August 3, 2012 1:00 AM | John Polson
If there's one thing the industry will remember about Supergiant Games' Bastion, chances are it'll be its audio. The game's rich, ethereal score and iconic narration gave the game a very unique tone, and went a long way toward establishing its striking aesthetic.
And at the 2012 Game Developer Conference, Bastion's audio and music designer, Darren Korb, discussed the ins and outs of how he made the game's sound stand out from the pack.
Of course, there were plenty of factors at play, but one of the game's most successful elements, Korb explains, was its narration. It allowed the game to tell its story without ever interrupting gameplay, and as it turns out, this iconic feature only came about due to a stroke of luck.
When he began working on Bastion, Korb happened to live with his childhood friend and actor Logan Cunningham, and his voice acting skills helped inspire Korb to give in-game narration a shot.
He explains, "[Supergiant was] kind of experimenting with different narrative techniques that allowed us to give the player a story without making them stop and doing the wall of text thing...And the fact that Logan was a talented actor and was my roommate made me think, 'Well, hey, let's just try narration!'"
After just a few voiceover sessions, the team knew it was the right direction to take. As the project went on, Korb learned even more about working with game audio, as he outlines in the above presentation.
To check out the session for yourself, simply click the Play button on the above video, courtesy of the GDC Vault.
About the GDC Vault
In addition to all of this free content, the GDC Vault also offers more than 300 additional lecture videos and hundreds of slide collections from GDC 2012 for GDC Vault subscribers. GDC 2012 All Access pass holders already have full access to GDC Vault, and interested parties can apply for the individual subscription Beta via a GDC Vault inquiry form.
Group subscriptions are also available: game-related schools and development studios who sign up for GDC Vault Studio Subscriptions can receive access for their entire office or company. More information on this option is available via an online demonstration, and interested parties can send an email to Gillian Crowley. In addition, current subscribers with access issues can contact GDC Vault admins.
Be sure to keep an eye on GDC Vault for even more free content, as GDC organizers will also archive videos, audio, and slides from upcoming 2012 events like GDC Europe, GDC Online, and GDC China. To stay abreast of all the latest updates to GDC Vault, be sure to check out the news feed on the official GDC website, or subscribe to updates via Twitter, Facebook, or RSS.
[This article originally appeared on Gamasutra.]