Game Audio Design
Hey, I’m Alasdair, a game audio designer based in Dundee. I’ve recently graduated with a first-class honours degree in Sound and Music for Computer Games from the University of Abertay being awarded the JAMES award for exceptional work.
Whilst at university I became fascinated at how sound can be used to immerse audiences in both visual and sonic forms of entertainment and over the last few years I’ve developed a number of sound-based apps, toys, and games, all of which you can see here on my website.
An Award Winning Audio-only Horror Experience
‘FHear’ is an audio-only survival horror game where the player is completely cut off from any visual stimuli and immersed in a 360° soundscape where they are forced to use both environmental sounds and music to evade the grasps of a creature built up in their imagination, whilst following the voice of a friend to safety. As the creature gains tract on the player the intensity of the soundscape ramps up creating an anxiety ridden atmosphere which the player can’t escape unless they turn the lights back on and turn the game off.
After releasing ‘FHear’ I was awarded the JAMES award for expectational work and been reviewed by scottishgames.net:
"One of the more experimental creations on offer comes from the Sound and Music for Games Programme in Alasdair Marnoch’s prize-winning FHEAR, an audio-only horror-survival game. While not a completely novel idea, it’s an incredibly ambitious task, and Marnoch’s commitment to spinning a narrative within this framework (and enticing the viewer’s individual imagination to flesh-out that narrative) is commendable"
Check out the game and more info on it here:
WHAT I DO
Sound plays an extremely important part in immersing an audience in any form of entertainment. When attempting to draw in an audience’s attention, it’s important to create a soundscape which matches the style of the other aspects of the project, e.g. the visuals, themes and storyline, or it will sound out of place.
Once all the sound effects have been recorded and edited, they need to be implemented into the project. The type of project will dictate how you apply this. For linear projects like podcasts, films and television shows, this requires you to dub the assets in using a DAW, like Pro Tools or Reason. For more interactive forms of entertainment e.g. games and artistic displays, I may opt to use Unity and Wwise.
A showcase of a few of the applications I have developed
PROCEDURALLY GENERATED CAR AUDIO
A prototype for an app developed on Pure Data which procedurally generates the sounds of a car using FM synthesis techniques, presenting the driver with crucial information as they drive. The user also has the option to listen to a soundtrack which is procedurally generated based on how they drive.
Check out the link to download the application and for more information on how I developed it:
MULTITRACK SOUND TOY
An application which allows the user to upload the stems of any song and hear different parts of the song depending on which keys they press on a midi keyboard. How hard they press each key will dictate how loud they hear it.
If you want to check out this cool little sound toy download it from here:
Or check out this video I recorded which explains what it does!
Artificial Paradise Overdub
This was a project that I undertook in my second year of University. At this point in my life I was still working towards a degree in Audio Engineering, however, I enjoyed developing the soundtrack for this animation motivated me to transfer to Abertay University, where I studied Sound and Music for Games.
I’ve learned so much about sound development and implementation since developing this project and there are many things I would do differently now, but I look back on developing it fondly, as it helped me develop a passion for sound design.
Not only do you need to have the correct equipment to do any job, you also need to know how to use it
Unity, Wwise, Pro Tools, Reason, Pure Data
Yamaha HS5 Studio Monitors, Audio-Technica ATH-M70x monitor headphones, Tascam US 4x4 audio interface, Zoom H4n Pro handy recorder, Samson C01 Studio Condenser microphone, RØDE NT5 small-diaphragm cardioid condenser microphone x2
SYNTHS, MIDI KEYBOARDS AND INSTRUMENTS
Yamaha MODX6, Novation Impulse 61, Carillon Control 25, Violin, Bass Guitar, Tin Whistle
GET IN TOUCH
Please feel free to contact me if you require any assistance with game audio.