On music in Nova... [topic from 2003]

Recently, I got it into my head to try to get Nova to play music at some point while the player was flying around in space; not a program running in the background, but for Nova itself to suddenly start playing music.

It didn't seem extremely hard: using the Nova Command Pxxx, a sound could be played at an appropriate time, say, after a Qxxx command, or when a mission 'OnShipDone' command runs.

I picked out the piece (One of the combat music tunes from "Master of Orion 3"), programmed a mission so that it succeeded after a particular ship is scanned (A large, angry battleship of my own design), and had P10051 in the 'OnShipDone' field.

At first, the music didn't play. It turns out that I needed to convert the sound using Quicktime Player to a particular format; it wasn't enough to be a System 7 Sound, it specifically had to be 8 bit Mono.

After doing that, the sound played properly; the entire minute-and-ten-seconds of it. It was a little quiet for my liking, though, and the sound was almost two megabytes in size. So, don't expect any "80's Greatest Hits" plugs out of me. I did this mostly for kicks, just to see if it could be done with the Nova Engine.

That, and at two to three megabytes a tune, anybody with a dial-up connection would scream bloody murder...

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Quote

Originally posted by Eugene Chin:
That, and at two to three megabytes a tune, anybody with a dial-up connection would scream bloody murder...

...just before committing bloody murder. 😄

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Quote

Originally posted by Eugene Chin:
**

That, and at two to three megabytes a tune, anybody with a dial-up connection would scream bloody murder...

**

Thing is, any EVN TC will be megabyte heavy because of the shans and movies and landscapes and such, so a few more megs here or there probably won't hurt. Those with dial-ups will scream, but those of us with DSL or cable will rejoice. 🙂

_bomb

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my time in exile..."

Yeah, great try at it. Now, if only I could find a program that would convert all of my "tracker" music to .wav's or .mp3's.

For those of you who don't know what a "tracker" music file is, it's actually quite simple. Computer musicians use what's called a "tracker" to create digital music. You make a collection of small sound files but when you put them all together, along w/ loops and what-not, you creat a "mod" file. The file extension's range from .mod to .it to .xm.

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(url="http://"http://blackwidowsw.tripod.com/home.html")Black Widow SW(/url)
(url="http://"http://3d_xtreme.tripod.com")3D Xtreme(/url)

Are you able to burn the song onto a regular music CD?

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Burn tracker songs? I don't think so - at least, not as a tracker sound file. You have to convert them to something else.

I think PlayerPRO (the registered version) can export to .wav's which can then be converted to .mp3's.

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(url="http://"http://blackwidowsw.tripod.com/home.html")Black Widow SW(/url)
(url="http://"http://3d_xtreme.tripod.com")3D Xtreme(/url)

edit are the songs themselves limited? ie if there was a intense battle scripted for a particular mission and i wanted some epic movie music ie orchestral with choir to indicate its epicness mwahaha would this be feasible? or should i just include a few mp3's with the tc and say play this song while your flying here here an here lol

err actually if its an 8 bit mono i already imagine i know the answer to my question.

This post has been edited by Sleipnir : 04 February 2011 - 01:14 AM

The sound format is fairly restricted, and not of exceptionally high quality, but the engine doesn’t care what it’s the sound of — the procedure is the same whether it’s a simple sound effect or Beethoven’s Fifth Symphony. There’s no mechanism to synchronise it to in-game events iMuse-style, though. All you can do is tell it to start playing.

Beyond the Pxxx operator, you also have the option of including the music as a QuickTime movie, which you attach to one of your descriptions. This isn’t useful for background music, however, as it will only play while that movie is on-screen.

This is actually one case where WinNova seems to have an advantage over Mac. I have had no trouble getting EVNEW to import .wav files, and they play perfectly well in-game. I have not experimented with .mp3 importing, but I suspect it would also work. It does, however, occasionally create an issue when trying to convert a .rez file back to a Macintosh resource file.

@krugeruwsp, on 04 February 2011 - 12:32 PM, said in On music in Nova... [topic from 2003]:

I have had no trouble getting EVNEW to import .wav files, and they play perfectly well in-game. I have not experimented with .mp3 importing, but I suspect it would also work.

That’s just because EVNEW automatically converts them for you. I don’t know whether the Windows version of the game has looser requirements in terms of bit rates etc., but the 'snd ' resource certainly doesn’t maintain the MP3 encoding.

Well, I thought EVNEW was converting them to the Windows equivalent of a snd resource, but I think it either does it differently than the Mac snd encoders or WinNova is more lenient about it. For whatever reason, snd sources created on EVNEW will not convert back from .rez to a Macintosh resource file, even if I took a snd resource directly from a converted Mac file, copied it in EVNEW, and converted it straight back to a Mac file.

@krugeruwsp, on 04 February 2011 - 04:17 PM, said in On music in Nova... [topic from 2003]:

Well, I thought EVNEW was converting them to the Windows equivalent of a snd resource . . .

Really, .wav is already the closest thing there is to a Windows equivalent of 'snd ', although it’s closer to AIFF.

@krugeruwsp, on 04 February 2011 - 04:17 PM, said in On music in Nova... [topic from 2003]:

. . . WinNova is more lenient about it.

This is quite likely the case — I expect all of the code related to playing 'snd ' had to be completely re-written for Windows, probably going through QuickTime.

@krugeruwsp, on 04 February 2011 - 04:17 PM, said in On music in Nova... [topic from 2003]:

For whatever reason, snd sources created on EVNEW will not convert back from .rez to a Macintosh resource file . . .

Out of curiosity, in what way do they not work?

They simply won't play, or will come out as garbly static.

It's an endian problem with MC - it's byte-swapping snd resources when reading/writing rez files (RealBasic being overly helpful?). Works fine if running in Rosetta.

For info about sound in Nova, check the Audio Guide on my site. I haven't really tried but I don't think Win Nova is any more lenient about the format than Mac Nova.

This post has been edited by Guy : 05 February 2011 - 04:40 AM

@guy, on 04 February 2011 - 11:22 PM, said in On music in Nova... [topic from 2003]:

It's an endian problem with MC - it's byte-swapping snd resources when reading/writing rez files . . .

Ick, of course. Various standard resource types are 'helpfully' converted on Intel when reading (but not when writing). I’m still not sure the DITL and DLOG editors actually work properly, but it hadn’t even occurred to me that 'snd ' would be affected, since I don’t do any decoding of it myself.

@david-arthur, on 05 February 2011 - 10:16 AM, said in On music in Nova... [topic from 2003]:

(but not when writing)

Are you sure? I noticed the byte-swapped data when I saved a snd in a rez file.

@david-arthur, on 05 February 2011 - 10:16 AM, said in On music in Nova... [topic from 2003]:

I’m still not sure the DITL and DLOG editors actually work properly

Both DITL and DLOG seem to work properly for me in MC. I have not done detailed tests to make sure their in-game appearance is exactly as it should be, but then I didn’t notice anything out of the ordinary that would have prompted such an investigation.

@guy, on 05 February 2011 - 07:18 PM, said in On music in Nova... [topic from 2003]:

Are you sure? I noticed the byte-swapped data when I saved a snd in a rez file.

Exactly — the resource was swapped when loaded, and didn’t get swapped back when written.

@qaanol, on 05 February 2011 - 08:21 PM, said in On music in Nova... [topic from 2003]:

I have not done detailed tests to make sure their in-game appearance is exactly as it should be, but then I didn’t notice anything out of the ordinary that would have prompted such an investigation.

Good — if it were wrong, it would be really wrong. I think the problems I’ve seen come from an incorrect resource left over from when things didn’t work being parsed by the correct algorithm.

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