About the game

The Last Aura is a 3D action-adventure game developed by Leyline Games and published on Steam in 2019. Set in dark ruins and played from a top-down perspective, players control Demilux, a mystical orb of sentient light called an Aura. Once tasked with containing the darkness, the Auras failed in their roles, leaving Demilux as the sole survivor of their civilization. Now, Demilux must endure their fate and restore the balance between light and dark.

Demilux navigating the dark ruins.

The game comprises 15 playable levels featuring memorable boss fights. Players must solve puzzles, explore mazes, find power-ups, team up with allies, and rely on the few remaining light sources to avoid the bosses’ powers and traps within the eternal darkness.

About my role

In this game, I was tasked with the creation of the entire soundtrack. The developers and I shared a similar vision for the desired overall sound, so we quickly agreed that the soundtrack would center around ambient piano music. We believed that the piano was the ideal instrument for conveying the desired emotions in this tragic yet hopeful narrative.

The soundtrack was created by employing multiple composition tools and techniques, with the tracks meticulously crafted to complement the visuals and storyline. Each cue features dense ambient undertones, layered sound design, and ethnic instrumentation to evoke the feeling of traversing ancient ruins.

Demilux traversing a moving platform.

The game is divided into stages and boss battles, with each boss encounter preceded by designated stage levels. To align with this structure, the soundtrack was arranged into tracks for each boss, featuring distinct compositions for their stage levels and boss battles. These tracks were designed not only to match the atmosphere and intensity of their respective use cases but also to embody the essence of each boss, conveying their identity and behavior.

For instance, the boss Maynos portrays traits of a superior intellect and revels in mind games and illusions. To mirror these characteristics, I crafted the music with elements that convey a magical atmosphere, such as delayed arpeggiated synth lines and the incorporation of wind chimes, along with other complementary sounds.

The Amatus boss battle.

Another example is the boss Lyssa, characterized by an unstable personality and psychopathic behavior. To capture the essence of this character in the music, emphasizing her instability and madness, I composed wavering melodies, incorporated chromatic passages, utilized dissonant sounds, and integrated other peculiar elements into the overall soundscape.

Before facing a boss, players must first complete the preceding stage levels mentioned earlier. To add variety and heighten anticipation, the stage tracks were divided into segments with partial melodies. Initially, the stage tracks feature sparse and incomplete melodies, gradually building up to melodies more reminiscent of those played during the boss battle. I employed this technique not only to establish a connection with the respective boss but also as a way to add variety and provide a musical crescendo until the moment of encounter.

Demilux approaching a crystal.

All of these creative decisions were aimed at creating the most immersive experience possible. The goal was to foster a strong emotional connection with players and help them more easily connect with the storyline and characters.

The complete soundtrack is available on this page in short snippets. Additional information about the game is available on its Steam page.

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