El Hijo

A non-violent stealth video game, where a young boy tries to escape and find his mother. A tribute to Sergio Leone’s westerns and the music of Ennio Morricone.

The music for the multi-awarded video game “El Hijo” is an interactive orchestral score, dynamically changing throughout the game. Thematically, the score engages in a musical dialogue with Ennio Morricone’s iconic work on Spaghetti Westerns, to whom the music is dedicated. It revisits the Wild West settings of the Spaghetti Western genre in a non-violent context.

The music interactively leverages the player’s movements within the game to influence the symphonic orchestration. As the central game character, El Hijo, moves around various environments such as a dark monastery, a dusty desert, or a bustling town, different aspects of the orchestration are revealed, thus embodying the diversity of the journey experienced by the young boy.

Space not only unfolds the narrative journey of the main character, El Hijo, but also expands the orchestral composition: a dynamic orchestration in space, guided by the user’s journey as El Hijo. A turn at a corner might reveal an angry monk, underscored by a slide guitar; a threatening cowboy approaching, accompanied by a crescendo from a string trio. An ostinato from the timpani and the double bass punctuate the overwhelming ride on a cart, while moving in the darkness is met with the sonorous tones of low brass instruments.

This composition represents the culmination of my previous musical research into the expressive nature of physical space, exploring how space can play an active creative role equal to other musical dimensions, such as melody and harmony. I designed the musical interactions specifically for this game and they were implemented by programmer Stephan Schüritz.

Created with the team of Honig Studios

Published by HandyGames