Why Do I Hear Boss Music?: Conceptualising the Use of Mediated Audio in Tabletop Role-Playing Games
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There is a lack of scholarly literature regarding the use of mediated audio in tabletop role-playing games (TRPGs). While the use of mediated sound is not inherently part of tabletop role-playing games, the vast amount of overwhelmingly popular ambient sound and/or music compilations on platforms like YouTube and Spotify reveal the employment of these aural media by players during play. Considering the lack of literature, we ought to turn to conceptualisations of the use of mediated sound in a comparable medium; video games. The media of video games and tabletop role-playing games are both interactive in nature, so many of the ideas and issues applicable to video games may apply to TRPGs. The media have significant differences as well, preventing the blind use of concepts from video game literature for TRPGs. By turning to video game for conceptualisation of the use of mediated audio in that medium, and being conscious of the difference between the media of video games and TRPGs, these concepts are ‘translated’ such that they become applicable to the medium of tabletop role-playing games. These concepts provide a new framework for further research of sound in TRPGs.