Gaming

Hogwarts Legacy “Making The Music” Video Details How Challenging The Soundtrack Was To Create



Hogwarts Legacy recently released a video called “Making the Music,” in which many of the game’s composers give us behind-the-scenes details about their intent with the game’s soundtrack, the challenges they faced when creating it, and their overall thoughts on it. The first most interesting bit of info came from Lead Composer, Chuck E. Myers, who stated that he’s been working on the soundtrack for about four years. Myers describes his experience working on Hogwarts Legacy as “the pinnacle of anything I’ve ever been involved with.”

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Audio Production Coordinator, Nathan Ayuobi, goes on to explain what the audio team’s goal was when first conceptualizing the music. “We wanted to make Hogwarts Legacy our own,” Ayuobi stated. “We wanted to put our own stamp, our own brand on it.” The Harry Potter franchise has an undoubtedly iconic and memorable soundtrack, made by world-renowned composer John Williams, and while the team knew they had to draw inspiration from it, they clearly didn’t want to simply rely on it.

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“Not only does it sound new and fresh,” Ayuobi continues, “it’s nostalgic.” Myers further elaborates on this notion, revealing how one of the game’s pieces, which he calls the “Ancient Magic” melody, spawned from the team’s idea of making an “older” version of the franchise’s iconic Hedwig’s Theme. He describes it as a sort of “relative” to the original theme; one that better matches the game’s 1800s setting.

Throughout the video, you can notice the sheer amount of production value that Avalanche Studios has placed purely on Hogwarts Legacy’s music team. There are sizeable orchestras of numerous musicians, playing a wide variety of instruments. They even have a choir. At one point, Myers explains their usage of unique and unusual instruments, which they’d never used in any of their previous games, such as the “thunder-sheet” (literally a big metal sheet that they bang on to create wave-like sounds), and the “waterphone.”

Another big challenge the team faced, which Ayuobi goes over, was making the music dynamic. He explains how, at any point, during certain missions, the player could hypothetically get on their broom and start flying, or enter a cavern, or enter a shop, and it was difficult to make the music transition dynamically between these scenarios, which could change unpredictably based on player input. Furthermore, Myers expresses how difficult it was to keep the “ancient style of the music,” while having it match all these different types of moments.

A final interesting tidbit is one that composer J. Scott Rakozy revealed. Each Common Room, one for each of the four Houses, will have its own theme. Rakozy states he “studied up” on all the houses in order to make sure their themes matched properly. Hogwarts Legacy is slated to release on February 10, 2023, for PlayStation 4, PlayStation 5, Xbox One, Xbox Series X|S, and PC. A Nintendo Switch version is in development, but a release date has yet to be announced.

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