One thing we’ve been wanting to do since we first launched Gnome Stew is have a contest for our readers — and here we are with our first contest!
Last week I promised that the prizes would be surprising. We’ve never seen a contest like this one on any other gaming site, and we’re thrilled to be able to offer something this unique to our readers.
World oF Twilights Studio
Gnome Stew reader PaPeRoTTo (Giorgio Vezzini in the real world) is a sound engineer who creates custom sound effects for his own game, and he recently started a company, World oF Twilights Studio, to do the same thing for your games.
Giorgio does great work, and listening to his effects its easy to see how much they would add to a gaming session, especially when it comes to immersing your players in the game world. Listen for yourself — here are some samples of Giorgio’s sound effects (all direct links to MP3s):
- Walking through a field (complete with birds and a wagon going by)
- Sentry turret showdown (shades of Aliens)
- A classic demonic voice
- Ambient background: aboard a wrecked space station (awesome!)
- The stone gargoyle awakens
(If for some reason a link won’t load, copy and paste the link into your browser’s address bar — that should do the trick.)
Want Giorgio to design a set of custom sound effects for your next session? Read on!
Gnome Stew is giving you a chance to win three custom sound effect packages courtesy of PaPeRoTTo and World oF Twilights Studio:
- 1st Prize: 2 scenes featuring 5 layers, 1 scene with 3 layers, 2 SFX and 2 adjustments.
- 2nd Prize: 1 scene with 5 layers, 1 scene with 3 layers, 2 SFX and 2 adjustments.
- 3rd Prize: 1 scene with 5 layers, 1 SFX and 1 adjustment.
I’m not a sound engineer, so I asked Giorgio to spell all that out for me. Here’s what each of those terms means:
Scene: A sound file with multiple elements — for example, running footsteps on a metal floor, the heavy breathing of the runners, the rumble of the boulder they’re running away from, a villain’s cackling laughter and the clanking of machinery in the background.
Layer: One sound element within a scene. The example above includes five layers.
SFX: A simple, reusable sound “unit,” like the crackle of a fireball or the rattle of machine gun fire.
Adjustment: A change made to any of the above. Want louder fire for your fireball, or a deeper laugh for the villain? That’s an adjustment.
How to Enter
We made entering this contest so easy it’s criminal:
- Register for a free account on Gnome Stew. Make sure the email address you use is valid, since winners will be notified by email (change it here if you need to). If you already have an account, skip this step!
- Leave a comment on this post. Seriously — that’s all you have to do. We’d love to know how you use sound effects in your game, or what you’d do with a custom effects package if you won, but any comment counts as your entry.
Not registered on the Stew? Read our comment policy and register.
Multiple comments are welcome, but you can only enter once. (And Gnome Stew authors aren’t eligible to win, obviously.)
And We’re Off!
This contest will run from today until 11:59 PM (MST) on Monday, September 1st, 2008. (Edit: Oops — I put 12:01 AM before, but my intention was to give everyone all day on Monday, not just one minute of it. I’ve changed the deadline to 11:59 PM.)
We’ll announce our three randomly selected winners in a separate post on Wednesday, September 3rd, 2008. Each winner will also be contacted via email, and we’ll put them in touch with PaPeRoTTo directly so that they can claim their prizes.
Good luck, be sure to check out World oF Twilights Studio — and get commenting!
I’m here and ready to win ^_^
I like starting the Game using the soundtrack to Conan the Barbarian. If the gaming group is unfocused, I pull out the Xena Warrior Princess Soundtrack. They beg to play rather than listen to that music……..
This contest is bound to have some very, very satisfied winners. Sound effects during a game can subtely and dramatically alter how your players perceive the game. I have long used music to help convey an overall feel or impression of the game being played, but sound FX take that one step further.
I guess it’s high time i considered expanding beyond my sheet metal, slide whistle, and wax paper + comb. My PCs can only take so many levitating destrachans.
i would love this in my game i have always wanted to to a game like that
Been meaning to sign up for a long time. Here’s the proper kick in the pants to get me in gear!
I’m entering this contest because this is such a novel idea.
Just thought of another application for SFX, apropos of a comment I just made in mixing SF and Fantasy, the sounds could give the atmosphere of both or either? What does an Elven Archer or plated Paladin think when he starts to heare eerie, SF-ish sounds around him, or a disembodied voice in his head (Speakers!), or the doors hiss-SLIDE open a la Star Trek? What does he think is making those “lightning” noises, or what (or who) is that wierd looking Monster (?) with all the arms or three legs? It might be an Alien “Ally” if he can be restrained from skewering it?! Those sounds could just give the clue? I don’t remember whether anyone (including me) has mentioned the idea of having Character themes, yet?
I WANT FREE STUFF!
This is a great contest. Normally I do my own SFX but this would be very cool.
Great idea! Not sure how I’d use sound effects, but I’m curious about it now.
For those interested, here’s a site that has some free sound effects:
I have tried this, there is a usenet newsgroup dedicated to SFX, and you can get some good stuff on there… galloping horses, swords clashing, stuff like that… if you have an audio editor on your pc, you can make all sorts of things like this. It’s pretty cool.
I had a lot of SW SFX I ripped from games and stuff, that also work great for a sw game.
Nothing beats scaring your young jedi PC, standing in a dark chamber and seeing the player’s face as he listens to the hiss of a red lightsaber igniting behind him…
good stuff this contest…
I heavily use music in my games and would love to get some SFX going. I already have a great idea!
I’ve never used music in a game, I hear a lot of people do it but I was never into music that much… might have to change that, I don’t know :/
The prize is certainly interesting. Those sound effects could come really handy for my next project =)
It would be pretty nifty to incorporate sound effects into a virtual game table…
I’ve never used sound effects in a game before, but I am looking to make a mix CD of music from 1947 to help set the mood of my next campaign. And some sound effects coming from creatures That Man Was Not Meant To Know would work nicely, too!
I like sound more then DaveTheGame. Would these be usable for a video game? That’s what I’m interested in…
I like virgil’s idea of a mix CD of contemporary music, not sure if it would work for Fantasy however, or even Victorian era? 1940s music does set a “feel” though. I also once played in a game where the GM had his CD of the “Temple of Elemental Evil” game in the computer as background noise, it had a steady background track of rattling chains, creaks, groans, and things going bump in the night, and set the scene beautifully! I also remember a scary game where we, the PCs, spent the night in an eerie Dungeon corridor with a background wailing noise, faint and inexplicable; we found out later that it was totally harmless, the wind blowing across the neck of a bottle would you believe, but it produced a feeling of genuine alarm even though it was only described to us; if it had actually been playing in the background it might have really had us wetting our pants!
I like to have CD/MP3 tracks that I loop while a certain scene is going on, then click to the next soundtrack at the next scene. I would think specific sounds for specific events would be… corny. But maybe there’s a way to pull that off, if used sparingly.
This contest is now over — thanks to everyone who entered! Winners will be announced on Wednesday. 🙂