Thinking of Ideas for an Audio Submission

The level greybox to base our soundscape(s) on in Unity.

This post is just collection of early stage ponderings for my audio coursework. I want to capture ideas that lend themselves to musicality where, in reality, there would be none. (This might include ideas where musicality is found instead of being created by anyone in everyday reality. ‘Song birds’ are an example that comes to mind.) The clanging music found across the environment in Silent Hill (1999) may be an obtuse example, but it highlights that you can use diegetic sounds to build a musically-informed soundscape.

The soundscape must use the Unity level (pictured above) as a base, although (as far as I am aware) we can reimagine it so long as it fits in with our chosen idea. Below are some starting points for ideas that I could later pursue. There’s no reason I cannot mix and match them if I so wished!

Idea 1. / Dimensional Rooms

This level reminds me a lot of the tutorial for Portal, although I am weary of making a design too similar to it. I do feel going for the sterilised sci-fi route would be the most direct path (which is by no means a bad thing!) but I imagine there’ll also be a lot of submissions that go down this path. For this idea, each room will have a different physical property. I think it would be interesting if it was set in an underground car park / storage facility. Urban, industrial, perhaps even gritty(?) Some inspirations for this could include the games Control or something a bit grungier like Fallout or Half-Life. I watch a lot of television series, and I had the show Misfits in my mind when I thought of the idea.

Misfits is a show about young adults serving community service in a very concrete heavy part of London. After being struck by lightning, the group obtained supernatural powers. Definitely think the show has inspired this soundscape idea quite a fair bit! Copyright E4 (2014).

I could be creative in my use of street sounds and foley, and living in Dundee should mean that capturing these noises shouldn’t be too much of a problem either! Although, this idea doesn’t spark as much inspiration for myself as Idea 2.

Idea 2. / Fragmented Memories

For this idea, each room is a memory or a portal to a different, thematically linked place. I’m thinking of an outdoor or a high-fantasy mystical setting, possibly inspired by folk music and cottagecore. I think this would evoke the greatest sense-of-place for myself, given I spent the majority of my life on Skye. This idea is not as fleshed out and I feel there is a possibility it might be difficult to write about, although I would have a massive emotional investment in the concept. It would be a more challenging concept to tackle, but I could draw from a little bit of research from my second year project on Alzheimer’s to inform how the soundscape could traverse ‘memories’.

Above are some photos some friends and I have taken from my recent trip to Lewis. I feel I could have a unique yet informed perspective for this idea, although I would need to discuss its viability further.

Idea 3. / Victorian Haunted Library

I’m wanting to turn the idea of haunted being scary on its head for this idea.

Set in a library or a portion of a manor house last visited in 19th century Europe, you explore and see the spectral shapes dancing in the sunlight. They’re not harmful, nor are they scary. They’re merely passing through. The dilapidated grand piano plays itself off into the eve, and empty glasses of wine raise in a toast...

This idea is a little more fantastical, but flipping the idea of something scary into something friendly and welcoming would be fun to explore! If I fail to dive into this idea exclusively, I still want to think outside the box and flip cultural narratives on their heads, keeping this idea’s spirit alive with whatever I pick. Pun intended.

Published by SeylorDev

Hey! I'm Lyes Oussaiden, a student at Abertay University studying Game Design & Production. I'm also the Producer and Audio Designer for Crabertay.

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