Adaptive Audio Overview

The adaptive audio part

Adaptive Audio

In order to illustrate the creation of the TAM app which its two distinct section, one opening semi-generative sequence and one traditional song structure with elements being reshaped and transformed the methodology section gives an overview on personal examples of adaptive audio tools and creations in video game engines with focus on their random features. The bibliography section references recent books on composing and creating music and sound for video games.

Different techniques exist to compose adaptive music. A distinction is generally made between:

Horizontal Resequencing:

Horizontal resequencing is a method of interactive composition where the music is dynamically pieced together based on the actions of the player. For example. when the music is playing underneath the gameplay, it may reach a decision point in the music when it could either go to a new section of music or repeat the previous section depending on the player’s actions."1

Vertical Remixing:

Vertical remixing is an interactive composition technique in which layers of music are added or taken away to create levels of intensity and emotion. This method of scoring is useful when the composer needs multiple quick changes to intensify the score, where harmonic changes based on gameplay are not as important."2

As FMOD is one of the main tools I used for my research and the TAM app the methodology section as well as the advanced teaching skills examples will give a detailed overview on these tools.

These adaptive audio tools can be analyzed and put into a wider context of algorithmic music (cf. next pages) into which generative and semi-generative music falls and where randomness is a key element.


  1. p. 143 in Sweet, M. (2015). Writing interactive music for video games: a composer’s guide. Pearson Education, p. 143 ↩︎

  2. ibid. p. 155 ↩︎