Integrating Music Into Video Games with Wwise

Integrating dynamic music into video games was our latest CRAS AES student body presentation. CRAS instructor Brock spent a couple hours with us going over Audiokinetic’s Wwise Thursday night as one of our free extracurricular classes. Wwise is a middleware software that provides an audio pipeline solution for video games. Wwise is used in roughly 40% of the video game market, along side other softwares such as Fmod and Unity.

Our Cycle 9 curriculum is where CRAS students are first introduced into Game Audio integration. For the scope of our curriculum, the Game Audio classes cover how to integrate sound effects into video games through the use of Wwise. Students are able to experiment with the skills they have gained up to this point in the program by creating and recording their own sound effects, and them integrating them into the Cube demo provided to them with the Wwise software.

Virtually every video game has music integrated into it. Music provides an emotion, a theme, and having the visuals of a game supported by effects and soundtracks enhances the gaming experience exponentially.

Designing a music score for a video game can be a challenge though. As opposed to movies, where the film progresses from beginning to end at a constant rate, video games offer the freedom for the player to change the experience at their will. In some cases, the music may need to repeat for extended periods of time, without changing. Or, in other cases, the music will need to change to a completely different composition based on a player’s actions in the game, such as dying or completing a level.

Audiokinetic’s Wwise software allows audio engineers the ability to use triggers found in the game’s code to be used to adapt the dynamic musical score. It can be configured to randomize musical pieces, or change to different entire musical libraries, all based upon what happens in the game, in real time.

Wwise is one of the most popular and powerful softwares available for this sort of sound effects and music integration into video games.