Dwelling of Duels is a website which hosts a monthly competition for musicians to arrange or cover songs from video games. It requires that the main instrument be "played live"; in other words, you can't sequence it in a computer program using your mouse or other non-instrumental means. Most of the entries use guitars, but any live instrument is acceptable, including piano, electronic keyboard synthesizer, violin, vocals, and anything else under the sun.
The songs are posted at the month's end anonymously, and the winner is determined by popular vote on the site's forum. As long as the song meets the basic requirements, it is accepted into the competition and remains hosted afterward, regardless of quality or popularity; this means that complete beginners go toe-to-toe with experienced and even professional musicians; the most well-known contributors include Jake Kaufman (who composes music for video games such as Shantae and Contra 4), Chris Kline (who has played guitar for the Video Games Live concert tour), Dennis Mott (guitarist and vocalist for metal bands Dissolution and Putrescence), and Ailsean (known for submitting that Terra In Black song to Overclocked Re Mix).
This site and its songs provide examples of:
- Cover Version - Every song!
- Creator Couple - Hale-Bopp and Pongball, as seen here.
- Everything Is an Instrument - Including anvils, Heineken bottles and samples of strikes and shouts from Street Fighter.
- I Am the Band - Most of the entries are done by individuals using pseudonyms.
- In the Style of... - Many of the entrants draw a lot of inspiration from specific artists like Alice in Chains, In Flames, and Opeth.
- Orchestral Version - Several of the songs use a sampled orchestra with one or more live instruments taking the lead, such as this Command & Conquer song.
- Rearrange the Song - Averted: it is forbidden for an artist to re-enter an improved version of an old entry.