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khadri0109

Newbie Composer Question.

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If one was wanting to start composing music for video games, what program would one use and what format would one save the files in? With my limited knowledge of music software I was thinking fruity loops but not sure what format to save it in or if I am even on the right track. Any help would be greatly appreciated.

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This is a case where Fruity Loops is not your friend.

I'm not a composer myself but I've heard good stuff come out of Garage Band. If you've got the cash and you want something professional go with ProTools. If you would rather go with something totally free you could use something like ModPlug, ScreamTracker and so on to create sample based music.

As far as mix-downs, you'll want to keep your source music files but for distribution you'll want to use a format like MP3. If a developer wants it in a different format they'll let you know.

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Fruity loops is a fine program to start making music with. I personally find it intuitive and easy to use, while also being able to do more complex things.
Depending on what kind of music you want to make and the amount of money you have to spend, you may want to look into VST plugins or Soundfonts for some samples to use. VSTs and Soundfonts can be free (like Hammersound), but real quality will cost you something.

About the format, the working format will of course be FL's format. To export it as audio, I recommend you export it as a wave file and use another program to convert it to what you need for the game (I use CDex). Depending on the game engine, you may need mp3, ogg or something different. Exporting it as a wav file means you keep all the audio in raw form and can convert it to the right format as needed.

Hope this helps [smile]

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Thanks to you both that helped a lot. I will look into the items listed. Right now my budget is a shoestring and maybe some lint so the free one is where I am going to look.

As for the format question thanks a lot. I will be saving them to .wav as it makes the most sense.

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My opinion might not be as helpful because I was blessed with having friends in low places in the audio engineering industry, but I use Finale 2009 to write all of my music, and then programs like Cakewalk and a program called Traktor (it's a program to distort and add other guitar like effects to sound files) to tweak it up and change the sound banks to something a little less midi sounding.

With that in mind, I start my files off as .MUS (Finale's default save). Then when I am finished, I save it into .mid format so that I can read it into Cakewalk. Once I am done adding my final tweaks in Cakewalk, I save the file into .wav format. For anyone who doesn't know anything about .wav files, they are huge, but they are tons faster than .mp3's or .ogg because your computer doesn't have to worry about decompressing them. If you have small effects that you are looping (5-15 seconds), KEEP IT AS A .WAV, if you are adding a full 5 minute clip or longer, you might want to look into converting them into another format for total program size issues.

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Fruity Loops isn't really the type of application you want, it's just a sequencer (or at least it was when i used to use it for drum tracks).

You want something like Cubase, Sonar, and to a lesser extent pro tools (great quality, but it's not just software, its a hardware/software platform, as the software only works well with digidesign hardware, and now m-audio stuff).

I've always used Cubase, but its all preference.

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A few free ones i tried are Hydrogen and LMMS. I'm not that good at making music as it turns out (although i find it quite fun), but i thought LMMS had potential.
btw, You can get LMMS for Windows (and Mac?) too.

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