Friday, June 22, 2018

Music to Game to: Eight Trails, One Path

I listen to a lot of music (over 40 days worth in 2017 according to and I find that few things help me keep the mood of a game foregrounded in my mind like a good soundtrack. Plus, I’ve discovered that when I’m playing music to a speaker via Bluetooth, I’m less likely to be on my phone, lest my players hear any stray sounds, letting me better model engagement during a game. To that end, I want to share some of my favorite music to game to; the albums that inspire and inflame my imagination and that I’ve found work well as background music for games as well. I’ll do a mini-review and cover the basics of what mood it helps me set.


A compilation album celebrating “the various styles, approaches, and concepts used by eight contemporary guitar masters.” The album is mostly solo acoustic guitar, lending itself naturally to an American Wild West feel, but there bits and pieces of other instruments as well. The album feels surprisingly unified for a compilation, with the focus on the guitar helping each song to sound as part of the whole.

  • Vocals?...Distorted vocals low in the mix on “Stranded on Io”
  • Music Genre(s)…Psychedelic Rock, Folk, Acoustic
  • Perfect for…Wild West games or any game you want to add a Western flair to.
  • If you only grab one track, make it... Stranded On Io”, which adds a slight sci-fi ambience, for a melancholic explorer lost in space feel. Though if you were going to run a more straight-forward or authentic Wild West game, this might also be the track you skip.

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