In August 2014, we came to Kickstarter to raise money to film a documentary about the history of video game sound (music, voice, and sound design).
We travelled three continents to interview professionals in all aspects of game audio: the composers, sound designers, voice actors and directors, the software and hardware developers, audio directors, and chip musicians. Over the course of a year, we managed to interview over 100 game audio professionals in person about what they do and why.
Our aim was to document the history of video game sound from the earliest days of arcades and pinball through to the major console, PC, mobile, online and indie titles of today, covering a diverse range of people involved in the industry.
The Beep Book presents these interviews with 100 game audio professionals in an exclusive TWO VOLUME collector's set, beautifully laid out and carefully edited.
Although we planned on creating a book from the project originally (see our original Kickstarter), the sheer number of pages means we've needed to split the book into two volumes to get it all in! Because of the length, we need some extra funds now to take those pages to the printers and get them printed into a high-quality book series for you.
We cover just about everything you can imagine in this book's interviews: Amiga, Arranging, Atari 2600, Audio direction, Audio games, C64, Casual, CD-ROMs, Chiptune, Colecovision, Composers, Conducting, Dreamcast, Facebook games, Festivals, Fighting games, Film sound, FM synthesis, Foley, game remakes, GameBoy, GameCube, Getting into the industry, Handhelds, Implementation, indie games, Instrumentation, Intellivision, Interactive/adaptive audio, iPad, Jaguar, kids’ games, licensed music, live performances, middleware, MIDI, mixing, MMOs, Mobile, MOD, MSX, music games, N64, Nintendo DS, online gaming, orchestration, PC, pinball, Playstation, programming, prototyping, PSG, synthesis, Quality Assurance (QA), racing games, ringtones, Sega Genesis/MegaDrive, SID, singing voice, slot machines, sound cards, sound design, sound recording, soundtracks, sports games, Super Nintendo, technical sound design, technology, tools training & education, Turbografx 16, voice acting, voice directing, Wii, Xbox, & much, much more!
We've gone around the world to get the details in-depth with the men and women who were there and captured their stories in this beautiful two-volume set.
We intend to only print the minimum amount of physical copies we need to fulfill our backer orders. While the digital version will continue to be on sale in the future, this Kickstarter campaign will likely be your only chance to get a hard copy of the book set and/or DVDs. Get an extra set for your library, students, or friends now! Or just hoard a few to sell later!
The book will be printed as a black and white paperback in Canada, using high-quality paper and inks, with a perfect-bound spine and high-quality colour cover.
We've made available a sample interview for you here (PDF), with Forza Motorsport's audio director Nick Wiswell. We knew a lot of thought went into today's car audio, but we think you'll really enjoy reading the details and seeing the kind of depth of interview we got out of this project!
Volume One: North American Interviews: (we don't have nearly enough space to give all their credits here)
- Nobuo Uematsu (Final Fantasy series)
- Arnie Roth (conductor of Distant Worlds)
- Becky Allen (Popcap audio director)
- Chanel Summers (ex-Xbox audio evangelist)
- Guy Whitmore (Peggle 2, NOLF, adaptive audio specialist)
- Leonard Paul (EA audio turned chiptune artist, Beep composer)
- Simon Ashby (Audiokinetic Wwise guy)
- David Viens (Plogue chip guru)
- Alexander Brandon (Deus Ex, Unreal series, Skyrim)
- Alex Wilmer (Tomb Raider series)
- Charles Deenen (Maniacs of Noise turned trailer expert)
- Clint Bajakian (LucasArts, God of War, WoW)
- Michael Land (LucasArts, iMuse creator)
- David Warhol (Intellivision audio)
- George Sanger (The "Fat Man": 7th Guest,Wing Commander)
- Jason Graves (Dead Space, Tomb Raider)
- Jenn Lewis (EA Sports turned indie audio)
- Levon Lewis (Transformers, Golden Compass)
- DB Cooper (VO artist: Bioshock, Beep!)
- Michael Csurics (VO director)
- Peter McConnell (LucasArts: Grim Fandango, Hearthstone)
- Rudy Helm (Sierra On-Line)
- Tracy Bush (WoW composer & voice of murlocs)
- Tom White (director, MIDI Manufacturer's Association)
- Spencer Hooks (game audio at Dolby)
- Steve Horowitz (Nickelodeon and other kids games)
- Chris Huelsbeck (C64 guru: Turrican series)
- Brad Fuller (Atari coin-op)
- Dren McDonald (Ravenwood series, Gathering Sky)
- Jory Prum (LucasArts + Grim Remastered, Walking Dead)
- Peter Drescher (ringtones, "annoying audio" guy)
- Tom Rettig (Broderbund, Prince of Persia)
- Brendan Becker (chiptuner responsible for Pretty Eight Machine)
- Rich Heimlich (soundcard expert)
- Brian Schmidt (Xbox and pinball)
- Damian Kastbauer (technical sound designer, Uncharted)
- David Thiel (pinball sound and Qbert's voice creator)
- Marty O'Donnell (Halo, Destiny composer)
- Nick Wiswell (Forza series)
- Wilbert Roget II (Monkey Island remake, Tomb Raider)
- Bryan Celano, Chip Beaman, Masanobu Tomita, Shannon Potter (Formosa Interactive)
- Garry Schyman (Bioshock & Destroy All Humans series)
- Jim Welch (Meriwether, slot machine audio)
- Lance Hayes (Forza, Gears of War 3)
- Richard Ludlow (Disney Infinity, The Raven)
- Scott Gershin (Last of Us, Resident Evil 6)
- Tom Salta (Ghost Recon, Halo anniversary)
- Penka Kouneva (Transformers, Gears of War 3, WoW)
- Winifred Phillips (Assassin's Creed III: Liberation, Little Big Planet 3)
- Gordon Durity (EA Sports)
Volume Two: UK, Japan, and Bonus Email Interviews (conducted by Chris Greening of Video Game Music Online):
- Adele Cutting (Harry Potter series)
- Anastasios Constantinou (Tazman Audio)
- Graeme Norgate (GoldenEye 007, Crysis)
- Allister Brimble (100+ Amiga titles)
- James Hannigan (Dead Space 3, Harry Potter)
- Joanna Orland (Wonderbook, God of War 3)
- John Broomhall (Transport Tycoon, X-COM)
- Mark Estdale (VO director on Game of Thrones, etc)
- Nathan McCree (original Tomb Raiders)
- Michael Kelly (Sony Playstation audio)
- Rebecca Parnell (Evil Dead: Fistful of Boomstick)
- Richard Jacques (Sonic series)
- Sam Hughes (Lego Batman 3)
- Scott Selfon (Microsoft audio)
- Stephan Schütze (Polar Express, Jurassic Park)
- Hiroki Kikuta (Secret of Mana)
- Hisayoshi Ogura (Darius, Arkanoid)
- Hitoshi Sakimoto (Final Fantasy Tactics, Monster Kingdom)
- Koichi Namiki (Sega Sound Team)
- Michiko Naruke (Wild Arms series)
- Nobuyoshi Sano (Ridge Racer, Tekken series)
- Noriyuki Iwadare (Grandia series, Lunar series)
- Shinji Hosoe (Namco turned SuperSweep)
- Tenpei Sato (Rhapsody, Valis, Disgaea series)
- Tetsuya Shibata (Monster Hunter, Devil May Cry)
- Yoko Shimomura (Mario & Luigi, Kingdom Hearts)
- Yoshino Aoki (Mega Man, Breath of Fire series)
- Yuji Takenouchi (Metal Gear 2 MSX)
- Alberto Gonzales (Altered Beast, Tintin, Asterix)
- Anders Carlsson (chiptune artist Goto80)
- Shota Nakama (director of Video Game Orchestra)
- Rob Bridgett (Prototype series, Scarface)
- Harumi Fujita (Ghosts N Goblins, Mega Man)
- Hideki Sakamoto (Echochrome, Yakuza)
- Junko Tamiya (Strider, Bionic Commando)
- Masahiro Aoki (Doujin Circles, Sengoku Basara)
- Masashi Kageyama (Gimmick! Benkei Gaiden)
- Michiru Yamane (Castlevania, Twinbee)
- Ryuichi Nitta (Ninja Gaiden, Beatmania)
- Saori Kobayashi (Sonic, Panzer Dragoon)
- Takahiro Izutani (Metal Gear, Bayonetta)
- Yasumasa Yamada (Art of Fighting, Samurai Shodown)
- Frederic Motte (Fury of the Furries, Pac in Time, Sam Power series)
The Beep film project is a feature length, HD-shot film with a series of DVD extras of Tips on Getting into the Industry, a 22-minute Japanese special "Beep: Big in Japan" + a tribute to Ryu Umemoto. We are also turning all interviews into a series of webisodes and an online interactive documentary!
Watch one of our current webisodes or the teaser, released at the Game Developers' Conference 2015 here.
*Please note: Although reward states HD DVD, the DVD format is standard def. We shot in HD. If you want HD, please opt for Blu-Ray when we send the survey.
We owe a huge thanks to the professionals who gave us their time and told us their stories. It's been an enormous privilege to be able to show the world what their work means to us.
We could never have made this project without the help of so many wonderful people and organizations! Our previous Kickstarter backers got us off the ground and running (well, flying!) all over the world to gather these interviews. We owe them a huge thanks! Check out the backers page on our website for more info.
We got through this with the help of many volunteers who put in time and energy: Michael Schiciano, Chris Greening, Andreas Hamm, Ruth Dockwray, Rory O'Neill, Leonard Paul, Matthew Charlton, Alwyn Spies, Rebecca Hernandez-Gerber, Sarah Dockwray, Neil Baker, Scott Arnold and Jackson Philip-Gerber. Thanks also to our copyeditors Matthew Schwager, Andreas Hamm and translator Emil R. Nilsson.
We also had a wonderful group of sponsors who helped us out. If you'd like to become a sponsor, please contact us! We have sponsorship opportunities for webisodes available.
Follow us on Twitter @GameSoundDoc
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Risks and challenges
I've got a proven track record of finishing large-scale projects, and I've published five books through major publishers, and self-published four more books in the past, so I'm well versed in the vagaries of publishing. I also used to run a music magazine in the 1990s, and dealt with printers on a regular basis. I'm confident that I can deliver the project on time and to a high quality.
We've already finished the work on this project: The interviews are done, and the book is laid out ready to go to the printers. All we need now is the funding to push the start button!
The only real risk at this point is just not raising enough funds to cover the cost of printing, which means the need to take the funds out of the film promotion and post-production budget. The more backers we get, the more affordable the books become for us to print, and the more funds we can put towards the film, so please tell your friends and followers about us!Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
- (58 days)