Monday, May 16, 2011

The music of WoW

Do you play your games with the music turned on? In particular, do you listen to WoW's score while playing? I have to admit that I do not. I prefer to play games (doesn't really matter what genre) with the in-game music turned off.

Even when the music is beautiful, I find it distracting and after listening to it over and over, it becomes annoying. WoW has some great music and a lot of work has gone into it but I have only listened to it once when Wrath of the Lich King was released. I wanted to experience the flavor of the different zones but after I got a taste of that, I turned it back off.

Strangely, the one game whose music I really loved was Warcraft 2. The Human campaign had a very engaging tune and I would listen to it ad nauseum without getting tired.

So I'm the type of person who likes to concentrate on the ambient sounds and effects. I find that the experience is more immersive this way. If you think about it, real life doesn't actually have music coming from the background.

Despite what I said above, this is not the subject of today's post. I wanted to talk a little bit about the music which reminds you (or me) of WoW. What do you mean, Darth Solo? Well, for me there are two episodes which have imprinted in my brain certain music that will be hard to erase. Every time I head this music it reminds me not only of playing WoW, but of playing it during specific times in my life.

Even though I don't listen to WoW's score, I do rarely listen to my own music if I'm in the right mood. The first such period was during classic WoW, around 2006 or so. I vividly remember riding with my dwarf hunter around Stranglethorn, listening to The All-American Rejects. Those were the "good old" days when I was part of a proper guild and I even managed to get into some raiding action regularly. Whenever I hear songs by The All-American Rejects, it reminds me of those times, especially since I was going through a more difficult period in real life.

The second scene that is burned in my memory is at a later date, during Burning Crusade if I'm not mistaken. I recall playing very late at night with my rogue, leveling him up in Un'goro Crater, listening to Shinedown and getting buzzed on a sixpack.

So yeah, whenever I head these two bands, I'm instantly transported to WoW. It's a weird feeling but on the other hand there are certain songs which strongly remind me of other events in my life, some of them going way back into my early childhood.

What about you? Do you have any songs or bands which remind you of WoW or any other game?


Redbeard said...

I do like the music, but I have it turned down so that it doesn't dominate my sound. When I do turn it up, however, is when I'm in one of my favorite sounding instances, like Grizzly Hills.

Rades said...

I usually only turn it on in specific areas. Karazhan, for example, has INCREDIBLE music. In terms of world zones, though, the only area I make a point of actively turning on the music & listening to it primarily is Vashj'ir. That place has an amazingly beautiful, haunting soundtrack. I could listen to it forever. :D

koalabear said...

Whenever I hear "Don't stop believing" by Journey I think about my guild's first Lich King kill because we played that song in the beginning of the pull.

Normally I play with game music on and my music playing either on my computer or my tv.

Darth Solo said...

Hmm, I don't even remember listening to Cataclysm's music. I might have, but I have no recollection.

@koala lol nice story. And I love Journey.

World of Warcraft Paladin said...

I don't like listening music while I'm playing because I feel disgusted listening of it even-though it is hardcore.

Echo said...

I've almost always played WoW without music and sounds. Full silence. Why? Because I used to play at late night... and I loved the sound of silence :)

@Darth: will you be re-blogging and start a Diablo3Alone new blog? ;-)

Darth Solo said...

@World of Warcraft Paladin does the music disgust you? I don't know... WoW's music is pretty high quality. I don't listen to music in games because it is distracting and breaks the immersion.

@Echo is that a veiled Simon & Garfunkel reference? :)
Haha I was thinking that if Diablo 3 is good enough I might just start another blog. Or I could stick to this one. I'm sure a lot of my readers are also Diablo fans. At any rate, it would be hard to separate myself from wowalone.

Echo said...


> At any rate, it would be hard
> to separate myself from wowalone.

Until the next-gen Blizzard MMO comes out. Then you (and everyone else, me included) will be screwed! ;)

Darth Solo said...

I think I'm just about done with MMOs. Unless it's really, really good, I doubt I'll be drawn into another MMO.

Blizzard's next MMO may be a genre that I don't like, but who knows. I might swallow my words later.

What I would like to play would be a really nice and complex space MMO. I was considering EVE Online a few years ago but that one is much too hardcore even for me.

Echo said...

I tried Eve a grand total of 4 times over the time (using the 14days trial). I couldn't go past the trial though. It's very complex and -to be honest- I felt really "alone" in the dark space.

I'm now playing Lego games with my children. I mean *real* Lego games. Oh joy :-D

Darth Solo said...

Ah I'm almost tempted to buy myself some Lego games, especially Star Wars sets (the original episodes, not this new crap they farted out).

Anonymous said...

WoW music is under-appreciated IMVHO. I rarely get to do this, but when I can I have the option of playing WoW in hi quality surround sound. The engineers deserve real credit. They did a bang up job on the sound. It may be best to fish to if you want to appreciate, but they deserve credit.


Darth Solo said...

I agree, the music score is very high quality. Some people are just not that much into music though. If I hear a song too many times, no matter how good it sounds the first time, it ends up driving me crazy. So after listening to most of WoW's music once, I turned it off.