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  1. #431
    tonyhind86's Avatar
    WA Convoy Comms Officer

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    I'm tall and skinny, and will probably look like the undead tomorrow morning. If I get a number tattooed on my arm, I'll audition for a part of a "Little One", should a TV show ever materialise
    WA Finale Convoy Communications Officer

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  2. #432
    Litmaster's Avatar
    Tower Librarian

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    Quote Originally Posted by Kc View Post
    They were much smaller earlier in the story, so that's where the name came from. Small in height and frame. Now they are still skinny, but taller. They can crawl and scramble, but not as often now that they are taller.
    I'm still imagining LOTR Ents, only white with huge claws and fangs...
    We're back Alive again for WA Goldrush!

  3. #433
    tonyhind86's Avatar
    WA Convoy Comms Officer

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    Quote Originally Posted by Litmaster View Post
    I'm still imagining LOTR Ents, only white with huge claws and fangs...
    Almost like a hybrid cross of Ents and Orcs...
    WA Finale Convoy Communications Officer

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  4. #434
    Red Shirt's Avatar
    "Hoarder"

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    Quote Originally Posted by Gooer View Post
    Personally, i would of loved to hear it aired on here, as it is, but then picked up by a producer (or something like that) who liked/loved it and wanted to visualise it, pretty much in the same way, without cutting anything/changing anything.
    That seems to be the best path, some of the best programming has come from that or a similar model, fully planed out from start to finish.
    Babylon 5 did it, J. Michael Straczynski had the plot arc fully planned and set before the show even went in front of a camera for the first time. Even Fringe, another JJ Abrams production, had a more cohesive plan in mind and turned out to be a pretty decent show for it. Unlike, *ahem, you know.
    Likes Gooer liked this post
    "I've got tons of great ideas. Trouble is, most of 'em suck." George Carlin
    "I've got the guns, the radio and the water for the Zombie Apocalypse, but you gotta have a yo-yo." Chris Boden

    Hey, get a load of this. Guess who started writing again and has a spot in the fan fiction subforum?

  5. #435
    7oddisdead's Avatar
    omnipresent

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    Gamertag: t0dd i5 d3ad PSN ID: --- Steam ID: --- Wii Code: ---
    *flips table*
    Last edited by 7oddisdead; Feb 11th, 2014 at 02:16 PM.
    Likes Gooer, Kc liked this post

  6. #436
    UndeadSweeper's Avatar
    "Stalker"

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    Thanks KC.

    Off the Topic, Does anyone notice if they look at the chat window when they visit the page one or all of the chatters are named gatekeeper? Is this normal or is there a ghost in the system?
    Z Sniper: I'm gonna die????!!!! God**** it,....i wish people would tell me these things!
    KC : Hee hee hee.... *giggling in corner.
    Z Sniper: You are evil,.......*crying in corner.


    Z Sniper: I bestow you SUPER MUCHO MACHO MAN!


    *Proud member of the Victor's Mucho Macho Fan Club*
    Member of the CJ Defense Force: Because no one else will.

  7. #437
    Kc's Avatar

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    Gamertag: kc wayland Steam ID: waylandprod
    Quote Originally Posted by UndeadSweeper View Post
    Thanks KC.

    Off the Topic, Does anyone notice if they look at the chat window when they visit the page one or all of the chatters are named gatekeeper? Is this normal or is there a ghost in the system?
    That's a username that the system uses. It's not a ghost

  8. #438
    tonyhind86's Avatar
    WA Convoy Comms Officer

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    Quote Originally Posted by Kc View Post
    That's a username that the system uses. It's not a ghost
    But Gatekeeper is a ghost now though
    WA Finale Convoy Communications Officer

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  9. #439
    Burgerbros's Avatar
    "Scavenger"

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    PSN ID: BlueLightMoths Steam ID: burgerbros

    Tumblr and Instagram????

    Does We're Alive have a tumblr or a Instagram? Just wondering because lots of people look at Tumblr and Instagram. Also it would be fun if you could post pictures of when you record.

  10. #440
    Kc's Avatar

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    Gamertag: kc wayland Steam ID: waylandprod

    Smile

    Quote Originally Posted by Burgerbros View Post
    Does We're Alive have a tumblr or a Instagram? Just wondering because lots of people look at Tumblr and Instagram. Also it would be fun if you could post pictures of when you record.
    We just got on Tumblr. It's taking some time to figure it out and get it all nice and customized, and well, figure out how that social network works. We have lots of pictures to share, so I think that'd be a great place to do it.


    This one came into my inbox. I sent Lit some SFX for the convoy drama he's putting together. Some of the SFX were from when we first started out.

    Quote Originally Posted by Litmaster
    I spent like an hour just listening to the files, which was fascinating in it's own right. I didn't realize just how many FX you've actually made specifically for situations in the show. Listening to you and Shane back in the day running various takes of "boots-fast-on carpet", etc, was a really interesting 'behind the scenes' glimpse.

    I don't know how many people are interested in this kind of technical detail, but I'd be really interested to find out what kind of system you've devised to keep all this shit straight. You start with the script, but then what is the specific process you use to bring it to life? There's gotta be some kind of process where you run through, mentally, which ambient sounds you'll need, which music to fit the mood, which specific FX, etc.... and does that take place all AFTER the character dialogue comes in? Or before? Then you probably have some written guide to annotate WHERE the sounds should go, just to organize them. How has this process evolved since the beginning? And, what, you first look in your sound library for the right effect, but if it's not there you create it? That's like, dozens of new sounds per episode, probably! And then there's the whole process of putting everything together: importing tracks, aligning tracks, etc. Jesus!

    You know, that would be a really interesting thing to do for the studio tour the day after the live event: walk us through a random episode, and tell us some details about the whole procedure for how it went from the writing room to uploaded to the internet. I'm not even sure how you keep consistent deadlines, given all the variables involved, and that different episodes have different amounts of sounds included in them; I imagine something like "The War" was a bitch to edit... which was the most difficult chapter to record so far?

    Very Gratefully yours,
    Lit
    "I don't know how many people are interested in this kind of technical detail, but I'd be really interested to find out what kind of system you've devised to keep all this shit straight. You start with the script, but then what is the specific process you use to bring it to life?"

    The script has a very basic outline of what happens in the scenes. Character location is given, as it's appropriate for the performers, but anything non-essential to that is mostly left out. What sort of surfaces they are walking on, atmosphere, most all that stuff is figured out after everything's recorded. When we're editing it after recorded, the script then only acts as a guide to keep everything on track, but what's more important to listen to is what's been recorded. Many times the foreground characters have lines, and there's characters doing things in the background that would be weird without them. One example is from the most recent episode, Chapter 43:

    SPOILER 


    After the dialogue's in place, it's just a process of layering in the sound fx. I, personally prefer to have the ambiance go in first, the room tones. Some rooms have a bit more hum, or buzz, but it helps to put this layer in the bind the scene together with some over-arcing sfx. From there, footsteps are next. They help position the characters, and also pace the scene. I find that the most important foley is footsteps, and my editors can attest that it's what I'm most picky about. They connect the characters to our audio world. From there, the rest gets layered in piece by piece: doors, guns, backpacks, cloth, zombies... etc... Some of that comes from our library, and some created with foley. It's hard to really pick out "how many" we create for every new episode, especially when we listen back and sometimes record entire footstep tracks in one take. 4 minutes of one track of footsteps could get broken up into pieces as we sometimes cut over-exerted movement or cutting back the footsteps as we sometimes create too many on a first take of foley.

    Where the sounds go, there's no guidebook, or any sort of "Rules". Many times I'll come out with a standard of doing things, but then also break that standard as well. For narration I say to have a few seconds buffer to help separate it from the scene, but then sometimes given the pace of the scene, that timing is cut down when it's not needed. One thing I've learned about this whole process is to trust my gut when it comes to editing. If something sounds off, it's off. It you think it feels rushed between two lines, it's rushed. Most of the time the changes aren't glaring, but just small internal reactions that I have to pay attention to.

    If you were wondering how we organize all these SFX, we use a program called SoundMiner. It allows us to have our SFX libraries available with all the meta-tag information that will sort through everything for us. I just put in the keywords of what I want, and then proceed to sort through the sounds from there. In the past we didn't have this and had to just use the search tool on the computer and hope we have the right tag on the filename. We've gotten a bit better at that stuff now, but still there's the process of finding what you want and that perfect word used to describe a sound. Many times it's not the specific sound you're looking for, but just something that sounds like it. After doing this for a long time, I have come to know what specific sfx I'm looking for, and some of my favorites for certain actions like gun movement, and 50-cal mount movements, etc...


    • Pro Tools does a pretty good job keeping all the tracks organized, but once again I'm very anal about where everything needs to go and in what order. There's:
    • A master track on top for everything.
    • 3 Aux Tracks below that all other tracks feed into. Voices, SFX, and Music. SFX is given a limiter, whereas Music and Voices are not. That way the guns don't go too crazy loud, but then I also have special tracks that bypass the auxes in those cases that I don't want audio cut down for whatever reason. Sometimes you want to have a gun shake you in your seat. (I tend to prefer louder guns for more realism). The aux tracks are also given the reverb automation. That way if I have 10 tracks of voices, only one track is responsible for adjusting the reverb (echo) in the environment. Of course the Music tracks don't have reverb applied. (Although I broke that rule once for a special scene).
    • The voices tracks - Anywhere from 5 to 10 tracks filled with the character's voices and takes, and also muted versions of alternate takes. I used to have several dummy tracks where I put the alternate takes, just to keep it cleaner, but it was harder to then find the other takes if the primary choice didn't work out.
    • The monoFX tracks - These are where the footsteps and all single track SFX are included. I tend to not try and group these tracks into "footsteps here" or other logical organization. It would make sense to do that, but often the # of footsteps in a session varies from scene to scene and then we'd waste timeline real estate between scenes. The more empty tracks left unused, the more time spent scrolling through trying to find something. We produce this stuff so fast that this is just one of the ways we cut on time.
    • The stereoFX tracks - The same thing as the mono tracks, but these are reserved for sounds that are distinctly stereo and want to be kept in stereo. Trucks, engines, and things like that are usually reserved for these areas. There are far fewer stereo FX tracks, since we foley in mono. This lends much to my opinion on sound that forces stereo perspective in audiodramas is distracting. Many times I'll take a stereo sfx, and make it mono.
    • The unclipped tracks - These are those sfx tracks that I don't want clipped down by the limiter. Anything in these spaces bypass that insert.
    • The ambiance tracks (mono and stereo) - These are ambiance tracks that hold the room tones, wind, and atmospherics
    • The music tracks - Seft explanatory
    • And the narrator track.


    In all, it's a lot of tracks, and a lot of organization, but really not too difficult. This system was refined from day one, and a lot of changes have come about since the beginning. Someone might think that I might be worried about this stuff being "trade secrets", but really it's not. I would love to take you all through a typical workflow for one episode, but it would take too long. I'll explain the process when you all come out, but we can't go into too much detail and show you all the steps as it really does take a long time. As for what episode was the hardest so far? Each one has it's own varying degree of difficulty. Emotional scenes are hard because they have to balance performance, music, and minimal sfx to have the heart come across, but don't go too far and become cheesy. Action scenes can be hard because they require a lot of precision sound fx to make sure the scene is clear and not muddled with too many sounds that just end up making it a mess. Normal talking scenes are hard because you have to do your best to accompany minimal action with enough sound effects to not make it dry or barren, while at the name time not over-doing it. Scenes with any music is hard because we tend to have to recycle what we have in our libraries, and hope that we can tailor it enough to make it feel new or fresh.

    But, if I were to choose an episode, Chapter 36 was pretty damn hard. Whenever you edit an entire hour segment in one go, that's just a nightmare. You just have to take it one scene at a time.
    Likes Litmaster liked this post


 
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