[Sound challenge] Competition #6 - Unseen!

Hey everyone!

Before we let loose another competition I thought we could discuss something new!

A few people have suggested we add sound to an existing game, so I thought if anyone has a prototype that they wouldn't mind being used for the challenge please volunteer! This would be a great way to meet sound oriented people and hopefully get sound for you game!

My thought is to be able to have all the code etc. that plays the sounds already there, then the musicians just need to swap out placeholder sounds to see what their sounds/music sounds like in the game.

If no one volunteers their game/code by the 16th of August then I will jam a game/framework during the Cape Town City Hall Jam.

Please let us know! :D

We have chosen game unseen!

The theme...
For this challenge we are replacing audio to the game Unseen by clockworkacorn http://clockworkacorn.com/games/ . All you need to do is download the game and replace the existing audio files. More hooks can/will be added along the way, so keep checking here!

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 finished your entry, post a link to it here.
3. Finish the project by Monday the 8th of September
4. Did I mention EVERYONE can join in? We like silly gimmicks and I-made-this-with-a-water-bottle-and-my-laptop type entries so there are plenty of excuses to take part!
5. Feel free to collaborate, we love it when people work together ;)
6. Have fun and try to give feedback to other entries!

Download links to for Unseen Links updated: 21/08/14

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!

The download links above have been updated. Use the new XML file with lists of audio files.
For example:
<list name="taser">
<audio file="sounds/taser-1.wav" />
<audio file="sounds/taser-2.ogg" />
<list name="music-tense">
<audio file="sounds/music-1.ogg" />
<audio file="sounds/music-2.ogg" />
Quick Start Guide:

Everything you need to work with is in the "sounds/" folder (Note: this is not the "assets/sounds/" folder).
Open "sounds/lists.xml" in a text editor and add/edit sound files for any triggers you like.
Have fun :)


F12 - enable cheat mode in-game (indicated in the top left).
R - restart the current scene (useful for looking for a specific upgrade).
U - instantly complete the current level (get upgrades quickly).
V - show vision of everything.
B - toggle blueprints.
T - show debug physics models.
Y - spawn an enemy


  • That would be great fun!
    Thanked by 1creative630
  • We'd be happy to volunteer one of our prototypes for the competition. Most of them don't have sounds in them as well but we'll be happy to add them to one for this competition. We use Haxe for all our prototypes and I doubt a lot of people here would be familiar enough with it to make use of the source code, but we can write it in such a way that the sound files in the asset folder can just be replaced easily.

    We're also happy adding sound hooks throughout the competition if someone specifically needs them.

    So yeah, check out our prototypes at http://clockworkacorn.com/games/ and let me know if one there strikes your fancy. The only exception on that list is the full version of Monsters and Medicine, which is currently on sale, but we can make a demo version of that available which uses all the sounds in the full version.
  • Wow this could be really awesome! @riocide I played your Monsters and Medicine game and, before I knew it, way too much time had passed haha. It would be awesome to make stuff and implementing it an actual game!
  • @karl182 Thank you, I'm glad you liked the game :) We're currently in the process of launching the full version. Hopefully that should be happening soon.

  • I am very keen to give Unseen a try! I think it has a cool concept and a lot of motion...
    Have some ideas that could work nicely with the gameplay.
  • @Riocide Rad! Thanks for volunteering :) Just replacing sounds would be great. The only reason I said source code was if people wanted to add more sound triggers, but if you are willing to add them on request then that's perfect!

    I also vote for unseen, although monsters and medicine would have been fun too :P

    @Riocide I think we should give people a little more time to vote on the game, then we could start the competition on say Friday evening? I would just need a link to the game :D
  • I'm super keen to get involved in the sound design side!! :)
    Thanked by 1creative630
  • @creative630 You're welcome, we're glad to help. Friday evening should be fine. Once you guys are sure about which prototype you want can you just give us a preliminary list of some sfx hooks you want added? It's easy for us to add them but adding them one by one as people request won't be the most effective way to do things. A small list of basic hooks we can add before Friday evening would be useful on both sides.

    And yeah, as soon as we have that we'll add the hooks and some random place holder sounds and send you the local builds for the chosen game.
  • @Riocide Cool. I think we can confirm the prototype by tomorrow morning to give you time to code. I assume it will be unseen :)
    Thanked by 1Mexicanopiumdog
  • @creative630 That sounds perfect from our side. Just confirm with me via this thread and recommend some hooks we can add and we're good to go :)
  • This "sounds" like an awesome idea (punpunpun)
    Can I volunteer my game Oliver? Game is here
  • Cool I think we can confirm that Unseen will be used for the challenge.

    @PowerCat Thanks for volunteering! I think that we are going with @Riocide for this competition as they volunteered first and have some interest already. Maybe we could use your game in a future comp? :)

    @Riocide In terms of wanted sound triggers, these are my thoughts for unseen. You don't need to do them all, they are just ideas I thought might be cool. You would probably need to decide according to how it fits with the gameplay you envision.
    • Footsteps, or when the little sound circles spawn behind you.
    • Player collision sounds, when you bump into a wall or another player.
    • Shooting/punching sounds, it might be cool if you could either have multiple sounds that could be chosen from randomly. Or if you could adjust the pitch of one sound.
    • Menu selection sounds
    • Doors opening
    • Damage/death sounds
    • Menu click sounds
    • Foley sounds, so if there were any items like powerups that would emit sounds from their position.
    • When another player first comes into line of sight (or is locked on) (this is probably not super important, just could be nice to have)
    • Song ending trigger.
    • A change in pace trigger, eg. like being targeted by another player or sneaking up on a player or in/out cover.
    • A change in scene, like a level change or level area.
  • Awww :(
    Let me know for the future then ;)
  • Thank you @Riocide for volunteering!

    The triggers that @creative630 mentioned sound great! I had a few more in mind...
    -Stepping on exit zone/portal
    -Ambience sound?
    -Level Complete Sound

    -stealth sprint/flashbang/invisibility
    -> I think 2 special ability sounds are fine to prototype.
    Is it possible to always have those 2 as upgrades or is it randomly generated what u can upgrade...for the sake of testing it would be great if there are 2 abilities that are always upgradeable...

  • edited
    Super glad you guys are keen on using Unseen. I'll be the one adding the sounds hooks from our side, either later today or tomorrow.

    I think most of the suggested SFX by @creative630 and @Mexicanopiumdog will be easy to do. It should also be easy to add more SFX after the competition starts.

    Music is a bit more difficult. An idea is to have a customisable list of tracks and then possibly add more lists that depend on the current situation, like "normal", "guards nearby" and "seen by a guard". How does that sound?

    @Mexicanopiumdog: upgrades are randomly chosen at the moment, but there are debug cheats that allow you to "save scum" for any upgrade. Is this ok, or would something less random be needed?

    EDIT: I think it would be very useful if I documented some of the debug cheats in any case.
  • @francoisvn
    Yeah if you supply us with a list of cheats it should be fine...We dont want to be messing up the game now with special requests.. :P

    Regarding the music: I think for now having it relatively basic ie.
    "normal", "guards nearby" and "seen by a guard"
    is perfect.

    Btw, what idea did you base Unseen on? Its a very cool concept and I would really like to see it developed, especially on the art side!
  • @Mexicanopuimdog The initial discussion we had that eventually became Unseen was basically "Hmm...can we do a roguelike-like stealth game?". I personally think that well-done procedural generation could be a natural fit for expanding on the discovery and and adaptation aspects of stealth games.

    We're still not sure what the end result will be, but we like the place it's heading to. You can check out the MGSA thread on the game at http://www.makegamessa.com/discussion/2227/prototype-unseen-v2-stealth-roguelike if you're interested in the development process so far.
  • Ok, we've got most of the sound hooks added in, with most of them using copies of the same sound. Just replace the files in the sounds folder, and make the magic happen!

    Download: For testing, you can hit F12 while playing to enter debug mode, which allows the following commands (and more):
    U - Finish level, allowing you to select an upgrade
    R (on upgrade screen) - Reroll upgrades so you can get what you want
    R - Restart level
    If you need another command, it might already be there :O, just ask. If not, we might be able to add it for you.

    One thing that needs to be mentioned is that we changed the formula that calculates the volume of sounds a bit and are aware that sounds may still be too quiet in general. If so, let us know and we'll see if we can improve it.

    Implemented sound hooks:
    Ability sounds for blink, invisibility, and all three thrown items
    Player (and guards) taking damage and dying
    Opening and closing of doors
    Guard being alerted (triggers when he hears or sees anything while he's not looking for the player already)
    Finishing a level, losing, and completing individual objectives

    Hooks we'll add soon:
    Clicking a button (main menu and upgrade screen)
    Running into walls or guards
    Ambient sounds

    Let us know if there's anything that doesn't work as is and needs to change, or if there are more hooks you'd like added. We also haven't added functionality for multiple sounds for the same hook, but we have a possible solution that we just need to implement.

    P.S. Enjoy the game too! :)
    Thanked by 1creative630
  • Fantastic, thanks so much guys you are awesome!
  • Uhhh, when I extracted the windows version of unseen AVG popped up saying std.dll is a WIN32/Heri virus. Is this a known false positive?
  • edited
    I don't know for sure, but I suspect that must be a false positive.

    I just downloaded it on my home pc and scanned it with AVG with no warnings. My AVG is version 2014.0.4745 for reference. So, if your version is the same, I have no idea why it's getting reported as a virus.
    Thanked by 1creative630
    Howdy, I'd like to get in on this and contribute - but… I'm on a mac and have zero coding knowledge. Is there an easy work around or can I submit audio files and someone can implement them on my behalf?

    Could you explain the Blink power up - whenever I use it all the nearby guards just home in on me! I'm probably using it wrong?

  • @MCA No coding needed, you just need to replace the sound files already there and the game will do the rest!
    Thanked by 1MCA
    @creative630, okeydoke - thanks! (just reread the instructions in Ramperkash's post above, d'oh!)

    Another ignorant sound guy question: I've downloaded the Linux version (I'm on a Mac) - do I need some software to test it? Game Maker?
  • edited
  • Hey guys, running into bit of a wall here...nothing is happening when I replace the sounds...now there is no audio for the trigger!
    Do the samples need to be a specific sample/bit rate/length?
  • @MCA: We will try get a Mac build up ASAP, but the only Mac we have is with @Riocide and he's away for the weekend, so it might have to to wait till Monday, sorry about that! You shouldn't need any special software to run the Mac build :)

    @Mexicanopiumdog: AFAIK the sounds just need to be WAV files with the correct filename (make sure the extension is .wav). The easiest sound to test is probably the footsteps (sounds/step.wav). Also note that you may need to restart the game if you change sounds, because they get cached. If you're still having an issue, maybe try run the game from a terminal/command line and see if you get an error message?
    Thanked by 1MCA
    @francoisvn OK, cool!

    @Mexicanopiumdog You can probably use MP3 or OGG instead of WAV (I see there are OGG files in the assets>sounds folder). Might be that the sound files are too large? Maybe try reduce their size. Found this handy article, it's a little dated but still worth a read: http://gamedev.stackexchange.com/questions/20672/what-quality-should-my-sounds-be
  • You can try use OGG files (MP3 isn't supported on native targets due to licensing), but the filename (including the extension) must be the same. On Linux the game gets confused if a file has a .wav extension, and is actually an OGG format, but YMMV.

    The plan for music is to have a separate xml file that you can use to edit the various lists. If that works well, we can look at doing a similar thing for sfx, which will mean you can use OGG or WAV.
  • edited
    As @ francoisvn said, I'm away for the weekend, sitting on a farm at the moment, so internet access a bit shoddy.

    @MCA I've built a mac version of the current version and hosted it here: https://app.box.com/s/ec85moajvmnysjgzopdz

    I hope that helps, sorry for the time delay, I'll definitely be able to provide more regular updates come Monday.

    The app is signed using a local signature so you might have to manually allow it to install to get it running. Sorry for the inconvenience.
    Cool, thanks @Riocide - didn't mean to put you under any kind of pressure to sort it out :-)
  • I have tried everything to get at least one sound working but for some weird shitty reason Im not managing :'(
    I drop in the new .wav file and when I open the game that sound doesnt work anymore...I have tried bouncing my sounds as Mp3 and drastically reducing the size but to no avail...HELP?!
    Also having no luck getting sounds to work - tried WAV, OGG and MP3.

    Do you need to reboot the game somehow to make the new sounds take effect?

    Also noticed that even though I've replaced the Taser sound, the original Taser SFX triggers when guards attack, and kill me.
  • edited
    Unfortunately we won't be able to support MP3 on native (Windows, Mac and Linux) due to licensing fees. It is very unlikely that OGG files will work now, but in the future they should (the current system assumes that the file extensions are .wav and therefore WAV files).

    Once you've replaced a sound file, such as "sounds/step.wav", you should just need to restart the game and it should work.

    @Mexicanopiumdog, @MCA: Could you try run Unseen from a terminal (command prompt if Windows) and see what the output is when you change a sound and it doesn't work.

    If you still don't come right, can you please send me a copy of the sound file you're trying to use, so I can do some more debug work?

    Sorry it isn't working for you yet, I'm sure we'll be able to figure it out :)

    EDIT: I did some more fiddling and finally managed to reproduce the issue. I'll see what we can figure out ASAP.
  • Ok I tried it through command prompt, here is the output:

    C:\Users\User\Downloads\Unseen-windows\Unseen>Invalid Wave Format!
    Error opening sound data
    Sound.hx:96: Error: Could not load "sounds/taser.wav"
  • Update: it seems like the build we put out won't work as-is. We didn't realise that the sound assets are "embedded" with a list of them and some hashes, so changing the files worked in our tests, but it seems like that was basically just luck. When I tried to use a much larger WAV file, I could reproduce the issue.

    I have found a workaround for now and pushed an update to our repo. The sounds will still need to be WAV format for now, but at least you should be able to change them. We will try and get new updated builds out ASAP. Sorry for the false start :)
  • edited
    Windows and Linux versions updated. (Same links)
  • I've also updated the mac build in my link.
    Can't get my sounds to work :-/
  • Yes...still not working for me eiher...
  • Hey guys. I've tried some things and it appears your sounds have to be the exact format of the original ones. They are 16bit 44khz mono. The mono is very important too, because the won't play at all if they are stereo. Hope it works for you! :)
  • Cool I've checked this with taser.wav and step.wav, and as soon as I convert them to 16bit 44khz mono they work in game!:)
  • @karl182 Didn't work for me - my files were stereo, so made them mono but still not getting playback.
  • @MCA Mmm that's strange. I you want you can send me one of your files to test on my side, and I'll be happy to see if I can figure someting out.
  • You guys should just make a Dropbox and work director through that together.
  • @karl182 Here's a clip:

    I'm using the Mac build, if that makes a difference. Wondering if I should add some metadata to the audio file?
    Any help is much appreciated :-)
  • @MCA mmm your file doesn't work for me either. I see it contains meta data that pro tools created, and if i strip that out of the file it makes the game freeze if it tries to play the file. I managed to get it working my importing it into cubase and just exporting it again. So it looks like it has something to do with the BEXT meta data that is included in your export. I don't really know pro tools, but maybe see if you can disable it when exporting. I also managed to get it working by converting your file to mp3 and converting it back to wave. This isn't ideal though but could be used as a last resort.
    Here is a link to the your file that i exported out of cubase. It works on my side so you could maybe just check if it works for you.
    Hope it helps!
  • @karl182 I have also tried exporting Mono 16bit 44,1khz files but to no avail! Im also using Cubase and have unchecked pretty much all the export options except Mono Mix Down...
  • @karl182 No luck. Used the file you'd provided. Will check the export settings of Pro Tools, see if there's something there…
  • @karl182: thanks for all the support, we really appreciate it :)

    I don't think it needs to be mono, I have stereo sound that worked for me, but mono is probably better. The mime data of a WAV file that works for me is: RIFF (little-endian) data, WAVE audio, Microsoft PCM, 16 bit, mono 44100 Hz. I exported this from Audacity (http://audacity.sourceforge.net/) and made sure to select "WAV (Microsoft) signed 16 bit PCM" (44.1 kHz seems to be implicit).

    Here's another random sfx that worked as a replacement for me: https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/55182426/build_room.wav

    @Mexicanopiumdog, @MCA: if still no luck, can you maybe try run it in a terminal and make a note of any output? It might help us work out what's happening.

    The plan forward is to add an XML file with a few lists of audio files. The main reason is so that you can have a list of music tracks, but if we extend this for sfx then it should make things a bit more flexible, and probably allow the use of OGG files. We should have this update out tomorrow or Wednesday (we would have liked today, but today is a really busy day for us). An example of the XML might be:

    <list name="taser">
        <audio file="sounds/taser-1.wav" />
        <audio file="sounds/taser-2.ogg" />
      <list name="music-tense">
        <audio file="sounds/music-1.ogg" />
        <audio file="sounds/music-2.ogg" />

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