In February of this year, we were asked to model scenarios for working from home. For much of Blizzard, the transition was relatively painless, logistically – move your computer and some peripherals home or simply VPN into your work PC from an existing home computer.
However, for those of us in voiceover, we were faced with a looming challenge. How would we continue recording actors if the venues where we recorded them were closed by a government order for the safety of the general public? We were planning to temporarily suspend all VO recording just days before the Stay at Home Order was issued – but the team had already collectively decided that shipping our next game without VO was not an option. That was our mindset as we suddenly found ourselves without a way to record actors for our games – or at least, not in the manner we had been accustomed to for years and years.
What ensued was a massive effort to develop a method to keep recording with actors – from their homes – and maintain a workflow that was familiar to the participants in those sessions. How would we connect everyone? Would we be able to maintain the Blizzard quality that our colleagues and community have come to expect? Would we be able to hit our deadlines?
We’ll talk about what we did, how we did it, and, perhaps most importantly, why we did it. Through a combination of ingenuity and sheer will, we kept recording, we hit deadlines and we delivered on quality – all while living through a global pandemic.