The Soundtrack of SWTOR

The official SWTOR soundtrack

The official SWTOR soundtrack

When Star Wars was released, one thing many did not pick up on instantly was the quality of the soundtrack. When watching a film, or playing a game, people often do not realise they are receiving a constant stream of audio information. This is often the case with Star Wars, which is what makes the sound track so elegant and inspiring.

The background music of the Star Wars films has been incredibly popular over the years. The main theme, as well as songs such as The Imperial March have been used, sampled and re-hashed too many times to count. The Imperial March on its own has become one of the most widely recognised film tracks of all time, and almost everyone, whether they have seen Star Wars or not, instantly associates the music with evil and tyranny.

John Williams used a variety of audio techniques in Star Wars which influenced viewers opinions of the characters and events of the film to a great degree. Each character had their own ‘theme song’ which played whenever they were active in the film, and to accompany these themes were many battle, triumph and disaster scores.

The soundtrack will undoubtedly be a large part of Star Wars The Old Republic, as it has been in Star Wars games of the past. In KoTOR I and II Bioware elected to compose their own score, rather than re-hash the classic John Williams numbers which all Star Wars fans know and love. In SWTOR Bioware again plans to compose their own musical suite, with composers Mark Griskey, Gordy Haab, Jesse Harlin, Lennie Moore, and Wilbert Roget, II on board.

If you have played many Star Wars games before, you will have certainly heard the work of some of these men.  Mark Griskey was the composer of the Star Wars: Starfighter and Star Wars: Knights Of The Old Republic II soundtracks, and many will remember Jesse Harlin from Star Wars: Republic Commando.

Following is the final battle theme from KOTOR II, composed by Mark Griskey:

And now Gra’tua Cuun from the Republic Commando soundtrack, composed by Jesse Harlin

With the combined knowledge of these artists, there is a lot of Star Wars music and sound effects experience under the group’s belt, so they should be able to do a great job of creating immersion, fitting and timeless numbers as John Williams did in the original Star Wars Films, contributing greatly to their success. If the Bioware developers can ensure that the selection of tracks is elegant, they are heard at appropriate times, and do not grow too tiresome after repeat listening, then the SWTOR soundtrack should be incredibly popular with players, and may do well enough to be made into a commercial product in its own right.

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