Q&A: Composer, Alex Dop speaks to Big Win Board

Push Gaming's Composer, Alex Dop spoke to Big Win Board about his creative process when it came to creating DJ Cat's catchy soundtrack.

Can you start by telling us what your inspiration was for the soundtrack behind DJ Cat, presumably the game was born from the success of DJ Fox?

Yes! There’s no denying that DJ Cat was inspired by the success of its predecessor DJ Fox. Ultimately we wanted to take all of the elements that made DJ Fox so popular with players and inject them into a brand-new title with a different feel.

The aesthetic of DJ Cat lends itself to a more of a throwback Hip-Hop sound. I liked to imagine that these games were taking place in the same nightclub, just on a different night and with a different DJ! 

You would go to the DJ Fox club night if house music was your thing, and you’d go to the DJ Cat club night for a nostalgia trip into the world of 80’s and 90’s Hip-Hop. It definitely feels as if we’ve expanded upon a new Push Gaming musical universe with this release!

As players unlock new rows it feels as if new elements of the soundtrack come into play, where did this unique idea come from?

This idea came from Andy, our Head of Audio at Push Gaming. It’s something that felt very different from a sound design point of view, especially as it’s not something we’d seen before in this space. It was also something that was new for me compositionally!

Not only have we added new layers on top of existing music to increase the intensity, but we also added different variations onto the same piece of music. This in itself was a great challenge, but all of the hard work was worth it as DJ Cat sounds great fot it! 

Just how much of an impact a strong soundtrack can have on a new release?

I might well be biased, but I genuinely believe that a strong soundtrack massively changes how a game comes across, and how much fun the player can have! 

There have been many occasions in recent years where a tiny tweak to a game’s soundtrack can make a monumental difference in terms of how player’s engage with the game. We’ve also had to perform re-writes to music as the animation develops in order to fit with the aesthetic.

A poor soundtrack that’s the wrong style can subconsciously make players feel as if something isn’t quite right with the game, whereas a strong soundtrack can pull players in and have them humming the tune as they do the dishes hours and days later!

How do you know when you've written a winning soundtrack for a game? Do you know straight away when you implement it, or do you rely on feedback from colleagues and customers?

You definitely go through various phases when it comes to developing a soundtrack for a new title. Phase one is essentially just me spending as much time as I can getting a good feel for what I’ve written and ensuring I’m happy with it. From there the soundtrack goes onto the audio team who will do their bit tweak it so that it’s at its best. The final internal hurdle is the wider-development team, they will give me an indication as to whether or not it’s a fit.


Add a Comment