The Pillars of the Earth is a visual novel adventure game created by Daedalic Entertainment based on the novel of Ken Follett. During my sound design internship at Daedalic I created soundscapes and soundeffects for many ingame scenes of book 2 and 3 of the game. In 2017 the game got awarded the German Developer Award for “Best Sound”.
For this scene from the game I created all the sound effects. Ivo (Lead sounddesigner at Daedalic) and I spent a lot of time figuring out, how music and sound can intertwine to keep the suspense throughout the whole scene. We composed additional parts and different endings for each scenario that this scene can result in.
When I saw the gameplay video of Youtuber Zalzar I knew that we were successful in our mission!
Definitely check out Zalzars Pillars of the Earth Walkthrough – it’s so much fun to watch him play the game!
For the atmosphere in the crypt you can hear a choir of my own singing. I intended for the choral to be a little arabic sounding since the origin of the Madonna in the crypt is from an arabic friend of the protagonist. Also it should give off a sacred but also haunting vibe since the crypt is a place of many mysteries.
There are two atmospheres for Tours since you visit the city twice – at noon and in the evening. In the noon soundscape you can hear workers jovially talking to each other and working energetically. In the evening the sounds change towards sighs of exhaustion after a hard work day.
William at the fireplace should be the most dramatic scene in the game. William sees the devil but the sound is actually William’s own laugh evolving into the devil sucking his soul out of his body.
The most fun parts to design in the game were when the screen turns black and the story proceeding is completely told by sound. For the cutscene in the bushes I worked a lot with binaural panning.