Message Boards give warm welcomes to our newest addition to the developer's family, Sarah Steele! She works over the Sound Dept. Meaning, all the awesome sound effects and cool dialogue we hear in the game.
I wanted to start a new post not all to welcome her, but to give Pirates a new place to dock there questions and pick up a Mug or two of hardy, sweet answers. So any questions, ask here or around the Tavern! More than enough tables!
I wanted to start off with a few questions and comments. First off, Sarah Steele, let me say, you guys do an awmazing job! Probably one of the most crucial yet over looked jobs, because it's the sound that's ever so needed, but we've become so accustom to always having it, we forget it's part of the project! I love all the voices, music, and effects your team works hard on. Very little to complain about really. I do have just a few questions to ask of you Sarah:
1. Blind Mew writes up many quests for the game and Ratbeard controls all the animations and graphics. Do you work very close with them? Not only that, but we have hundreds of NPC's with speech. How or where do you find all the voice actors/actress to support the whole game, especially when we go to many worlds that require those with accents corresponding to the world (ex. Actors with Italian-Accents for Valencia, Greek-Accented Actors for the Eagles of Aquila, etc.)? Lastly, is it hard to get the right sound for the script? As in how you want a line to sound?
2. KI produces many of it's own custom musics for the game. Are you responsible over the composers who work on the background and critical musics? Also is it difficult to create a piece of music for the Skyways and Lands? I always think of it as, 'Oh, this piece doesn't make that eerie-ness we need' or 'Can you make this part be a little softer to add more wimsy' and a lot of back to the drawing boards on music.
3. Roughly, how long did it take to make most of the sounds for Books 1-14?
3. Something that's become Blind Mew catch-phrase is "That would be telling..." if we ever ask something that would force him to reveal a cool or juicy surprise in the later books. So if I asked you say "What would the Darkmoor music sound like?" or "How would the critical for the Kroks in Krokotopia go?" what do you think your "can't reveal-yet!" phrase would be?
Again, ever so pleased to meet you Sarah Steele! And Thanks in advance for the answers! (if any that is...)
Greetings and a Harrrrty welcome also to Sara Steele. x Hands a specially crafted steel tankard of yum x. I have been a fan of sound editing and its creation for years. The fact that I was DJ in radio stations and was also a television director in a small station that meant the director could and had to do all areas needed and I developed a love for sound creation and it's power. I have always been VERY impressed with the sound quality of this game and have been delighted with the little touches in it that make it oh so full. It is on of the reasons I was on of the vocal ones to get Torro's sound balanced so that I could once again have the game sound back on with out risking blasting the speakers and waking the whole household or deafening myself with the headphones. I truly missed those sweet little sounds that make each world seem more real. I enjoy all the music so very much and I have laughed myself into tears with the vocal performances of our beloved characters more times than I can count. A true sound master is known by their invisibility. If you don't think about it then they have done their job right, just like it does for a good video editor. Sarah, you are the true invisible woman but I love your craft quality so much that I can't help but notice it so it is the ultimate oxymoron. So welcome and please hear my pleasure at finally being able to say to the responsible person. Very well done
Thank you Cunning Finnigan for the kind words. I'm glad to hear that you are enjoying the sound fx, voice overs, and music! We always wonder if any pirates are enjoying them!
1. We work closely with Blind Mew and Ratbeard to help get a feel for the personality and voice we want for the character. Thankfully, we live in Austin, Texas, where we can find many talented voice actors/actresses here. We do have a few actors that we use from LA, London, and Scotland. It usually isn't too difficult to find their right "voice" for a specific character, but sometimes we hold closed auditions to find just the right one.
2. Nelson Everhart is our amazing composer and we guide him for how we may want specific worlds and/or pieces to feel, but he writes all the music himself. The critical stingers are done by our sound designers in the studio. They are very talented and they will write music in their spare time. It isn't too difficult to get the "right piece" for the music to go with Skyways or other areas like that, but we do sometimes have Nelson make a few tweaks.
3. About 8 to 10 months.
4. "Spoilers....." (Can you guess which reference this is? )
Sarah Steele, I have to say that the companion Sarah Steele is VERY strong in the early levels even! It makes me want her as FIRSTMATE all the time! She's so powerful, I like to cheer her ON! Yeeh! :P I also just promoted her for the first time last week! I have to say KI did amazing with companions. :P
Welcome, Sarah Steele! P101's soundtrack/voices are my favorite parts of the game, and I'm so excited to know that you work closely to their creation. I have a few questions as well:
I seldom hear voices in the soundtracks; choral, etc. I'd love to hear them. Are they present and quiet? If not, then why not? (Edited 10 hours later: Heard a choral bit in Monquista. Love it!)
A few of the sound effects are truly unique. Take the cats, for example. Do you collect the sounds from some sort of program, artificially create them, bring cats, etc? What about other things like the poison sounds for Swashbucklers?
This might be more of a Nelson-oriented question, as was the first one, but I'll give it a shot: I'm curious on the ensemble. Are they all one group that plays game soundtracks for livings, or are they individual artists/sections that come together for the project?
Once again, LOVE LOVE LOVE the music/sfx/voiceovers. Give yourself a pat on the back. Fair winds on these here boards!
Sarah Steele, I noticed one of Egg Shen's critical attack music stings had a change when he was in action not long ago. I liked it! Gives it more variety. Hope the same applies to Ratbeard's critical attack music stings, someday. I like it, but it needs more variety. Thanks!
This is posted in another area but Sarah, I wanted you to be sure to know how much your hard work is continuing to bless me. Please pass this on to Blind Mew and all other responsible parties so I don't clutter up the boards with the same post.
"My latest huge giggle is when they deal with the sirens and put wax in their ears. All the muffled voices and all the 'What's' Had me laughing so loud I was in danger of waking up the household, as my back pain had me awake in the middle of the night and I was playing. All the laughter made me feel Oh So Much better . Kudo's again to Blind Mew for the hysterical writing and to Sara Steele for her team's fantastic vocal acting. Woop, what a ride! "
sarah steele and the other developers are doing GREAT on the FX, sound, voice overs, and battle styles in pirate101!
(and sarah is an awesome companion, took out a beachead clockwork in a couple hits!)
i also have ideas that i think will be excitefull for the players of the game and inspiring for KI and their crew, and this may also apply for Wizard101.
let the PLAYERS THEMSELVES do some voices of NPCS and companions!!
i got this idea when sarah mentioned having people voicing characters from all over the world, and i figured some of them could be US! i'm sure having thier voice being casted around the world will give them pride in themselves and give a good feel to the youth of the game. auditions could of course be held, in major cities most likely. you know like,
San Diego, Portland, Miami, New York City, Austin, (probably where you would start lol) Toronto, Columbus, Los Angeles, Chicago, and Denver
I hope you like this idea for auditioning players, and please respond developers! (especially sarah!)
Miss Steele, mind me asking if you've fixed a bug I noticed a while ago with critical music? From memory my Musketeer's Wing Chun, friend's Kobe, and sister's Egg Shen had no music in the background during a few Cool Ranch battles. It happened with Subodai and Kan Po too at one point. -shrugs- Did you ever fix that? It's been a few weeks since I've been on Pirate (not my fault ) so I don't know if that's been fixed.