So I'm in the process of creating all of the sounds for a game that will run on pretty much all mobile platforms. The game takes place mostly outdoors. My question is when you guys are exporting all of the sounds, do you put a small amount of the SAME reverb on all sounds, or do you leave them dry. I'm thinking of doing this to give all of the audio a cohesive sound, but I worry it will just muddy up the game, especially when I start downsampling all of these assets to 22khz.

For this game, the sound engine has very limited capabilities so it won't be able to add real-time reverb.

I really intended this question to be about the use of one reverb over all sounds, but as I've been looking around, there doesn't seem to be any discussion on SSD about reverb in mobile game audio. If you would like to expand the question to that, that would be great.

  • How about trying it out with a few tracks/sounds? Commented Aug 21, 2013 at 17:16
  • @Internet Human, Ha, yes that is always the best solution. In fact, that is what I did before I posted this. But, I was asking because I am in the early stages of the audio development and right now it sounds good with the reverb. However, I wanted to see if I could save myself a headache much later on if the mix gets too muddy with all of that reverb. I was also just curious to see what other's approaches are.
    – jeremyk23
    Commented Aug 21, 2013 at 22:58

3 Answers 3


Hey Jeremyk23,

I usually think about reverb (and other effects) on a case by case basis, as it depends on what the game is. On the last game, I applied reverb to some VO but not to sound effects. It not only helped them stand apart, but kept the mix cleaner. Also, reverb can also imply space and is something that's key when working on a game that conveys spatial differences.

If you're thinking merely about an effect (which it seems like by the way the question is framed), I would be careful about the amount of reverb. The external speakers on mobile devices often has a form of compression that is not nice to long reverb tails. Also, frequencies respond differently to the same kind of reverb, so I wouldn't recommend using the same reverb on the higher range as you would on the lower range. The bass can get especially muddy if there's too much.

In short, I'm not a fan of mass-batch processing when it comes to effects like reverb, but I would experiment and see about dialing in a little bit and find which parts work best.

Hope that helps,


  • Hey George, thanks for the helpful response! Yes, with the exception of a few lines of dialogue that need a giant reverb tail for an effect, I was speaking mostly of applying short, .75 second long, subtle reverb to in game effects, (and maybe dialogue) just to make it feel like all sounds were coming from the same environment. I've got to try that different reverb for different frequencies suggestion, I never really thought of that other than to just make low end sounds have very short and low frequency cut tails.
    – jeremyk23
    Commented Aug 21, 2013 at 19:32
  • You bet! As with most sound design situations, the answers can vary, but I think experimenting is the best bet. Trust your ear gut in the end and see if the reverb makes sense for what you're trying to create. Best of luck! Commented Aug 22, 2013 at 13:20

Yea, I would check out what internet human said. You can apply the same reverb by using a sample manager of sorts or a batch converter, so it's easy enough to just try to do it and see how it sounds. Usually a small amount of reverb is enough to bring something to life, but not really interfere with the mix too much.


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