Thoughts on letter sounds

baconace

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What are yall's opinions on letter sound effects(IE: typewriter)? I was originally just using Cursor2 as a sound effect for dialogue but I got some feedback that it was annoying so I'm looking for alternatives. Should I just remove the letter sounds or does that make the dialogue too bland?

A potential idea is to make letter sounds more dynamic(different pitch for each character), but I'm not sure if that fixes the inherent problem that can come from listening to repetitive letter sounds for multiple consecutive boxes of dialogue.
 

TheAM-Dol

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In my opinion, there are very few cases where I find the letter sounds not irritating.
I think the constant repetition of the same sound is one of the more annoying parts, so 1) reducing it's overall presence in the mix will be less irritating, and second of all finding a way to make the sound vary with each tick so it's not just replaying the exact same tick over and over and over again.

imo, clearly biased here because this what I am doing in my own game, just using an initial sound that represents the character speaking is less intrusive and annoying and also serves a purpose, since each character has their own sound it helps indicate which character is speaking.
It's kind of like how in some JRPG's you might have the voice actors adlib some "Yeah." "Huh?" "*sigh*" for non important text moments when they speak, it's a similar idea for me game.
In my game, for example, since my character's name is a play on the word "fiddle", her "voice" sound is just a very short legato violin phrase.
Other characters are represented by other instruments, such as a guitar, cello, accordion, etc.
 

baconace

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In my opinion, there are very few cases where I find the letter sounds not irritating.
I think the constant repetition of the same sound is one of the more annoying parts, so 1) reducing it's overall presence in the mix will be less irritating, and second of all finding a way to make the sound vary with each tick so it's not just replaying the exact same tick over and over and over again.

imo, clearly biased here because this what I am doing in my own game, just using an initial sound that represents the character speaking is less intrusive and annoying and also serves a purpose, since each character has their own sound it helps indicate which character is speaking.
It's kind of like how in some JRPG's you might have the voice actors adlib some "Yeah." "Huh?" "*sigh*" for non important text moments when they speak, it's a similar idea for me game.
In my game, for example, since my character's name is a play on the word "fiddle", her "voice" sound is just a very short legato violin phrase.
Other characters are represented by other instruments, such as a guitar, cello, accordion, etc.
Oh, that makes sense. So a sound just plays at the start of each new dialogue box, rather than for each letter/sentence?
 

TheAM-Dol

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So a sound just plays at the start of each new dialogue box
Yes, well, that's how I did it with my previous game. For this game, I felt like playing the sound effects too often would get annoying, so now I only play the sound effect whenever the character speaking changes.
To bring a little more life to the dialogue boxes so it's not just uncomfortably quiet all the time, I have a "text progress" sound. Whenever you progress the text to the next dialogue box there's a little "beep"...come to think of it, kind of like how the old Pokemon games use to do it.
(should start at 0:27 second, but if not, that's when the dialogue boxes begin popping up.)
 

Kes

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I am one of those who find typewriter sounds intensely irritating.
I think that TheAM-Dol's game can just about get away with the single sound because it fits in with the type of music that's being used. The highly artificial 'ping' sound is not so different from the music. However, in a non-retro game I assume it would be a different style of music, and I cannot think of a sound which would not regularly clash with whatever music track was playing.
 

ATT_Turan

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In my opinion, there are very few cases where I find the letter sounds not irritating.
I'll one-up you and say no cases :stickytongue:

Admittedly, I can only think of the Shining Force games as examples that I've played, but the sounds contributed to the childish feel of those games and definitely annoyed me as I played. If I had the option to turn them off, I would.
It's kind of like how in some JRPG's you might have the voice actors adlib some "Yeah." "Huh?" "*sigh*" for non important text moments when they speak
I also quite dislike that practice. I know it's in the newer Fire Emblems, probably in some other stuff I haven't finished, but for me it actually detracts from the immersion to hear these random interjections that are generally not represented in the actual text.

In my opinion, if it's not actual voice acting of the text being displayed, keep all sounds to a minimum.

(I quoted TheAM-Dol but am not referring to the stuff at the end of that post, which is clearly designed in an artistic way)
 

TheoAllen

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Videogames are an audiovisual experience to me. I'm accustomed to hearing something while reading a text. Otherwise, I would get sleepy (pretty much the reason why I skip most text journals or books in games). A typing sound that simulates a person talking keeps me alerted. Of course, as long as it doesn't bleed my ears.
 

Ahuramazda

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I use them in my game, but I keep the volume of the sound effects low enough that it cannot be abrasive even if you set sounds in the game at max. I also made it have the random pitch variance so that it is not the same sound per interval and it only makes 1 sound effect per 3 letters.

Code:
var audio = {}
audio.name = 'Cursor1'
audio.pitch = 100 + Math.randomInt(25) - Math.randomInt(25)
audio.volume = 20
AudioManager.playSe(audio)

I would argue that 20% of the total master volume isn't too bad, but some people will always complain about something. :)

(and there might be a better method of getting a random +/- on the pitch variance, but I don't know how other than how I did it :p )
 

Broliant112

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What are yall's opinions on letter sound effects(IE: typewriter)? I was originally just using Cursor2 as a sound effect for dialogue but I got some feedback that it was annoying so I'm looking for alternatives. Should I just remove the letter sounds or does that make the dialogue too bland?

A potential idea is to make letter sounds more dynamic(different pitch for each character), but I'm not sure if that fixes the inherent problem that can come from listening to repetitive letter sounds for multiple consecutive boxes of dialogue.
I think Undertale does a good job at it, and some of the text sounds have become iconic. I would go about it by playing a certain sound and randomizing the pitch each time it plays, probably possible in events but cleaner in script.
 

TeiRaven

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I don't care for typewriter sounds with dialogue--partially because I strongly dislike when the text isn't all displayed at once. I generally read faster than the text scrolls in, but if I click to display the rest of the textbox, odds are very good that I will at some point skip a text box entirely. And that's just frustrating. There are exceptions to every rule, of course, but on the whole it's not my thing.

I do like a little click or blip or other soft sound cue each time a new text box is displayed, but not anything longer than a second or two.
 

Sword_of_Dusk

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I don't mind the little text sounds when a person is speaking, but that may come from a lot of time spent playing Ace Attorney.
 

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