Thursday, May 7, 2009

Sounds Exciting

Good gracious we're just barreling along on projects these days. I've been having the good fortune to work on some cool content.

The Dossier team has been letting me tackle some sound effects for RED. The taks requires a good ear and a whole lot of patience. Let me break down the process for you.

The team hands off a scene for me to play-through and evaluate what sounds are needed to help create a richer experience. I then write down each sound that I'm going need, and access the sound library, an extensive collection of everyday sounds we hear. Once in the library, I find the perfect sound for each occasion and save them out for editing or finalizing. These sounds are then passed on to some of our scripters to integrate into the game. We systematically apply this process for each and every scene in the game!

What makes the job so difficult and time-consuming is picking out the perfect sound to emphasize the action taking place. For instance, let's say a door is being closed in a scene, some questions I may ask myself would be: what kind of door is it; a sliding door, a cellar door, an office door? What is the door made of; wood, metal, glass? Is the door being slammed, or shut gently? All of things can influence the kind of sound I need to find. In addition there may be as many as 100 different types of sounds in our library that meet my requirements. That's a lot of listening! Sometimes I may even need to alter a sound to get the right environmental effects, like if Nancy is underwater, or in an echo-friendly cave.

Overall though, the process is quite fun, particularly when I have to create sounds that don't exist. To do this, I utilize the sound library and try to find similar sounds, or pieces that make up what I need. This is more of a necessity for puzzles, when we're trying to attribute sounds that don't have a particular standard; like sliding game pieces or providing feedback on choices you make (cheery sounds for correct answers, buzzes for wrong ones, et al.)

Well I hope you enjoyed the little jaunt into the wonderful world of sound effects. Till next time.

- Novel -

1 comment:

HerInteractive said...

Very cool! Finding the perfect sound effects is a tough job and the Dossier team is lucky that they have someone as talented are you are to work on the sounds!