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Posted by on Nov 3, 2015 | 0 comments

Adventures in SFX – Creating Port of Call

Michael Raphael has been recording and releasing high res sound effect collections for sound designers and editors since 2010. His site Rabbit Ears Audio covers such diverse sonic ground as Hind Helicopters, train whistles, and typewriters. In a recent collaboration with Audio Director Rob Bridgett he has released a new library called Port of Call and they’ve kindly offered to give us some insight into its creation. Many thanks to Michael and Rob for this contribution.

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Posted by on Oct 13, 2015 | 1 comment

Thoughts on Limitations in Game Audio


Rob Bridgett is an audio director at Eidos-Montréal.

Leonard Paul is the president of the School of Video Game Audio.

Images courtesy of Rob Bridgett & Leonard Paul

Nine years ago, we collaborated on an article on the idea of limitations for Gamasutra and wanted to see where our thoughts would take us. This time around, rather than produce another article, this submission is a set of our musings meant to be used as starting points or inspiration when working with the limitations of game audio.

Allowing a view of the long-term in our art gives a certain freedom but it can also be paralyzing unless we set limits on ourselves.

An exciting, creative challenge is one with well defined limits: a well defined brief; a box to play in.

Not only do technical limits advance but also creative limits as well.

Working within a genre is a form of self-limitation (style and structure, for instance, “we’re going to write a 3 minute pop song”). A platform/format is a limitation: 12 inch, an LP (two sides), a CD (long running playlist). We need to consider the equivalent boxes and structures in games (menu, mission, genre, format, art style).

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Posted by on Jun 24, 2014 | 2 comments

Should It Make A Sound?




Guest Contribution by Rob Bridgett

For the past 14 years I’ve been a proponent of sound as a deeply integral part of the video game development process, getting audio involved earlier, allowing it to become a part of decision making and concepting, allowing sound’s early presence, excitement and enthusiasm to influence the other disciplines involved in the collaborative sport of video game development.

Recently, you may have noticed a trend towards narrowing down the focus of what we consider to be multi-disciplinary game development, there are small team, minimal, retro, and almost inevitably towards audio-only games. At the Game Developer’s Conference Nicky Birch of Somethin’ Else’s spoke about their audio-only games (such as Papa Sangre) as did Brian Schmidt on a similar theme in 2013). These are games in which the player has little or no visual input or stimulus, but relies entirely on spatialized audio cues.

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Posted by on Oct 1, 2013 | 6 comments

Review: Game Audio Culture by Rob Bridgett


Review by Karen Collins

Game Audio Culture” isn’t a book, so much as a manifesto. Dragging sound design (perhaps somewhat reluctantly) from out of the darkened underground studios and out into the open, Bridgett proposes that it’s time that sound designers started to be more collaborative with the rest of the game team. Bridgett boldly states that we’re in a “post-sound design era… no longer obsessed with the ‘neglected’ art” of the soundtrack. Sound designers can’t play the victim anymore: sound is getting the respect it deserves, and the next stage is to become a key collaborator on projects. Suggesting that fully one third of the sound designer’s skill set should be social skills, Bridgett sees the audio director as playing a much more important role in the future than in the past. Bridgett dubs this new art “social sound design”.

With that premise in mind, “Game Audio Culture” maps out just how Bridgett envisages the future role of the sound designer to play out. How does game audio influence collaborative practice? Where does design come into the mix, and how does that change under the idea of social sonic practice? How should scheduling change to accommodate a more social, collaborative space? How do you plan your budgets? What role does audio play in QA, and how does audio bring in feedback from its team and its players? These are just some of the questions Bridgett seeks to answer.

For the game sound designer, this book offers practical tips on how to turn your workplace into a more collaborative, holistic world, in which sound plays an important part. It best serves as a how-to guide on being an audio director, in a world where many of the triple-A titles have teams of people working on audio that need to be coordinated and managed. Most game audio directors find themselves in that role through promotion and experience, but without any formal training available. Bridgett fills the gap in knowledge by providing useful tips and tricks that will benefit even the most experienced designers and audio directors. For the rest of us, he gives us much to think about in terms of our practice.

For the academic or scholar studying game audio, the book is particularly useful in its description of process, and will help anyone to understand the many different skills required to undertake sound design for games today. Especially interesting are the more meandering thought pieces that round out the book: self-described “utopian” considerations of where game audio is heading, what the future holds for sound design, and two interviews that read like thoughtful, in-depth discussion between two sound designers, kicking back over a beer and reflecting on their jobs.

Finally, I would suggest that game designers themselves pick up this book, to understand what the sound team is doing and to incorporate some of these tips in bringing the sound team on board early. In short, there’s something in “Game Audio Culture” for everyone: it’s one of those books that is worth reading multiple times, as a reminder of how far we’ve come, and how far we still have to go.

Special thanks to Karen Collins for contributing this review. You can find Karen on

You can purchase Game Audio Culture online here.

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Posted by on Sep 30, 2013 | 0 comments

SFX Independence – September 2013

In comparison to the swathe of releases and sales through the summer months, September has been an altogether quieter affair on the SFX library front. The following libraries are all available to purchase/sample now.

SONIC SALUTE – Car Doors: Exteriors – Open and Close




Sonic Salute’s new library requires little explanation. ‘Car Doors: Exteriors – Open and Close’ is a collection of almost 80 (mono) files of scrapheap-bound car doors opening and closing. It’s available now for $15.
Further information is available on their website.


RABBIT EARS AUDIO – REA013 Bridgett Tones




Rabbit Ears Audio have collaborated with game audio specialist Rob Bridgett to launch two new libraries under the Bridgett Tones moniker. REA013.1 Room Tones is a collection of interior ambiences, whilst the companion REA013.2 Air Tones provides a mixture of exterior ambiences. Bridgett Tones is available as a 16bit / 24KHz library pack for $50, or $25.00 for each pack.
For more information on Bridgett Tones or to purchase a copy, visit the website.

BOOM LIBRARY – Nature Essentials by Gordon Hempton

Those busy folks at Boom have collaborated with Emmy award-winning acoustic ecologist Gordon Hempton to lanuch ‘Nature Essentials’. This collection of is the first in a series compiled from almost three decades-worth of recordings by Hempton. ‘Nature Essentials’ is intended to provide an exhaustive range of nature’s wonderful ambiences; streams, rivers, wildlife and thunder, to name but a few. This 3GB library is available for purchase now, through Boom (€149.00) and also via Hempton’s own Quiet Planet company.


Quiet Planet –


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