Using MIDI to Modify Video Game Content

Holm, Jukka and Arrasvuori, Juha and Havukainen, Kai

Proceedings of the International Conference on New Interfaces for Musical Expression

This paper discusses the concept of using background music to control video game parameters and thus actions on the screen. Each song selected by the player makes the game look different and behave variedly. The concept is explored by modifying an existing video game and playtesting it with different kinds of MIDI music. Several examples of mapping MIDI parameters to game events are presented. As mobile phones’ MIDI players do not usually have a dedicated callback API, a real-time MIDI analysis software for Symbian OS was implemented. Future developments including real-time group performance as a way to control game content are also considered.