Leading with Sound : Proactive Sound Practices in Video Game Development book cover
1st Edition

Leading with Sound
Proactive Sound Practices in Video Game Development

ISBN 9780367535872
Published May 19, 2021 by Focal Press
234 Pages 15 B/W Illustrations

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Book Description

Leading with Sound is the must-have companion guide to working on video game projects. Focused on the creative, collaborative, philosophical and organizational skills behind game sound and eschewing the technical, this book celebrates the subjects most essential to leading with sound in video game development at any level. Refuting the traditional optics of sound as a service in favour of sound as a pro-active visionary department, , this book examines each of the four food-groups of dialogue, sound design, music and mix, not through the usual technical and production lenses of ‘how’ and ‘when’, but the essential lens of ‘why’ that enables leadership with sound.

Leading with Sound is essential reading for aspiring sound designers, inside and outside of the classroom, as well as experienced professionals in the game industry.

Table of Contents

Part One: Ports of Entry

01 What is this Book About?

02 The Big Four: Understanding the Four Food-groups of Audio (and how they inter-relate)

03 What Drives the Mix of Your Game.

04 Taking a Psychological Approach to Sound Categorization

05 What is a Game Developer?

06 What is Game Audio?

07 What You May be Missing: Vision to Drive Your Tools and Pipelines

08 Communication Essentials: Managing Expectations of Quality (The ‘L’ Scale)

09 Developing Early Audio Visions

Part Two: Sound Design

10 Why do we Need Sounds?

11 Working with Sound.

12 Higher Level is Better.

13 What is Causing these Sounds and Where are they Located?

14 Ambiguity and Clarity.

15 Designing for Three Audiences. (Player, Spectator, Creator)

16 Thinking Horizontally, Vertically, and Diagonally about Asset Design.

17 Designing a Moment: Temporality in Interactive Sound Design.

18 Leading with Sound: Spectacle and Immersion.

Part Three: Music

19 Why do we Need Music?

20 Music as Creative Crutches: Reaching for Music Too Soon & Too Late.

21 Defining the Sound: Towards an Iconic Music Design

22 The Shape of Emotion: We Can’t Feel Emotion All the Time.

23 Diegetic, Non-Diegetic and Trans-Diegetic Musical Spaces.
24 Non-Diegetic Space in Recorded Music

25 Leading with Music: Music as Spectacle Throughout Production and Post-Release

Part Four: Voice

26 Why do we Need Voice?

27 Early Dialogue Development

28 The Sound of Voice: Dialects, Culture and Meaning

29 Casting Philosophies (Auditions, Recording, Iteration)

30 Let’s do it Again

31 Rethinking Dialogue Production: Infinite Alternatives

32 Leading with Voice: Leveraging the Spectacle of Performance

Part Five: Mix

33 Why do we Need to Mix?

34 Mix Essentials

35 Philosophy of the Mix: Narrative Dynamics (Pushing, Pulling, Shaping)

36 Some Defining Terminology and Features of Non-Linear Mixing

37 Mix Consistency

38 Building the Mix

39 Planning and Surviving the Major Milestone and Final Mixes.

40 Leading with the Mix: The First and Last Thing You Think About.

Part Six: Fade Out

41 The Importance of a Holistic (Four-Food-group) Vision

42 Studio Culture: A Theory of Everything

43 Game Audio Studio Spaces: Architectural Problems in Video Game Sound.

44 Games are for Everyone: Accessibility, Options and Customization in Audio for Gamers.

45 Finding Our Place, Between Vision and Service.

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Rob Bridgett is a British-Canadian Audio Director based in Montreal. In 1993 Rob attended Derby University to study cinema and media, and was one of the first to graduate from the ‘Sound Design for the Moving Image’ Master’s degree programme at Bournemouth University in 1999. Having worked as an audio director in the games industry since 2001, Bridgett has become a committed advocate for ‘leading with sound’ and 'sound as design’.