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A day in the life of audio...

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Mod Ian

Mod Ian

Jagex Moderator Forum Profile Posts by user
Hi everyone I am Mod Ian. I’m part of your friendly neighbourhood Audio Team, and responsible for music and sound effects in RuneScape.

I have been with Jagex from the very early days and seen RuneScape grow from a small game into what it is today. I am responsible for much of the classic music, so you can blame me for those songs that get stuck in your head. As we are having a forum Month I thought I’d write a post about a typical working day for me, I hope you enjoy it!

So - this week I have been putting the finishing touches on the audio for Raids. After dealing with the sound effects for the bosses, I still had the goebie area to consider. There's an awesome-looking new forest that's part of the goebies’ home world, so I set about making the atmospheric sounds to accompany the new area.

I began - as I always do - just walking around the area and soaking up the atmosphere, looking at the unusual trees plants and getting a "feel" for the place. We have a great library of sounds to work from, so I set about looking for birds, beasts and insect sounds that would fit with the theme. Obviously, when dealing with any kind of alien environment you can't just rely on stock sounds, so I knew I would be doing some manipulation of the sounds I collected.

Once I had collected and grouped together the source sounds I wanted, I ran most of them through a variety of processes, including varying the pitch of the calls and cries, and randomising the timbre and volumes until I had some of the qualities of sound I wanted to achieve.

I thought about the size and depth of the forest and wanted some of the sounds to be close and some to be distant, you should be able to hear the calls of birds in the treetops as well as the chirp of crickets near you, so I set about using reverberation and some light echo to give a sense of space and distance.

Once I had all my sounds available, I set about placing them all over the forest area using our Map Editor. we have to control how often sounds will repeat, how wide the range will be and the pitch they play back at, so this takes a fair amount of tweaking to get right. After coating the landscape with sounds, moving them around, adding more of some and removing others, the forest came to life.

One of the most satisfying things is when you've spent the time putting everything together and you can just walk around and soak up the sounds you’ve created, listening to growls near you, strange birds twittering in the distance, insects scuttling or the rustle of leaves. I hope that I've captured the essence of this new area, and that you feel immersed when you visit it!

Ian :)

03-Jul-2015 10:55:42

Robo Dragon

Robo Dragon

Posts: 10Bronze Posts by user Forum Profile RuneMetrics Profile
Glad we know who to blame for some of the early highly addictive music :P

Autumn Voyage and Scape Original are imprinted on my brain, as are a couple of the wilderness ones.

Quick question though, is audio aware/looking to fix the audio, it's been broken since the RS3 launch, and repeats sounds all the time it really turns me away from ever having sound effects/ambient sounds turned on.

E.G. You'll click a tab on your interface, and the click will repeat every couple seconds, really frustrating. (Apologies if this is more engines side than audio's).

I think I recall the audio now runs on it's own dedicated server? Because we never had this issue prior to RS3 launch.

Cheers,

Runemix.

06-Jul-2015 15:25:18 - Last edited on 06-Jul-2015 15:27:02 by Robo Dragon

Aig123

Aig123

Posts: 147Iron Posts by user Forum Profile RuneMetrics Profile
Always looking forward to new soundtracks and remastered versions of ones already existing.
Audio really does add to game play immersion, whether it be questing, combat, skilling etc.

Runescape must have some sort of world record for the most soundtracks by now right?

06-Jul-2015 15:28:28

Ninjafiggy
Mar Gold Premier Club Member 2013

Ninjafiggy

Posts: 795Gold Posts by user Forum Profile RuneMetrics Profile
You do what you do well. Seriously, the audio in this game is so immersive.
Release a runescape soundtrack :P
Ninjafiggy
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06-Jul-2015 16:00:22

Lockhart
Aug Member 2013

Lockhart

Posts: 765Gold Posts by user Forum Profile RuneMetrics Profile
Mod Ian did you compose:

Baroque
Spirit
Yesteryear
Garden
Fishing

.....from early rs2 days??! :D

Those were absolute classics! I don't know how many times I put them on repeat. ^_^

Thanks for the read! Look forward to hearing more from the whole team! :D

Keep up the awesome work!! :)

06-Jul-2015 22:14:27 - Last edited on 06-Jul-2015 22:15:04 by Lockhart

Eridyn
Dec Gold Premier Club Member 2010

Eridyn

Posts: 2,944Adamant Posts by user Forum Profile RuneMetrics Profile
A very enjoyable read, looking forward to hearing what Mazcab sounds like. :D
@Eriddyn
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06-Jul-2015 23:25:52

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