MK11 Sound Design Featured on HBO’s VICE News Tonight

The folks from VICE’s News Tonight stopped by NetherRealm to participate in some sound design fun with fruits and vegetables. Check out the video to see how we make some of our gore sounds for Mortal Kombat 11.


Comments 14

  • MarcusSeptember 1, 2019 at 11:28 am

    Wow. Great stuff. The magic of making sound!! Also I’ve been wondering. How did you guys created this sound for Sub-Zero? This really High-pitched whiz?? What kind of process you went trough?

    Timecoded YouTube link:

    • StephenOctober 4, 2019 at 9:38 pm

      Thanks! I made a ton of source material for Sub Zero’s sound effects because he was one of the earliest characters in development and I had the luxury of time. Those whooshes were made from processing recordings of breaking a frosted glass lamp shade in my office. I granulated, stuttered, and stretched them and then many performances were layered together, dopplered, then fed into the Cloud Delay and Metaverb modules of Molekular (in Reaktor) and then a ring modulator.

  • Karel PsotaSeptember 22, 2019 at 6:58 am

    So cool! Can’t believe how well the raw skull shattering sound worked. Really cool use of Crystallizer too 🙂

  • LoganFebruary 23, 2020 at 12:42 am

    This is awesome. How did you make those nut cracks sounds so brutal? What plugin did you use for that?

  • Parth DesaiAugust 29, 2020 at 4:14 am

    This is so cool! How did you make D’vorah’s voice sound the way it does? I can hear some cricket-y, insect-y sounds going on in the background while she speaks. Thank you! 🙂

    • StephenSeptember 8, 2020 at 3:33 pm

      Hey Parth, I wasn’t the one who worked on the Dvorah voice processing, but I know some of the basics. The chain was created by Brian Chard, then updated a bit by Matt Swanson for MK11. It all starts with a great voice performance, which Kelly Hu certainly gave us. From there, it’s pitched up a bit and ran through a granulator plugin to give it a little more stuttery feel, then auto tuned chromatically to make it sound a little more rigid and less naturally human, and finally there’s a pitch plugin with fast LFO’s on formant shit and pitch shift to increase the feeling that something is always a little ‘off’. There’s also a parallel chain of convolved cricket sounds that goes through a very fast tremolo, which is blended in and out with the dry speech.

  • James TurnerNovember 26, 2020 at 11:31 am

    Your soundwork is absolutely fantastic. The way you designed punches,swords sounds, magic is soo unique. I’ve never heard anything unique like this in other games. (Especially swords sounds). Amazing!
    Would you recommend any plugins for designing sword/knife sounds effects? Like scrapes, whooshes? Maybe interesting techniques if possible? Thank you!

    • StephenDecember 16, 2020 at 11:01 am

      Thanks James! For the swords in these games I like to make them sound very sharp and bright. Typically I start by recording various metal shings with different objects like random metal cutlery. Then I will frequency shift or granulate the metal with plugins like mFreqShift, GRM Shift, Uhbik-G. With Uhbik-G I’ll constantly move knobs around creating different gestures and shapes, and then use those as material for whooshes. When I’m recording shings, I also like to record a secondary mic that runs through outboard distortion unit that gets printed onto the recording. Sometimes it can really bring out cool harmonics.

      • James TurnerDecember 19, 2020 at 6:42 pm

        Thank you very much for your for explanations, Stephen. It’s really helpful.

        One last question. I also noticed that you have a YouTube channel where you upload videos sometimes. Are you interested in making any like: tutorials, process videos, and etc. for your channel or you don’t really have time for that? Thank you for the answer.

  • GeorgeMarch 27, 2021 at 4:18 pm

    Hi James! You did an amazing job here, great work. Your Reaper looks awesome, what theme are you using here? Thank you!

  • David SOctober 4, 2022 at 8:34 am

    Hello, Stephen. Your sound design is amazing and unique. I’ve never heard such sound design in any other games. I listened closely to the sounds and I’m curious how you did all these whooshes. Did you have to go through some synth process, creating those whooshes manually or you used certain plugins on normal whooshes sounds? Could you please share some of your techniques or giving some tips on making these? I’d be grateful.

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