Sunday, October 24, 2010

32-channels sound engine

The previous incarnation of SOTE was somehow limited in the sound department: Adventure Game Studio didn't offer much control over channels and volumes.
Now, the new sound engine in Multimedia Fusion 2 uses 32 channels and controls each one of them and their volumes one by one.
Channel 1 is devoted to the main background music;
Channels 2-3 hosts occasional secondary musical cues mixed with the first one;
Channels 4-7 is used for diffuse environmental sounds;
Channels 8-12 for audio sources with volume calculated upon the distance from the player;
Channel 13 for footsteps with volume calculated upon the perspective scaling of the player and different step effects based on the type of terrain the player is walking upon;
Channels 14-32 are used for other simple occasional sound effects.

Everything can be done easily, supporting once again the goodness of a difficult choice, the one which led us from a well known program, AGS, to another one, MMF, completely different and not ready to create graphic adventures before having spent much time developing a proper engine.
From a certain point of view, we're recreating AGS inside MMF plus building a SOTE engine.


  1. Cool. Nice to hear from you again! Now this is exactly one month after the last post, isn't it, then?

    That newly redesigned GUI that you've talked about before looks much better than I thought. When I saw it in the other older screenshot I was fairly hesitant to accept it for its 'junky' grey look (lol, reference to the look of the Millenium Falcon spaceship), and the large chunk of space that it's taken up at the top. That last part is unusual when you'd have thought that most adventure games of this ilk would have rather put something like that on the bottom of the screen. But today is the age when the GUI design and icons are supposed to be minimalist and sparse, especially in the adventure genre where you can often open up the menu(s) from inside the game. But still, I think that very chunky bar is taking up a bit too much space at the top. So, what you could do is to make it slide and disappear across into the top of the screen line when the mouse cursor moves away from hovering above it, or to be toggled on/off by a keypress.

    Or, maybe; and I'm sorry to say this if it annoys you, and would require more efforts from you for this free game, lol; you could redesign the GUI all over again. Lol. Yes, really, I do think that you'd have to do it if you want to attract better critical acclaim from people around the world, and to avoid that niggling criticism that some, or many like potentially me may have if you had kept that new bar.

    *Another question: Now, where is that huge background picture of the Coruscant cityscape that was here before you posted this blog? It's so pretty, love it. Why did you remove it?

  2. 1) Of course it disappears on mouse-off. Actually the GUI of SOTE has always been disapperaing since the first 2004 Tech Demo (disappearing + placed on top = ispired by Beneath a Steel Sky), and more than ever it is now! Never on earth I'd keep a big GUI always visible. The game is fullscreen (and now widescreen) most of the time.
    The image above is cut down and the game screen is both wider and higher than what you see there, so the GUI seems to occupy more space than it really does, and it happens only when it shows up.
    It's not minimal, sure. But consider that this adventure has a rétro flavor, and 15-20 years ago GUI interfaces occupied half of the screen and were firmly stuck :D

    2) Hey, LOL, the Coruscant background is still there. Try refresh!

  3. Phew, cool. Thank you. "and now widescreen". Yes! That is now even more epically cooler, as you'd be catering this adventure to more people who has got a widescreen monitor, or might be considering one.

    Yes, I agree with you that this thing is a very retro game. Yeah, I've had experience as a little kid with what many adventures, and many other games looked like on the screen. The real-time strategy games seemed to be only the acceptable genre for the kind of big, fixed GUI that are placed on-screen nowadays.

    Yes, I see the background, but not yesterday. Weird. Maybe I visited here yesterday on the Safari browser, so only blue colour. But now I see it there, too, as well.

  4. Fuck yeah, SOTE is alive! I have been following this project from the start (aka years), and when the old site told the project was put on hold I lost all hope for this project. Now I stumbled on this site on accident and was overjoyed to see that guys still work on this project. Maybe we can actually have a faithful adventure game rendition of SOTE after all!

  5. That's my final goal, Teemu, and though it's a very hard one to achieve, I assure you that every effort will be made. This time I'm not bound to wait others' work to be done, I can do everything by myself, and if the rest of the team finds some time may even help me. Working on a new engine is always the longest task, but when it will be over, the game creation rate will be way faster than before.

  6. Please update the blog more often... Pleeeeeease.

  7. Greetings, Boba. I've been following this project for a couple of years and I really wish to see this game finally coming to an end and to play it. I would like to see this videogame finished at the same time I fear it won't never be that way due to the difficulties implying in these works. However, in my blog, I have written a critical and excited article about three amateur graphic adventures, one of them is your Star Wars: Shadows of the Empire. Thank you for your effort and take a look if you like.

  8. Thank you E., I can understand your concerns about what seems to be too ambitious and impossible to accomplish. That's why I'm trying to speed up the restart of the project with a new engine. It's a tricky passage and the engine must be perfect in every aspect. Hang on, and you'll be happy with the result!

  9. Nice to see you guys are still developing this... I'm looking forward to seeing the final project.


  10. woooh this game is more Hyping then TOR online *.*