I was part of the audio team that created the audio for the rally racing game Dirt Rally, the latest installment in the Dirt franchise. I mainly worked on vehicle and environmental audio.
We recorded numerous rally cars specifically for this game and used the resulting recordings to help us create vehicle audio in-game that not only sounds authentic, but that also behaves authentically and mimics the real-life subtleties and idiosyncrasies unique to each vehicle. We paid close attention to behaviours that make each car sound so unique so that we could accurately reproduce things like each vehicles’ dynamic range and the effect that each gear change has on the sound of the engine load as well as the detonation pops/overrun intensity and at what RPM ranges they occur.
For the environmental audio I wanted to make the tracks sound realistic, alive and dynamic. I took the time to research the particular wildlife that inhabits each location and accurately reproduce the sounds that you’re likely to hear at a given time of day, year and even at specific altitudes on each track that I worked on. I also attended one of the WRC rally events last year and took the oportunity to record general ambiences from various spots around the track and also the sound of rally cars in the distance, which I then added to the game and set up to trigger sporadically to add an extra layer of authenticity. I feel that this makes players feel like they're not the only driver on the tracks and that the tracks are in fact occupied by numerous other drivers, just like an actual rally.
For the weather, I devised a system that changed the tone and intensity of the rain depending on not only the camera view and speed of the vehicle, but also the particular location of the player on the track. For example, I reduced the intensity and volume of the rain in sheltered areas such as forests. It’s a subtle effect but I think that it helps add to the overall immersion and is something that at the time I hadn’t heard done to that extent in any of our competitors titles.
The videos above show some of my work on Dirt Rally, for the best viewing experience, please watch in HD.