Working with Stephen Barton is always fun and this job was certainly that, if a little unusual.
Rather than creating a batch of sounds for a whole project, Stephen wanted a few specific sounds for an important cinematic sequence within Titanfall 2 – sounds he just didn’t have in his studio. In fact, it’s the opening movie scene for the game.
Stephen got in touch, asking for some sounds to underping the cue he had written for it. The studio wanted to add some “quiet strength” to the music, which was predominantly orchestral. This meant some subtle but intense rhythmic elements, both basslines and ‘ticking’ percussion, and also pulses and low drum hits. The key to the sound was that it should not sound too synthetic. It didn’t want to stand out, but be very noticeable if it was pulled out of the track.
The obvious answer for me was to use Zebra. It’s the best softsynth out there for organic synth sounds, especially ones you want to sit carefully in the mix. I put together a number of sounds for Stephen (I think about 50 in the end) for the cue, to make sure he had a good selection to choose from, and he (and the game’s director) were kind enough to let me know they loved ALL the sounds and found it difficult to chose the right ones to include!
It was also very kind of them to include me in the credits for the game.
If you’ve not checked it out yet, Titanfall 2 looks incredible. The reviews have been really good too.