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 Post subject: Console Music History
PostPosted: Fri Mar 01, 2013 4:27 am 
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I've been doing some preliminary work on Console Music History.The general idea will be the same as with Portable Music History - a certain number of games released daily in chronological order, all at least timed, tagged where possible, but the site will be dealing with games from these systems:

1983.07.15: NES/Famicom. Formats used: NSF+M3U, VGM.
1983.07.15: SG-1000. Formats used: SGC+M3U, KSS+M3U, VGM.
1985.10.20: Sega Master System/Sega Mark III. Formats used: same as SG-1000
1986.02.21: Famicom Disk System. Formats used: same as NES.
1987.10.30: TurboGrafx-16/PC Engine. Formats used: HES+M3U, VGM.
1988.12.04: TurboGrafx-CD/PC-Engine CD-ROM˛. Formats used: HES+M3U, VGM, Redbook Audio
1988.10.29: Sega Genesis/Sega Mega Drive. Formats used: VGM.
1989.11.30: SuperGrafx. Formats used: Same as TurboGrafx-16
1990.10.21: Super NES. Formats used: SPC, SNSF
1991.07.01: Neo Geo AES. Formats used: VGM
1991.12.12: Sega CD/Sega Mega-CD. Formats used: VGM, Redbook Audio
1993.09: Commodore Amiga CD32. Formats used: Amiga exotic formats, Redbook Audio.
1994.09.09: Neo Geo CD. Format used: Redbook Audio
1994.11.14: Sega 32X. Formats used: VGM
1994.12.23: PC-FX. Formats used: HES+M3U, Redbook Audio

So pretty much everything notable up to PlayStation/Saturn/N64 generation. I'll think about newer systems once we're done with the above, but generally with exception of N64, they aren't really feasible - PS1 music rip set is currently at 100 GB, and we have ripped... I'd estimate about 20-30% of all games released.

Obviously it'll take a while until we reach SNES premiere, but here's what I have in mind with the site. Let me know if you have anything to add, or just generally don't like the idea (valid criticism will be appreciated) - this is mainly directed at YK, but everyone's free to voice their opinion:

1. SNESMusic.org sets will have filename changes from 8+3 to pmh standard ($disc_number$track_number $track_title.extension, so so-13.spc will change to "201 Imaginary Track Title.spc")
2. All SNESMusic.org sets will be retagged to have a consistent tagging scheme - copyright fixes, year of release fixes, composer fixes, etc, etc. Not sure how much of that will be needed, YK, so please don't interpret this as a diss to you.
3. Non SNESMusic.org sets, SNSF/MP3 recodings/that new byuu format (if it gets anywhere) for undumpable sets will also be included, with basic tags like all those untagged pmh sets.
4. Files will be packed with 7z archiver. It's smaller than rar, supported on just about any system/music player worth it's weight and is open source and free.
5. Please discuss this I've been thinking about removing ambience/SFX/voice tracks from sets. I don't really think they add much to listening experience.
6. Please also discuss this What is your take on cross-site synchronization? Should we replace the SNESMusic.org sets at time of cmh set release? Do it once/twice per year (beginning of 1991, 1992, etc?). Or just let cmh link to SNESMusic.org set and update there? Datschge said it makes no sense to have two sites with almost the same content, and I agree with him, yet pmh has some nice features SNESMusic.org lacks (multiple title screen shots, easier way to contribute missing data).

I agree that the project is a bit on the gargantuan side. That's almost 5000 potential sets and it has taken me a year and a half to clear 2000th entry mark with pmh. Still, I believe the site to be needed, especially given sorry state of 8-bit console music archives. :)


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PostPosted: Fri Mar 01, 2013 12:48 pm 
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Quote:
1. SNESMusic.org sets will have filename changes from 8+3 to pmh standard ($disc_number$track_number $track_title.extension, so so-13.spc will change to "201 Imaginary Track Title.spc")


No qualms whatsoever about this one. I never liked the format we're using; I just adhered to it out of tradition, more or less.

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2. All SNESMusic.org sets will be retagged to have a consistent tagging scheme - copyright fixes, year of release fixes, composer fixes, etc, etc. Not sure how much of that will be needed, YK, so please don't interpret this as a diss to you.


Seriously, a lot of that is simply stuff I never got around to. There were a *ton* of these little tagging fixes to deal with, and as clunky as the update interface is, it kinda overwhelmed me. It makes more sense when we're talking a complete overhaul.

That said, unless we're talking about asinine things such as "genericify track titles", "rigidly adhere to OST timers, even if incorrect", and "stick fades on non-looping songs", I'm all for it.

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3. Non SNESMusic.org sets, SNSF/MP3 recodings/that new byuu format (if it gets anywhere) for undumpable sets will also be included, with basic tags like all those untagged pmh sets.


One thing I have to request is that, if we're just going for an "all sets" format, we make sure to mark those sets that lack titles and/or timers. I find it very annoying when I see an interesting *SF set on a site only to download it and find that it's just a raw rip. Hopefully this shouldn't be an issue, but I figured I'd bring it up anyhow.

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4. Files will be packed with 7z archiver. It's smaller than rar, supported on just about any system/music player worth it's weight and is open source and free.


Fair enough. I didn't care a whole lot for the RSN format anyhow.

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5. Please discuss this I've been thinking about removing ambience/SFX/voice tracks from sets. I don't really think they add much to listening experience.


I'd like the ambient tracks and musical-ish SFX kept, personally, but voice clips can be removed. That was another tradition I just kinda upheld, but I find that some sets are just clogged with them.

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6. Please also discuss this What is your take on cross-site synchronization? Should we replace the SNESMusic.org sets at time of cmh set release? Do it once/twice per year (beginning of 1991, 1992, etc?). Or just let cmh link to SNESMusic.org set and update there? Datschge said it makes no sense to have two sites with almost the same content, and I agree with him, yet pmh has some nice features SNESMusic.org lacks (multiple title screen shots, easier way to contribute missing data).


Well, if the SNESMusic content will be available at CMH, I see little reason to keep SNESMusic as a thing. CMH seems like its natural successor. That said, I do want in on this project; I've been with SNESMusic for like, 12 years, and would hate to be locked out of it during this transition period. And this forum could continue to exist as one for CMH/PMH, unless you already have one elsewhere.

That said, I'll continue to update SNESMusic until CMH is ready. I would've made an update this month, but my computer died earlier in the month. The drives are fine, however, and I'll be getting a new one literally later today, so... yeah. Sorry about the delay.

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PostPosted: Fri Mar 01, 2013 3:15 pm 
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YK wrote:
That said, unless we're talking about asinine things such as "genericify track titles", "rigidly adhere to OST timers, even if incorrect", and "stick fades on non-looping songs", I'm all for it.

Nothing of the sort.
Well, for pmh I've been adding a 1 second fade to all jingles/non-looping tracks. Actually prefer that to adding a second to track duration, and either is needed due to the way NEZPlug++ handles track durations.
No plans on changing timing in the SPC sets, unless I manage to find some timing errors.
YK wrote:
One thing I have to request is that, if we're just going for an "all sets" format, we make sure to mark those sets that lack titles and/or timers. I find it very annoying when I see an interesting *SF set on a site only to download it and find that it's just a raw rip. Hopefully this shouldn't be an issue, but I figured I'd bring it up anyhow.

This will be handled the same way pmh does it.
All sets on site will be timed. Period.
Sets with generic title tags (BGM #, Jingle #) have version number 0.9
Each set update (no matter how minor) bumps the version number by 0.01
Sets with tags have version number 1.00 and up.
YK wrote:
I'd like the ambient tracks and musical-ish SFX kept, personally, but voice clips can be removed. That was another tradition I just kinda upheld, but I find that some sets are just clogged with them.

Okay, will be done on a set by set basis, you okay with being the decision maker? I will compile a list of tracks to remove, and you will have a veto option, if you don't like any of my removals.
YK wrote:
That said, I do want in on this project; I've been with SNESMusic for like, 12 years, and would hate to be locked out of it during this transition period. And this forum could continue to exist as one for CMH/PMH, unless you already have one elsewhere.

Well, you can start by going to pmh (it's linked to on main SNESMusic.org page if you haven't visited yet) and see if it's to your liking (and maybe providing some tags if there's a Game Boy/Game Gear game you're fond of that is still untagged there). I will keep you in the loop, and if everything works out, I don't see a reason you shouldn't have SFTP access and backend admin login.
I've been discussing this (and pmh) here: http://hcs64.com/mboard/forum.php?showthread=25282 , but I visit this forum at least once a day, so feel free to keep discussion here.


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PostPosted: Fri Mar 01, 2013 3:47 pm 
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Quote:
Nothing of the sort.
Well, for pmh I've been adding a 1 second fade to all jingles/non-looping tracks. Actually prefer that to adding a second to track duration, and either is needed due to the way NEZPlug++ handles track durations.
No plans on changing timing in the SPC sets, unless I manage to find some timing errors.


All right, thanks for clearing that up. It was just one of my biggest pet peeves from the *SF scene, so I was hoping we'd avert that here. =P

Quote:
This will be handled the same way pmh does it.
All sets on site will be timed. Period.
Sets with generic title tags (BGM #, Jingle #) have version number 0.9
Each set update (no matter how minor) bumps the version number by 0.01
Sets with tags have version number 1.00 and up.


Sounds good to me. Pretty much how SNESMusic handles it already, so no complaints to be had here.

Quote:
Okay, will be done on a set by set basis, you okay with being the decision maker? I will compile a list of tracks to remove, and you will have a veto option, if you don't like any of my removals.


Yeah, I was actually gonna suggest that we go set-by-set. For some games, the ambient tracks are a big part of the soundtrack, I find, as are the other things. I don't expect you'd really go bonkers removing tracks, but sure, I'd be glad to be the "decider", as George W. Bush once said. :P

Quote:
Well, you can start by going to pmh (it's linked to on main SNESMusic.org page if you haven't visited yet) and see if it's to your liking (and maybe providing some tags if there's a Game Boy/Game Gear game you're fond of that is still untagged there). I will keep you in the loop, and if everything works out, I don't see a reason you shouldn't have SFTP access and backend admin login.
I've been discussing this (and pmh) here: http://hcs64.com/mboard/forum.php?showthread=25282 , but I visit this forum at least once a day, so feel free to keep discussion here.


Unfortunately, my familiarity with Game Boy isn't anywhere close to my familiarity with SNES, and the few GB games I *have* played, it's pretty much a guarantee you already have up there. :P

That said, I'll take a look at the site a bit later and let you know what I think.

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PostPosted: Wed Mar 13, 2013 5:06 am 
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YK, would you be okay with the old site being set to read-only mode (meaning, no new sets/updates permitted) when/if cmh eventually hits SNES sets?

Granted, we're talking about... 7 years of both SMS and NES, 3 years of TurboGraphx-16 and a year of Genesis before we even reach SNES games, so we're talking late 2015/early 2016, but still I'd prefer to run this by you. :)


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PostPosted: Wed Mar 13, 2013 11:13 am 
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Knurek wrote:
YK, would you be okay with the old site being set to read-only mode (meaning, no new sets/updates permitted) when/if cmh eventually hits SNES sets?

Granted, we're talking about... 7 years of both SMS and NES, 3 years of TurboGraphx-16 and a year of Genesis before we even reach SNES games, so we're talking late 2015/early 2016, but still I'd prefer to run this by you. :)


Fine by me, provided I can continue to handle updates and such for the new site. :D

That said, in preparation, I'm going to start phasing out voice clips and non-musical-ish sound effects, starting with this update; anything I update that *has* voice clips or non-musical SFX will be removed.

However, it's not a blanket ban on these things: I might leave in longer, more significant voice clips (e.g. Super Metroid, Lion King, ESPN Speedworld, etc), but there's no need to include, say, every single minor "injured" voice clip, or every voiced call in a sports game, as they just clutter the sets. As for sound effects, they should sound at least somewhat musical. Frankly, it's really about time we settled on some standards regarding those; this *is* SNES*Music*, after all (soon to be Console *Music* History), not SNESVoices/SNESSounds or whatever. If anyone disagrees, let me know; we'll work *something* out.

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PostPosted: Thu Mar 14, 2013 12:03 pm 
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YK wrote:
Fine by me, provided I can continue to handle updates and such for the new site. :D


Shouldn't be a problem, although the setup is a bit different, so you'll need OpenOffice (not sure about MS Office or Libre or whatever else is out there) and a SFTP client (I can vouch for FileZilla) for updates.

I've attached a test set for ActRaiser, have a look and let me know if you don't like anything about it.
BTW, a little heads-up, the European version screenshot is an APNG file, so should animate between English/French/German version when opened in Opera, Firefox or Chrome with proper plugin.


Attachments:
actraiser test.zip [90.58 KiB]
Downloaded 246 times
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PostPosted: Sun Jan 11, 2015 6:49 am 
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Okay, site is up and running, still quite early but seems to work fine.

Console Music History

Do share your thoughts, and let me know if you find anything broken (some things might still point to pmh instead of cmh)


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PostPosted: Sat Jan 17, 2015 1:36 pm 
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So. Yeah. After this last argument, which I've purged for the sake of everyone's souls, I've decided it's finally time to officially announce my semi-retirement. I've been working on SNESMusic.org since 2001, and generally enjoyed it. But so many complaints about things that don't really need to be complained about have left me just... not having fun with this anymore. It seems like just about everything I do, I get bitched out. I try to spice up soundtracks to make them look more "professional" and less hacky, and I get bitched out. When I *do* opt to switch to a more standard set of track titles, ala Secret of Mana or Tactics Ogre (I am dead serious when I say I have *never* seen the track titles the site originally used *anywhere else* except this site), I... also get bitched out. But if I were to change the titles to more generic ones, I'd also get called out by Datschge. I can't win, so I'm no longer going to play the game.

As a result, I'm leaving things in the capable hands of Knurek from here on out. I trust his work (even if I don't agree with those ridiculously long 7z filenames he uses :P ), and he's probably a hell of a lot more open-minded and willing to listen to peoples' complaints and concerns than I was, am, or will be. Hell, maybe he'll even get that massive composer backlog finished that I could never be arsed to do. :P

I might still do random site updates here and there, and I'll still maintain and leave up this forum (Knurek, feel free to cross-link this forum with CMH, since, well, it's already here), I'll still check it, post here, etc. But as it stands, I'm a simple, bitter, bull-headed old fool who simply has no further tolerance for the kind of drama that's gone on here over the last few years.

Finally, apologies to blitzlunar. I've been ridiculously hard on you over the years, and man, you don't deserve it. You're a cool dude, and I've just been an unreasonable jerk the whole time. I assure you I'm *not*, however hard that may be to accept; I've just been suffering severe burnout here, and *it shows*.

I'd say "farewell", except I'm not truly *leaving*. I'll be around if anyone needs me for any reason. I got some more PSFs I retimed, which I should get to submitting... but there's more I want to do, so. Yeah.

Good luck with CMH, Knurek. I wish you the best.

I leave you with this. The most accurate and concise track naming ever for Tactics Ogre. ENJOY!!!

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PostPosted: Sun Jan 18, 2015 9:57 am 
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My hiatus was initially caused by college work. Over time, though, I wanted to actually create a SNES game using the ASM skills I inherited from producing music modifiers (I started with trying to modify variables, then I got into hex editors and then gradually developed my lookup skills, first with direct hits, and then with indirect hits. It took me a bit to get the addressing right, but I eventually was able to get both of them working.). It's taking me a while, but I actually intend on creating my own sound driver (I've decided to step back and do one for the Atari 2600 first).

I still make music modifiers, but I've been digging even deeper than usual into the raw music data. I've actually been reverse engineering some of the data (once again, without a debugger: just a hex editor and a SPC player). Because a SPC dump can give me each variable (and I can usually rat out pointers anyways), this means I can usually determine what type of data is actually music data. Now, we're not talking about N-SPC, Rare, or Square music... these are sound drivers of much more obscure games (well, I'm also looking up earlier Ocean games and their sound data, as I was fooling around with Cool World, so... depends).

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Just consider me your friendly SPC dumper. Also a bit of a perfectionist (though not too literally)... I make sure my dumps are at the first note. I might even hack away the SFX if needed.

Want a music modifier for a particular SNES game? All you need to do is ask via PM (or you can check out the Music Modifiers topic and post there) and I'll be on the job. ^_^

SPC Set Progress Log


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