GameSoundCon 400pxGameSoundCon, the largest professional conference for video game music and sound design, has published the 2021 Game Audio Industry Survey with new numbers on income for game audio pros, showing the latest job related trends, rates, contract terms, compensation and other industry statistics.

  • This year, GameSoundCon had the strongest overall survey response ever with over 600 respondents.
  • A new question was added to the survey: GameSoundCon asked if composers had ever received Performing Rights Royalties in 2020 from any game they had ever scored. Only 16% said “Yes.”
  • Good news for women: The “gender gap” in pay in game audio, which GameSoundCon last examined in detail in 2016, appears to be gone. In 2016, the “cost of being female” was about 2 years of experience. That gap doesn’t exist in the 2021 data, so female game sound pros make as much as their male counterparts, after accounting for experience.
  • The percentage of women and non-binary game audio professionals was the highest since the survey began, reaching 15%.
  • Per-minute music rates have been stagnant, with $1k/minute being the most popular rate, though at the high end, rates have gotten higher.

 “Since nobody could predict how the game sound industry was going to develop during the pandemic, I didn’t know what the survey would show this year. I’m beyond pleased to see that so many people participated,” says Brian Schmidt, founder and executive director of GameSoundCon.

The 2021 report covers both freelance and salaried game music composers and sound designers and gives details about:

  • Compensation
  • Salaried Employees, Freelancers, Contract Terms
  • By Gender, Geographic Region
  • Work and Environment
  • Freelance/Employee Status
  • Job Roles/Responsibilities
  • Audio Middleware
  • Education
  • Education Level/Degree Type
  • Compensation
  • Entry Level income/education

Click here to read the full survey report.

GameSoundCon will be held virtually this year on November 8 - 10. For only $75 per ticket, anyone, no matter where located in the world, can attend the conference online which will provide a great learning and networking experience about game music, sound, dialogue, and more for both beginners and seasoned pros. To register, please go to

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