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Video Game Demo

 
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Bruce
Boardmeister


Joined: 06 Jun 2005
Posts: 7923
Location: Portland, OR

PostPosted: Sat Nov 25, 2023 9:06 am    Post subject: Video Game Demo Reply with quote

I've assembled a new video game demo. I used many different cuts to show my range, but in preparation I listened to many other VG demos and most were longer cuts (10 to 20 seconds) and were usually straight acting, not characters. Is this demo going to be useful for me or should I go more long-form? Thanks for your thoughts!

https://soundcloud.com/bruce-miles/video-games-bruce-miles

B
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I'm not a Zoo, but over the years I've played one on radio/TV. .
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Bob Bergen
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Joined: 22 Apr 2008
Posts: 938

PostPosted: Sat Nov 25, 2023 10:11 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Well, let me start with the fact that you are damn good, Bruce! Very vocally versatile.

But the pace of this demo is very dated. Games today are indeed far more real. And each character needs to offer the listener a lot more meat. Gone are the days where games, even animation for that matter, are seeking actors who can do a million different voices. It's all about the acting with more grounded characters. And just like a commercial demo or promo demo must reflect the styles and landscape of today's commercials and promos, the game demo needs to reflect the current landscape of games.

Check out JB Blanc's game demo: https://www.atlastalent.com/audio/animation/animation_male_blanc_jb_interactive_07_31_17.mp3

Ben Pronsky also has a great game demo:
https://www.atlastalent.com/audio/animation/animation_men_pronsky_ben_interactive_09_01_22.mp3

Note the pace and acting. It isn't wall to wall voices. Games are very cinematic today.

And if you do not have actual recent work that reflects today's games, have a game demo produced from scratch. Now, if you have a recent body of great game work, then perhaps provide clips on your website, like Steve Blum:
http://www.steveblumvoices.com/work/#/video-games/

Steve is a rock star in the world of games.

I think all of this should give you a better idea of what is needed and (or) lacking from your current game demo.
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Philip Banks
Je Ne Sais Quoi


Joined: 20 Jun 2005
Posts: 11048
Location: Portgordon, Scotland

PostPosted: Mon Nov 27, 2023 5:58 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

From my limited experience it would appear that the video game market has evolved from grotesques to moods.

On the set of the film "One of our aircraft is missing" a very young Peter Ustinov was asked by the director, "Peter, what are you doing in this scene?"

"Well, errr, nothing" Ustinov replied.

From the other side of the set veteran stage and screen actor Sir Hugh Williams shouted.

"Oh No you're not young man, I'M doing THAT!"

DO nothun' dood! It's the future.
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Bob Bergen
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Joined: 22 Apr 2008
Posts: 938

PostPosted: Mon Nov 27, 2023 7:13 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Well, I would hardly call it doing nothing. A natural cinematic delivery, very real and very authentic, is one of the hardest nothings an actor can do. Meryl Streep does it brilliantly. So did Jimmy Stewart. One of the reasons animation and game actors are having a hard time today is they still think it's all about voices or vocal range. It certainly was when I got in the game, but that was over 40 years ago. Today it's about grounded authenticity, something that more often than not takes years to master. Now, there are still a variety of genres out there with some asking for more over the top/cartoony deliveries. But this is why God created take 2. I will give em one grounded and one more broad. Rarely these days are they booking the broad choice. Especially in games.
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Jack Daniel
Cinquecento


Joined: 23 Jun 2016
Posts: 576
Location: SoCal

PostPosted: Mon Nov 27, 2023 10:59 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Bob knows a hell of a lot more than I do about game voices, so I offer this personal perspective a little sheepishly. I would say many voices are grounded these days, something I've noticed in the one game I play, Call of Duty. Some of those voices could have been lifted from actual military comms and impress me to no end. Others... are wildly cartoony and silly--and yes were are talking about the same game. This might be because COD embraces both the realistic and the goofy in its games, though the combo can be jarring. Outside of this experience, in looking even at some of the top players in the gaming space, I find much of the acting to be very "voicey" and on the cartoony side. Perhaps this is inevitable with the specs provided, but I often am surprised by the difference between audition specs (eg, "very grounded and underplayed") and the final product (total cartoonsville). In summary, what I see is that *some* current gaming VO is very natural and "grounded," whereas quite a bit is still close to being lifted from the old Hannah/Barberra cartoons.
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Bob Bergen
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Joined: 22 Apr 2008
Posts: 938

PostPosted: Mon Nov 27, 2023 11:30 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Agree with Jack! But getting back to the original question which is about the demo, each byte these days is longer than in the old days. Has more meat to it. Shows off more acting range than vocal range, even if the character is cartoony. Be it a game demo or a cartoon demo, you want each character doing, not commenting. Acting is reacting. You want each character involved in the scene, not discussing what they are witnessing. And you also want to stay away from the words "you" and "I." That becomes formulaic. Name your scene partners. Have your character in motion. Within the same scene, divert their attention and intent. You can show off so much acting range by doing all of this, even if the voice is cartoony.

Last edited by Bob Bergen on Mon Nov 27, 2023 1:05 pm; edited 1 time in total
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Philip Banks
Je Ne Sais Quoi


Joined: 20 Jun 2005
Posts: 11048
Location: Portgordon, Scotland

PostPosted: Mon Nov 27, 2023 12:02 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Anyone really interested in getting into video game work see above for some "right on target" guidance supported by experience and informed opinion.

Fabby stuff Bob and Jack!
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