Miracle of Sound - Encore

Miracle of Sound - Encore
Crucible and Gordon Freeman Saved My Life

MiracleOfSound | 26 Apr 2012 12:00
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It's been an amazing year! Almost 10 million accumulated views over the internet (most of those on The Escapist and YouTube) and finally after over a decade of trying, my beloved music is my job.

I've had people on another continent who I have never met get married to one of my songs ("Redemption Blues"), I have had messages from brave soldiers and marines who told me that the joy and fun in my music helped to get them through the hardest of tours. I've had countless messages from wonderful, interesting everyday people who the songs touched in some way. I've met some of my heroes. And it's all thanks to you guys - the Escapist community. So thank you from the bottom of my heart. You have made me a very happy little nerd.

The criticisms and input from all of you has, I believe, improved my songs in a big way. I don't know how many noticed but most of my recent songs have taken the most common criticisms into account ("too repetitive" being the biggest offender) and I feel the songs are mostly much better for it. The songs I've made in late 2011 / early 2012 are, largely because of you guys, the best I've ever written. Listening to (the right) feedback makes art stronger and hearing the difference in songwriting craft between "Gordon Freeman Saved My Life" and, say, "Sovngarde Song" or "Joker's Song" solidifies this point in my mind.

To celebrate my first year on The Escapist, we bookended the event with the song that started it all and something a little bit different, an instrumental.


Let's get the elephant in the room out of the way first; don't worry I'll keep it spoiler-free.

What did you think of the ME3 ending? Will you make a song for the "Retake Mass Effect" movement?

I'm torn on this one. Let me try and explain.

The ending broke my heart and I can understand the upset about it. My other half walked into the room just as I finished it and she described the look on my face as "a little boy who just got told Santa doesn't exist".

I couldn't even play any other games or watch any movies for a whole week. I felt like I had been sadistically punished for emotionally investing so much into the story. It seems to be the case that it's the biggest, most dedicated Mass Effect fans who've been the most upset by this whole thing - something I can relate to.

I also understand the venom being spat about multiplayer. I was pretty annoyed when it was confirmed that you must play multiplayer to unlock the "best" ending (and yes, this is confirmed now). I hate multiplayer gaming in general (despite an on/off miserable COD addiction) and never could have imagined my favorite series would be the first to have multiplayer shenanigans rudely infringe upon my beloved campaign.

But no - I won't be making a song about it. BioWare, the developers, are a wonderful group of people who I have had the pleasure of meeting and working with. I'm not about to stab them in the back or burn bridges. Besides, Mass Effect gave me hundreds of hours of joy - I'd rather focus on that.

When I met BioWare in Germany last year I didn't meet a bunch of money hungry drones - I met fun, passionate people who adore their fans and loved meeting and interacting with them. They put more effort into fan service than any other developer I can think of (the Tali incident being the exception). I trust them and I have faith that they'll do right by their fans on this one.

While I totally relate to the upset over the ending (and it makes me spit rage when "journalists" like Colin Moriarty release blockheaded, grossly offensive tirades about "entitlement" at the very public who keep him in a job), it makes me very sad when I see threads saying "F*** BioWare" or "Goodbye BioWare" or people review-bombing the game.

BioWare doesn't deserve that. Give them another chance guys, the public statements may have been bizarre and obtuse but you can bet your quad the actual coders, writers and developers care about what you think and are doing their damndest to keep us happy.

On a positive note, some of the conspiracy theories give me a great laugh. The people suggesting I had been paid off by EA to stick up for BioWare on Twitter were particularly amusing.

Why aren't you responding to me? / Why haven't you been uploading any YouTube videos?

I only just got my internet back after a month without it due to moving house. Apologies if I missed a few messages!

When are you going to play live?

In September at the Escapist Expo! Details are here.

Would you change one of your songs just because fans didn't like it?

I have done. Twice.

Why are you making so many Skyrim songs? I hate Skyrim.

Because Skyrim gives me the most ideas for songs, because I like Skyrim and because money is a finite resource.

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