Boss Music

Video game music has come a long way from my childhood in the 1980s. Beeps and boops have been replaced by orchestral compositions that rival classical composers and the biggest movies. The scale, variety and sheer power of some video game scores is astonishing.

I really like it when music for boss battles is different to the general music and soundscape for the rest of the game. Some games use different music for different bosses, usually with great significance – and some even distinguish different phases of the same fight!

(this piece of music from the sublime Hades springs to mind)

Examiners are not the final bosses of your PhD journey and you’re certainly not there to fight them! But one connecting element between them and video game boss music is that there is a change of pace. A different challenge. More focus. More urgency. A greater need to do well and a limited circumstance to do it.

You already know everything you need to know. You’ve completed many challenges to get to the viva. As you prepare, breathe and think, “What else? What am I bringing to this? What else do I need?”

And as music is a fantastic catalyst for action and emotion, consider what music could help you as you prepare. What could you listen to in order to feel calm? To feel happy? To give you focus? What could you listen to and feel more confident?

(this piece of music from the sublime Hades springs to mind!)