Scientists have used modern technology to recreate a 3,000 year-old-mummies voice box to produce a video game sound effect.
Media has always incorporated various objects to create unique sounds for our favourite scenes and sound effects. The art of creating these sounds is called Foley in which the foley artists create sounds to match the content taking place. Star Wars used a disco ball to create the sound of BB rolling over the sandy grounds of a planet, and a pug was used to create the alien sounds in Halo: Infinite.
Now, in today’s surreal world, we’re seeing foley artists taking extreme measures to create simple sounds for video games. Scientists have successfully created a 3D printed model of an airway that belongs to a 3,000 year-old-mummy named Nesyamun. The 3D-printing was created by placing Nesyamun in a computerized tomography scanner to capture his vocal tract.
Once created, these scientists were able to connect the 3D model to an electronic larynx which was then able to produce the sounds of what this Egyptian priest sounded like. You can hear the results in the embedded video below.
The sounds are perfect for applying to a video game, perhaps a Nintendo-specific title for an “Invalid command” sound effect. Imagine playing whatever game this sound could be implemented into and thinking, “Yes, that is the sound of a 3,000 year-old-mummy telling me I cannot perform that action here.”
Of course, dragging up and using a deceased 3,000-year-old priests voice box as a sound effect is bound to cause some controversy. Perhaps even causing fear of ancient Egyptian curses from fiddling around with the corpse. There’s also the potential fear that using the sound of Nesyamun in a video game with the right input sequence could spark up some age-old incantation and put the player in danger.
It’s certainly an interesting way to generate a sound effect, and it’s still unknown what video game will be utilizing the sound effect, however, so long as the priest is credited I have no issues personally.
(Featured image source: Jon Farman)