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High Score 2023

Explore music for games at High Score: a two-day conference

Saturday 30 September - Sunday 1 October in  Melbourne

In-person conference and live stream featuring top composers, sound artists and industry pros from games and music

Panels, demos, workshops, networking, legal advice, A&R and more tailored to music creators of all levels

Limited time: High Score Scholarships - apply by 7 September 5pm AEST.

High Score is where music creators, game developers and industry professionals connect and explore the important role that music and audio play in game design and experience.

Join us Saturday 30 September & Sunday 1 October at LCI Melbourne in Collingwood – or on the live stream. Tickets are on sale now!

Drawing on a theme of "Tools of the Trade", this year’s High Score is focused on building deeper relationships with existing tools, finding new skills and putting everything to the test creatively, technically and practically. Whether your craft is composition or songwriting, sound design or foley, audio engineering or technical implementation – High Score has something for you.

Returning as hosts are ABC’s Good Game Spawn Point and Double J radio presenter Angharad 'Rad' Yeo and ACMI curator and award-winning videogame journalist, Jini Maxwell.

Opening the conference will be the legendary composer, Yoko Shimomura (Kingdom Heart, Final Fantasy XV, Super Mario RPG, Street Fighter II), discussing her 30+ year experience with the medium of game audio and composition.

Australia’s own Christopher Larkin (Hollow Knight, TOHU, Outfolded) will close out the conference with his experiences creating and refining a distinctive sound and production approach.

Panels and discussions on diverse topics include:

  • Foley design with Sony PlayStation's Joanna Fang and Blake Collins, who have worked on Marvel’s Spider-Man 2, God of War Ragnarok and Horizon Forbidden West.
  • Audio and sound for mobile games with Jayde Marter, Katarzyna Wiktorski & John Guscott
  • Deep dives into the soundtracks of: Dredge, Broken Roads and Justice Sucks
  • The first presentation of The Australian Music in Games Benchmark by Dan Golding and Brendan Keogh for Creative Australia


  • Hands-on demo rooms to try out gear from our sponsors Ableton, FMOD and Native Instruments
  • Networking time
  • Book 1-on-1 meetings with industry bodies, Arts Law Centre of Australia & Australian Guild of Screen Composers
  • and so much more!

Don’t miss the chance to network and connect, try out software and hardware or learn from local and international speakers on skill development, aesthetic design, and the structure of the ever-changing games industry.

  • $70 earlybird in-person ticket – EXHAUSTED!
  • $120 full price in-person
  • $25 live stream

High Score is presented by APRA AMCOS, in partnership with Creative Victoria, and is part of Melbourne International Games Week.

Buy tickets

Sponsors & Supporters


Yoko Shimomura - Keynote

Shimomura’s name is one of the most recognised in video game history, and her compositions are some of the most beloved. Since graduating from Osaka College of Music in 1988 as a piano major, she has contributed her music to some of the most renowned video games, such as those within the Kingdom Hearts, Mario & Luigi, and Street Fighter II series. After working at Capcom and Square Enix for much of her career, she now continues to compose for games through freelance work, and is the lead composer on the recent Square Enix flagship titles Final Fantasy XV and Kingdom Hearts III. (photo credit: OSAMU NAKAMURA)


Christopher Larkin - Keynote

Christopher Larkin (he/him) is an establish composer and sound designer for video games and the moving image. His work and achievements include the score and sound effects for hit indie title Hollow Knight, evocative indie point-and-click Tohu, and music for Cannes World Film Festival award-winning VR documentary Thin Ice VR.


Angharad Yeo - MC/Host

Angharad 'Rad' Yeo is an award-winning television presenter, video game critic, technology journalist and one of the hosts of technology podcast Queens of the Drone Age. She is also a host of ABC ME's Good Game Spawn Point, and Double J's Weekends. Her other credits include ABC Science's Elevator Pitch and Rad Experiments, and ABC Listen's How Games Play Us.


Jini Maxwell - MC/Host

Jini Maxwell (they/them) is a curator and an award-winning videogame journalist. They work at ACMI, Australia’s museum of screen culture, where they specialise in curating videogames, As well as acting as lead curator on ACMI's centrepiece ehxibition, they recently curated Out of Bounds: Exploring The Limits of Videogames. Jini also works on game events, including Untitled Goose Game Live in collaboration with Orchestra Victoria, ACMI RMIT Games Talks series, and ACMI X WIP night, a monthly meetup for screen creatives to showcase their works-in-progress. Independently, they co-curate Gay24 films, a regular film night screening rare, radical and archival queer and trans films. They worked at Freeplay Independent Games Festival as a Creative Producer from 2019-21.


Aaron Edwards

Aaron Edwards (he/him) has been working in the international media scene for over 15 years as a composer, sound designer, music editor & audio programmer. He now brings those different perspectives together as Product Manager for FMOD.

Alexander Aniel

Based in Tokyo, Alex has worked in the game industry for over ten years. At Brave Wave Productions, he manages game composers primarily from Japan, connecting them with developers in North America, Europe, Latin America and other Asian countries, connecting these composers to their fans worldwide.


Ben Houghton

Ben Houghton (he/him) is a Melbourne-based composer and sound designer currently working on multiple game projects including “Call of the Golden Valley”, “Letters to Arralla” and “Site Unseen”. Ben specialises in adaptive music systems and brings a wealth of knowledge to game audio from years of producing and performing electronic music.


Blake Collins

Blake Collins is the Senior Foley Mixer at PlayStation Studios in San Diego. With a background in Film and Television spanning over 16 years, he teamed up with Senior Foley Artist Joanna Fang to establish the Foley Department at PlayStation in 2021. Together, they've worked on titles like Marvel’s Spider-Man 2, God of War Ragnarok, Horizon Forbidden West, and MLB The Show 23.


Brendan Keogh

Brendan Keogh (he/him) is a videogame industry researcher at Queensland University of Technology, Brisbane. He has written extensively about the cultures of videogame production and consumption for over a decade.


Broghan Blackshaw

Broghan Blackshaw (she/her) is an Experienced Sound Designer at PikPok in New Zealand. Over the course of her career she has created hundreds of bespoke compositions for fun, video games, advertising, documentaries and other mixed media. Outside of games, Broghan works in several bands and co-owns a record label.


Cameron Lam

Cameron Lam (he/they) is Art Music Lead at APRA AMCOS taking care of composers and writers in the genres of Art Music (Classical, Jazz, Sound Art, Experimental and Improvised Music). He has also been the curator of High Score since its inception in 2017, focused on fostering skills development, and building connection with the Australian (and global) game audio community. They are also a composer, producer and artistic director focussed on cross-artform collaboration with music and the curator of the Australian Art Music playlist on Spotify.

Chris O'Neill

Senior explosion engineer, creature creator and music meddler at PlaySide Studios. Chris' time in audio has seen him cover an eclectic variety of areas; everything from Paramount and DC universe mobile titles through to live installation pieces and projects for Google, Square Enix, and IBM. His personal highlights include remixing 'Snake Eater' for Metal Gear Solid V, designing audio for the BBC's first ever VR documentary, and getting eaten by a T-Rex as the voice of the 'Trapper' class in Primal Carnage: Extinction.


Dan Golding

Associate Professor Dan Golding (he/him) is Deputy Chair of Media and Communication at Swinburne University, the host of Screen Sounds on ABC Classic, and an award-winning composer (Untitled Goose Game, Frog Detective, Mars First Logistics) and writer (Star Wars After Lucas).


David Mason

David Mason is a Māori freelance music composer and sound designer based in Aotearoa. David was the composer and lead sound designer for DREDGE by Black Salt Games. David specialises in orchestral and chamber music and sonic arts and has a Master’s Degree in classical composition.

Fernando Pepe

Fernando Pepe is a Brazilian sound designer and game composer with 12+ years of experience. He has worked on 50+ projects, recently leading the Audio team at Wildlife. He also teaches sound design and is a partner of Moonsailor Audio.


Jacques Foottit

Jacques Foottit is Co-Founder and Technical Director of DOTDOT, an award-winning creative studio that uses sound, art, hardware and software expertise to create innovative experiences both on-screen and in real-world environments.


Jayde Marter

Jayde Marter (he/him), a devoted Audio Director at PikPok, shapes gaming with acclaimed titles like "Into the Dead 2" and "Doomsday Clicker," lauded with a Play by Play Award. His multifaceted expertise, spanning composition, SFX, and music production, elevates collaborations with Callum, Kadington, Times x 2, and Burn My Shadow. Founder of "Burn My Records," Jayde champions talented artists, amplifying their unique voices. Rooted in a love for sound, he drives audio innovation, humbly embracing industry opportunities.


Joanna Fang

Joanna Fang is an Emmy award winning Foley artist and sound editor. After graduating from NYU Film in 2014, Joanna trained with acclaimed New York Foley artist Leslie Bloome at Alchemy Post Sound. Seven years and hundreds of credits later, Joanna transitioned into game development in 2021 and now works for Sony Playstation Studios Sound where she co-leads the development of their inhouse Foley stage with Blake Collins CAS. Her Foley spans across triple A titles, films, TV, podcasts, and theatre.


John Guscott

John Guscott (he/him) started out in game audio production in the early 2000s and is now an established Composer, Sound Designer, and Audio Director based in Melbourne, Australia. He has worked across many console, PC, mobile and VR titles and is currently the Audio Lead at PlaySide studios.


Katarzyna Wiktorski

Katarzyna Wiktorski (she/her) is a Polish-Australian pianist, composer, arranger, band leader and producer. Fusing improvisation, modern jazz, classical and film score influences, she creates emotional and ornate listening experiences for screen and performance projects. Since her 2020 releases, Kat has led multiple ensembles, collaborated with local artists and commissioned to create music for game projects, including a beautifully illustrated word game GUBBINS by Studio Folly.


Marie Foyle

Marie is an entertainment lawyer with extensive experience in film, TV and games, including bringing global TV brands and characters into the interactive games market. She is currently Principal Solicitor at Arts Law, advising on everything from games development to music licensing, 360 deals, management agreements and publishing agreements.


Martin Taylor

“Martin “Tain” Taylor (he/him) is currently taking the lead in research and data collection for the payment of music royalties in video games at APRA AMCOS and has twenty years of experience working with both major and independent record companies. He has been teaching arcade gameplay and history at events through 1989 Arcade Bar for the last four years and has a passion for passing this information on to the next generation of gamers. He is also an avid retro arcade gamer and, as well as competing in the Australian Battle Of The Arcades for the last five years, also set the Twin Galaxies world record for Metal Slug 2 on the Neo Geo. He has also been invited to be a commentator on successful world record high score attempts on Wonderboy, Sunset Riders, Point Blank 2 and Midnight Resistance.”

Mika Cornelius

Mika Cornelius (they/them) is a composer/sound designer based in Auckland, who has created sound design and music for video games, theatre, short films and podcasts. They are a sound designer for Dredge by Black Salt Games, an NZ-made fishing/horror game.


Mitchell Pasmans

Mitchell is Lead Sound Designer at Samurai Punk Studios where he strives to create fresh and distinctive noises for all Samurai Punk releases. He has received multiple AGDA Nominations in both sound and music for his work which includes KillBug, ScreenCheat:Unplugged and Justice Sucks.


Natalie Jeffreys

Natalie Jeffreys (she/her) is a composer, sound designer, and composer’s assistant. Most recently, she was Sound Designer for Every Hue of You, composed additional music for Season Three of The Rising of the Shield Hero alongside Kevin Penkin and Alfredo Sirica, and has assisted Kevin Penkin on several anime projects. In 2022, she assisted composer GrandPrizeBigFuzz on the online game Gods Unchained.


Nicholas McDonnell

Nicholas McDonnell (he/him) co-founded Samurai Punk in 2014 and has since worked on all of Samurai Punk’s games in various positions including Design, Art and gameplay programming. Nicholas is very passionate about ensuring high quality game feel in Samurai Punk’s games and making compelling, replayable experiences.


Paris Buttfield-Addison

Paris Buttfield-Addison is co-founder at Yarn Spinner, creators of the wildly popular narrative game development tool, and producer at Secret Lab, a game development studio based in beautiful Hobart, Tasmania, Australia. Secret Lab builds games and game development tools, including the BAFTA- and IGF-winning Night in the Woods, and ABC Play School Games, Qantas games, and hundreds more. Yarn Spinner is used in tens of thousands of games built around around the world, including the award-winning A Short Hike, Lost in Random, Dredge, Frog Detective, Button City, among many others. Paris formerly worked as a software engineer, and product manager for Meebo, which was acquired by Google. He has a degree in medieval history, a PhD in Computing, and has written more than 30 technical books on machine learning, programming, and game development.


Simon Hanna

Simon (aka Grand Prize Big Fuzz) is an award winning Composer for video games, music artist & co-founder of Featherfall Audio. After winning AGDA Best Music award for Rite (2020), he has gone on to work with Immutable on Gods Unchained, Raini on The Lords of Light and most recently with The Lemur Conspiracy on Vactics.


Talia Raso

Talia Raso (she/her) is a sound designer and audio obsessor, enthralled by the effects of audio-visual cohesion in multi-sensory experiences. She has been a member of the audio department at PlaySide Studios since 2022 lending her work to such titles as Age Of Darkness, WorldBoss, The Godfather and Legally Blonde mobile games as well as the Dumb Ways to Die franchise. Talia has been working in audio engineering and audio post production since 2012, and has had the privilege to join some incredible teams on feature films, animations, documentaries and national advertising campaigns.


Taylor Hardwick

Taylor Hardwick is a PhD candidate at Swinburne University of Technology. Her research examines how Melbourne-based games events navigated the shift to online formats in 2020, with a focus on experiences of safety, accessibility. Her other research interests include games industries, games and fandom communities, and representations of gender and sexuality in popular culture.

Tim Sunderland

Tim Sunderland is a lifelong musician, having started playing at the age of 10 and producing music since 2013. He got his first gig making music for games when he joined Drop Bear Bytes in 2019, and is now Composer and Audio Lead on their upcoming RPG, Broken Roads.


Troy Innocent

Dr Innocent connects people and place through urban play. Working with the city as a material, his work reimagines the creative, linguistic, cultural, social diversity of our world/s via processes of ‘reworlding’. Innocent is founder of the RMIT Future Play Lab, Urban Play Network and creator of 64 Ways of Being.


Zander Hulme

Director of Australian game audio company Supertonic, Zander Hulme's (he/him) true passion is in designing and optimising interactive sound and music systems. Recently he was Audio Lead on 5 Lives Studios' Windbound – a sailing/crafting/survival game featuring sophisticated adaptive music and a menagerie of fantastical squeaking, roaring, and belching creatures.