Today’s Podcast features interviews with Minnetonka, Intel, Full Sail, Neural Audio and Solid State Networks. Click here to listen.
Archive for March, 2007
Some of the sights and sounds from the 2007 GDC
photo caption: Kevin Becka, Greg Sutton, Sarah Jones, Erika Lopez and Tom Kenny
This year’s Game Developers Conference had more audio than in any past show. I predict you’re going to see this increase in the next few years as audio steps up in true partnership with video, offering the gamer a truly immersive experience. For in-depth coverage, check out our Podcasts from all three days of the show and be sure to watch mixonline.com for the GDC wrap up. We are gearing up for NAB where we’ll offer video coverage, Podcasts, live Blogging from the Mix booth and regular web updates from the show. Thanks to Intel for sponsoring this year’s Mix GDC coverage, and we’ll see you in Vegas!
photo caption: Jayson Kadhemi (CRAS) and the owner of the Saloon
The Saloon is the oldest bar in San Francisco: It first opened its doors in 1861. After the show, a number of GDC’ers were at this ancient watering hole sampling the great blues, beer and more.
The show is wrapping up with a very cool event for composers. The G.A.N.G. Demo Derby is sort of the “American Idol” of the game sound world-Basically, these people get up in front of an audience, play a minute of their best work, and a panel of heavyweight composers critique them. But instead of “yo dawg, that’s kinda pitchy” or a weepy “you really made this your own,” these guys are providing honest, valuable feedback. (And hey, it’s free.) There’s plenty of love to go around, though, because the talent showcased today is truly amazing. We’ll definitely be hearing a lot from these composers in the near future…
So it’s day three, and I’m running on fumes. All I can say is, y’all might think NAMM’s wild, but there’s truly nothing like partying with these gamer guys…but back to work…
Just came out of another panel: “The Importance of Audio in Gaming: Investing in Next-Generation Sound”-the running theme for sure this week. One by one, Scott Gershin and the gang tackled the “obstacles” hindering quality game audio: Consumer acceptance, support from decision makers and technology. Well, we know the technology (for the most part) has arrived. As for consumers, it’s clear that they are ready: 83 percent of adult gamers listed sound as one of the most important game console elements. And what’s more, 31 percent of American households are rigged for surround. More and more, they’re expecting film quality in their game experience. So how to garner support from the decision makers? They’re challenged to create a more cinematic sound experience, but they need to understand what that means, productionwise. The best way to convert them (and we’re hearing this over and over again) is to learn how to be a salesperson: Treat your work as a product, and the producer as your customer. And as Scott says, “Bring them in, turn the mix up to 11-and the subs to 12.” In other words, hustle, baby…
photo caption: David Rudolph of CRI Ware
The word middleware is a term you hear a lot at the GDC. The term describes software tools used by game developers to create the game. CRI Middleware offers a comprehensive tool suite for developers including an audio engine that allows the audio designer to build dynamic sounds that vary in both pitch and amplitude over time. For more info, be sure to check their website and download the software for free. If you use it within one year to create a game, it’s free!
photo caption: Robert Brock (CRAS), Sarah Jones (Mix), Michael Kimball (Soundelux), Tonya Visconti (CRAS), Michel Henein (CRAS/Diesel Games)
North Beach is packed with Italian restaurants, music and unique San Francisco flair. The best gnocchi on the planet can be found at Panta Rei at the corner of Stockton and Columbus. The group above was out having a late meal after the G.A.N.G. awards.
This “model” is just one of the many impressives demos of how good rendering and modeling of the human form has become
Audio is key to providing a completely immersive gaming experience. The chair pictured above was a popular stop in the Intel booth. It reacts with motion, vibration and subtle positional changes as the gamer drives around a racecourse. Notice the surround speakers built into the back near the gamer’s head.