Five Enlightening Videogame* Sound Design Videos

Creating audio for videogames is dirty, backbreaking work, at least when happening upon some greasy mass of scrap metal with extraordinary sonics leaves a sound designer no choice but to lug the thing from wherever to the studio. Ah, but the rewards…well, they’re not particularly monetary: pay runs fair to middlin’.

How a sound designers’ union meeting might look if publishers allowed such things.

Still, given the opportunity to work in a realm where quality, original sound is prized–and knowing that, for most gamers, whatever they play on is the best-sounding thing they own–only a schmuck or lucky fool with a film gig could possibly think of passing. And even then (as you’re just about to learn), not always.

Heavenly Sword
Developer: Ninja Theory
Genre: Action-Adventure, Hack and Slash/Beat ‘Em Up

Instead of having an in-house sound department, why not hire some of the best people in film to handle your audio? Think the people who crafted the sonics for Crouching Tiger Hidden Dragon might know a thing or two about transforming sword fight field recordings into epic soundscapes?

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Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix
Developer: Electronic Arts
Genre: Action-Adventure

This clip opens with someone saying “no one knows what magic sounds like.” The sound designers apparently think it sounds like pots and pans. We kid, of course, but what’s up with that pumpkin sound at the end?

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Gears of War
Developer: Epic Games
Genre: Third-Person Tactical Shooter

Watch as, wielding a real chainsaw, Gears of War sound designer Jamey Scott attempts to record real chainsaw sounds in the control room and gets dangerously close to destroying thousands in gear.

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Dead Space
Developer: Electronic Arts
Genre: Third-Person Shooter, Survival Horror, Action

According to Glen Schofield, executive producer of Dead Space, “in our game, audio is just about everything.” Audio director Don Veca adds “I think one of the most unique audio elements of Dead Space is not necessarily the sounds we make, it’s the control of the sounds we make.” Judging by this video, we say they’ll deliver.

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Gears of War 2
Developer: Epic Games
Genre: Third-Person Tactical Shooter

“Audio is everything,” says Cliff Bleszinski, lead designer of Gears of War 1 and 2. Bleszinski demanded crunchier sound effects for the sequel, but instead of remixing the audio from the first, lead sound designer Mike Larson replaced most of it.

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“As William Strunk himself maintained that any two words naturally belonging together become one over time, and as “video” and “game” are already so married in the land of the mother tongue, we’re making our move now.  Anybody who doesn’t like it can go eat one of these.

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2 Responses to Five Enlightening Videogame* Sound Design Videos

  1. Pingback: Five additional enlightening videos on videogame audio design and one text-based interview. | IPR Blog

  2. Great to know about all those staff.