Game audio/music rips - bootleg or not?

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I may be over thinking this a bit, but I wonder if there might be a way to distinguish… If a soundtrack can only be obtained via the movie packaging, it is called a bootleg here, I believe, as it is not officially released, just the movie is. If there is a musical product within another packaging, like a game, is that still really considered a release? I mean, a CD is a release, I can go buy it. So is a digital release, I can buy that too, or download a bootleg from a torrent site. But id a musical product is inside a game, I cannot buy it, I need to buy the game. If I were to soundtrack that game, that is a bootleg release (or similar) as it is not for sale, correct?

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Depends how it’s presented I’d say.

If you buy a game and it includes the soundtrack as a separate thing, album like, that’s definitely official IMO - if you need to rip it off the game files, then a bootleg is probably more like it.


That makes sense. But it seems to apply only to physical games. What about a digital only game? I mean, I can see easily if I buy a physical game and I have only one disc, then the soundtrack needs to be ripped off of the game disc, so then that is bootleg. But if I have a game disc and a soundtrack disc, then it would be official as you have stated. But for digital releases, there is no physical piece(s). So then, if I am understanding, in the example provided to us here, there is a soundtrack online that requires the game to access. But since it is available as a soundtrack type entity, that makes it official vs bootleg or any other. Assuming I understand, I still wonder if there needs to be a differentiation for such things? Specifically meaning a release I can buy vs a release I need to buy something else in order to actually get.

I couldn’t disagree more. How is that more of a bootleg than the rip from a simple CD?


Simple. A music CD is a music CD release, thus the actual release is the CD, not the rip. If I rip sound from a game disc, then the release is a game, not a musical piece. As far as I know, a rip does not create a separate release, but it is a copy of its source.

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Yes, but the release is still an official release not a bootleg. Copying the music doesn’t create a separate bootleg release even if the source is a game instead of a CD.


Above, reosarevok said this, which is also what I believe:

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Some of the games that I buy on steam that come with a sound track they are separate files to the original release.
Sometimes these are available at additional cost and are purchased as an add on to the game.
These files will usually be downloaded to a different folder in the game install for you to move to a location you choose.

For games that do not contain an official sound track where the files are hidden I would consider it a bootleg but still worthy of being added to the database.


There are also some CD-ROM games that have a separate audio CD portion on the disc. They usually have some admonishment on the packaging warning listeners to skip to track 2 when playing them in a CD player.


Those are for sure official as we play them in our CD players.
I guess I have already bought some game without having the particular console, just for the music the CD contains. :slight_smile:

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I know. I used to have one, and it contained instructions to skip to track 2 if you were playing it in a CD player.

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In some games it’s a little less clear. In Civilization V and Civilization: Beyond Earth, the music files are contained in the game assets, but they’re in a subfolder called “Soundtrack” and they have full metadata. “Ripping” in this case is simply copying the Soundtrack folder to your music folder (and running it through Picard, of course. :smile: ) In this case, is it bootleg because it’s not separate from the game?

In Civ 6, the soundtrack is a DLC separate from the game files and in Civ 4, the files are in a Soundtrack folder under the game assets, but there’s no metadata. I would call Civ 6 official and Civ 4 bootleg, and I’m leaning toward official for Civ 5.

If the music comes from the people who made the game or the music, I’d call it official. If it is a recoding of the game music made by someone playing back the game’s audio or just distributing the audio files then it is a bootleg.

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Apologies for not reading the whole thread - but how difficult it is to make new categories? Instead of trying to get game tunes to fit into something not quite right for it, can we get a category added for it?

I am finding a similar confusion with Radioplays. Not really “Broadcast” or “Spokenword” or “Audiobook” but a kind of overlap of all of them.

I get a feeling that MB has expanded to cover a lot more audio types that originally planned.

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That’s actually a pretty good idea. What would we call a release that’s included in some other product? I’m not just thinking of computer game soundtracks now, but also music that comes as part of a book or magazine. Heck, I vaguely remember records stuck to the back of cereal boxes when I was a kid. Maybe those type of products need their own category, though I can’t think of a name for it right now.

Yeah - but they were records playable on a record player. They would be music tracks and fit neatly into MB categories already. Just need a different media type as “vinyl” would be a bit of a stretch as I am sure I remember cutting some out of the cardboard… Flexidisks were the classic from this time too. (I have a few of those buried away in the collection somewhere).

These “coverdisks” were promotional. Plenty of Music Magazine cover disks already listed here in MB.

They are not really a different audio type though. I didn’t realise the thread had also gone into unusual medium too.

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