Riot Games, Monstercat and Noisestorm Reveal What Went Into Bringing “Crab Rave” to Teamfight Tactics

Ever wonder how EDM keeps finding its way into your favorite video games?

Out now on Riot Games‘ popular auto battler, Teamfight Tactics is the final patch of their “Remix Rumble” event, which features numerous character and gameplay adjustments. While we won’t get into the finer details, interested players can watch the complete rundown from Gameplay Director, Stephen Mortimer, here.

However, one portion of this update has given dance music fans a reason to check out the game if they already haven’t.

One of Teamfight Tactics‘ most infamous creatures with which to do battle is a giant crustacean dubbed “Crab Rave.” At the time of the creature’s launch, there was no special in-game music for this EDM-inspired NPC. Now, after the latest update, players will be able to jam out to Noisestorm’s incredibly popular and ultra-memeable 2018 single while the giant crab decimates your team.

This, of course, is far from the first time we’ve seen electronic dance music invade video games, like with Riot Games’ League of Legends and VALORANT as well as Monstercat’s contributions to Rocket League. But how exactly did these partnerships come to life?

We spoke with some of the minds behind Teamfight Tactics as well as the Monstercat team and the creator of “Crab Rave,” Noisestorm, to find out.

One must ask what considerations go into selecting music for a video game. For this instance, “Crab Rave” was the obvious choice since the character was already inspired by the song. Considering the fact that the current season of the game features a music festival theme, Peter Whalen, Senior Game Director of Teamfight Tactics, says the most important factor was simply making players smile.

On the label side of things, Monstercat’s Director of Sync and Partnerships, Gavin Johnson, said they caught wind of the NPC inspired by one of their releases and they actually reached out with an offer to include the single.

Now, most importantly, you may be curious about what the creator of the track thinks about including his music in games.

“I like to make sure that the game is one I play or would like to play,” Noisestorm explains. “In this case, it was apparent from community feedback and from watching gameplay that it’d be a great fit for the game! The high-quality animations paired with the song would be a really fun crossover, especially considering the portal name is ‘Crab Rave.'”

Digging a little deeper, we asked the group to speak a little more about how the artists are involved in the process. Whalen took us behind-the-scenes with their recent collaboration with Steve Aoki at the start of the in-game season. Aoki plays the game himself, Whalen said, and was very involved in many of the pieces of the partnership.

“[Aoki] helped with the trailer, the musical vibe for the set and on a new character, Scratch, our blue DJ squirrel,” he explained. “Scratch needed to capture Steve’s essence, so we had a few sessions where we’d talk through some concepts and make sure to capture his preferences and ideas. The track Steve developed had to incorporate metal, jazz and classical as part of an epic DJ showdown, so we worked together to line up the visuals with the music.”

On the more technical side of things, Teamfight Tactics‘ Sound Design Manager, Alison Ho, explained how crucial it was for Noisestorm to send over stems. “Noisestorm and the Monstercat team graciously sent us some individual pieces alongside the track, which made it easier for us to incorporate the music into the separate rounds of the game.”

The fact that the song is almost six years old now is something that made this collaboration a bit different than their previous releases, including the event featuring Aoki.

“Typically, these musical collaborations happen before a project begins, and the music created is for a specific part of the final product, whether it’s in game or a cinematic piece,” Ho says of the new update. “‘Crab Rave’ was created by Noisestorm years before, so the collaboration took a different approach.”

Noisestorm and Johnson themselves caught wind of the character named after one of the label’s flagship releases and saw the buzz online, which led to them reaching out to Riot Games. Whalen, of course, was happy to ink the partnership.

“For Teamfight Tactics, we lean more whimsical and light-hearted, so having something with as much meme potential as ‘Crab Rave’ is a wonderful fit.”

The final result of this back-and-forth is what we have on our monitors today: the all-new “Crab Rave” portal featuring the sounds of Noisestorm’s hit of the same name. You can learn more about Teamfight Tactics and start playing the game for free on desktop or mobile here.

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