in the production of the game audio. The more you can include the better your understanding of this project.



First of all, I’d like to begin with some reference material that was given to me by Rohan (Game Designer). Rohan mentioned that the settings/environment for Guinea Pig would be quite similar to the Dexter’s Laboratory cartoon with hints of lab equipment scattered through each level.

The theme song is classical in nature with what seems to be realistic sounding orchestral instruments. Beginning with hints of joy, the music then transitions into a more dramatic piece conveying themes of power and evil once reaching a final climactic point.

I think this is a great piece of music however I honestly don’t think this is the type of score I would be creating for Guinea Pig. Firstly, the level of detail put into this theme song is incredible, for a mobile/tablet game I think something this extravagant would be ridiculous. Secondly, I don’t believe that the classical genre translates themes of science and cute guinea pigs in an easily digestible manor, after all, I’m sure the primary demographic for this game will be younger children.

Instead, I am planning on focussing more towards an 8-bit chiptune/retro arcade type sound which I believe will compliment the game. I feel as though the use of white noise and Lo-Fi synthesizers are a great representation of what a low budget animation should sound like. It is also iconic of vintage arcade style games which could induce nostalgia in the player both audibly and visually. Another edge that Lo-Fi audio brings to the table is its’ incredibly “cute” sounding character, which in my opinion will bring out the sweeter side of Guinea Pig. In saying this, I understand that Guinea Pig won’t be all about cute and sweet elements in fact the game focusses on eliminating terrifying lab experiments so I am expecting elements of horror through the sounds of mutated lab animals (enemy).

Ideally, the score for Guinea Pig should be a balance between two different sets of dynamics; design and tone.


From my experience creating 8-bit and Chiptune style soundtracks I know that there is always a risk in oversimplifying thus producing a sound that is strictly 80’s retro. Guinea Pig is however a contemporary appropriation of the retro genre so I’m aiming to design an overall score that will sit between strictly retro and strictly contemporary.


FEZ Original Game Soundtrack – Full


I’ve decided to go with the soundtrack for the game FEZ because of Rich Vleeland’s similar ideals, he’s managed to successfully recreate the iconic 8-bit sounds we all love from the earliest of video games but redesigned them with modern day techniques.


Philosophy of Music Design in Games – Fez


In this video Rich Vleeland discusses some of the philosophy behind creating the great FEZ sound. He also touches on some the processing techniques he uses. I’ve gathered that using the softsynth Massive will be a great advantage considering how appropriate it’s sound will be for this type of music and also there are many great tutorials from Rich about the FEZ sound design which I will implement.

Music Workshop – FEZ


This is another example of Composer Rich Vleeland discusses some of his sound design techniques.








One thought on “Referencing – Guinea Pig

  1. Rowan: I hear what you are saying about the music and think you are right. I would love to see references and demos of what you imagine the music to sound like. The atmospheric feeling is inspired by Dexter’s Laboratory but the art art style, animations and humor of this style is more inspired by the game Castle Crashers, so it does have that arcade feel but it’s more of a modern arcade feeling considering it’s targeting a younger audience (Smart Phone users).


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