Shouting for video games can be challenging yet invigorating. Depending on the game's genre, shouting might be a routine part of the performance. The skill set overlaps with anime voice acting in many ways as that generally involves a lot of shouting too. If you haven't read our article on anime screaming, we recommend doing so. In this piece, we'll discuss how to effectively deliver shouting in video games without harming your voice. We'll delve into the background and best practices for shouting in video game voiceovers. Understanding emotes also proves crucial in a video game session, so do explore our article on that as well.
For optimal performance and vocal cord health, hydration remains key. Always start by drinking plenty of water. Next, ensure you adequately warm up your voice. For a session involving shouting, consider extending your regular warm-up routine for added preparedness.
Directors, sound engineers, and voice actors usually structure the session to first tackle standard lines and then gradually build up to the more strenuous ones. This approach helps to save your voice from early strain. If the session isn't designed this way, request for the more vocally taxing parts to be scheduled towards the end.
Much like a muscle becoming stronger with regular workouts, your vocal ability also develops over time. However, if you experience any signs of vocal strain or damage, such as a tickling sensation or more severe symptoms, it's crucial to pause and rest. Ignoring such signs could prolong recovery time and possibly keep you out of work.
Experiment with the pitch, tone, and tempo for each character you voice until you find what's comfortable. If a particular voice proves challenging to maintain, consider developing it further or revisiting it later.
Video game shouting often differs from anime. While there are exceptions, the shouts in video games are typically not as drawn out or exaggerated as those found in anime. Nonetheless, it's important to deliver a convincing and powerful performance.
Consider a shooting game scenario where your character gets shot in the leg. A muted whimper or a standard shout won't be convincing. Here, the performance requires an expression of intense pain. If personal experiences do not offer a reference point for such a performance, push your performance to the edge.
Voiceover artists, particularly those with experience in genres like commercials where a conversational tone is a norm, may fear shouting is overacting. But this mindset can be limiting in video game voice acting, where robust performances are often necessary. Underperforming can lead to prolonged sessions and added stress on your voice.
In summary, it's often easier to tone down an over-the-top performance than to ramp up a subdued one. So, when you're tasked with a shout, give it your all.
Shouting for Video Games by Alan Shires