Sound design, voice directing and recording (Full Design)
Travel to the best vacationplanet in the galaxy and discover that you have to shoot your way through hordes of mutants, just to file a complaint. Utopia 9 – A Volatile Vacation is a rogue-like 3D twin stick shooter set in a tragicomic future with a retro sci-fi feel.
Check out the game on steam.
Its all about shooting down walls of raging mutants in order to file a complain to the travel agency that arranged the presumed luxury vacation to the planet Utopia 9.
Sound work has focused on satisfying feedback when triggering the oversized and rather exaggerated weapons accessible and when wounded and dead mutants splash against the walls or onto the ground in the alien surroundings.
Getting an eerie and abandoned atmosphere has been important to support the story plot. To enhance the experience of shooting, ambience sound has been mixed rather low and focus has been on details and quality of shots, blasts, explosions, splashes etc.
The tragicomic feel is supported by a catoon-like voice for the main character contra-posing the almost too evil and exaggerated mutants.
A semi-musical score blending and rising unnoticed from the ambience, has been used to signal the coming of mutants and the danger of the situation.
The 3rd person omniscient perspective results in potentially many visible auditive sources and it has been important to keep the eerie quite atmosphere while maintaining a nuanced soundscape and enhancing the experience of shooting guns and splashing mutants. Therefore, when dense activity appears spectral- volume- and pitch variations has been important as well as variations in vocal utterances to indicate differences in mutant power and resistance.
Try playing the ambient score below to get an idea of the atmosphere and the signaling function correlating with the appearence of mutants.
Look at some gameplay video to get an idea of the soundscape.