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agaricus5
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Hello everybody!

I have had some discussions with Erik and since there are a few little complications over the music for DROD, I have decided to release the music I have composed for DROD so far to you, the DROD Community, to hear, evaluate and give comments on. This music has nothing to do with Emmett, nor am I in competition with him, for I composed these long before now... in fact, long before the editor even came out, about a year ago from the time of posting. Now, however, since Emmett is writing the music for DROD, and the music coding will be different for the next release, I thought I might as well release the music to you before I get too busy with exams to do so.

Ok. Before continuing to the downloads, there are one or two notes I'd like you to read first, a little about the history of the pieces, and mostly things I want opinions on because I think they could be improved:

General

First, the files themselves are in a stream format, .ogg, like Emmett's music, so you cannot view them conventionally with many older music players including Windows Media Player. If you do not have the capability to listen to .ogg files, go to a site like this one to get your hands on an .ogg file decoder and player (Winamp seems to be the best, so I'd recommend it):

http://www.vorbis.com/

The second thing is that all the files have odd, rather technical names that I used to originally distinguish them from other things on my computer, but soon, as I couldn't think up any better names, became their official names. At the moment, they are called DROD Scores, primarily because I used a music writing program (Sibelius 2) to write them, so their original format was in a score, and also because they are intended for the game DROD. I personally like the names, although I get the feeling others may not, so anyone who can come up with nice renames for each piece is welcome to submit them to me.

Thirdly, the style of each piece is a little odd, being a sort of cascadey, multilayered, polyphonic sort of music, so you will hear lots of repetition and similar instruments through the pieces, although I have tried to keep each iteration varied enough to render each different. If anyone finds this, or any other aspect of the music boring/annoying or generally negative, then tell me about it, and I'll see if I can make improvements to it.

Fourthly, I have the original score files and can convert them into a selection of file formats, so if anyone likes the pieces enough to want a copy of the notation so they can see what the music looks like, then ask me, and I'll send you a copy by e-mail.

The last thing is this. I am freely distributing this music to all of you on the forum, and eventually DROD.net if the response is positive, so I don't mind distribution of the music for whatever you want to do with it, which includes the scores, except for this one thing:

I would rather someone tells me if they would like to use the music for any other purpose apart from DROD and generally listening to it, for example putting it in another game (Although this is unlikely). I suppose this is understood anyway, but in addition, as the music is free, I don't want it to be used for profit-making things as I have distributed it free. However, this probably never will be mentioned again as I trust everyone here anyway.

So... a quick note on one or two pieces next:

DROD Score 1

This piece was the first I composed, back in January 2003, and since the idea of composition for DROD was so exciting, I went into a frenzy and wrote it in three days. So as you may hear, it's a little repetitive, basic, and perhaps not as good as any of the later pieces, but opefully you'll enjoy it anyway. There is an old .mid file of this on the old forum (now lost in ignorance) where I tried to release it once, but decided the problems with MIDI and sound differences made it sound worse than it was, so I let it quietly drift out of knowledge. If anyone wants to compare how the MIDI sounds with the .ogg file, then you may still find it if you scrummage around on the files section of the forum at Yahoo.

DROD Score 4

This one was composed later, finished in April, but took a substantially longer time to finish. Near the end of the piece is a really high flute, meant to be a piccolo, but I'm not sure if it works or not musically, so if anyone has any comments on it, then I'd like to hear them. Also in there is a section slightly based on a part of a piece by Chopin (guess which) and some rather loud dynamics, so judious use of the volume control on such sections is advised.

DROD Score 5

Completed just before August, this piece took ages to complete, about 2 months this time. There is another set of high flutes in this again, so if anyone has any comments, those would also be helpful. The piece also contains a "mini-climax" at the end where I actually dropped the volume slightly because the sound card was failing under the sheer number of notes playing. If anyone thinks this stands out and looks odd, then please tell me and I'll see what I can to to improve it.

DROD Score 2

Just completed at the time of writing, I originally called it DROD Score 6 because 6 follows 5. However it was renamed to 2 to fill the gap between 1 and 4, so...

Anyway... there are one or two things in here, namely the style of the opening and ending, which someone has described as wedding music, which is worrying, that I think I definitely need feedback on. If anyone thinks that this, or any of the others are totally out of style for DROD music, then please let me know so I can sort it out.

DROD Score 3

"Why is there a gap here?", one might ask. It's not logical, and the explanation is also not logical, being to do with the feelings I have for music, so I'll explain it later if anyone's interested, but not now, as I have not much time.

One final note. DROD cannot play .ogg files yet as the game engine apparently cannot decode stream format music - the code "needs to be adjusted", something that I think I have asked before on the forum, but I cannot remember where. To listen to it and play DROD at the same time, disable music in DROD and then just play it in the background with the OGG decoder.

That's about it.

Enjoy!

The DROD Scores in numerical order can be found here:

http://www.caravelgames.com/wesleyc/DROD%20Score%201.zip (3679KB)
http://www.caravelgames.com/wesleyc/DROD%20Score%202.zip (5607KB)
http://www.caravelgames.com/wesleyc/DROD%20Score%204.zip (4877KB)
http://www.caravelgames.com/wesleyc/DROD%20Score%205.zip (5290KB)

[Edited by agaricus5 on 12-02-2003 at 10:05 PM GMT]

Edit: The links no longer work. The downloads will be in a newer thread.

[Edited by agaricus5 on 05-14-2004 at 09:31 PM GMT]

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12-02-2003 at 09:53 PM
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b0rsuk
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....it's not evil enough :=\\

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12-02-2003 at 11:57 PM
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Emmett
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It's a shame that I won't be able to listen to this until my work on DROD is done. I'd really like to hear it, but I'm afraid that if I do, I'll end up lifting a theme or something, you'll cry bloody murder, Erik will kick me squarely in the scrotum, and death will envelop the universe.

That being said, though, as soon as I'm done, I'll be checking these out. :)

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12-03-2003 at 12:56 AM
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agaricus5
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quote:
b0rsuk wrote:
....it's not evil enough :=\\

Evil?

I don't do evil.

I do contemplative, atmospheric or mysterious. Not horror or evil. Sorry.

quote:
Emmett wrote:
It's a shame that I won't be able to listen to this until my work on DROD is done. I'd really like to hear it, but I'm afraid that if I do, I'll end up lifting a theme or something, you'll cry bloody murder...

I won't do anything of the sort. Lifting ideas is fine. Copying music is not. I think you're more likely to do the former, but that's up to you to judge.

quote:
Erik will kick me squarely in the scrotum, and death will envelop the universe.

A tad exaggerated, especially that which is highlighted in bold. Please refrain from it where possible.

quote:
That being said, though, as soon as I'm done, I'll be checking these out.


Oh, good. I'd love to have an expert analysing/commenting on my music. ;)


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12-03-2003 at 01:03 AM
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mrimer
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Wesley, I enjoyed your music. It does exactly what you say it does, and well. I can tell you have spent a long time on this. Very sweeping and noble!

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12-03-2003 at 01:50 AM
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quote:
agaricus5 wrote:
quote:
Erik will kick me squarely in the scrotum, and death will envelop the universe.
A tad exaggerated, especially that which is highlighted in bold.
Very exaggerated - we all know Erik wouldn't do such a thing. That's what I am here for. They don't call me the DROD Mafia for nothing. And if that doesn't work, I'll be making a visit with a pair of pliers, a balpene hammer, and some jumper cables.

And I'm of the opinion that death enveloping the universe is just a liiiiiittle more extreme than a kick in the nards.

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12-03-2003 at 04:40 AM
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trick
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Yep, nice music, Wesley!

quote:
Emmett wrote:
Erik will kick me squarely in the scrotum, and death will envelop the universe.

Does this mean that the fate of all living things in the universe lie in Emmett's scrotum ? :huh
Schik, I think you might have to be a little bit careful with your... toys.
12-03-2003 at 05:08 PM
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agaricus5
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quote:
trick wrote:
Yep, nice music, Wesley!

Thanks.

quote:
quote:
Emmett wrote:
Erik will kick me squarely in the s___, and death will envelop the universe.

Does this mean that the fate of all living things in the universe lie in Emmett's s___ ? :huh
Schik, I think you might have to be a little bit careful with your... toys.

No. It's probably an independent event, which has nothing to with Emmett's... err... private parts.

Please can we not mention them so explicitly anymore? Do remember that there are children on this forum.

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12-03-2003 at 05:22 PM
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Scrotum is a medical term, Wesley. Most boys should know what it is by a young age, certainly younger than the youngest user on this forum. In fact, by using that word these guys are being careful. They could have used something much worse, I am sure. And they didn't use it in a sexual connotation, which basically means that it wasn't truly offensive by the standards of PG media.

Now, since we're all friends here I think it's safe to say we can try to watch our language around those who may be offended by it. But there is nothing inherently offensive about the words which describe certain body parts. Well, at least in the way that your doctor might use those words.

Game on,

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12-03-2003 at 05:36 PM
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agaricus5
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Oneiromancer wrote:
Scrotum is a medical term, Wesley. Most boys should know what it is by a young age, certainly younger than the youngest user on this forum. In fact, by using that word these guys are being careful. They could have used something much worse, I am sure. And they didn't use it in a sexual connotation, which basically means that it wasn't truly offensive by the standards of PG media.

Now, since we're all friends here I think it's safe to say we can try to watch our language around those who may be offended by it. But there is nothing inherently offensive about the words which describe certain body parts. Well, at least in the way that your doctor might use those words.

Game on,

OK. I won't push the matter further and risk the topic turning into some sort of forum war over the offenciveness and classification of words in textual media.

Sorry about that.

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12-03-2003 at 05:41 PM
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For some reason I'm reminded of a word that literally means "incapable", but has been stereotyped to refer to a specific part of the male anatomy. People always freak out when I use it, it's funny.

Note: I don't say what the word is here BECAUSE of the stereotype and stigma attached to it. I think most people will be able to figure out what it is anyway

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12-03-2003 at 09:10 PM
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agaricus5
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quote:
DiMono wrote:
For some reason I'm reminded of a word that literally means "incapable", but has been stereotyped to refer to a specific part of the male anatomy. People always freak out when I use it, it's funny.

Note: I don't say what the word is here BECAUSE of the stereotype and stigma attached to it. I think most people will be able to figure out what it is anyway

OK... OK... Please can we stop the off topic discussion of the male anatomy on this thread? If you want to pursue the matter further, can this be started in a new thread on the Anything board?

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agaricus5 wrote:
OK... OK... Please can we stop the off topic discussion of the male anatomy on this thread? If you want to pursue the matter further, can this be started in a new thread on the Anything board?
Okay, okay, we'll stop. No need to get testy about it.

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12-03-2003 at 09:37 PM
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Well, yes, to get back on topic, I finally had a chance to listen to your DROD Score, Wesley, and it is indeed very nice. If I had to complain about something, it would be the length of the songs--they are good for listening to while playing the game but not necessarily as "in-game" music. As an over-arching soundtrack it works quite well. I am also very impressed at your musical talent.

Game on,

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12-03-2003 at 09:55 PM
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agaricus5
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quote:
Oneiromancer wrote:
Well, yes, to get back on topic, I finally had a chance to listen to your DROD Score, Wesley, and it is indeed very nice. If I had to complain about something, it would be the length of the songs--they are good for listening to while playing the game but not necessarily as "in-game" music. As an over-arching soundtrack it works quite well. I am also very impressed at your musical talent.

Game on,

The music is very long due to the amount of repetition in them. Because the theme repeats with variations, I added/inserted themes between the main ones to break it up and allow for musical variation. I understand the length problem, but I'm not sure if I want to address it directly, for I would either have to cut the main sections of the DROD Scores out and have them as seperate scores, but that will make the piece repetitive over a few replays, or shorten each theme, both of which will change the pieces' structures, which I don't really want to do.

Has anyone any suggestions about what I should do?

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Since I'm not really a musician, I can't offer the right kind of advice. I can tell you if I like what I hear, but that's about it. I am making my comments based on other video game music I have heard over my long and illustrious career, so therefore the only suggestion I can think of is to do the same as me and get more experience. Lots of RPGs on the market have very nice soundtracks. Although not everyone likes the gameplay, almost all the recent (PlayStation and above) Final Fantasy games have very nice soundtracks. A game called Chrono Cross by the same company is especially notable. In terms of games for the computer, there are almost too many to list, so I will say that two recent games that had their soundtracks released, since the music is fully live orchestral, are Morrowind and Ultima IX. I could probably send you some MP3s if you are interested. Some other games probably have good enough scores to have them be on their own CD but I don't have them. Icewind Dale might be one because of Jeremy Soule (I think). Anyway, the more video game music you listen to the more familiar you will be with what is usually expected of it.

Game on,


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12-04-2003 at 03:45 PM
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The problem is that in all the computer games I've played, the music length is fairly short. This, I've deduced, is probably because you are not going to hear a particular piece continuously for that long, so the piece can be short.

Take racing games, for example. Many of them have you racing round a track several times, but the race usually lasts for only a few minutes, so the music length may only be 1 or 2 minutes long before it loops because if it is too long, you are obviously not going to hear all of it during a race, so some of it becomes unnecessary. This is also true in many platformers that I've played, where you are not likely to be in a level for an extremely long amount of time, or if you are, you may go into a different area with different music, and so such music may only last three or four minutes before looping.

The problem with DROD is that you are very likely to be sitting in fromt of your computer playing it for a long length of time, up to 1 or 2 hours, and if you are stuck in a level, then you will be listening to the same music for that period of time, assuming, of course, that the level's rooms are all of the same style. Because of this, if the music loop is too short, then people may get bored of it by the time they reach the 45 minute mark and may want to switch it off. That's partly the reason why they are so long - to give the player enough variety in the music so it will not loop too many times while he/she is playing a particular level.

The other half is that I generally tend to compose long pieces, so I prefer taking one theme and developing it a lot to taking lots of different but short themes and putting them together.

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12-06-2003 at 10:15 PM
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A good example of evil DROD music is the one from Level6 (ice theme).

Creepy.

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12-06-2003 at 11:26 PM
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quote:
agaricus5 wrote:
The problem with DROD is that you are very likely to be sitting in fromt of your computer playing it for a long length of time, up to 1 or 2 hours, and if you are stuck in a level, then you will be listening to the same music for that period of time,


I agree with you. That is why we're writing five songs for each level style. You might on average spend ten minutes in one room, and listen to one song loop 3/4 times. When you move to the next room, you get a different song. If you end up in one room for too long, we might have the song switch before you've left the room, or just go quiet for a bit before beginning again.

-Erik

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12-07-2003 at 04:29 AM
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quote:
b0rsuk wrote:
A good example of evil DROD music is the one from Level6 (ice theme).

Creepy.

Really? I thought that was the happiest song of the bunch. It is titled "Glad You Came", and is about being glad to see your friends. Sheesh, it couldn't be less evil! :-O Either you're joking or you hear it a lot different than I do. Of course, if you really think my stuff's evil, I got no problems with that.

-Erik

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12-07-2003 at 04:34 AM
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Not sure where level 6 music being evil came from - I thought Glad You Came fitted the ice theme nicely. Evoked the idea of an ice cavern wonderfully.

I thought The Way Down was a bit more sinister than the other DROD pieces. Including Waiting (which I'm not a big fan of).

Matt

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12-07-2003 at 07:18 AM
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Mattcrampy wrote:
Not sure where level 6 music being evil came from - I thought Glad You Came fitted the ice theme nicely. Evoked the idea of an ice cavern wonderfully.

I thought The Way Down was a bit more sinister than the other DROD pieces. Including Waiting (which I'm not a big fan of).

Matt

Maybe he was referring to the Webfoot DROD Music for level 6.

Although I don't think it is very evil either.

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