Total War: Warhammer II: Curse Of The Vampire Coast - Tattered Sails Shanty

How to make trailer audio for a trailer about Vampire pirates without going full "Pirates Of The Caribbean" straight away? That was a question we asked ourselves in our initial meeting before starting production on a trailer, which later on turned out to be one of the most popular ones Creative Assembly has produced so far.

After our initial discussion with the Cinematics team our first step was to evaluate the raw edit and to search through our extensive collection of trailer tracks to see what would work on this particular asset. We put together a temp track of trailer tracks to define the style and after a bit of back and forth with the editors we were ready to give our composer Armin Haas the initial temp track to work with. At this moment we weren't quite sure how to structure the trailer musically as it started out quite quietly but had to build to an epic crescendo in the end. There was always the idea in the back of our head to create some kind of "piraty/shanty" vibe to the trailer music, but how exactly that could sound like wasn't entirely clear to us at that point. This was something we discussed quite early on with our good friend and main cinematic editor on this trailer, Sam Simpson.

“There was always the idea in the back of our head to create some kind of "piraty/shanty" vibe to the trailer music [...]”

After the first few iterations of trailer music we slowly arrived at the final structure of the track which guided us nicely through all the scenes. Our composer Armin Haas came up with this great melody which would later be one of the most iconic parts of the track. In similar fashion to the 3K trailers we tried to find an old pirate poem which we could use the lyrics from but unfortunately our search wasn't successful and we ended up writing the lyrics to the first part ourselves:

Aaah the blood runs cold.
We take our loot but dont get old!

We instantly fell in love with the theme and the lyrics and we knew that we had to bring back the shanty style singing again to create a climax for the whole trailer. Again, Armin created this amazing melody line for the singing and we wrote the lyrics for the last part here at Noiseworks:

All hail the mighty, he’s arisin’ from the deep
With tattered sails and incredible tales,
We are caught in endless seas!

Fan-created, two hour version of the shanty track.

Once again it showed that the process between ourselves here at Noiseworks and Creative Assembly works incredibly well. While it wasn't exactly a risky move to include a shanty like that, it was certainly and unconventional one, but nevertheless one which definitely went down incredibly well with the fans. We can't wait to work on the next instalment of the series (if there is one), until then.. ALL HAIL THE MIGHTYYY!!