quarta-feira, 7 de dezembro de 2011

Make a Game - Sound Effects and Music

First off, sorry for the delay between posts, but I the college semester was ending and I had no time. I'll still write everything I want before the day of the Ludum Dare, I think.

So I'm going to write about sound effects and music for games, trying to display some links and solutions for people who aren't really sound oriented but need to get a quick sound for a game. I'll also explain how I organized music and sound in libGDX.

Music, what to do?
Music is pretty important, of course. A game will become boring without it and it can touch a person's heart when the music is amazing. It's extremely strong in setting the tone in any type of game. Not trying to state the obvious here, but if you can tie in music and gameplay, like playing a faster tone when something action-like happens can really create the moment. Or break it. Look at the moment created here:

I think the video speaks for itself.
So you need to add music to your game. You have three options, really, you can either make it yourself, have someone else do it or use an existing piece. When you're a game company, you'll probably go with "have someone else do it", since they'll be professionals and you can ask them to convey the feelings you wish to pass on. But when you're a indie game designer, you'll want to either make it yourself, if you have some talent and/or experience with creating these things. I don't. I tried messing with some midi files but I got lost.

If you wanna go with music making, I recommend this:

Musagi, music maker
It's pretty beginner oriented. Don't beat yourself up if you can't do it, though. Use free music. Yes, that exists. But you HAVE to be careful, since you have to respect the desires of the authors. Some will ask for a link back, just credits, others may ask for nothing, but you have to respect that, or else you'll be doing something wrong and that is not nice! It may even be a crime.
Here are some sites for music:
Dano's songs, they are cool
Indie Game Music

Sound effects, do I need them?
I used to ask myself that, sometimes. But yes, you do. The experience feels much more bland without those little guys to tell you have made a good choice, if you can't select something or if you killed somebody. In-game, of course. My favorite example for good, well put sound effects are, of course...

 Just pay attention to those genius-like sound effects! Amazing!
So, it's the same as music. If you wanna create some dirty, simplistic old school effects, use this amazing little dude here:
It's awesome for making old school stuff, really!
Other than that, you could also get existing sounds, but be careful about the author's wishes and license. Flash Kit has both sounds and music, although it's a little bit hard to navigate.

Flash Kit

If you still need more resources, check this topic in gamedev:
Topic about Free sounds and music in Gamedev

 Sounds and Music in libGDX
That's pretty straightforward, actually. You just load up the classes with the file handlers and call the methods. If you wanna simply grab a code, here is the source code for a class that I use to play and "organize" the sound effects in my game:

SoundPlaying source code for libGDX!

So I think this is it, everybody!

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