Jason Graves is very confident scoring horror games, and he does it well. His haunting and hair raising soundtracks for the Dead Space franchise became milestones in horror scoring and were highly acclaimed by the players and critics. The composer has given us another interesting OST in that genre for The Dark Pictures: Man of Medan.
Jason Graves composed yet another scary soundtrack.
The game is the first chapter of an anthology that according to the developer Supermassive Games, will consist of five parts and five different stories. Just like in their previous game, Until Dawn, the player’s choices and decisions have a strong effect on the plot. In Man of Medan we control a group of friends on a diving trip who then get abducted and transported to a mysterious vessel from the World War II, which seems to be haunted.
Man of Medan can be played in a single-player mode or in multi-player mode, which is quite exciting for a horror game. Despite lots of predictable jumpscares and the boring first part of the game, the playthrough is enjoyable, especially during the haunted vessel part. This is to the credit of the voice acting, sound design, and of course the music.
Jason Graves composed yet another scary soundtrack. The dissonant orchestral risers combined with gloomy electronics make a perfect background to what lurks in the narrow and dark corridors of the Ourang Medan. Sudden music strikes are even more frightening than what we see on the screen, similar to what we had a chance to experience in Dead Space, and actually this OST is very Dead Space like. While orchestra in horror productions seems to become worn out these days, Graves is still able to use it very skillfully. Bringer of War, There’s a Storm Coming, You Cannot Hide from this OST show this skillfullness in scaring the listener.
It is hard these days to create a horror soundtrack which is not obvious and predictable.
Man of Medan is also a game about friendship, relationships and adventure, hence the other part of the soundtrack consisting of uplifting, epic melodies. Redemption and The Temerity of Youth are heartwarming tracks telling the story of youth and innocence, also the relief after surviving all the horrors of the ship. The other hand Of Stormy Seas and Howling Winds takes you to a mysterious, exciting journey of exploring the sea.
The Dark Pictures: Man of Medan OST is one of the most appealing scores by Jason Graves. Aleatoric and dissonant but also relaxing and peaceful. At the latest Game Music Festival Gareth Coker told me that Jason Graves is a master of horror, and I agree with that. It is hard these days to create a horror soundtrack which is not obvious and predictable.