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Detroit: Become Human

The plot revolves around several playable characters, all of whom are androids; among them Kara, who escapes the factory she was made in to explore her newfound... read more

The Music Behind Detroit: Become Human (Interview)

Author: Limarc Ambalina
12-Jun-2018

Category: Interview

Interested in the beautiful soundtrack of Detroit: Become Human? Take a look at our interview with the composer who worked on the soundtrack of Connor's story within the game. Nima Fakhrara also worked on Resident Evil Revelations 2 and numerous major films!

The Music Behind Detroit: Become Human (an Interview with Nima Fakhrara)
Nima Fakhrara is a decorated composer who boasts work from major films such as The Girl in the Photographs (2015), Consumed (2015), The Signal (2014), I Am A Hero (2015) and Gacchaman (2013). As well, he worked on the soundtrack of Resident Evil(BioHazzard) Revelations 2. More recently, Fakhrara was commissioned to work on the score of the highly anticipated and recently released Detroit: Become Human. The game is developed by Quantic Dream the creators of Heavy Rain and Beyond: Two Souls, both of which were generally well-received by the gaming community for their powerful storytelling in the video game medium.

Nima Fakhrara

Detroit: Become Human is a game told in a similar fashion to Heavy Rain. The game holds Quantic Dream’s distinct episodic and multi-protagonist style. One of the protagonists, Connor, is an android created to hunt down deviants (androids who have committed a crime). Fakhrara worked on the soundtrack for Connor’s story specifically, using music to tell the story of an android who was created to hunt down his own kind. Music is a powerful medium, an art form that can both stand on its own and compliment others. In Detroit: Become Human Fakhrara composes a beautiful score full of raw power and emotion with his own unique style and custom-made instruments. Here’s what he had to say about the project:

To start things off, are you a gamer or were you a gamer in the past? If so, what are or were your favorite video games? 

I am very much of a gamer and have always been fascinated with video games and the world they create. I am a big fan of the Fifa franchise, and I think I have owned every game since Fifa World Cup Italia ’90.  I also love games that are story driven and create an opportunity for the player to immersive themselves in their world.  

Which game do you think has the most beautiful soundtrack to date?

Two of my favorite scores to video games are Last of Us and Red Dead Redemption. Both of these scores created something that was unique as well as told a beautiful story just with its music.

You have an impressive background and numerous highly-acclaimed previous works such as the Japanese zombie pandemic film "I Am A Hero", "Biohazard(Resident Evil) Revelations", and so on. While "Detroit: Become Human" is very different from your past work, how has your previous work affected or inspired your work for Detroit: Become Human?

Thanks, it has been a great privilege to be able to work on such amazing projects with very talented people involved.  For Detroit, when I was approached for scoring the game, the creatives wanted me to create a new sound and utilize my skills of building a new vocabulary of sound for Connor.  Throughout my musical career I have always been fascinated and excited about creating new sounds and musical colors for my composing palate, so it wasn’t a new thing for Detroit.  However what was challenging and exhilarating about Detroit was that David pushed me to be more and more unique.  So I built and modified instruments that were both interesting and exciting for myself.

You were commissioned to work on the story of the android named Connor. Androids are difficult to relate to. While humans can feel alienation, racism, and fear, empathy for a hybrid species of human and machine is hard to attain. What sort of research did you do to get into character per se or capture the emotional atmosphere of Connor’s story?

What was really important from the start of the project was to capture something that was true to Connor, his characteristics, as well as his philosophies.  I wanted Connor to feel emotion but not the way humans do. I thought about how an android/robot would create music, how they would convey their emotional feelings musically, as well as what are the circumstances that Connor would deviate from his only goal, which is completing his missions.  With this said, I created and utilized instruments to capture the mechanical feel of Connor.  I built a 20-foot guitar to create the sound of the inner working of an android.  I used an Unplugged Electric String Quartet to both have a cold sound as well as to develop unconventional feelings and be able to create emotional moments that are familiar but yet robotic.

Video games are a medium that combines many various forms of art, one of which is of course music. To you, what is the importance of music in a video game? How does music help tell the story of Connor?

Especially now, with the advancement of technology, video games have become a compelling storytelling platform.  For me, being a storyteller, I try to help the story, and be a tool for the director to achieve what the experience of that story should be.   Creating a musical atmosphere for any story is very important, especially when you are trying to immerse the player in a world, and the journey the characters are taking the player on.

Lastly, throughout Connor’s story, we experience the plight of the android and the painful and tragic stories of injustice that these androids face. Did you draw on any of your own personal experiences or any real-world situations to help inspire your work?

Being Iranian born, and working in the entertainment industry has had its challenges of isolation and being an outsider. Connor, throughout his journey, is very much the same, in isolation, against the norm, and trying to achieve his goals. However, I have been fortunate enough to have a fantastic support system of friend and colleagues to be able to convey my own story and be part of that norm, with my own unique voice.  Hank is Connors support system, there is a father-and-son, brotherly, as well as a teacher-student relationship between them that both Connor and Hank rely on, but yet, Connor has his own story to tell, in his own unique way.

The Music Behind Detroit: Become Human (Interview)
Have you played Detroit: Become Human? Let us know what you thought of it in the comments below! As always, for all your gaming news keep it here with us at KeenGamer.



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