unity adam sound design Asbjoern Andersen


Popular game development platform Unity recently released the full version of Adam, a real-time presentation of what Unity is capable of – built entirely in Unity. But it’s not just a tech demo; it’s also a great short in its own right, with some excellent sound design.

I was really curious to hear the story behind the sound – and thankfully, the man behind it, Swedish sound designer Aleksander Karshikoff, was happy to share it.

Below, he highlights his thoughts and approaches behind the film’s sound design, and demonstrates some experimental robotic breathing techniques. And if you haven’t seen the film yet, here’s your chance as well!



Video Thumbnail

The full Unity ‘Adam’ demo / short

Hi Aleksander, how did you get involved with the Adam film, and with Unity?

It was through my colleague and friend Max Lachmann from Pole Position. He was the one who took me on board and introduced me to Unity’s demo team.
 

What was your overall vision for the sound design?

Well, the brief we got from Vess, the film’s director was simple: even though they look like robots, they are human beings in a robotic body – make them as human as you can. This was the mission and it meant that sonically we needed to get as far from the robotic-sound as possible. An impulse that wasn’t easy to resist at first. Regarding the overall feeling of the world depicted, we aimed for an outdated modern world, something that was hi-tech many decades ago, but now felt somewhat archaic.
 

What was the biggest challenge in getting the sound right?

I guess Adam was the biggest challenge. Since metal, pneumatic and electric sounds all emphasize the robotic feel, we went for different kinds of plastic and no motorized/electronic sounds at all. A lot of the sounds that Adam makes originate from a Rubik’s cube – a toy quite potent, it turns out!

A lot of the sounds that Adam makes originate from a Rubik’s cube – a toy quite potent, it turns out!

Then, of course – the breathing… It took quite a while to decide how it should be. But at the end the decision favours the perception of Adam as human, which meant letting him breathe as a normal human being, despite the logical gaps (picture-wise, not story-wise) that come up with this approach.

The reverberation of the breathing (making it sound as if it comes out of a more hidden part of Adams body) is a way of dealing with those problems, but at the and of the day this was the most effective way to make the audience understand that Adam isn’t really a robot, but something else!

Video Thumbnail

An experimental version of Adam’s breathing, later abandoned for a more human-like sound (PS: Don’t try this at home)

Did the fact that it was rendered in real-time present any challenges in terms of sound? And from a technical perspective, how are the sounds implemented into Unity?

Although it is rendered real-time, the sound was made against a rendered file, more or less as if it was a normal film – with the difference that character action, camera angles and movements, textures and fabrics were subject to change at any given moment – and this was the case because the sound work was done parallel to the coding. The correct implementation of the sound into Unity will be done only in case an interactive demo is released.

 


Popular on A Sound Effect right now – article continues below:

 
  • Fabric Drag & Slide Play Track 550+ sounds included $38

    Need the sound of objects being pushed, pulled, dragged, moved – or perhaps sliding and scraping over different surfaces? The Drag & Slide SFX library gets you exactly that: More than 500 dragging and sliding sounds that are ready to be used as they are – or for intense sound design.

    Drag & Slide features recordings from sources such as:

    Bags, Barrels, Blades, Bottles, Cabinets, Chairs, Coat-hangers, Crates, Dining Tables, Fridges, Frying Pans, Iron Boxes, Iron Tables, Metal Cans, Metal Chairs, Nightstands, Pallets, Paper bags, Plates, Racks, Rakes, Shoes, Shovels, Sledgehammers, Spray cans, Stones/rocks, Toolboxes, Vacuum Cleaners, Various heavy objects, Wooden Boards – and more!

    Technical details:

    All sounds were cleaned, edited and filled with BWF-Metadata for instant use in your projects – and many of the files in the pack contain more than one sound. Recorded with Sound Devices 744T, 788T, Sennheiser MKH8050, Ambient ATE208, Sony PCM-D100

    Add to cart
  • Drones & Moods Atmosfear Play Track 50 sounds included, 31 mins total $10

    Featuring sounds taken from lo-fi instrumental recordings, harsh noise experiments and granular synthesis explorations, Atmosfear is a gritty soundscape collection geared towards the horror genre. With a distinctly unpolished production style to bring a rough edge to your scenario, these sounds can be used to invoke feelings of suspense, dread, tension, fear and doom into your characters and environments.

    What does an industrial scale torture chamber in an abandoned asylum sound like? What about a high-voltage electrical possession? Find the answer to these questions and more with Atmosfear. Enter if you dare.

    Add to cart
  • Human Swordfighter Play Track 479 sounds included $25 $20

    Swordfighter is a robust package with sharp sounding swords, heaps of variations and all the extras you need to make a fight come alive. Build unique sword swings with various hits, swooshes, schings, different fighter vocals and impacts on various surfaces. All up there are 137 sword sounds, 93 surface impact sounds, 15 knife throwing sounds, 48 swooshes and 180 fighter vocals.

    This version includes two sub-folders: one optimised for a film & TV workflow and the other optimised for video games workflow. Plus a few bonus sounds of a charging army.

    20 %
    OFF
    Add to cart

GET THE MUCH-LOVED A SOUND EFFECT NEWSLETTER + 40 FREE SFX:

Just enter your details below to get the newsletter and 40 free sound effects (soundlist):


 

Sorry, the offer is currently not available - but the A Sound Effect newsletter comes with free sounds in every issue (+ exclusive stories, interviews, guides, audio jobs, audio events, sound highlights and more). Get it right here.


 


 

Where did you source the sounds for the film? Did you do a lot of custom recording?

Most of the sounds we took from Pole’s own libraries, such as ambiances, ambient effects from interiors of planes and tanks, hydraulic and pneumatics, alarms etc, and hard fx such as the gunfire and everything that come along with it.

Then we made additional recordings of specific effects, mainly sounds that were very specific to the depicted characters and of course foley.
 

Want to know how Adam’s graphics, animation and VFX were made? Here’s how:

 
Find out how Adam’s visuals were created, in this in-depth presentation by Zdravko Pavlov, Robert Cupisz, and Krasimir Nechevksi:

Video Thumbnail
 

How did the collaboration between you and Pole Position come into place – and is this something you’ll continue in the future?

We had been working together a while back on a feature film, “Cirkeln” (The Circle) where I was sound supervisor and Pole where involved doing some sound design and field recording.

When they where asked to do the Unity demo they contacted me, seeing this as a step to be able to take on more film, cutscene and trailer work. It has been a great pleasure to work with Pole and I certainly hope that our collaboration will continue. New projects are being planned and the future seems bright!
 

A big thanks to Aleksander Karshikoff for the story behind the sound of ‘Adam’!

 

 

Please share this:


 


 
 
THE WORLD’S EASIEST WAY TO GET INDEPENDENT SOUND EFFECTS:
 
A Sound Effect gives you easy access to an absolutely huge sound effects catalog from a myriad of independent sound creators, all covered by one license agreement - a few highlights:
 
 
  • Human Swordfighter Play Track 479 sounds included $25 $20

    Swordfighter is a robust package with sharp sounding swords, heaps of variations and all the extras you need to make a fight come alive. Build unique sword swings with various hits, swooshes, schings, different fighter vocals and impacts on various surfaces. All up there are 137 sword sounds, 93 surface impact sounds, 15 knife throwing sounds, 48 swooshes and 180 fighter vocals.

    This version includes two sub-folders: one optimised for a film & TV workflow and the other optimised for video games workflow. Plus a few bonus sounds of a charging army.

    20 %
    OFF
  • In a remote research lab in the north-east of England, scientists have been secretly carrying out experiments on a number of human test subjects. There is no record of what these experiments entailed or who authorized them, but one thing we do know is that something went horrendously wrong and transformed these once-innocent, everyday people into something else entirely… Something inherently evil.

    Herein lies an audio documentation of these wretched beasts as they run amok with only one thing on their minds… To feed and to destroy.

    Zombie contains 205 vocal sounds in the following categories:
    Subject A: 67 raw unprocessed vocal sounds
    Subject B: 89 raw unprocessed vocal sounds
    Subject C: Zombie Brat: 18 raw unprocessed vocal sounds
    Processed: 27 vocal sounds with pitch down and reverb fx
    Layered: 4 layered, looping sequences of Subject A & B
  • Ice Frozen Play Track 809 sounds included $45

    Frozen is a collection of ice impacts, scrapes, debris, slides and more taken during a miserably cold winter in the arctic tundra of Massachusetts. These recordings were meticulously recorded, edited, named, renamed, edited again, re recorded, then re-renamed (you get the point) to give you the best quality ice library you can get.

    The library roughly is broken into two sections, raw and processed. Raw is designed for sound designers to go wild with: stretch, distort, compress, and more to your hearts content. The processed section is for designers and content creators on the go. If you’re on a tight deadline, pulling some sounds that are already going to get you close to where you need to be is imperative. These processed versions play very nicely even when not designing ice.

 
Explore the full, unique collection here

Latest sound effects libraries:
 
  • Destruction & Impact Debris – Ambisonic Play Track 110+ sounds included, 17 mins total $75

    Get all sorts of ambisonic debris recordings in this release from Spheric Collection – perfect for earthquakes, landslides, explosions and beyond. Debris is the material you will need for a house and gallery collapsing. From very small stone and dust to large rocks, this collection is a good set of mineral sounds – covering everything from impacts, continuous falling debris, rocks poured from various heights, light and heavy falling debris sounds, a number of falling rock sounds, to rocky explosions and blasts, glass sounds and more. Always immersive all sounds are ambisonic recordings.

    About Ambisonics:
    This is an Ambisonics sound effects library - and by using the free SoundField SurroundZone 2 plugin you can convert the B-format files into your preferred format (stereo, 5.0, 5.1, 6.0, 6.1, 7.0 or 7.1 surround). Note: The library also contains ready-made stereo mixdowns for your convenience.
  • Drones & Moods Affright Play Track 208 sounds included, 45 mins total $30 $15

    Affright” is a collection of 208 sounds (Wav, 24 Bit / 48 kHz) aimed to induce tension, fear and urgency in horror productions.

    You will find looped percussive elements (clocks, metals, hits, alarms, musical elements and more at 75 bpm), designed rhythmic elements (75 bpm) and fx (atmospheric elements, reverses, noises, risers, drops).

    If you are a musician who wants to define the building blocks of an intense horror track or maybe you are a sound designer who needs to create a musical moment in a scene from a sound design perspective, this library can help you to achieve those things.

    Metals, vinyl noises, voices, ukuleles, flutes, guitars and clocks were used to create this intense pack of 164 loops and 44 Fx.

    Check the main demo!! It was created very quickly using only the sounds of the pack with NO ADDED EFFECTS, only mixing the levels of the sounds and shows you the intensity of what you can create with this library!!

    50 %
    OFF
    Ends 1569707999
  • Hum, Buzz & Glitches Vintage Film Tech Effects Play Track 206 sounds included, 5 mins total $120 $99

    Vintage Film Tech Effects features Slate claps, Beeps, Bloops, Film leader tone, Static, 2 Pops, digital dropouts, record player noise and much more. We’ve collected these vintage sounds from old Hollywood dailies reels, and film stock. 206 tracks that recreate the sound of the lost art of classic Film, TV and radio production.

    18 %
    OFF
    Ends 1569016799
  • City Life Transit: Japan Play Track 40 sounds included, 2.75 hrs mins total $30 $15

    Looking for authentic ambient sounds of Japanese transportation? Look no further! Field recordist and composer Ryan Ayers travelled to Japan in April of 2019 and captured this wonderful collection. His journey took him from Osaka to Tokyo to Fukuoka and all points in-between. Travel aboard the trains of the JR, the famous Shinkansen, the Hanyu Ferry and more! Explore the train platforms and station terminals of Osaka. Get lost in the Kansai International Airport. There is a subway noodle shop as well as specialty food markets. Authentic walla and natural activity give this collection the ear candy necessary to be an integral part of great soundscapes.

    This is a purely recorded sound pack. Nothing is synthetic or layered here. What you hear is exactly what was captured on location. We edited and mastered the files to bring out the best parts of the recordings. Most of the recordings have been ready-made into loops for ease of use. As always, we have embedded the files with detailed metadata for easy database searches.

    50 %
    OFF
    Ends 1569967199
  • Foley Wooden Ship Ambiences Play Track 50 sounds included, 85 mins total $149.99 $99.99

    Ahoy Mateys! Step aboard the finest sailing ship sound effects library in the land.

    Whether you’re working on an exciting Pirates of the Caribbean style video game or a relaxing sea-faring romance, the hours of exceptional background loops and additional cutting edge ship sounds contained within this sound pack will set your project on a course to excellence!

    EXPLORE AN ENTIRE SHIP

    Whether your adventure takes place in the MAIN DECK, CABIN, BELOW DECK, atop the CROWS NEST, in a MEDIEVAL PORT, or on a DISTANT SHIP in the HIGH SEAS we’ve got you covered! Each ambience contains MULTIPLE VARIATIONS, ALL WEATHER CONDITIONS, and MULTIPLE INTENSITIES to cover each and every part of the ship, on the rough and calm seas, this sound effects library is perfect for every situation you need.

    A JOURNEY TO REMEMBER

    Our expert team of sound designers have meticulously crafted each ambience into CONTINUOUS, NON-REPETITIVE, DRAG AND DROP-READY LOOPS that will serve as perfect background audio for your game, film, animation, live event, or even as relaxing background audio! We have even included FULL and SIMPLIFIED MIXES, ISOLATED WEATHER, OCEAN and WOOD CRACKING versions, SHORT and LONG non-repetitive variants, and numerous other options for your convenience!

    TREASURE APLENTY

    With FREE UPDATES, FOREVER! and FREE BONUS AMBIENCES: MEDIEVAL PORT and isolated, SEA, SAILS and FLAG FLAPPING, Ship’s BELL RINGING, WEATHER and WOOD CRACKING SOUNDS, all supplied in industry standard Hi-Rez WAV and Hi-Quality MP3 formats, there’s no better time to set sail on the high seas with this ONE OF A KIND sound pack!

    So what are you waiting for? Take command of this UNIQUE library and begin your journey on the high seas today!

    KEY FEATURES:

    • Huge variety of Old Wooden Ship Interior and Exterior Ambiences, All Weather Conditions and Additional Useful BONUS Sound Effects for every scene or situation.
    • Multiple variants and intensities for your convenience and additional edit options (lengths, looping versions, stingers, etc.).
    • Ready to use – requires no editing, labelling or splicing. Categorized, organized and individually labeled files for maximum use efficiency
    • All files are included in Hi-Rez WAV, High-Quality WAV and High-Quality MP3 formats
    • FREE Updates to higher versions, FOREVER!

     

    33 %
    OFF
    Ends 1568757599
 
WANT MORE LIKE THIS?
FOLLOW A SOUND EFFECT FOR THE LATEST IN FANTASTIC SOUND:
 
          

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

HTML tags are not allowed.