The secret to the gruesome sound effects in Mortal Kombat is exploding vegetables
If you haven’t lived under a rock for your whole life, you probably know what a foley artist is. If you don’t, they’re the bloody legends who provide the SFX for all your favourite movies and games. Naturally, most of the sounds you hear in those media aren’t actually the real sounds you think you’re hearing. And that makes sense, when you’ve got a game as gratuitously violent as Mortal Kombat. Now, you can get a behind the scenes look at just how they make the SFX that give Mortal Kombat’s fatalities their gory beauty.
Rightio, as you’ll see in this video, the most powerful tools in a foley artist’s arsenal are a few everyday kitchen utensils and handyman implements. When they take those and they apply them to a varied range of produce and some fully sick processing programs, they can create a pretty special range of gruesome audio files.
Mortal Kombat is one of those games that has always relied pretty bloody heavily on the creativity of its foley artists, so it’s probably understandable that those guys put a lot of work into crafting the sounds of heads being ripped from necks, ribs being stomped, blades carving through flesh, and blood and ichor splashing onto the concrete.
Stephen Schappler, the Senior Sound Designer at Netherrealm Studios, the home of the Mortal Kombat franchise, says, “On average, it takes a day to two days to do the sound for one fatality. There’s a lot of work that goes into making the sounds for one character, let alone the whole cast of the whole game.”
Watching him work, it’s kinda crazy to think that the cracking of walnuts, the chewing of bananas and the crunching of peppers can provide so many gruesome sounds, but once they’ve been processed, it’s obvious that making the sounds is a whole lot of fun.
“It’s fun work. We’re busy, but as you can see, this is all real fun stuff.”
Final thought: We’ve gotta agree. For so many people, working in the video games industry is the ultimate dream. Experimenting with the various sounds you can get from destroying groceries is a pretty cool way to make a living. Of course, enjoying the (broken) fruits of your labour in the final product must be pretty bloody awesome too.
Just in case you missed it, here’s one of Ozzy’s latest commentary videos…Ozzy Man Reviews: Live TV Fails
Video Link: Vice News