How much time is spent on the soundtrack of an average game?
Well I think my case is different from others as I've only worked for AAA video game companies. We usually have 2 years to finish the game, including its soundtrack.
What are the most common issues you have come across doing audio for video games?
I don't know if there are any major issues, but making music for specific games is not the same as writing music for film or television. It's a gray zone you just never know what to expect, so it's always a challenge!
For film or television, what kind of issues do you face?
I think once you are able to talk to the director of a film, it's a lot easier and some of the film directors have knowledge of music or can play instrument. In my experience, they either know exactly what they want or if they don't, they just let me do what I think will fit.
What programs do you recommend to producing adaptive audio cues for in-game music?
Pro-Tools for me, but I use Logic, Cubase and Digital Performer as well. I can even write music in Garage Band if I don't have an access to my favourite DAW but I think industry standard is Logic and Pro-Tools.
What challenges and opportunities do you see emerging in the future of game composition?
Video game composition has attracted a lot of film composers now and I think I have in part set that trend by bringing Harry Gregson-Williams into the game industry for Metal Gear Solid 2. Now video game music has become a very attractive field to get into for a lot of up and coming film composers. I believe all composers are the same, except game composers are more detail-oriented and a lot of file organization skills are required. I think game composers have an opportunity to write and express any genre of music and have an opportunity to write other media like Japanese Anime, Film, Television and for top 40s artists. It all depends on the composer. What do you want to do? Who do you want to write for? I'm always searching for that, even now I'm searching to write for game, film, television or animation projects and I even write dance and hip hop tracks too! I just enjoy writing!