So sometimes I visit this old-school arcade in San Rafael where I grew up. It has new games but also old favorites like Mappy, Dig-Dug and Ms. Pac-Man! I’m actually pretty good at the last one, but Jason is amazingly good. Usually…
This time, apparently the employee got sick of all the sounds (sinner!) near the office and turned them all off. This made playing as well nearly impossible. This was an interesting lesson about how sound not only is fun and enjoyable, but also useful and integral to gameplay.
The sound of the pellets being eaten reminds you that you are going down the right path. The oninous sounds of the ghosts makes you careful. And most importantly, the sound when you get the super pellets… those few moments of invincibility to devour those pesky ghosts… Your mind almost memorizes the length of the sound… and without it, well it’s anybody’s guess! And who can enjoy those flirtatious cutscenes without the cute music? As simple as the sound is, it’s SO IMPORTANT.
Recently we’ve been downloading some Casual Games from Reflexive and other portals and noticing games with no music! Hey, bad place to skimp on the budget, guys! Games with good music and sound effects are more fun and more complete. Well, at least we think so!
Incidentally, the Ms. Pac-Man in downtown San Rafael, at Star Base One, rocks… it’s modded to go super-speed! Go play!