[Sound Challenge] Competition #4 - Kid friendly ----- Voting close.

Hello again!

I believe its time for another sound challenge!

The theme...
For this challenge we are going to add sound to a 1min video of a kid-friendly game (download links in the video section). This needs to appeal to a younger crowd so remember that everything needs to snap, crackle and pop with enthusiasm!

This time the clip is from a lets-play video of Little Big Planet.

For additional challenge we will also be adding optional modifiers which you may choose to follow.
  • 70s action movie style. (Check out the amazing spiderman 1970 for reference)
  • Crescendo (gradually getting louder)
  • Decrescendo (gradually getting softer)
  • Accelerando (gradually getting faster)
  • Sforzando (a sudden emphasis)
The rules:
1. EVERYONE can join, you don't need to be a musician or have a sound engineering degree. Lets face it, we all need sound effects for our games and most of us are pretty terrible at it (I know I am). So lets practice using any software out there! (See below for some suggestions)
2. Once you have made your entry, post it here.
3. Stick to the theme. Or don't. We don't really care either way, just join in!
4. Finish the project by Monday the 24th of March
5. Did I mention EVERYONE can join in? We like silly gimmicks and I-made-this-with-my-gaming-mic-and-a-horseshoe type entries so there are plenty of excuses to take part!
6. Feel free to colaborate, we love it when people work together ;)
7. Have fun and try to give feedback to other entries!

The Video
You are not forced to use the video but feel free to use it in your entry by adding any audio you want. We are looking for all types of audio entries including: sound effects, music, voice overs or all of the above.

The old audio has already been stripped off the video for you and is available in downloadable form:
480x840 in .mp4 format, 18.6mb download
1280x720 in .mp4 format, 30mb download

Advice and popular software thread:
Check out this thread for advice on software/tutorials etc.

So who will be joining me? Feel free to ask any questions!

Update: Voting now open!
Hey everyone, its time to vote! Anyone on the forums may join in so please make sure you do! While voting is great feedback is constructive, so feel free to drop some constructive critisism for the contestants!

Here is a link to the voting page

Voting closes next monday, the 31st of March!

Voting has closed! Thanks to everyone who voted and thanks to all who participated!

Best Music Category:
image 1st - @Gibbo
image 2nd - @karl182
image 3rd - @Tim_Harbour & @McCoySoundD tied!

Best Sound Effects Category:
image 1st - @karl182
image 2nd - @McCoySoundD

Best Overall Category:
image 1st - @karl182
image 2nd - @McCoySoundD
image 3rd - @Gibbo

Congratulations to everyone for completing something awesome!


  • Yup, will definitely work to come up with something for the music side of things for this one :)
  • So... I guess this isn't kid friendly :P

    Thanked by 1Merrik
  • It depends on how young you define a "kid" I suppose, though I suppose this challenge aims to cater for young kids, so 3 to 12?
  • Haha, yes I think 3-12 sounds about right. So much less brain splattering zombies probably :P
  • I don't see a video? The link takes me to LBP wiki page.... I have something I worked on today for this but didn't match it to video.... I'll post it as soon as I've touched it up
  • Also ... its almost 2 mins long .... ;/ Maybe I should edit it...
  • Whoops, I took out that link out and placed a link to the original (longer non-english) lets play...

    Also don't feel pressured to edit it, throw it out here in its full state!
  • Ok so here it is! Thrown together quite quickly but in the right theme I reckon :D


    Thanked by 1creative630
  • Wow that was quick @Tim_Harbour! A catchy theme :)
  • It's from all the game jam practice...I did it in about 4/5 hrs... practising with the sonatina orchestra you linked me...awesome sounds... :D looking at the video though the music might be a bit too brasen and not subtle enough but I do think it still kinda falls into the "kid" music theme...I hope :P
    Thanked by 1Bensonance
  • @Tim_Harbour, it really is an awesome piece. In terms of it being kid friendly...I think it is, but seems a little overbearing at times. I listened to it yesterday so I can't remember at this point exactly which parts. I'm not even sure exactly how to explain it.
  • I get what you mean...it has the potential to be overbearing but I kinda imagined the end of a Star Wars movie when I was writing it (well the end of Ep 4 and 1). That fanfare celebration kind of music... So I guess it's not completely a kids vibe... never done anything with that in mind though so probably not my best work :P
  • Ok, forgive my ignorance and bear with me please. I'm going to try and explain exactly it is that the music communicates to me at the specific times that my mood changes. (Please take it with a pinch of salt since I don't really know anything about music.)

    0:27 - A cello(I think) starts playing which suddenly makes the music seem a lot more serious.
    0:39 - Drums come in, but they are not happy/playful drums. They make me feel like they are demanding my attention instead of teasing me into playing with them.
    0:52 - Violins(?) start playing...they play in what seems to me like a rigid march...flutes with playful octaves is what I keep wanting to hear here instead?
    1:20 - Symbals! Hehe, I like them, but it has to be accompanied by a suiting catastrophic visual event. As is they feel a little more than is required.
    1:32 - The rest is wind down, but at this point the song doesn't feel like a kids song anymore. It's taken on a lot more meaning. It does make me feel nice and relaxed at this point.

    All in all I really love the track, but it feels more like a track that would suit a kids Christmas movie rather than a game. You can hook in the kids with the fun start and then make the parents cry with the sad end(depending on whether the puppy lives or dies :P).

  • edited
    @Tim_Harbour I like the piece too.

    One cheap trick you could try is to set it in the Lydian mode alla Simpsons theme.

    (Basically, raise the sub-dominant by a semitone - so in A major D becomes D#. The harmonies may become a bit funky, and you may need to tweak them a bit. If you do not have a lot of Ds in a section to begin with, you may need to add a few as passing notes to establish the mode, otherwise the first one you hear thereafter will surprise the listener and sound off. It also works great if you add a harp arpeggios / scales, especially in your more dramatic section. Harp texture (or similar) can also make the piece feel faster, which can be cool in the wind down section. Just random thoughts!)

  • @hermantulleken Not a huge fan of the lydian mode in this situation because I would then have to use a IVb5 and some chromatic harmonies to make it work as well as putting my melody into the key of A# major while the rest of the song is in A. If I were to use the lydian mode I would rather use it in the key of A (so starting my melody from the D) rather than shifting the whole melodic/harmonic centre as that would require a reworking of the melody and chords(which is work for another piece, not just an edit to this). I am currently using C# as my main melodic centre to imply a slight phyrygian sound and get that semitone between the 1st and 2nd notes of my melody. I do get where you are coming from with the lydian sound for playful things however I rarely find a point in editing a piece once complete, I would rather do a whole new piece with that in mind, less editing, more composing :D Thanks for the tips though.

    @Rigormortis thanks for the pointers. If I had used other sounds except orchestral sounds some of these points would probably be different. When using orchestral sounds I have very little option to use anything but cello in the bass etc. so I get your pointer of it making it serious but it's either that or tubas which also didn't sound too great... this particular piece I was experimenting with orchestral sounds so sounds like the drums (timpani) are the standard orchestral drum sound. If I were to edit it so I used some electronic sounds mixed in I could probably achieve some of the notes you make but I think your primary concern is my use on instrumentation.

    I do use flutes later but for the weird flourish at the end when the cymbals join in and flutes are not my favourite instrument for accenting a beat which is my main use of the violins in the 2nd section.

    I do get your points to make it less serious but then I would write a new piece from scratch to avoid that as I feel what makes it serious is the use of traditional orchestra sounds.

    Thanks for the feedback though all, it is good to think about. :D
  • @Tim_Harbour Hehe cool :) (I sometimes move pieces in all modes to hear how they sound; but yeah, I know in some cases it leads to difficulties.) Still it's a cool piece :)
  • Totally Herman, I don't think your suggestion won't work but it would require a heavy rework of the piece and as I said, it might be easier to just start from scratch with a lydian sound (I really do like that idea btw...might even use it as a basis for my next piece :D ) Thanks for the feedback...it is much appreciated :D
  • Hi everyone.
    Completely new to Make Games SA.
    I'd like to give this one a go. Sound and music if I can.
  • Welcome @McCoySoundD and glad to hear you're joining in!
  • Hi All! I just signed up! :) I really want to get into game music and sound and what better place to start than right here! these challenges look really cool!
  • Welcome @karl182 - glad you could make it!
  • @gibbo thanks man! I'm really glad I found this site! :)
  • Here's my entry for the challenge!

    I'd started out with a more 'African' approach (marimbas, kalimba etc.) due to the African level footage from LPB but it wasn't very jolly and kid-friendly, so ultimate decided to switch it up and do a cross between Cape Malay carnival music and New Orleans vibes
    Thanked by 2Tim_Harbour Merrik
  • @Gibbo,
    Nice entry, love the tambourine entry, it just makes it.
    I have gone for the marimbas, etc. Going for a kind of African Dawn approach. Will post soon. Like the ambient SFX too, though there was a random loud cricket in there...
  • @gibbo Wow well done man! You really captured the feel of the video well!
    Here's my entry as well! i decided to do sound effect as well, and decided I want to do all the effects from scratch. So I recorded a bunch of silly and interesting sounds(mostly with my mouth... :) ), and started playing around with them. It was really fun doing this and will surely be taking part in future challenges as well! :)

    Thanked by 1Tim_Harbour
  • @Gibbo That's really awesome! I really like the attention to detail highlighted in the variation of the strumming and the solo at the end. I think that if either the guitar or trumpet came in a little earlier at around 00:30 it would add a bit more variation in the beginning (the melody seemed a little cramped at the end). Though I think that's because its such a short vid, if it were longer the build up would feel right to me :)

    @karl182 I'm loving those sound effects, so many pops and tinkles! The only sound effect I wanted to be more pronounced was the x2 at around 00:54, I think it blended into the music a little too well? The jungle theme music was definitely spot on!
  • @creative630 Hey man! Thanks for the feedback! I get what you mean with that x2 sound! :) Looking forward to hearing more entries!! :)
  • @McCoySoundD - thanks, hehe yeah that cricket was pretty loud. Looking forward to your entry!

    @karl182 - great work there, the music definitely fits the theme and the mouth-based SFX's are awesome (particularly the straining sounds of the zebra character) :)

    @creative630 - it was tempting to bring those instruments in earlier but wanted a bit more of a build-up (and a bit of space to try doing some of the bonus challenge dynamics), though agreed it's quite tricky doing a complete piece in a short vid :)
  • @gibbo thanks man haha yeah i felt a little silly while recording it but it ended up working pretty well! Well done again on your entry man!
  • edited
    Very cool stuff guys. Really sounding awesome. I have no real notes to add at all. Very pro! :D
  • Here's my entry.


    As said earlier, I went for the typical "African child" marimbas, xylophone, glock, with violin and trombone to keep things going a bit. After the other entries, mine feels very chilled and slow, but I was going for background looping.

    I recorded SFX in my flat with an SM57 (because that's what I have). All except two tracks of ambience from Freesound.org:
    Calm Morning Outdoor Ambience by blouhond
    20080728.peacock.wav by dobroide

    I used Wwise middleware to create randomization in the "New Material" etc. sound, having recorded a toy xylophone playing notes of G pentatonic, every time the event is triggered the balloon sound with three random notes is played in quick succession. Helps to stop it being boring. Also used Wwise's random functions to randomize pitch and volume of the blue bubble sounds so they're not so repetetive.

    Any questions, crits welcome.
  • OK, now I feel stupid. Am I supposed to attach the video file, not a link to Youtube? And in a particular format, I guess. Didn't want to accept my avi in h264...
  • edited
    @McCoySoundD Well done man! I really liked the little details like the sound when swinging on the monkeys and stuff! if you post the short url for youtube it just post the url, but if you copy the long url from the address bar while watching the vid on youtube and paste it in here, it will embed the video. Well done again! This goes to show that there are so many different ways that could work!
  • @mcCoySoundD - I see what you mean with your approach, more chilled with the marimbas etc. but definitely works for the footage, and also very cool SFX's along with the background sounds!
  • edited
    I still haven't finished my entry (recording is hard! I only have a bass line that definitely needs some mixing :/) but I hope to get it finished sometime soon. I will probably miss out on the voting but I will put it up for crit later this week.

    Congrats to everyone who managed to submit an entry! Its not too late to enter but note that I will be putting up the voting page tomorrow morning. If anyone is running late then submit when you can for feedback and I will add you to the page asap :)
  • edited
    Hey everyone, its time to vote! Anyone on the forums may join in so please make sure you do! While voting is great feedback is constructive, so feel free to drop some constructive critisism for the contestants!

    Here is a link to the voting page!

    Voting closes next monday, the 31st of March!
  • edited
    Thanks for the sticky!

    Just a reminder that voting will close on Monday the 31st of March, so please check out the entries and vote! I'm sure the contestants would love some feedback :)
  • Reminder this is the last day to vote! I will be closing the voting at 8pm tonight.

    Thanks to everyone who has voted!
  • Voting has closed! Thanks to everyone who voted and thanks to all who participated!

    Best Music Category:
    image 1st - @Gibbo
    image 2nd - @karl182
    image 3rd - @Tim_Harbour & @McCoySoundD tied!

    Best Sound Effects Category:
    image 1st - @karl182
    image 2nd - @McCoySoundD

    Best Overall Category:
    image 1st - @karl182
    image 2nd - @McCoySoundD
    image 3rd - @Gibbo

    Congratulations to everyone for completing something awesome!
    Thanked by 2Tim_Harbour hanli
  • Congrats guys, this was a good one!

    @creative630 - still keen to hear what you came up with if you're still working on it :)
  • Great Job everyone!! Thanks for the votes!
    When's the next challenge going to be? :)
    These are great fun!
    Have and awesome day all!
  • Wow, guys and gals, you're all so talented... Only just stumbled upon this thread and loving it.
  • @karl182 We will probably start it at the end of April, with a hand-in at the end of May.

    If anyone has suggestions for the next theme then please mention it here!
  • @creative630

    I have a suggestion for the next theme. As the last theme was "Kid friendly", why not explore the opposite end of the scale?
    Creepy, Horror, Insanity! Oooh yeah, pack away those Tinker Bell samples and aspire towards John Carpenter's brilliance...
    Thanked by 1creative630
  • Thanks @creative630! and thanks for all your work organizing these challenges! mmm the scary creepy theme could be cool! I will think some more as well and post if something comes to mind!
    have and awesome day all!
  • Hello Guys,

    yet again...so sorry for the late hand in but I really wanted to do this one too!

    Great work everybody!
    Thanked by 1creative630
  • Awesome stuff man, I actually got really nostalgic for a bit there... there's obviously an instrument/synth you're using that triggered memories of an old game. Great piece!
    Thanked by 1Mexicanopiumdog
  • Nice @Mexicanopiumdog I really enjoyed the light, fun, happy scene you set there! The sound effects also gelled with the music quite nicely :)
    Thanked by 1Mexicanopiumdog
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