Game Sound Production for VR game which using famous animated movie series – [The Haunted House VR]
The Haunted House is an adventure/horror animated movie series for children and has been very popular since 2016 in Korea. Recently, games are launched which as based on various platforms such as VR, AR, and Mobile games using this IP recently. One of them is the VR game [The Haunted House VR] released on January 19th.
Musai Studio has been in charge of producing sound in games such as Dubbing, SFX, BGM of [The Haunted House VR]. The major difference with the other game sound production we have made, it would be we should preserve the feeling and emotion of original contents. So we must balance between the feeling of original animated movies and vibrant sound for VR game.
The original voice actors who play the main characters of the animation occupies an enormous proportion of the character identity by the voice itself.
Usually, studios cast voice actors who have a similar tone with original actors due to license or budget issues. To avoid the fans noticing the difference from the original, we cast the original voice actors who participated in the animated series’ dubbing for the main roles. Therefore, we could bring a genuine feeling to the game as much as possible. On the artistic side, the dubbing went much smoother since the voice actors fully understand the characters and acted more enthusiastically because of their love and pride for the characters.
Generally, the sound effects in children’s animations are somewhat monotonous. So, we used the sound effects within the original animation as a reference to design the sound with more impact and detail, giving the user an upgraded Virtual Experience through this game. One example is the part where a giant monster reaches out and catches a roller coaster with a player on board, we wanted to surprise the players. So, compared to the other monster effects, we added a more rough and heavy feeling. And by using stereo effects among most of the other sounds that were playing in mono we are able to encapsulate the users feeling as if the cars were really being smashed up.
The Haunted House VR, users take an adventure, guided by ‘Shinbi’ the goblin, through the spooky underworld of ghosts, from around the spooky apartment on a roller coaster ride. The fan base of ‘The Haunted House’ not only covers preschoolers but also elementary students. Even if the target age starts from low, we wanted the music wouldn’t sound too childish. For the apartment theme BGM, which is played right after the game start, we set the concept as an “auto-play music box” at an amusement park because the roller coaster is the main vehicle in the game. Based on the setting that children wander around the haunted apartment at night, the rhythms and melodies were arranged to made the users get curious about the upcoming adventure, while playing minor harmonies with the organ sounds that would appear in the Dracula film.
On the other hand, we wanted to the underground world-themed BGM to blur the sense of space-time as a concept of a new world where completely separated from reality. We tried to express the Asian afterlife, known as ‘Gucheon’ with rich reverb and scattered Melody, like oriental painting having lots of margins by using ambient sound.
In the case of [The Haunted House VR], a project that should be considered the specialty of VR platform games as based on popular animated movie IP, it was required an understanding of original content and target users as well as the specificity of the platform ‘VR’. We hope that many children will be able to play happily!
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