Ye Chenyang is a Composer working at Booming Tech, the developer behind Conqueror’s Blade based in Hangzhou, China. Ye joined Booming Tech in early 2021, and his work can be heard in the new battleground besieged by Northmen in Season VII: Wolves of Ragnarok. As part of Music Week, we sat down (virtually, of course) with Ye to discuss his background, influences, and work in bringing beautiful music to the gloriously brutal battlefields of Conqueror’s Blade.
What is your background, and how did you get into music in videogames?
Ye: I studied recording arts at university, with a focus on composition and arrangement. After graduating I began working at NetEase as an audio editor while simultaneously doing a bit of music production.
I joined the games industry because I'm a gaming enthusiast, and I'm very interested in both game and film music, and so I wanted to use my professional knowledge to create music in an area I'm interested in and create music that would touch the hearts of players.
What are your core responsibilities at Booming Tech on Conqueror’s Blade?
Ye: I create music for in-game locations (maps), menus, and videos.
What is your process for making new music in Conqueror's Blade?
Ye: First, I delve deep into the area of history I'm going to create music for. I read up on its culture, the era, game lore, and think about the feeling we want to give the player. Then, I'll create a rough idea of what I want it to sound like in my head, and then set up a few instruments that I might need, and work on a demo. While composing the music I will also continuously share my progress with colleagues, and we'll discuss ways to make improvements to make it even better. Finally, I'll add the music to its area in-game and listen to it for as long as I need to and see whether or not it meets my expectations.
How is your music influenced by the cultures that inspire the game, for instance Vikings in Season VII: Wolves of Ragnarok?
Ye: In Season VII, I created the music for Heilung Fjord and for the login menu. It was my goal to convey feelings of savagery and excitement, and so I took much inspiration from the band Heilung and used many ancient instruments. I added orchestral influences to rather simple melodies to give it a more epic feel, and to make it grander and more exciting without losing the ancient feel.
What was it like being able to use the music of Heilung when creating the soundtrack to Heilung Fjord? Could you tell us about that process?
Ye: The music of Heilung is savage and wild, and fitted perfectly with Season VII’s theme. However, adding such unique music to the game and making it adhere to everyone's taste is no simple matter. For this composition, I divided Heilung's music into several sections and added a section to different parts of the siege battle. This was so I could as closely as possible create a Viking-like atmosphere, while catering to the tastes of a wider audience.
Do you have any other influences that inspire you when you’re making music?
Ye: While creating music, I listen to the soundtracks of other games and live performances to gain inspiration.
What is your favourite piece of music in Conqueror’s Blade?
Ye: The background music for Heilung Fjord, and the new music for Reginopolis that will be added soon.
What other games do you like to play when you’re not working on Conqueror’s Blade?
Ye: League of Legends, Nioh, God of War, and more.
Thanks for chatting with us, Ye!
This feature is brought to you as part of Music Week, a special week of content running from May 10-16 celebrating the history of Viking music, and modern-day compositions by Heilung and Booming Tech. Keep an eye on the Conqueror’s Blade website for more features, a contest, and other surprises!