Blog 11/Week 11: Audio Shesh (Voice Acting for the very first time), Level Designing (Made it better).

Oh god this week…. there’s a lot to talk about it really, I’ll try and break it down to the necessary details.

So Wednesday is pretty much all things audio related. In saying that, we all got a tour down on level 1 to the film/audio studios to see how they function as well as getting to know some of the equipment we will be using. All of stuff about audio seems very alien to me (up to a degree anyway) even though I did have a bit of experience creating beats using FL Studio many years ago as to fuel my interest as well as experimenting with different sounds. With this audio workshop, I’m amazed with the different concepts used, how some of the different mics function, how sound travels through air, how mics process sounds differently to how we process sound, etc. All of those things intrigued me and since audio is one of my interests, I hope to get back into it someday. Okay, after we got taught how to use the equipment, we all had timeslots to record all the voice acting for our game. Technically speaking, this is actually my first time voice acting for a video game with like somewhat decent equipment in a “sound-proof” room. I know from what we were told that there are better recording studios around Sydney but for me at least, this is a pretty good set up. We’ve been given an hour and a half to get all of the voice acting done and my oh my…. it’s a pretty awesome experience! Yes, I as well as the Project Manager who also did some of the voice acting had numerous amounts of muck-ups (which we be collecting them as bloopers and might find some use for them in the future or just archive it for good memories, we’ll figure it out) but nonetheless we all had a very good laugh. I like how my voice sounded very smooth in some of the dialogue I spoke but thinking in the process as well as post recording I already knew in my own mind that I could do better (being the perfectionist that I am). Apparently I have a nasally and loud voice (okay, I’ll take it as a compliment). I really want to learn how to utilise that into different voice impressions but seeing as this is a skill that I don’t possess naturally, I’d be willing to practise it if time lets me. Voice acting… might pursue that as a potential career. Maybe not. Who knows really? I just love learning the things.

Transitioning now to actual work on our game. You guessed it people, I did more level design because I love it and I like to think it is something I can actually do/can better improve on. Given the level we had, I simply took what we already have and made that stronger. In this case, I re-positioned stuff on the level to make it bigger/basically to have more in it. That mainly consisted of moving the terrain, created more height on the building nodes for the facilities to sit on when spawned and creating another section for the 2 wharves, like adding a sort of tunnel and stair assets leading to them so we would be creating that 3D aspect of souls walking down to the wharves to get on their respective boats. This would also mean that we have to re-adjust the already positioned camera angles which shouldn’t take too long to complete. It’s just a matter to trial and error to figure out where they see fit. I also re-positioned the rock assets and added a lot more of them around the level to enhance that cave and underworld like vibe.

Here’s a couple of screenshots of the current level (along with the addition of particle effects which were implemented by one of the designers in our team):

Current scene of terminal.

Current scene of terminal.

Different view of the level from the wharves’ perspective.

Different view of the level from the wharves’ perspective.

As you can see from both screenshots I added more rock assets to give off that cavey feel into the underworld. The particle effects in the terminal essentially made the level more “juicy” in a way that gives it something more. I even added some signs to the level just to reiterate that comedic stance of the underworld actually being presented like a terminal for the AI to wander and make their way to board their appropriate boats.

Here’s a close up to some of them:

Sign depicted above instructing the souls to “watch where you’re going” as they descend to their designated wharves.

Sign depicted above instructing the souls to “watch where you’re going” as they descend to their designated wharves.

This one is conveying that there is only one way out of the terminal and that is through to the wharves and onto the boats (in this case, the good wharf) going to the Fields of Asphodel.

This one is conveying that there is only one way out of the terminal and that is through to the wharves and onto the boats (in this case, the good wharf) going to the Fields of Asphodel.

But in regards to what I have done, I redid the level with assets that I’ve found via the Unity Asset Store/Google Images. I’ll link them at the end of the blog. I really wanted to create the signs as well as the other assets by my own hand but unfortunately due to time eluding us I have to make do with what I can muster.

With my individual task of writing my Exegesis, it’s going at a slow but sure pace. I’ve just been informed by my facilitator that somewhere in my exegesis I need to make mention of a psychological aspect about our game (this is required as it’s part of our learning outcomes for designers). That is, affiliate a certain game mechanic in a real life situation? (I’m still coming to terms with it but I think I can make out what that means) Like, from talking to our facilitator/other people, I want to talk about how the AI work, not necessarily from a technical perspective but so much from a psychological one that describes how crowds in a transport terminal work/how do they work/why do they manoeuvre in that way as opposed to another way/etc.? This is interesting stuff, I have no idea how much I will delve into this but research into this is gonna be fun. Psychology is good for the mind (no pun intended).

Alright, let’s research this stuff now and see how it will turn out.

Hope you all enjoyed this week’s blog entry!

DFTBA (Don’t Forget To Be Awesome).

References/Resources:

Marc7260. (May 17, 2012). Building entrance LP – NY style. [3D model]. Retrieved from: http://www.turbosquid.com/3d-models/free-max-mode-building-entrance/672046

Mysafetysign.com (n.d.). Watch Your Step Signs and Labels. [Image]. Retrieved from: http://www.mysafetysign.com/watch-your-step-signs

SafetySign.com. (2015). Enter and Exit Signs. [Image]. Retrieved from: http://www.safetysign.com/products/p3749/this-way-out-left-arrow-sign

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