Not quite a month ago, HB Studios announced
their new title The Golf Club
. With its unique course generator
and customization options, it promises to bring the player breathtaking places to golf.
In addition to the lush, restful surroundings, the developers are spending a lot of time creating an equally relaxing atmosphere of sound. According to John McCarthy, Senior Audio Designer:
The ambiences are lush, the music is chill and the commentary keeps things casual. I hope the cumulative effect of this is a soundscape that helps to ease people into an escape from their noisy lives for a while.
McCarthy is a firm believer in creating a catalog of sound all its own for The Golf Club
, spending hours at the local courses recording the sounds of golf swings, putts, chips, and whatever "club-hitting-ball" sounds he could get on tape. He's also visited various parts of Nova Scotia and recorded the ambient sounds of different areas of the country in order to give each course in TGC its own personal flavor. From wildlife to wind, you'll hear
the perspective change as the camera moves. The sense of peace in one's surroundings is enhanced by a laid back musical score that's "very chill and relaxing."
The final component in creating the desired effect in sound is the commentary:
In keeping with my theme for the soundscape of The Golf Club, I wanted the commentary to have a casual vibe. There are still elements of TV commentary like our semi-official sounding intros/outros and inter-hole score updates to keep you in the loop as your round progresses. There are also little comments that get triggered pre-shot with info like distance to the hole, info about your lie, etc – sort of like a caddy. You may get a little light-hearted ribbing when you mess up but it gets balanced by much praise when things go well. My hope is that when it all comes together, you will have a nice balance of relevant information and entertainment.
McCarthy himself will voice TGC's commentary, giving him a rare amount of flexibility as well as very short turn-around times since he isn't required to wait for talent availability. Commentary will be updated frequently after the game's release in response to player feedback so that it's "constantly evolving."
If you'd like to read up on some of the finer details of the soundscape, as well as hear an audio clip of some of the game's music, check it out here
Finally, we have two brief tutorials. The first teaches the player how to move greens and tees in the course generator:
The second Course Creator tutorial exhibits the creation of a course from scratch, starting with the first hole.
If you're a golf enthusiast, you might very well want to keep TGC on your radar. The Golf Club
is due out on next-gen consoles sometime this spring.