Stuffed Crocodile

Mazes, Martians, Mead

[RPG Music] Fantasy Ambient

Music for roleplaying games in my opinion should be setting moods but be as unobtrusive as possible. Everything that breaks the concentration of the players instead of enhancing the mood is bad. This means: No vocal tracks except for some sinister chanting because vocals distract too much, no famous or easily recognizable tracks because they  distract as well (if you don’t play Star Wars it will so break the players’ concentration if they hear the Imperial March, instead of the game they’ll think of the movies), no soundtracks with too many changes of mood.

Most film soundtracks are geared to exactly the film they were written for, they often have a wide variety of moods, which also will become distracting if played in the background.

One easy way of getting good roleplaying music are computer games, especially computer roleplaying games, because  most of them are easily loopable so one can key one single track to a special scene or location and just have it repeat over and over again. My favourite example for this is the soundtrack for Diablo I. I played this game for days and never noticed the background music that much, but it definitely was there, setting different moods for different parts of the game (Crypt, Cavern, Hell…). Lately I got around looking at the game soundtrack again and lo! there only were 5 tracks in the whole game! One can get a lot out of 5 tracks.

For my next game I am still undecided how to use this music: Do I just loop one track appropriate to location and mood? Or do I just use different playlists instead?

Film  Soundtracks

  • Conan the Barbarian/Conan the Destroyer by Basil Poledouris, if you get one get the first, it is THE best soundtrack for RPG I have ever found and covers a wide area of stuff, on the other hand it will make your players slay the high priest of the next temple
  • Red Sonja by Ennio Morricone

General Music

Roleplaying Music

Computer Games

  • Diablo II, wonderfully loopable, atmospheric tracks, covering a whole lot of ground [example]

Free Computer Game Soundtracks

Other Free Music

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7 responses to “[RPG Music] Fantasy Ambient

  1. Pingback: [RPG Music] Dungeon Ambient « Stuffed Crocodile

  2. Pingback: RPG Music: if you haven’t seen this post at Stuffed Crocodile, check it out « The RPG Athenaeum

  3. micahblackburn March 15, 2012 at 7:17 pm

    This is an awesome collection!

  4. creativecowboy47yahoo March 16, 2012 at 9:26 am

    Hi. I finally get a chance to reply!

    Have you found http://www.radiorivendell.com ? It’s not for the game table for the reasons you write about but I use it when I am preparing. Sometimes a sudden (or undiscovered) melody will play and get me past a writer’s block.

    Also, you have not mentioned Dronolan’s Tower. It could be it is not your cup of tea but have a listen to it on Youtube. It is real music (meaning real instruments, choir and orchestration) and the composer is a Hollywood musician into RPGs. I definitely like it. (Wish I had the CDs!) Here’s the free Youtube: http://www.youtube.com/user/dronolan?ob=0&feature=results_main

    Here are the Facebook pages for both :

    https://www.facebook.com/RadioRivendell

    https://www.facebook.com/#!/dronolan

  5. Geoffrey March 19, 2012 at 6:59 pm

    I know Radio Rivendell, but so far I never listened to it very long.
    I did not know Dronolan’s Tower. I will have to check that out.

  6. Pingback: [Tools] Syrinscape « Stuffed Crocodile

  7. Demetria April 25, 2013 at 7:54 pm

    Hello There. I found your weblog the usage of msn.
    That is a very neatly written article. I will make sure to bookmark it and come back to learn extra of your helpful info.
    Thank you for the post. I will certainly comeback.

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