Sometime ago, longer than I want to admit, I launched a very small survey entitled “Audio for Digital Games” and asked Portuguese game developers to participate.
As expected, the results were very interesting. However, it may be a particular case because active game developers and small / indie companies have been exploding in Portugal in the last couple of years. This is a fortunate situation and I wanted to understand how sound is being considered within these teams and developers. So, I decided to share them:
- Most of the inquiries are working for less than three years and the platforms they produce their games for is mostly pc / mac.
- Most of them don’t consider audio in games fundamental, but somewhere close to that (at least, none of them ignores it).
- More than 70% don’t have a dedicated person to work with the audio:
main reasons for that is that they don’t know anybody who does it or they do it themselves. A few say it gets expensive, but one answered he / she buys sounds and music him/herself.
- Big big majority gets their SFX and music on sites where the downloads have no cost.
- The most needed category is music, followed by ambiance sounds; the most difficult sounds to get are avatar sounds (like footsteps, attack and defense sounds, vocalization, etc.).
My immediate conclusions were that music is the first thing that developers want in the audio category and since anyone can buy / download music and SFX, a dedicated person may not be required to do a finer work.
Important note: this is not a scientific representation of the state of things in this matter; I wanted to understand the thoughts behind indie game development regarding sound & music. However, an interesting perspective!
Happy game audio!