Interactive Sound Design in FMOD


Spaceship interactive sound design


Sound Design

FMOD implementation

In video games sounds need to be interactive, meaning they need to respond to what the player is doing. This was a small research assignment to design sound for a spaceship. The sequence is interactive meaning it includes a short power-up sequence and shutdown sequence. By manipulating the parameters of speed and damage the sound of the motors of the spaceship will change.

In this session we first power on the spaceship and throttle up its engines. After a while we introduce more damage and the engines will stutter and alarm sounds get triggered. After that the damage layer will disappear and we will power down the spaceship.

This was implemented using FMOD a widely used audio engine. By defining a number of set parameters with developers, sound designers can focus on the audio implementation and developers can use a standard API to hook the game up to these parameters and focus on game development task instead of audio implementation.

Interactive (or adaptive) audio design is very common in almost every video game but can also be interesting for interaction in product development. Think of in-car dashboards, e-bikes or other user interfaces where haptic and audio feedback with the user is important.