有關獨立遊戲開發中的配音員角色

作者:Jaimie Lynn Hensley

在2016年的春天,我面試了一款獨立復古恐怖遊戲的配音員角色。回首過去,我希望自己的經驗能夠對配音員,獨立開發者以及其他致力於自己喜歡的工作的人帶去幫助。

《Camp Sunshine》

有時候遊戲開發需要一些準確的句子,但有時候也需要來自角色的持續反饋,所以這可能需要從配音員所需要的時間中進行刪減(最多可能幾分鐘)。我便會將自己至於角色的角度並進行一些即興發揮(更多內容詳見下文)。

我已經參與過許多獨立項目。當一個項目還沒有可遊戲演示版本或遊戲腳本時,我們就很難去判斷開發團隊是否有能力去完成這個項目。

《Camp Sunshine》是在公佈演員招募公告時便已經上了Steam的greenlight。我所共事的開發者將我的角色所出現的區域的視頻發給了我,同時還有我的聲音的遊戲效果。當10月末Fossil Games發行了《Camp Sunshine》時,我必須承認自己真的非常開心。

不過對我來說最重要的時刻還是在看到《Camp Sunshine》的遊戲玩法視頻的時候。因爲我想知道這個玩家對我的角色配音有什麼想法?

他是這麼說的:“不要那樣低語”。通常情況下你都不希望自己的講話方式會獲得這樣的迴應,但對於這一角色,這便是我們想要的迴應。那Steam上的評論又是怎樣?從整體上來看都是正面的!

配音

voice acting(from jjapk)

voice acting(from jjapk)

如果你問我今年的配音工作是如何獲得提高的,我的答案真的很簡單。我報了表演課程,向配音老師進行了學習,並升級了我的家庭工作室的裝備(即包括iZotope RX併購置了新的麥克風)。

我所負責的角色是個非常容易焦慮且渴望獲得幫助的人。作爲一個天生缺乏安全感的人,扮演這樣的角色並不困難。我會去回想自己非常焦慮的時刻,感覺自己的喉嚨被鎖住的時候,那時候我的聲音就會變得非常緊張且音調會變高。我會將這種體能特徵與被囚禁在黑暗中的感受結合在一起去演繹角色。

我覺得自己更加傾向於那些憂慮且性格怪癖的角色。因爲他們和我的性格更相近。但我也想去嘗試一些其他角色,即像那些強大,忠誠,異想天開等角色,因爲我想去探索一些不一樣的自己。再一次地,身體性能也很重要。例如你的站姿如何?你是如何呼吸的?你在哪裏感到緊張?你的聲音會對身體的那一部分產生共鳴?

這便是我每一天都在練習的地方,如果我可以讓自己發出像強大的武士那般的聲音,我便會相信任何充滿決心的配音員都能爲和自己性格不像的角色改變自己的聲音。並且說實話,一名優秀的老師值得你花更多錢。

獨立遊戲

我認爲我們中很多進入這一領域的人應該都遇到過一些讓自己傷心的項目。但是根據我的經驗,當我在尋找工作時我都會會特別關注一些重要方面:

是否有可遊戲的演示版本?不需要是完整的遊戲,但卻要有能夠呈現代碼,圖像等能夠用於創造一個可行遊戲概念的統一內容。如果只有草圖但沒有可遊戲的內容,或者只有角色“理念”和腳本(遊戲邦注:如她聽起來聲音就像Triss Merigold但更刻薄與直言不諱,並且能夠逗樂玩家們)等便會讓我覺得遊戲概念還不夠靠譜。

遊戲當前的狀態怎樣?是否有發行商?是否進行了greenlight,early access,或beta測試?大多數情況下你都希望在發揮自己的配音才能前先摸個底。

開發者是否真的清楚自己想要呈現怎樣的角色?例如“一個20歲的美國女性,講話低聲,沒有安全感,渴望別人的幫助“這樣的設定便會讓我清楚自己將如何爲這樣的角色配音。

方向是否明確。今年我所參與的不同項目都需要不同的聲音。根據我提交的錄音,開發者會給予一些特定的反饋。如角色是名士兵,他們就會希望她的聲音會更加洪亮有力。而與那些能夠清楚表達自己想法的人共事真的非常棒!

是否存在時間軸。當然有時候時間軸會被拉長並引出一些問題。但是擁有一個整體計劃能夠避免項目最終黃掉。

預算和資金也很重要。你需要確保項目是否獲得衆酬,或者自己是否能獲得來自開發者或其他人的報酬?對方如何付錢?付多少錢?何時付錢等等都是你需要了解清楚的。

本文爲遊戲邦/gamerboom.com編譯,拒絕任何不保留版權的轉發,如需轉載請聯繫:遊戲邦

Voice Acting in Indie Games: Finding Awesomeness in Yourself and in the Casting Calls

by Jaimie Lynn Hensley

Back in the spring of 2016, I auditioned for a voiceover role in an indie retro horror game. Looking back, I hope my experience can help you enhance your own awesomeness as a voiceover artist, indie dev, or whatever it is you do and love!

Camp Sunshine: The Project, The Reception

There were some exact sentences the devs wanted, but it was for a situation that required continual feedback from the character, that could be looped or cut to the length of time the player took to figure out what to do–up to several minutes. I put myself into the mindset of the character, and improvised. (More on this below).

I have worked on a number of indie projects that have fallen through. In my experience, it seems some of these approached voiceover artists too soon. When there is no playable demo, or no script, it can be difficult to judge if the team has the committment and ability to see the project through.

Camp Sunshine was already greenlit on Steam when the casting call was posted. The developer I worked with communicated promptly and kept me updated. He sent me a video demo of the area my character was in, with the in-game effects applied to my voice. When Camp Sunshine by Fossil Games was released on Steam in late October, I have to admit I was very excited.

For me though, the biggest moment of truth was when I found a gameplay video of Camp Sunshine. How would this gamer react to my character? (Here it is–but there’s plot spoilers!)

The gamer seemed to be put off. “Don’t…don’t whisper that way,” he says. Normally it’s not the reaction you hope for in regards to your own speech, but for this character, it was exactly the response we wanted! And the Steam reviews? Overall positive!

Looking back at the experience, I realized it’s been a serious level-up in two areas.

Voice Acting Awesomeness

If you asked me what made this year more awesome in terms of voiceover work, the answer is easy. I took acting classes, studied with a voice acting coach, and made some serious upgrades to my home studio (iZotope RX and a new microphone).

The character I played was very anxious, fearful, and desperate for help. As a naturally anxious person, this was not a stretch for me to get in character. I thought about the times I have been extraordinarily anxious, and how my throat would pinch and my voice would become very strained and soft and high. It was combining those physical characteristics with the mindset of being trapped somewhere dark and terrifying that informed my performance.

I think I will always have a proclivity for shy, anxious, or quirky characters. They’re just so natural to who I am. But I want to take on other characters as well. Strong, royal, whimsical, wild–I was able to explore many different types with my coach. And again, the physical attributes are so important. How do you stand? How do you breathe? Where is there tension? Where does your voice resonate in your body?

This is something I practice every day, and if I can sound like a strong warrior, I really believe any voice actor with determination can also change their sound for a character that might not come naturally at first. And honestly, a good coach is more than worth the money.

Indie Game Awesomeness

I think many of us breaking into the field have had the heartbreak of projects falling through. And there’s really no way to be 100% sure a dev or team isn’t going to go radio silence on you at some point. But looking back at my experiences so far, there are some key things I’ll pay attention to when looking at jobs or casting calls:

Is there a playable demo? Doesn’t have to be a full game, but a demo shows the code, the art, and the vision are cohesive enough to create a working concept. Sketches alone with no playable content, or character “ideas” versus a script (“She sounds like Triss Merigold but more sarcastic and outspoken, she will make fun of the player here”) are warning signs to me that the concept might not be concrete enough at this point.

What is the state of the game? Is there a publisher? Is it greenlit, early access, in beta? In most cases you’ll want the basics in place before you bring in voice talent.

Does it sound like the devs know what they want for the character? “American female, 20s, high register, whispering, fearful, desperate for help” gives me a pretty good idea of how I’m going to voice this character.

How is direction handled? A different project I worked on this year called for a number of “exertion” sounds. Upon submitting my recording, the dev had some specific feedback. The character was a soldier. Could she sound more throaty and powerful? Working with someone who can articulate what they’re after is fantastic.

Is there a timeline? Of course deadlines are sometimes extended and setbacks come up. But having an overall plan that is followed as much as possible helps ensure the project does not end up in limbo.

And, of course budget and funding. Has the project been crowdfunded, is it paid for out of the devs’ pockets, or something else? How will you be paid? What amount? When?(source:gamasutra)