(This guide was originally written for Ravengro, but keeping with the general theme of Ustalav, it’s certainly useable in pretty much every chapter!)
On a short intermission between sessions, I wanted to write up a little guide for all my fellow-GM’s out there, who might be about to run the first installment of Carrion Crown. If any of you are, by chance, considering adding in musical scores to your game, I thought I might as well share my personal playlist for the various events this far.
I’ve aimed for a very depressing and moody version of Ravengro, meaning I often used silent, eerie tracks. Most of these are disturbing and unsettling in nature (or at least, try to be). It’s certainly possible to have a more light and adventurous version of the town, which I will address in the end.
Silent Hill 2 OST: White noiz: This is used for the introduction in the game and serves equally well as background if you wish to describe the player’s arrival at Ravengro. It might be a bit too aggressive for some GM’s though.
Silent Hill 2 OST: Forest: I use this for Kendra’s Theme. It catches her sadness and frailty very well.
Silent Hill 2 OST: World of Madness : I use this mostly for the Restlands, but it’s great overall for Ravengro and even Harrowstone.
Silent Hill 2 – Promise (reprise) : For me this was THE theme whenever I was reading from the Professor’s Will or Journal. It fits so well, I think.
Arkham Asylum OST – IP V2 01 : I’m not sure whether this has a real name, but on digital downloads it seems to be the rather anonymous title. The players I’ve watched might have fucked it up. Either way; this is a really nice and subtle track for whenever the heroes are sitting in a dark room, candlelight and listening to the rain outside. Happens a lot in Ravengro. In my campaigns at least.
Orcs Must Die – Battletheme 2 : Some GM’s won’t like this because the style is too fast paced, silly, out of theme, etc. But still, it’s great for one specific encounter: The one in the Town Hall. In this a lot happens all at once and the music should reflect something hectic. At least consider it.
Thief – Deadly Shadows OST –Auldale: An ideal track with lots of sound from a small village at night.
Thief – Deadly Shadows OST – Church of the Hammer: For a darker twist on the temple. Might be too aggressive for some GM’s.
Thief – Deadly Shadows OST – Inn : For inns with a darker tune. This track is eerie in general and good for many settings. You can use it in various encounters and meetings.
Thief – Deadly Shadows OST – Pulses: I mostly use this for stores.
Thief – Deadly Shadows OST – Seaside Manor: A great track for the Lorrimor estate. A personal favorite of mine.
Thief – Deadly Shadows OST – Store: For inns and stores (duh).
Harrowstone Prison – Exterior
Silent Hill 2 OST – Forest Trail: Excellent for the journey to Harrowstone.
Hexen 2 OST – 04 “The Forgotten Chapel”
Hexen 2 OST – 13 “Demetriu’s Baths”
Silent Hill 2 OST – Prisonic Fairytale – Mary’s letter theme: I mostly use this for the outskirts of the prison.
Harrowstone Prison – Interior
Silent Hill 2 OST –Dirty Outskirts: This theme is very ‘Prisonous’ somehow. And very gloomy. The alternative version ‘Abandoned Streets’ is just the same only with added metallic noises.
Arkham Asylum OST – Sacrecrowloop : If you want to put a psychotic twist to some of the haunts (the one of Father Charlatan comes to mind…) this is your track.
Thief – Deadly Shadows OST – Breaths : This track is disturbed. And very unsettling.
Thief – Deadly Shadows OST – Haunted: Need I say more? This is THE track for Harrowstone.
Thief – Deadly Shadows OST – Lair: A track that tells danger is near.
Thief – Deadly Shadows OST – Prison: Need I say more? Not as great as Haunted but definitely a viable alternative.
Thief – Deadly Shadows OST – Wind and Stitch: This is an aggressive track. Yet, it’s very unsettling due to its creepy sounds.
Thief – Deadly Shadows OST – Zings: As above, just lighter.
A more adventurous Ravengro:
It’s certainly possible to achieve a more classical gloomy town that is merely moody instead of unsettling. A possible idea in this regard is to get your hands on the ‘official’ soundtracks made for the old Sierra Game – Quest for Glory 4 – Shadows of darkness. Even though it was originally in midi-format afaik, there are a lot of revamped versions out there. Some of these tracks are REALLY good for this setting.
I hope this could be of some use to those of you out there considering music. As you all know, I’m a fierce defender for musical sessions and if I’ll be able to help you in this regard, let me know : )