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Course: Introduction to Audio for Games

"Introduction to Audio for Games" is a practical course for undergraduate game engineering students. During the course, we explore the topics of sound effects, game music, and audio systems in game engines.

Motivation: When we realized that most of our students' projects were missing audio features, we figured we had to do something about it. We decided to create a new course that would teach students about the importance of audio to the gaming experience. Together with Dana and Nicole, we developed the new audio course. Later, Sven joined us.

Concept: The concept of the course is simple: we want to explore many important audio perspectives: Foley art, sound effects, composition, and technical implementations. Although some of these topics are only indirectly relevant to engineers, we feel it is very important to gain experience with them. To better understand the composers and sound designers they will later work with, it is best to slip into their roles once. Being a composer and sound designer for a few weeks will help them become better audio engineers.

Structure: The course consists of three big blocks with individual assignments and a project phase at the end of the semester. The three blocks are Foley art, composing, and game engines. After the students have experienced the roles of Foley artists and composers in the first two blocks, we introduce all the important audio features that common game engines have. In the subsequent project phase, students will develop a game with a focus on audio features. This can be a technical challenge or a specific gameplay feature that has to do with audio. In this project phase, students can decide whether they want to develop their own audio system or gain experience with typical audio middleware. For the project, they can again contribute their experience as Foley artists and composers.

Further Reading: If you want to step into the role of composer yourself, check out this great tutorial series at learningmusic.ableton.com.