Coders Guidelines To The Musician


mr_lou

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I'm starting this thread as a musician, and hoping that a lot of GP32 and GP2x coders will give their input.

I'm curious as to what the average GP32/GP2x coder prefers when it comes to music in your games. I imagine it's a question of speed vs easy-to-handle, so I'm guessing the music mustn't require too much CPU power while it must be easy to implement.

As I see it, there are the following options on the GP32/GP2x:

MOD files
XM files
OGG files

MOD files are usually 4 channels only, small in filesize and doesn't require a lot of CPU power. MOD files CAN be more than 4 channels though.
XM files are a bit more complicated, and thus requires more CPU power. File size is about the same as a MOD file.
OGG files is one single stream, so it requires the least CPU power, but file size is big.

So, the question is: What do you, as a coder, prefer to have in your game?
4-channel MODs?
8-channel MODs?
XM? How many channels max?
do you prefer MOD over XM? why (not)?
OGG?
other?

I'm asking this, because I like doing game music, and it would be nice to have some guidelines. I also plan to throw the link to this thread to other musicians, so that they might paste links to their already finished tracks which you can use in your productions for free (if your game is a freeware game).

Thanks for any feedback.
 

Exophase

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I expect that OGG actually uses a lot more CPU power than most MODs or XMs because of what goes into decompressing it.
 

mr_lou

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Exophase said:
I expect that OGG actually uses a lot more CPU power than most MODs or XMs because of what goes into decompressing it.
Good point. But especially XM can be stuffed with multiple tracks which all have a lot of effects, and I imagine an OGG requires less CPU power in that case, but must admit I don't have the technical knowledge (which is why I'm asking in this thread :))

Anyway, I'm also interested in knowing how big a MOD and XM is allowed to be in your game. 300kb vs 3mb; how much does size matter?
 
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goobers

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To be honest, I wouldn't say that filesize would make a huge difference, as most people tend to have fairly large SD cards anyways.

I am a fan of tracker formats (I use renoise a lot) but I think that ogg is probably the best way to go for game music, as you can have as many tracks as you wanted before bouncing down without any additional performance overhead.
 

kevcal

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Hi Mr Lou,

I like using your .mod file :) (have enabled bi-cubic interpolation (found some more clock cycles) and it sounds even better).
Will send you an email soon with a new beta... (work has been hectic, but still found time to code for the gp2x).

Personally I like using tracker music and find 4 channels (used well) enough for in-game music especially with lots of sfx accompanying...
 

Orkie

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Mr.Lou / Dewfall Productions said:
Where are all the coders at? Gimme some opinions about what you prefer to use in your game.
Most people use ogg or MOD. As I implied before, I prefer ogg.
 
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mr_lou

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kevcal said:
Personally I like using tracker music and find 4 channels (used well) enough for in-game music especially with lots of sfx accompanying...
But is the number of channels important when you look for music? Would you have used e.g. a 32 channel XM as well, or 8 channel MOD? Is there any advantage in using a 4-channel MOD over OGG and vice versa?

From what I gather from the replies, it just doesn't seem to matter one bit?
 
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quasist

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I'm fan of games where CD were with CD-music, so I prefer raw wave format (even sheddered off the 44b header)
 

kevcal

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Mr.Lou / Dewfall Productions said:
kevcal said:
Personally I like using tracker music and find 4 channels (used well) enough for in-game music especially with lots of sfx accompanying...
But is the number of channels important when you look for music? Would you have used e.g. a 32 channel XM as well, or 8 channel MOD? Is there any advantage in using a 4-channel MOD over OGG and vice versa?
From what I gather from the replies, it just doesn't seem to matter one bit? I suppose it depends on the type of game - I find with the kind of stuff I write, the music is incidental to the game (although adds a hell of a lot to the feel/urgency) .. therefore I don't want something too intrusive that takes the player's attention from the sound effects that indicate an event's occurred.. (and also obviously the less music channels I use (into Allegro's mixer routines) the more channels I have for sound effects (versus cpu cycles obviously).
 
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mr_lou

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kevcal said:
I suppose it depends on the type of game - I find with the kind of stuff I write, the music is incidental to the game (although adds a hell of a lot to the feel/urgency) .. therefore I don't want something too intrusive that takes the player's attention from the sound effects that indicate an event's occurred.. (and also obviously the less music channels I use (into Allegro's mixer routines) the more channels I have for sound effects (versus cpu cycles obviously).
So you're not thinking much about CPU usage?

Is there anyone here who refuse to use MOD and XM files instead of OGG? (And why?)
 
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kevcal

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Mr.Lou / Dewfall Productions said:
kevcal said:
I suppose it depends on the type of game - I find with the kind of stuff I write, the music is incidental to the game (although adds a hell of a lot to the feel/urgency) .. therefore I don't want something too intrusive that takes the player's attention from the sound effects that indicate an event's occurred.. (and also obviously the less music channels I use (into Allegro's mixer routines) the more channels I have for sound effects (versus cpu cycles obviously).
So you're not thinking much about CPU usage?I don't worry about cpu usage - it's more challenging technically to use mod playing inline with the game (and I have more control over it if necessary) :)
Saying that, if it was a problem then ogg on gpu940 would probably be the way to go I guess..
 
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mr_lou

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kevcal said:
I don't worry about cpu usage - it's more challenging technically to use mod playing inline with the game (and I have more control over it if necessary) :)
Saying that, if it was a problem then ogg on gpu940 would probably be the way to go I guess..
Thanks for your replies, to everyone. It's helped me getting an idea of how to build a website I'm planning. See more in this post.
http://www.gp32x.de/board/index.php?showtopic=40847
 
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