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The Sounds Of Skyrim

by Ben Hanson on Jan 14, 2011 at 08:15 AM

In a sprawling role-playing epic like The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim, good audio can make or break the experience. An out-of-place musical theme, a poor voice actor in a key role, or a goofy sound effect can ruin the immersion, pulling players out of the excitement of the game. At the same time, strong audio work can help a game soar, deepening every level of involvement in the world of the game. We talked with Mark Lampert, audio director and sound designer at Bethesda Game Studios, and the chief architect of the aural experience players will encounter in Skyrim. He revealed details on all the sound elements players will encounter in the game, and had some fascinating examples of his work to share.

Jump to any or all of the four videos that sound interesting.

Video 1: Lampert discusses sound design and sound effects of Skyrim, and how he collects the elements of those sounds in the field. He then reveals the sound effects behind a new creature in Skyrim, and shows off a new spell and the awesome sounds that accompany its casting.

Video 2: We hear some of Skyrim's early voice recording work from Max von Sydow (including new lines no one has yet heard), and Lampert reveals the philosophy behind voice work in the game. Lampert also discusses Sydow's character, and how he fits into the game world.

Video 3: Skyrim's sound designer explains the challenges of creating audio for the dragons of Skyrim, and discusses how he will create dragon shouts, one of the new gameplay mechanics of Skyrim.

Video 4: Lampert shows off some of the amazing musical score for Skyrim, composed by series mainstay Jeremy Soule. Can you hear the original Elder Scrolls theme as it weaves its way into the new music?

For more from our growing hub of in-depth content on all the unique elements of The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim, click on the image below.