Composer Stephen Barton detailed some of the process for audio in the upcoming shooter Titanfall from Respawn Entertainment. In a recent article from Kill Screen, Barton mentioned blending digital and audio sounds into one for the multiplayer game.
Previously, the composer has been credited to lauded titles like Call of Duty, namely the Modern Warfare release. In Titanfall, the scope goes much further away in the future, leaving open more possibilities to work with sound.
Seeing the game’s elements of man and machine working together, Barton stated the following:
I used synthetic and electronic sounds as blending elements. Here I can take a French horn line and design a synth to mesh with it in order to make a new, unified sound with an organic edge to it.
This idea was also applied to the warring parties in Titanfall. Both the IMC and Militia forces were given their own distinct sounds, without having either one being attributed to a certain point in morality.
Recording of sounds was done at the legendary Abbey Road, known primarily for their impact with The Beatles. It was also used for Star Wars and Lord of the Rings tracks.
For the IMC, Barton opted for a giant orchestral piece, with upwards of 60 musicians recorded in a giant room, representing their strength in numbers. It results in a more blended sound, due to the amount of instruments being played at the same time.
On the opposing side, the Militia tracks were recorded in a much smaller space. Hereby, Barton is hoping for a more human element.
It’s interesting to find out the thought out processes behind game elements we might not be aware of. Not many people would admit to an importance in sound quality in games, certainly not in a shooter.
For Titanfall’s release, it seems like Stephen Barton is looking to change that notion.