Plasma Pistol


Hello all
I am running FMOD Studio 1.05 on a Mac.

Those who have ever played a game in the Halo franchise should be familiar with the mechanics of the plasma pistol. If the player simply presses and releases the trigger, an uncharged shot is fired. If the player presses and holds the trigger, the pistol charges until the player releases the trigger, firing a charged shot.
This design calls for several stages of audio.

If press-and-release:
-trigger click
-uncharged shot

If press-and-hold:
-trigger click
-initial charge
-charge loop (plays after the weapon is fully charged, until the weapon is fired)
-charged shot

If weapon is depleted:
-trigger click with empty clip warning

I have some questions about this, most all of them having to do with the fact that I am new to the software and have minimal knowledge of it. I have imported the sounds and made a multi-track event, but I do not know how to make the corresponding triggers that result in the various outcomes. So… now what?


I’m not familiar with the intricacies of how Halo’s sound designers approached this problem, but one possible solution would be to use the logic track: a transition region that covers the initial charge and charge loop, and a loop region around the charge loop, would allow you to control the entire event with a single ‘trigger depressed’ parameter.


I’ve realized that the most efficient way to do this would be to have just 2 main sound files. The first file would consist of everything from the trigger being pulled to the charge, and the second file would be the actual shot being fired. I just don’t know how to make conditions like “trigger depressed”, or how any of that really works.


First, put your two sound files on the timeline as timelocked single sound modules (i.e.: just drag each of them on to the timeline). Separate them out a bit; You don’t need them to overlap.


Second, place a loop region around the section of the waveform that’s the charge loop. (You see that black bar above the audio track? right-click on that and select ‘Add Loop Region,’ then drag and resize it until it’s in the right place.)


Done. I had reverb/delay effects integrated into each soundfile, but I can figure that stuff out later


Next, add a destination marker just before the start of your ‘shot being fired’ sound. (Right-click on the logic track - that’s the black bar, again - and select the ‘Add Marker’ menu item.)


The next step is to add a transition region linked to the destination marker you just created. (Right-click on the logic track, select ‘Add Transition Region To,’ then select the name of the marker you created before.) You’ll need to resize and drag this region until it encompasses the charging and charge loop sections of your first sound file, but that shouldn’t be too hard.


Now you’ll need a parameter that will be used to determine when the transition region will work, so create that now. (RIght-click on the ‘+’ tab that’s just above the ruler, and select the ‘Add Parameter…’ menu item. The default settings are probably fine for your purposes, so when the parameter window appears, just click ‘OK.’


Finally, you need to add a logic condition to the transition region so that it ‘turns on and off’ based on the value of the parameter you just created. (Click on the transition region to select it; Then, in the deck, right-click on the ‘+’ icon to open the context-sensitive menu and select the ‘Add Parameter Condition’ menu item. In the widget that appears, click and drag one edge of the green box until it covers about half the available area; This represents the range of parameter values in which the transition region will function.)


With that, you’re done. Note that this just one of many possible methods, and may not work perfectly for what you have in mind; I recommend you read our documentation and learn more about the different things FMOD Studio can do, so that you have a better idea what method will be best for the specific purposes you have in mind.