I listened to the first part. I felt a little more could be going on in the backdrop of the song–keyboard washes, that sort of thing. You might consider a melody line in the treble range, just to contrast with the one already established–a countermelody, if you will. I wish I was a terrific engineer. I would have my music out already. As it is, I am study guitar and have done metal vocals for several years in an amateur capacity. Always wanted to start my own garage band.
Hi! I don’t post here often, but I aim to start! System Shock is the best game series of all time.
I LOVE the music in both System Shocks. I especially love that players can turn it off if they aren’t feeling it and not affect the general ambient fx.
While thinking about SS I’ve been rocking out to : D-Noise’s ‘The Best Of SynthWave’
There is even a track on there titled ‘System Shock’!
Here is another great, ‘shocky’ track:
What do you guys think? Is this music shocky enough? Does it get you pumped to hack robots, dodge mutants and infiltrate security systems in the outer reaches of space?
Body, I listened to those tracks. You’re right, they do hit the theme, but one of the wonderful things about SS2’s soundtrack is the use of percussion. Particularly the more industrial beats, such as beating on sheet metal. I hope for something similar to what you posted, but with more use of pacing and rhythm.
Ooo! I agree! listen to more, Dawnrazor! That first track ‘space odyssey’ is def lacking in percussion… but THIS one:
really gets my blood pumping. :) and actually most of the tracks on that album are bouncy like that.
I think ‘Med-Sci 1’ on the SS2 OST is really the baseline for that shocky sound. Agree?
Both those tracks are phenomenal, though I like the first one a little more, with it’s use of synthwave washes, definitely gave me a Tron/Bladerunner/SS2 vibe. As for the SS2 soundtrack, it will never leave my iPod. It still gives me chills up and down my spine.
While I’m on it, dark ambient, darkwave, and noise/drone music would also suit the System Shock vibe. Think the instrumental parts of Gary Numan (the keyboard washes on his newer albums like Sacrifice) or Switchblade Symphony. As well the dark ambience of Lustmord mixed between songs. I will reiterate, non-conventional instruments for percussion, and maybe even some exotic instrumentation–tabla, digeridoo, etc. The percussion of the SS2 soundtrack was almost tribal in nature, despite it’s dystopian, futuristic tones. Thanks for the quick reply. I feel there is still much to be touched upon in this topic.
I haven’t heard any of the music you mention, I’ll have to give a listen while I wildly swing my wrench around and cower in supply closets on the Von Braun.
I see what you mean now about the industrial percussion. That med/sci track sounds like someone is hitting a sheet of steel with reebar and there are sounds like some alarm going off on a medical device. You can def hear a little ‘Pretty Hate Machine’ in SS1’s music too.
SS’s music was just about cutting edge at the time, I hope a balance can be struck between the current cutting edge and that retro, 90’s cyber-punky feel.
Body, I was thinking more along the lines of Skinny Puppy ( https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fLm9mhh7gvg ). But NIN will do. You might also look up Sunn O))) for drone ( https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=T5P7bo5hKgQ ), they use guitar feedbacks to create sheets of sound. I don’t think it should be used commonly, but droning guitars would add a sense of ambience to lonely exploration aboard any spaceship.
I wouldn’t do the music exactly in the style of the above artists, but I would definitely incorporate elements of what they are doing.
This soundtrack sounds like a David Lynch movie, but electronic, and with elements of smooth jazz ( https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AUQpHPPbdCI ). I remember the elevator music in System Shock. Some hybrid of electronica with jazz elements would suit portions of the System Shock experience.
Also, this is from the Matrix soundtrack. It always reminded me of System Shock: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Brl7WmHDG-E
I’m not sure how to embed videos, so this will have to do.
So that’s synthwave, is it? It’s like Jan Hammer and Eric Brosius had a baby.
But particularly for that first clip (“System Shock”), what it most reminds me of – especially the bass line – is the “UNATCO Combat” track from the original Deus Ex:
This sounded familiar because, while Dawn has the SS2 music loaded, it’s the Deus Ex soundtrack that’s on my phone. And you know, that music does make me want to look for a Sec-2 'bot to take down with my Mark III loaded with Penetrator rounds. The Deus Ex “Area 51 Combat” track is also pretty dang industrial with with what to me feels like a System Shock vibe: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vlJAI62gFYU .
That last track nailed it, FlatFingers.
System Shock 2 tunes are easily memorable, but the original had much better melodic tunes with catchy beats. System Shock 2 beats didn’t fit the theme that much, they were too silly somehow. They pushed the feeling of urgency yes, but they sounded like some cheap underground beats from a rave party or something, not that I’ve been at one myself. If there was no music at all, the game would have been much creepier. You can always turn it off yourself.
This said, System Shock 1 music was more important since there were not that many sound effects in the end. The game was still pressing, even though the music was something you could listen on it’s own. My favourite songs from it are in this video called Security, Executive Quarters and Energy Systems. Of course the main theme is good too. These beats really helped me to focus on the matter at hand and gave me some encouragement if I could say, that the situation requires reaction but is not hopeless.
I also think overall that System Shock 1 is the better game. Getting more powerful feels more natural and fluid while in System Shock 2 you open the level up menu very often. It’s not as immersive and the game’s setting is not as believable either. Why send one guy to help a ship that is obviously in serious danger? I never could figure that out. The second one is still a great game, but the first one did many things just so well, especially the maze like levels to wonder around. The enemies were frightening too and I liked the bright colours. I even think that Bioshock is slightly more engaging game than System Shock 2 due to top notch voice acting and intact story. The action is frantic in it and I love it.