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    Video Game Voice Over

    John Melley - Tuesday, August 05, 2008

    I had a voice session for a video game yesterday. It’s probably the 10th or so session that I’ve done for various video games. They’re a lot of fun. One of the surprising things that I’ve found, at least with the games that I’ve worked on is that the performance is very physically demanding. You’re by yourself in a soundbooth with people directing you in your headphones.

    You need to be able to act as if the character you’re interacting with is there with you. Also there can be pages and pages of dialogue for these characters.

    If you are performing a character with an accent you need to maintain consistency with the characters voice throughout the dialogue and you need it to sound as fresh at the end as it was at the beginning of the session. This is takes a lot of practice.

    Yesterday’s session was one of the few times I really felt I was in “The Zone” with this. I really felt good about how well the session went for this particular character that I’ve been working on for close to a year now. (These games take a long time to develop).

    Also, some of the lines are expressing anger, or strong emotion. Expressing those emotions is more than just yelling, or sounding angry. Think about how you physically feel when you really get angry. You need to somehow put yourself in that place and pour it out through your character… and then you need to be able to do several takes of it. You’ll hear things like this in your headphones….

    (”click” Yeah… John, really good emotion… just like that, but back off the mic a couple of inches ‘cuz we’re overmodulating a bit. Also raise the pitch a bit. We don’t want him to sound “dark and angry” just angry. Couple more like that and we’ll go on to the next line. ‘Kay? “click” )

    (”click” Great!… now do a couple more like that, but a little slower… just to give us some options. Cool. “click” )

    I’m not complaining. This is how these things go. They are fun, but they can take something out of you.

    I could go on, but I need to get a couple of things finished up here.

    More later.

    John

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