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EA To Sell Game Music on iTunes 57

J. Charles Holt writes "Electronic Arts has announced that they're going to start releasing themes to popular computer games on online sources such as iTunes." From the article: "Those who doubt the hit potential of video game theme songs probably haven't seen Billboard's Hot Ringtones chart lately, where Koji Kondo has sat right near the top for 55 weeks. Who's Koji Kondo? He composed the theme for 'Super Mario Bros.,' which ranks this week right between the Black Eyed Peas and Bow Wow featuring Ciara."
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EA To Sell Game Music on iTunes

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  • I sell it on eMule, for free.

    After all, most of us probably bought the game, which means you bought the Music License along with the game.

    My cartridge was defective and apart, but Nintendo wouldn't send me a replacement. However, I still retain the rights to the music and provide this music to others who are in the same situation.

    Please do not download any music which you do not own. Thank you.

    I wonder if I could use this crackpot strategy with audio tapes. My Metallica tapes are also defective, and stopped
    • I'd like to think the same thing. I usually get the soundtracks to all the games I own in MP3 format. A friend of mine came over one time and pointed out that a lot of people would see that as illegal music downloading. That kind of surprised me because I had the same philosophy you had: I own the game. If I wanted, wouldn't I be able to just rip the songs from the game and take it with me anyway? I've bought a few game OSTs to titles in the past, but for the most part I just grab them from somewhere o
    • There are also many programs available to rip the music straight out of your games. I found one recently that let me rip my DDR disc. Also, if you own the game and download the music from a p2p service, you might be getting it from someone who is infringing, but you certainly aren't.
    • Though I both disagree with reject the concept of licensing, it does not grant what you want.

      For pretty much all media, you purchase permission to use <i>that physical copy</i> of the content. It can be revoked for violation of the liscence agreement (pirating, copying it to an ipod, listening to a competitor's CDs, etc). Actually, you're not supposed to be allowed to listen to the CD anymore if you break anything in the EULA, and that's probably on the RIAA/MPAA's todo list.
    • Then you are 100% illegal.

      #1. you didn't use your OWN cart.
      #2. you did not use it for backup purposes.
      #3. you did not remove it from the original media.

      You are 100% in violation of every country's (who signed the Berne Convention) interpretation of copyright law.

      (Think of it this way, since this isn't for backup there can only be one copy. You would have to destory the place in memory that contained the song (*This is also the reason you cannot re-sell this, or anyother single part of memeory on a game c
    • No, you don't own the license for the music. You own a game, which you can play and listen to as much as you like. And I think in most countries you also have the right to make a direct recording of the Music if you do want to listen to it, and it is solely for your personal use. But a game is not a music license. If a company wants to profit from their IP by releasing a soundtrack (which mostly contains extra music not featured in the game) they can do that with all copyrights. It's the same reason why o
  • by jsorbie ( 88275 ) on Monday November 07, 2005 @08:37PM (#13975212)
    I find that PC video game music is nice to listen to while programming. No doubt because the score should be written to hold a mood while at the same time not be intrusive or distracting. It drowns out the office chatter quite nicely.

    I personally wouldn't go buying it twice though. Many games have it in an ordinary directory in mp3 or ogg format, ripe for fair use. Others embed it into libraries or executables, which require some third party tool to extract (if at all). My feeling is that if I buy a game fair and square I should be able to pull the music out.

  • Um... (Score:3, Funny)

    by Blaaguuu ( 886777 ) < minus punct> on Monday November 07, 2005 @09:31PM (#13975605)
    Isn't the music in EA games usually just random popular songs? Aren't those already on itunes?
    • Re:Um... (Score:2, Funny)

      by ClamIAm ( 926466 )
      I'm just going to wait for about 10 years and then laugh at all the people who load up their EA games for a trip down nostalgia lane and realize what bad taste they had in music.
      • Christ I think that right now whenever I hear the radio crap driven soundtrack of most EA games. Especially the sports and racing stuff.
        • Exactly. But the irony (or something) will be so much sweeter when it's people who think that they really like this music thinking that thought.
  • Not a bad idea... (Score:5, Insightful)

    by FreakyControl ( 751781 ) on Monday November 07, 2005 @09:54PM (#13975725)
    There was a game company a while ago called The Logic Factory that had released a turn based strategy game called Ascendancy, and followed with a rather artistic RTS called The Tone Rebellion. When I purchased Tone Rebellion, I received the game soundtrack free of charge, since I had registered my copy of Ascendancy.

    Having never owned a game soundtrack before, my original thought was, "Wow, that's useless." This soundtrack, however, turned out to be one of the best relaxation/study CD's that I have. While Tone was rather unique at the time for having so much effort being put into the musical score, many game makers spend a great deal of time and money to create good (and sometimes excellent) music to go with the game. I know I've owned more than one game that I wished I had the soundtrack. This sounds like it's really worth checking out.
    • YES! I didn't know anyone else anywhere ever had played The Tone Rebellion. And yes, the soundtrack on that was really great and relaxing. I don't think my copy came with a CD soundtrack, though; I had to pull it off the game (but it was MP3s so it was no issue). I have purchased CDs of game music for games I don't own - especially orchestral and piano versions of Final Fantasy music. Game music isn't all bleeps and bloops any more. I will definitely be checking out itunes for game music.
  • If the front cover player is cursed, shouldn't the music artist be too?

  • But the question is, how will this affect the online remix community, (,, etc)?
  • While this is cool in one way - it will encourage game makers to put great music into their games - it also gives bigger publishers another advantage.

    There was a time when you just needed an idea and programming skills to make a game. Now you need lots of specialists to make all the sounds and graphics competitive, or your gameplay will never see the light of day.

    Soon, companies may say, "that's a great game idea, but can we make money from the soundtrack spinoff?" Hiring a top-notch composer will be
    • That's the indy game producer's problem.
      If the gaming public likes 50 Cent and his G-Unit shooting people, online WW2 sims, and MMOs, that's what they'll get. If they like inventive games, that's what they'll get. Don't blame corporaions for giving the gaming public what they like. It's how they stay in business.
  • THAT'S "Old School"? (Score:3, Interesting)

    by WidescreenFreak ( 830043 ) on Monday November 07, 2005 @11:17PM (#13976172) Homepage Journal
    From TFA ... and old-school tracks from the "Command and Conquer" games. licensed

    Wha....? That's what they call "old school"? Try going back to the C64/Amiga days when there was some really fantastic music out there. Musicians/composers pushed the envelopes with what they could do because they had to get the most out of limited, music voices (three fore the C64 and six for the Amiga, I believe). I'd love to hear modern versions of the themes from Skate or Die and M.U.L.E., both coincidentally from Electronic Arts.

    Companies like EA and Activistion really should look at remastering some of their REAL "old school" music. I'd love to hear so many soundtracks for my old C64 games in a modern accompanyment while staying 100% true to the old sound, like what a lot of C64 remixers have done.

    My list (at least those that I can think of right off the bat)...
    • M.U.L.E. - EA
    • The Last Ninja - Activision
    • Skate or Die - EA
    • Ultima V and Ultima VI - Origin (now EA)
    • Various Mastertronic theme songs
    • Various Cosmi theme songs
    • Various Sierra On-Line theme songs*

    Hell, there are a number of old game songs I'd like to hear remastered, licensing and approval by the original composers notwithstanding.

    The idea that Command and Conquer is old school while ignoring classics like Skare or Die is almost insulting. It would also be a nice tribute for EA and other companies to the real "old school" gaming that set the foundation for where these game companies are today.

    * Such a CD was released in the early 1990s, but good luck finding it any more. It contained from really great music by Mark Seibert, who composed the music for the King's Quest series, Police Quest series, and others.
    • Atari 800 M.U.L.E. had the greatest theme song of all time....

      (NOT the NES version though. That sucked with a great and powerful suction.)
    • That had to push the envelopes because they didn't have them.

    • For those who love the music from the Sierra On-Line games, Quest Studios [] has songs in midi, mp3 and ogg format, as well as whole soundtrack files in midi format.
    • I could mod the parent up, but I'll just give a hollaback and toss out some more old "old school" suggestions:

      • Almost any two dozen tracks from Sega's Sonic the Hedgehog titles, particularly "Chemical Plant Zone".
      • Starfox for the Super Nintendo, particularly the "Corneria" and end credits tracks.
      • Ninjawarriors for the Super Nintendo.
      • Klax for the Atari Lynx. Getting music that good out of a portable at the time was mind-blowing.
      • Lemmings. Admit it, half the reason you played that game was to listen t
    • Absolutely nothing can top the minimalist jazz in Pong.

      ... ... ... boop
      ... ... boo-beep
      ... ... ... boop
      ... bee ... beep
      boo ... ... boop

      And the music was generated through gameplay - a concept WAY AHEAD of it's time.
      Oh, yeah! I can dig it!
  • Square-Enix has been selling the soundtracks to most of the Final Fantasy games (as well as related recording such as The Black Mages) on iTunes for months now, and its become hugely popular, especially given the dificulty in actually obtaining the real soundtracks (usually hidiously overpriced in some small Anime shop IF you can find them)

    It would only figure others would follow once people say there was a market.

  • YES. (Score:2, Funny)

    by b4k3d b34nz ( 900066 )

    Now I can finally get that soundtrack to Blades of Steel! I've been waiting for 17 years now...

  • Not so fast, EA... (Score:2, Insightful)

    by fujiman ( 912957 )
    This is for the geniuses at EA, all else read on.

    What ou fail to realize is that the *reason* Japanese videogame music sells so well is that... wait for it... IT'S GOOD MUSIC.

    That's right. Square and Nintendo hire people called COMPOSERS that WORK on making MUSIC for GAMES. They are talented people whose life work is making beautiful, catchy, haunting melodies for your gaming pleasure.

    While it might be nice to think you can make a fast buck by shoveling crappy soundtracks on iTunes, don't expect any

    • Why just use Japanese game music for your example? By doing so, you're ignoring the fantastic soundtracks by people such as Jesper Kyd (Hitman series and Freedom Fighters), Chris Huelsbeck (Turrican series and Apidya), George A Sanger (Wing Commander and tons of others), and Christophe Heral (Beyond Good & Evil).

      Don't go placing the Japanese on a pedestal. There's plenty of horrible licenced jpop and generic techno in their games.

      Ignoring the faults of one game developer culture while praising the tri
  • I'm sure I saw a couple of EA Soundtrack albums on iTunes Music Store (UK) a couple of months ago (at about the time I noticed that iTMS UK had the various Final Fantasy OSTs as well, nice that it isn't some sort of US-only deal). Although they may have been some sort of early releases before the mail bulk or something.

    I think it's great that they're releasing them, pity I haven't played any EA games in a while so have no interest in actually buying them. Now the second Halo 2 sountrack would be nice when i
  • Koji Kondo composed the music for The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past.
  • I freely admit it. I have a digital music player filled with video game music. As a friend once said to be "you lose on a new level". I'm happy with it though. Super Mario, Sonic, Final Fantasy etc.. etc, etc. I've got a few modern game soundtracks on there as well. Much of the music was ripped from CD and ROM titles and decoded and then encoded by myself at great time and expense.

    I consider the whole collection to be 100% legitimate. Both on the grounds that I own, or have owned, all the games in question;
  • The best video game soundtrack was in rock n roll racing for the snes. Any time ozzy is on the soundtrack is a good thing.
  • Is this going to include the music that was created with EA's Music Construction Set []?
  • While this sounds cool to me.. what games has EA done that I'd care about the music from?
  • Oh gawd... (Score:3, Funny)

    by rubberbando ( 784342 ) on Tuesday November 08, 2005 @11:25AM (#13978769)
    As long as its not Madden rapping!

  • Just because you own a movie it does NOT give you the right to remove the soundtrack, place it on a CD and listen to it.

    You ARE ripping off artists when you do because they ARE paid on a different scale between ingame/inmovie and out of game/movie CDs
    (* the difference being the music didn't necessarily sell the game/movie but the music DID 100% sell the CD)

    As far as remixers go, in "most" cases if they are mearly using the composition and not the original they can apply to the composer for a compulsory lice
    • So we're allowed to listen to the music while watching the movie, but we're not allowed to turn off the screen and just listen to music? That's essentially the same thing. The only difference is that instead of using a DVD player and the DVD to playback the music, you put it on a CD to use in a CD player, or an MP3 to play on your computer or MP3 player.

      I'm sorry, but that doesn't really make sense. Also, unless I'm mistaken, I believe the DCMA allows you to actually convert the soundtrack to MP3 or anot

The absent ones are always at fault.