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Voiceover in the time of Covid

Voiceover in the time of Covid

New challenges arise, caused entirely by political and medical issues far beyond our control. What are we doing to keep Smugglers of Cygnus and the Cygnus Pizza Race on track?

The intro here may look like the ten billion emails you may have gotten from literally every single company you have ever done any sort of business with - but I think you'll find this is slightly different. Rather than go on about health and safety and how concerned we are, how about some actual things we did to maintain progress?

First up, our team of people is scattered around the globe. There's no massive Longplay Games Headquarters building in Union Square, Times Square, or Grosvenor Square for that matter. We don't even have a proper office at this point, though I do rent one on demand (not that I've had demand for it in ages!). This means that working remotely in the strictest sense of the word is obviously the order of the day.

There's also the fact that outside of myself, the closest thing to a full-time employee is an Australian cattle dog.

Have you committed that patch yet?
Have you committed that patch yet?

Because this is a very small shop that relies on people around the world to provide assistance on a contract basis, we don't have the usual issues from things like Covid. Or a coffee fund, more's the pity. What we do have, however, are people hampered by Covid issues in their own communities, and not just in the big tragedy sense of losing loved ones. (That should go without saying.) In the small sense of "Hey, sorry, we can't do voice recordings right now because the studio we would go to is. . . well, they're closed. Indefinitely."

Totally reliable people are unavailable because of massive global things entirely beyond their control. It has indeed been challenging at times.

I'm extremely lucky that some of our top-tier talent have in-home studios, but most people simply don't. Or they can't get any peace and quiet to use a studio when kids, pets, family, and others are all cooped up for months in the same house with them.

So we had to adapt.

Normally, when I need some quick voice work done by someone with their own studio, I would reach out to a certified badass like Michael Schwalbe or Aimee Smith. They're really great, and probably insanely busy with all the excess Covid work right now.

Unfortunately, Cygnus Pizza Race doesn't have the budget for a Dollar Menu right now, let alone top-tier talent.

Enter Miguel "I used to be a sound guy, and totally still am a pack rat" B. I went and dug through my storage unit, retrieved my Audio Technica AT-2020, found a quiet space, and got some tracks laid down. Between myself, Jess Alter and a lot of takes, we were able to get the voicing in place. It's not great, no. I gotta say though, for a sub-$5 game, it's pretty decent.

If folks want, we'll be happy to release a $20 DLC with professional voice acting.

So everyone out there: stay safe, stay creative, and don't let this get you down! There's always a way!

See you next time!