Gold Fever is an open-world MMO game that transports players back in time to the thrilling and dangerous 1930s, where they must navigate an unforgiving island in search of precious gold, forming alliances and rivalries with other players along the way.
In my role as a Technical Audio Designer on the Gold Fever project, I contributed to a four-member audio team, focusing on the creation and integration of procedural audio population systems for the vast game world.
- Designed and programmed audio systems.
- Implemented audio.
- Optimized audio performance.
- Improved the sound-implementation pipeline for our sound designers.
Unreal Engine 5
I created a system that handled procedural river audio. In Gold Fever, all rivers are based on a single Actor class, and this system includes a component that dynamically adapts river audio based on its width, depth, flow rate, and turbulence. It does so by analyzing these parameters in the editor over the entire length of the river and serializing this data to be used during runtime. The correct sounds are selected based on the position of the listener in relation to the river. Moreover, this system is capable of autonomously identifying waterfalls and appropriately populating them with the right sound sources.
Procedural Audio Population
I've built a procedural ambience system for the game that gives our sound designers the ability to create diverse soundscapes for each section of the jungle. The system lets us configure the spawning behavior of each sound, allowing bird sounds to play from appropriate trees and insect sounds like crickets to play from bushes near roads.
The game environment presents a range of states, including a day-to-night cycle, and various weather patterns like wind, rain, and fog. Our system enables each sound element to be tied to these environmental variables, meaning that each soundscape preset can be modified dynamically at runtime.
Considering the large playable area of the island, we required a system that we could use to quickly create 'audio areas' in the world with different audio and ambience settings. I created a system based on Unreal Engine's procedural mesh system that allows us to map the world with different audio zones using a ortographic top-down perspective. This system is well-suited for large-scale audio mapping of the game world. Each audio zone provides us the ability to adjust the overall ambience and add modifiers to the music and mix.