MPSE Wavelength

Spring 2020

Issue link:

Contents of this Issue


Page 39 of 55

40 I M PS E . O R G update their dynamic spatial audio systems to reflect the intended sound of those sabers." Bolen explains, "A great amount of time was spent going through existing material to understand the sonic differences in the different lightsabers and creating new assets to make sure that when you have each of these sabers and you swing it around in all directions and attack enemies that it behaves consistently as the other sabers [in the game], yet has the distinctive sonic qualities that tell you that you are wielding a unique weapon and that the sound is as specific as possible for that particular saber." There's absolutely an "expected level of detail with an established universe," says Paul Stoughton, sound designer on Vader Immortal. What's surprising is "how deep you have to go with something, like a lightsaber, to make it feel like an interactive object versus how editors would have cut it for a movie." This is not only true for when the lightsaber comes to life in your hand, but when it inevitably leaves your hand as well. Foley editor Blake Collins explains, "If someone has been disarmed of their lightsaber in battle, there are a few different routes that we can go. Depending on the action of the user or the game, there are different levels of intensity that need to be conveyed. Does the lightsaber just fall out of our hand? Or does it violently fling to the ground and bounce and scatter? We provide options of varying intensified hits. "For example, [the first option could be] a soft fall to the ground of the lightsaber with a singular impact. The second option could be dropped from a higher elevation but this time with a little force put into the drop, no pun intended. This drop could have a couple of bounces too. Or maybe when being disarmed with a light pass [it] would be just the sound of the lightsaber rubbing against a gloved hand. The next level of intensity could have added lightsaber rattle to almost feel like it's getting knocked loose a little bit. "For a lightsaber rolling on the ground, [the sound] could be a simple roll of the metal object across a surface. To add intensity we might add some grit on another recording pass to sound like it's scraping due to the force of which it was knocked away from us. We can also add things like a sprinkle of metal debris for added effect on a particularly hard disarming." Collins relays the fun and creative process of Foley for VR that explores the possibilities of the experience. "In film, we are stuck with what we see on the screen and can only take certain liberties to the storytelling we are trying to accomplish. In VR and video games, we have so much freedom. A lot of time we don't actually see what is going to happen exactly how it will. We have to be able to see in our mind's eye what could happen." But the focus remains on high-quality recordings that ground each user in their own Vader Immortal: Episode 1's Lightsaber Dojo

Articles in this issue

Archives of this issue

view archives of MPSE Wavelength - Spring 2020