Step 3: Sound


If you have not already prototyped a game, please visit the Design module before this one.

This module introduces you to the world of sound design. By the end, you’ll wonder why it ever seemed so scary, and your character will have a voice of their own.

This blog post by Nathan Lovato is a great place to start. He shows why sound is important in games and also provides some great links to free sound libraries (places where you can find lots of pre-recorded sounds to use in your game).

Necessary Tool: Reaper, a free-to-start Digital Audio Workstation (DAW)

Use the tutorial below to make a loop of track that you like and learn how to record your own voice in Reaper. You can safely ignore the video after the 20-minute mark, as the tutorial moves on to using virtual instruments, which are beyond the goals of this module. If you are interested in making your own music, however, go ahead and continue watching.

Now talk amongst your team

You all need to come to a consensus on which character uses which team member’s sounds. Once that is decided, you should record sounds (in different files) for when the character is walking, running, using effort (pushing / pulling / jumping), or performing any other action that they can perform in your game. Do they need to shout “Huzzah!” when they complete an objective? Will they utter a gasp when something goes wrong? Make sure your team agrees on these things!

Once you have a sound for each of your character’s actions, you can consider this training module to be complete. However, you should also think about other sounds that the environment might hold. If your character is in a forest, will birds be chirping in the trees? If they are in a laboratory, will there be bubbling chemicals or buzzing electronic devices?