This Ain’t My First Rodeo

I was once told by a great teacher that if I ever wanted a career in the game industry I would have to never, ever stop learning. He told me that the most valuable thing I could ever have is the understanding that my learning should not stop at the end of my graduation ceremony. He recommended that, in order to begin standing out, I should start standing up and showing what I know.

He casually mentioned that a blog would be a great place to start. And, well, a few short days later…here it is.

A new blog. I never quite know what to put here. An introduction? A statement of purpose? A funny gif? I’ve done this before – setting a new blog up, I mean, and it’s always been pretty much the standard fare introduction, as if I were introducing myself to a stranger or something: Hi. I’m Chris. I’m a would-be game sound designer, who just graduated from Columbia College Chicago, and I currently play bass for both a hardcore punk band and melodic death metal band. They’re pretty rad musical acts and it’s all pretty mega exciting, right?!

I AM SO RAD ITS NOT EVEN PHOTOSHOPPED.
I AM SO RAD ITS NOT EVEN PHOTOSHOPPED.

The purpose of this blog is pretty simple: Audio. All of it. Let’s talk about it. What am I up to? What are you up to? What have I learned? What can I still learn? How can I teach it to you? This will be sort of a collection of musings, ramblings, demos, retrospectives, tutorials, cool little hacks, lessons, and of course projects and clips that I’ve worked on. It’ll all be really cool, I PROMISE! The second purpose is that it will offer a way of remaining motivated. That’s a pretty important thing too.

Beyond that short intro, I really think that the best starting point is actually the ending point, though. Where do I want to end up? Well,  It’s not enough to want to BE a sound designer. I already am one. And I want to work on sound design for video games. It was while watching the “making-of” bonus disc which came bundled with Halo 2 when I realized that this was what I wanted to do for a living. While watching the clip of a few sound designers invent the engine of the Warthog, and playing in some test levels, I realized that what I was seeing was, without a doubt, the most exciting thing since the history of ever. I was 14 years old at the time, and I had just made a major life decision. At 22, I’m almost ready to tackle my mid-life crisis!

But yeah…There you have it, my new readers! My life goal is to basically…create the next Warthog sound.

So why not start now?
Here’s a short exercise I just did in Adobe Audition….so without further ado, I give you, my quick sketch of what the M12 LRV WARTHOG could have sounded like!

If you’re curious, what you just heard was created by combining the following:

  • My beat up ’93 Buick Regal GS revving in neutral at 2am in my parents garage for the whine layer of the engine
  • A gasoline-powered lawnmower cutting at grass for the “mech” sound layer
  • Some revving sounds from a ‘911 Porsche in 24 hours of Sebring, to give the final dirt skid and the engine rev some power
  • This Vespa PX 200 GS (www.freesound.org/people/druki/sounds/158891/) as the main sound and character
  • A ’90s Grand Am from the general-6000 library, kicking up some dirt and gravel for flavor, as well as to add some motion.

I roughly eq’d it, gave it a quick mix…and that’s it! There it is in all of its’ glory. Sort of. Like I said, this is a learning thing.

I’d like to say that this is it – I’ve accomplished my dream goal. But not yet…Stick around. I’ve got a lot of cool things in mind. There is much work to be done.

–Chris Prunotto

PS: I’m sorry if nobody actually says rad anymore.