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Why do games affect us the way they do?

Irish Lafayette

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As I listen to the soundtrack of Tomb Raider, Castlevania and various other game soundtracks, it just made me wonder something; what is it about video games that seem to affect so many people in similar ways?

If you look at the comments on these soundtracks, many express the same feelings of nostalgia, happiness, relaxation or whatever positive energy that can be felt as such thanks to that particular soundtrack.

The other thing that struck me as odd is how listening to these soundtracks takes us back to the very first moment when these soundtracks entered our lives and how they give us such vivid and clear memories of what was happening in our lives at that point, I most certainly do for one.

Now of course the same could be said about films, books, video and so on. However I do believe that there is something magical about video games that very few other mediums can touch in terms of having a certain impact with the player.

Certainly when I look back all the games I have played and loved adoringly they all of one common trait, that have an amazing soundtrack.

I do not wish to sound like I am romanticising the medium of video games, as I personally believe they are currently going down a very dark road in which it is accompanied by companies like Activision and Microsoft where creativity is a thing of the past and profits should be the main concern.

The appreciation of sound and music is something that I do not see in any reviews that we read or watch from a lot of sites/magazines.

I'm glad there are sites like this where the appreciation of music is taken to the next level where it alter that of which it listens to for a fresh approach and angle.

I can only hope that in the future more will respect the power and serenity that soundtracks bring to games as well as the enjoyment that can be had by listening to them. :smile:

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I pay very close attention to soundtracks when I play video games and watch movies. A game can still be a lot of fun not having a really great sound track but the best games have a soundtrack that sucks you in at all the right times and the rest of the time just constantly testifies to the game itself.

I'm looking at you Chrono Trigger.

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The game music we so love created and continues to strengthen emotional ties to moments in our lives. Now, whether these moments solely dealt with video games or intermingled with unrelated events, is another story altogether...

I feel the same way about the music during the Trench Run in Star Wars: A New Hope.

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I suppose that another reason games tend to enter people's hearts a little more is because they tend to be much more immersive than most other mediums. The additional immersion is a direct result of involving more of your senses than the other mediums, and because the player is directly in control, the player will usually associate him/herself with who or what they are controlling. And while it is true that a good book or movie can suck you in, nothing compares to starting up a REALLY good video game and then coming out of a trance 10 hours later when life rudely interrupts. Come to think of it though, I haven't had one of those crazy trances in a long time. Not since I grew up and had to be a part of life, what with having a job/school/family and all.

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