The importance of music in Rocket League montages

It’s hard for most of us not to get a little nostalgic when we hear the music from Rocket League x MonsterCat Vol. 1 come on.

Personally, those tracks take me back to when I started playing the game four years ago. For all of us, though, music plays such a big part in the game of Rocket League: whether that be the tunes we put on while we are grinding ranked, the song requests that viewers put on during a stream or that banger of a track that accompanies your favorite Rocket League montage.

That last example is what I want to dive into a little more in this article.

Just recently, I finished up a YouTube project revolving specifically around the music that accompanies Rocket League montages.

I gave three editors a week to make a montage but with a little twist: I gave them access to a music producer who would create an original track for them depending on what kind of mood or theme they were wanting their montage to have.

It was really incredible seeing what they came up with after the week was over.

Myself, French1000Island, and Zeke judged the montages after a week’s time, discussing the ins and outs of each one.  During these discussions, Zeke, in particular, made some points that really stood out to me.

In this piece, I want to take this opportunity to go over those points as well as show some examples of how music could change or even improve any Rocket League montage.

Pace Yourself

Something Zeke talked about was the pacing of the montages. One of them just seemed to stay the same speed the whole time and not speed up or slow down throughout the whole montage.

The track you pick for your montage will set the pace for your montage, somewhat defining the flow of the piece as a whole. Proper pacing can guide someone through a montage seamlessly in a way that a good writer does with an article. It keeps one captivated and treats the montage as an experience, one that flies by in an instant and has you wanting more. 

You want to match the speed of your clips to the music but also you want to match the individual content itself so that the viewer doesn’t get bored. When a bass drop may happen, for instance, the content in the clip coinciding with the drop is just as heart-stopping.

A lot of times what I do before I even start editing the clips together for a montage is to sit down with the track I plan to use and just listen to it a couple of times. This process really helps to envision the entire flow of the montage.

Making the Transition

On the topic of flow and pacing, transitions are really the glue that holds a montage together. These transitions will allow a montage to flow from one shot to another and should keep the audience interested through the whole video.

Really skilled editors have the ability to transport you from one shot to another without you even knowing you have gone to another scene.

A point that Zeke made about one of the montages was that there was a really amazing transition but then that was it: the rest of the transitions were all dissolved or just too simple.

This exemplifies another common problem montage editors may run into: consistency. The lack of consistent effective transitions and pacing can interrupt the flow and experience of the viewer and can make the music seem less fitting.

The type of music you choose for a montage can determine what sorts of transitions you will want for your montage. If you have really fast upbeat EDM music, you are most likely going to want more abrupt, quick transitions to reflect what the listeners are hearing. If you choose to go with a slower-paced track, you will most likely want your transitions to be more smooth and seamless.

The mistake sometimes can be putting the wrong transition with the wrong music, making the entire transition feel forced rather than fluent. 

Find the Goal

One of my pet peeves while watching a montage is when the music has a huge build-up to an incredible beat drop…. and then nothing interesting happens in the video.

Knowing where those really awesome moments are in your track will help you know where to place a great shot, block, or my personal favorite, a goal explosion.

This is really prominent when you are dealing with a track with a lot of beat drops or a lot of drums because it’s more obvious where the beats are.

If you are working with a slower track, you will probably have a little more leeway with where you place each clip. 

Good Luck!

I hope after reading this you may have picked up a few ideas or thoughts you now want to implement in your next montage, or perhaps maybe this has inspired you to start making your own montages!

Hopefully, we will all give a little more thought into the music we are using and take advantage of every little aspect that the track that we are using offers.


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