Original Music - Video Game
programming: Ethan Fenn and Gregory Kinneman
narrative design and writing: Jonathon Myers
art: Elliott Mitchell
Sleepwalking Backwards was created under two significant constraints: First, it was created in a 48 hour period as part of the 2012 Global Game Jam, an annual event where groups of designers, programmers, and artists come together to create new games over a weekend. Second, it was created for the 1980s Commodore 64 home computer, presenting various technical constraints for everyone involved.
The game tells the story of a recollection of a past relationship, devastated by tragedy. It explores ideas of self questioning, circular attempts to sort out difficult memories, and the inability to let go. The character wanders through familiar rooms of a house, reconstructing old photographs, and remembering objects, events, and feelings from the past.
The Commodore 64 platform helped to create a nostalgic feeling to the game and I wanted to embrace that in the music I created. At the same time I was very interested to push the available resources (all sound is created by just 3 programmable oscillators) to create something more lyrically expressive than the typical frenetic pop sound of most C64 music. Evoking the sounds of heartbeats and broken glass along with slowly wandering melody lines, my music aimed to key-in to the themes of memory, loss, emotional weight, circular thinking, and nostalgia.
Included below are the full music track for the game and (for those so inclined) a link to download the Commodore 64 data file of the game, which can be played either in a computer emulator or loaded onto actual Commodore 64 hardware.