How did you decide on the soundtrack?
For months we listened to ’60s music as we were doing other work. That gave us a massive list of possible songs. We also checked the Billboard Top 100 for every year from 1955 to 1969. Then we sat down and started figuring out which were the must-haves and figured out what we could afford, what we could license, and who’d be willing to work with us.
Sound design seems like it was a major focus – how did you source the voice actors?
We put together reference photos for who we would cast if we could have anyone in the world, and sent those out to agencies, which came back with a list of possible candidates. The scenes we wrote for auditions, however, weren’t always designed for the game. They were written to push lots of different emotions, so we could see the actor’s range. As for who we cast, first and foremost, they had to be good actors, but they also had to look the part. 2K’s motion-capture studio is hands-down the best in its class, so we wanted to do full facial and body scans. However, we were able to work a little around the actors. Alex Hernandez, for example, who plays Lincoln, has a great voice, is a great actor and sounds the part, and when we saw his face we knew we would use him for Lincoln. But he’s not as tall or broad as Lincoln, so we got another actor, an MMA fighter, to do the physical body work.
How did that process affect the game’s story?
We modified the dialogue on set with the actors – all the exchanges between Donovan and Lincoln were written on the fly, once the two actors had a rapport. It wasn’t until the game shipped that we finished all the writing.