This is a list of published texts, journals and websites for ludomusicological research and reference, organised by general focus. It is by no means exhaustive, but we recommend this collection as both a strong starting point and continued point of reference.

Monographs and Edited Collections

Game Music and Audio Scholarship

From Pac-Man to Pop Music (2008) – Karen Collins

Game Sound Technology and Player Interaction: Concepts and Developments (2011) – Mark Grimshaw

Playing with Sound (2013) – Karen Collins

Music and Games: Perspectives on a Popular Alliance (2012) – Peter Moormann

Music in Video Games (2014) – K.J. Donnelly, William Gibbons, and Neil Lerner

Sound Play: Video Games and the Musical Imagination (2014) – William Cheng

Music Video Games (2016) – Michael Austin

Understanding Video Game Music (2016) – Tim Summers

Ludomusicology: Approaches to Video Game Music (2016) – Michiel Kamp, Tim Summers, Mark Sweeney


Game Music History and/or Design

The Complete Guide to Game Audio: For Composers, Musicians, Sound Designers, and Game Developers (2001) – Aaron Marks

Masters of Doom: How Two Guys Created an Empire and Transformed Pop Culture (2003) – David Kushner

Game Sound (2008) – Karen Collins

Video Game Music (2015) – Daniel Ross

Keys to Play: Music as a Ludic Medium from Apollo to Nintendo (2016) – Roger Moseley


Game Music Composition

Music for New Media: Composing for Video Games, Web Sites, Presentations, and other Interactive Media (2007) – Paul Hoffert

Keeping Score: Interviews with Today’s Top Film, Television, and Video Game Composers (2009) – Tom Hoover

A Composer’s Guide to Game Music (2014) Winifred Phillips

Composing Music for Games: The Art, Technology and Business of Video Game Scoring (2015) – Chance Thomas

Writing Interactive Music for Video Games (2015) – Michael Sweet


Music and Sound in Screen Media

Film Art: An Introduction (1979) – David Bordwell and Kristin Thompson

Hearing Film (2000) – Anahid Kassabian

Audio-Vision: Screen on Sound (1994) – Michel Chion

Media Archeology: Approaches, Applications, and Implications (2011) – Jussi Parikka

The Oxford Handbook of Sound and Image in Digital Media (2013) – Carol Vernallis, Amy Herzog and John Richardson

The Oxford Handbook of Film Music Studies (2013) – David Neumeyer

The Routledge Companion to Screen Music and Sound (2017) – Miguel Mera, Roland Sadoff and Ben Winters


Video Game Scholarship, Design and Culture

Trigger Happy: Videogames and the Entertainment Revolution (2001) – Steven Poole

What Video Games Have to Teach us About Learning and Literacy (2003) – James Paul Gee

Rules of Play (2003) – Eric Zimmerman and Katie Salen

Game Design: Theory and Practice (2004) – Richard Rouse II

Videogames (2004) – James Newman

Half-Real: Video Games between Real Rules and Fictional Worlds (2005) – Jesper Juul

Digital Gameplay: Essays on the Nexus of Game and Gamer (2005) – Nate Garrelts

Playing Video Games: Motives, Responses, and Consequences (2006) – Peter Vorderer, Jennings Bryant

Gaming: Essays on Algorithmic Culture (2006) – Alexander R. Galloway

Persuasive Games: The Expressive Power of Video Games (2007) – Ian Bogost

Understanding Video Games: The Essential Introduction (2008) – Simon Egenfeldt-Nielsen, Jonas Heide Smith, Susana Pajares Tosca

Digital Cultures: Understanding New Media (2009) – Glen Creeber and Royston Martin

Game Feel: A Game Designer’s Guide to Virtual Sensation (2009) Steve Swink

Playing Along: Digital Games, Youtube, and Virtual Performance (2012) – Kiri Miller

Digital Play: The Interaction of Technology, Culture, and Marketing (2015) – Stephen Kline, Nick Dyer-Witheford, Greig De Peuter

Video Games Around the World (2015) – Mark J. P. Wolf and Toru Iwatani

The Art of Game Design: A Book of Lenses (2015) – Jesse Schell


Ludology, Narratology and Media Studies

Homo Ludens (1938) – Johan Huizinga

Man, Play and Games (French Les Jeux et Les Hommes) – (1958) – Roger Caillois

The Laws of the Game: How the Principles of Nature Govern Chance (1975) – Manfred Eigen and Ruthild Winkler

Image Music Text (1977) – Roland Barthes

Narrative Discourse: An Essay in Method (1980) – Gérard Genette

Narrative Comprehension and Film (1992) – Edward Branigan

Paratexts: Thresholds of Interpretation (1997) – Gérard Genette

First Person: New Media as Story, Performance, and Game (2004) – Noah Wardrip-Fruin

Convergence Culture: Where Old and New Media Collide (2006) – Henry Jenkins


Business & Marketing

The Business and Culture of Digital Games: Gamework and Gameplay (2006) – Aphra Kerr

Journals and Website Research

Screen Sound Journal (Australia/Oceania focus)

The Soundtrack 

Game Studies

Google Scholar