The Sound Design of The Secret of Monkey Island: Special Edition
It was The Secret of Monkey Island that first introduced me to video games almost 20 years ago, so to have the chance to work on the sound design on it for me was a dream come true.
Upon returning to the original I was surprised at how little audio was present aside from the music, and just how much silence there was. Adding ambiance to each screen was an obvious first step in order to give the game’s audio an up to date immersive feel. I then set about replacing the 60 odd sound effects that were used in the original game, from the sword fighting to the cannon sounds. The originals had been reduced to a very low quality in order to fit on the floppies.
As a fan of the original I really wanted to be true to the spirit of it and I was delighted when I came across the original source material for the seagull cries and the piranha poodle barks among others in our sound library. This meant that I was able to make better quality versions of the same old sounds and throwing in a little more variation to it to make it sound less repetitive.
As I added those new sounds, I began to realize that more and more never implemented sounds needed to be added! Fortunately it was at that time that we realized that it was fairly easy to add new sounds to animations which opened up the door for a load more audio.
So myself and Adam Bormann reviewed all the game’s animations and figured out how many we could add sound to before the end of the project. It was a particular pleasure to be able to add new sounds to the fight between Guybrush and Fester Shinetop that happens behind the wall in the Governor’s mansion which originally only had text and a couple of explosions as a guide to what was going on.
In the end we really felt the that new audio, including the music and voice acting really helped draw you into the world of Monkey Island and complete the experience where often there was just silence before.