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WildStar Week, Day 4: Audio Devlog with Charley Lanusse

by on December 15, 2011

WildStar Week, Day 4: Audio Devlog with Charley LanusseIt’s day four of WildStar Week here at GodisaGeek.com and things just keep getting better and better! Today we’ve got an interview with the Audio Director over at Carbine Studios, developers of the upcoming MMO WildStar, Charley Lanusse. Charley gives us some exciting information about the recording sessions for the game as well as the audio in general. As a special treat we’ve also got some audio snippets to share with you lovely people about just what happened when Troy Baker (the voice of Buck) and Jim Cummings (the voice of Sarge) went off script a little. Needless to say, hilarity ensues. We’ve got one day left and I’m already wishing WildStar was out right now! How about you?

Hi!  My name is Charley Lanusse and I’m the Audio Director here at Carbine Studios.  I’m responsible for setting the creative direction and determining how audio works in our game.  As part of my job, I have the pleasure of coordinating the efforts of incredibly talented designers, composers, editors, and contractors.  We all work together to build the epic sound-scapes you’ll hear while playing WildStar.

Our game combines elements of science fiction and fantasy, but with a sense of humor that gives us the freedom to have some fun.  Based on your feedback, we feel pretty good about that mix of epic adventure and light-hearted humor, and when you add in the darker elements WildStar offers, it makes for an incredibly rich audio universe!

Creating audio for a game the size of WildStar is a massive but incredibly rewarding undertaking.  With thousands of sound files crafted to support a wide-variety of zones, creatures and races, every day we get to work on something new. There is so much about the audio department I’d like to share with you, but for now I thought I’d tell you a little about our how we create voices for races in our game.

Charley Lanusse - Headshot

Voice design starts as collaboration between the Audio Department, the Art Department, and Narrative Design.   The team carefully considers the archetypes, personality traits and touchtone sound for each of our voices.  It’s so important that our voices are not only believable but full of life and character.

To get the right actors to represent our races we auditioned over 1000 people.   Our casting call included top video game voice performers, as well as television and film actors.  After a rigorous selection process, the actors were called back, and the voices were refined in the studio until we arrived at the perfect sound.

Many of our voices are on the serious side, but today I thought we’d have a little fun and share a few entertaining outtakes from our English recording sessions (sessions for other languages aren’t yet available, but we plan to share those with our non-English speaking fans in time).

Troy Baker who plays Buck, the Spellslinger in our trailer is a natural improviser.  In one of our recent studio sessions, I asked him to go off script and hilarity ensued.   You won’t hear this in the game but it’s really fun to listen to.

Here is Jim Cummings as the voice of ‘The Sarge’ – the Granok in our trailer.  Jim is one of the most recognizable voice actors in North America (we aim to have the same level of talent in localized versions of the game).  You may have recently heard him as Winnie the Poo or Tigger.  Jim sometimes goes off script giving us great out-takes like these.  (By the way, the music in the background is a special sneak-peak theme for one of our yet to be announced races. Big thank to Carbine’s Composer,  Jeff Kurtenacker!)

I’ll be sharing lots more about the happenings in the Audio Department in future posts.  For now, you can stay up-to-date with the latest WildStar news by following our Twitter feed @Team_Wildstar or checking out the WildStar Facebook page.

Thanks for your time!


Want to hear some more of Troy Baker and Jim Cummings’ voices as the characters of Buck and Sarge respectively? Why not check out the trailer below? Already seen it? Watch it again, it’s amazing!

That’s all we’ve got time for today, listening to the voices of Buck and Sarge, even in outtakes, makes me rather excited for WildStar, how about you? Let us know in the comments below this post or over in the forums where we can discuss in length about what we thought about everything in this interview, and more!

Be sure to check back tomorrow for our final day (awwww!) of WildStar Week here at GodisaGeek.com!