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      GameDev.net and CRC Press have teamed up to bring a free ebook of content curated from top titles published by CRC Press. The freebook, Practices of Game Design & Indie Game Marketing, includes chapters from The Art of Game Design: A Book of Lenses, A Practical Guide to Indie Game Marketing, and An Architectural Approach to Level Design. The GameDev.net FreeBook is relevant to game designers, developers, and those interested in learning more about the challenges in game development. We know game development can be a tough discipline and business, so we picked several chapters from CRC Press titles that we thought would be of interest to you, the GameDev.net audience, in your journey to design, develop, and market your next game. The free ebook is available through CRC Press by clicking here. The Curated Books The Art of Game Design: A Book of Lenses, Second Edition, by Jesse Schell Presents 100+ sets of questions, or different lenses, for viewing a game’s design, encompassing diverse fields such as psychology, architecture, music, film, software engineering, theme park design, mathematics, anthropology, and more. Written by one of the world's top game designers, this book describes the deepest and most fundamental principles of game design, demonstrating how tactics used in board, card, and athletic games also work in video games. It provides practical instruction on creating world-class games that will be played again and again. View it here. A Practical Guide to Indie Game Marketing, by Joel Dreskin Marketing is an essential but too frequently overlooked or minimized component of the release plan for indie games. A Practical Guide to Indie Game Marketing provides you with the tools needed to build visibility and sell your indie games. With special focus on those developers with small budgets and limited staff and resources, this book is packed with tangible recommendations and techniques that you can put to use immediately. As a seasoned professional of the indie game arena, author Joel Dreskin gives you insight into practical, real-world experiences of marketing numerous successful games and also provides stories of the failures. View it here. An Architectural Approach to Level Design This is one of the first books to integrate architectural and spatial design theory with the field of level design. The book presents architectural techniques and theories for level designers to use in their own work. It connects architecture and level design in different ways that address the practical elements of how designers construct space and the experiential elements of how and why humans interact with this space. Throughout the text, readers learn skills for spatial layout, evoking emotion through gamespaces, and creating better levels through architectural theory. View it here. Learn more and download the ebook by clicking here. Did you know? GameDev.net and CRC Press also recently teamed up to bring GDNet+ Members up to a 20% discount on all CRC Press books. Learn more about this and other benefits here.

Calum Bowen

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  1.   Thank you GroovyOne! I asked Surasshu and Aivi Tran whether they'd be interested in doing a remix and they created that absolutely gorgeous remix of 'Cloudy Forest'! I had no hand in it :~)
  2. ?It's finished! It's really finished!?   Woohoo! It's been about a year of work but it's finally been finished! I'm so so happy to be releasing the soundtrack and I hope ya all enjoy it!   FEATURING:   • OVER AN HOUR OF HAPPINESS IN .WAV FORMAT! • Amazing remixes from aivi & surasshu, HyperDuck SoundWorks, Blitz Lunar, Zackery Wilson and Saint Pepsi! • 5 piano arrangement sheets included with download!     STREAM/DOWNLOAD FROM BANDCAMP OR LOUDR   This is probably the biggest thing I've ever made and I'm dreadfully proud of it. I'd love to hear feedback from people!   p.s. you can also buy the game/play the demo here
  3. I agree with Jason & Nathan about the length and redundancy of some of the similar styles. I found myself skipping through a lot of the tracks. I think, personally, they don't all need to start and end - you could cross-fade between tracks mid-flow and this might make the listening experience a little less laborious.   I think the orchestral style is where you shine so I'd suggest trying to get as diversity as you can within that. The more chirpy tracks at the end could have been placed between some of the quite dark and intense orchestral pieces towards the beginning of the showreel for more a immediate show of diversity. Some feedback on Wolf Bane (track 4) - I was struck by how far right the drums were panned on this. I would consider centre'ing them as the panning seemed to weaken the effect of the drums and made everything sound a little imbalanced in my ears.   Those were my impressions! :~)  Calum
  4.     Thanks Kryzon! :~)   OK, the bass - as with a lot of latin music (and really most other music as well) the most common bassline is one that goes from the root to the fifth and back again. That's pretty much what I'm doing in the whole song. A way to get a little variation on this is to use a leading note - so if I was going from the chord of Cmajor to the chord of F major I'd be playing C and G for the C chord then just before going to F major I'd play an E to lead up to the F. You can also use the note just above the root note of the chord you're heading to if you're so inclined.   So using leading notes and sticking to the root and fifth (also feel free to throw in octaves!) is how I went about creating my bassline. I feel that unless it's a bass riff or a brief run that's leading somewhere specific, playing anything other than root or fifth or leading notes messy with the harmony a bit too much for my taste! I hope this helps!
  5.   Haha striking again! :~O    Thanks Case, I think I have a bit of an obsession with re-arranging! I'm very glad you like it!     Moritz!! Thank you! I'm very happy to be finding a distinctive voice!  :~)
  6.   Thanks a lot Nate! :~)         Well, the drums I mainly used were logic pro 9's 'studio tight kit' as well as the standard drum kit from Yellow Tools' Independence Free (which is... free). The Yellow Tool's one has a really lovely flam and drag flam (I forget my drum rudiment names but it's something like that!)! Thanks Ollie!
  7. [url=http://calumbowen.bandcamp.com/album/marble-time-official-soundtrack/][/url]   hey everyone! I just released a super chill, nintendo-style, jazz, feel-good, puzzle game soundtrack.   [url=http://calumbowen.bandcamp.com/album/marble-time-official-soundtrack]??CLICK?HERE?CLICK HERE?CLICK?HERE??[/url]   the whole OST is an exercise in re-harmonisation of one main theme (set out in the titles first track). I had a hellova lotta fun making it so I hope people enjoy it! There's a killer (free) remix by rukunetsu on there as well!    p.s. the game's got some mindblogglin puzzles! [url=https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/marble-time!/id630866259?ls=1&mt=8]so feel free to check it out![/url]   I would love to hear feedback.   Thanks guys! Calum
  8. Back on topic, I received a lovely performance of the main theme piano arrangement I wrote:   http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CQtl3BC9kCE   Working on more piano sheets. Any suggestions for which pieces to do arrangements of? I'm thinking March of the Green Lands, Frost Fandango and maybe Bonus Boogie.
  9.   Mmm. I think it's mostly that they're using the kinda chords & progressions that I'm super fond of. Listening to Theme of Prontera! Purity of Your Smile as well! These are some slow jams. Hahaha, this is amazing. I love that this isn't too far off from an R. Kelly instrumental, and, in the context of an MMORPG... jammin' & grindin'! Listening to a few more tracks, it sounds like there was more than one composer on the team. I'm pretty into these tracks, gonna see which composer this was. Mmm... this white christmas track is sweet too. 
  10.   Haha yes i did the children's voices myself! :~D It was kind of an experiment which surprisingly turned out alright! I was spurred on by this song and, in hindsight, Yoshi's Story! I've never played or heard stuff from Ragnarok Online but listening now - oh my god! Yeah, this is definitely the kind of music I love to write. I think I've found a new soundtrack to fall in love with! Thanks Madhed!
  11. Mmm, I get what you mean. I'm keen to have the vocals there but for them not to be distracting (and I also don't want them to be frustratingly distant :~D) - but it's difficult to judge being so aware of them.   I'm gonna play around with taking them out or bringing them up front in the next build. Thanks for the feedback!
  12. Thanks so much Python!  :~)
  13. Ah, OK! I'll have another look at the vocals in the main theme, python.  Ah! Thanks DumaFaa!! Got some more news: As part of the Super Ubi Land kickstarter, I've put together a 9-track EP of some of my favourite tracks from the OST so far (including 3 unreleased secret tracks!) There's also piano sheet music inside and a little thank you pdf! The EP is available in any of the reward bundles over 10$.   [url=http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/1331957958/super-ubi-land/]Click Here to go to the Super Ubi Land Kickstarter page[/url] [url=http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/1331957958/super-ubi-land/][/url]   Tracklist:   1. Main Theme 2. Bonus Boogie 3. Midnight Lake 4. March of The Green Lands 5. Frost Fandango 6. Shop Theme 7. ? ? ? 8. ? ? ? 9. ? ? ?   [url=https://soundcloud.com/calumbowen/sets/super-ubi-land]You can stream tracks 1-6 on soundcloud right now[/url]   This soundtrack has been (and will continue to be) my baby for the past 8 months so I really hope those who are interested enjoy it. For those who cannot spare 10$, I've put up the main theme for free download from now until monday! [url=https://soundcloud.com/calumbowen/super-ubi-land-main-theme]Click here to download while you still can![/url]   Apologies for a potentially spammy post, anything involving money seems to come off as a bit of a sales pitch. I hope everyone enjoys the music whether they pledge or not! :~D    (apologies to those of you also on TIGs who have already seen this :~D) Calum
  14.   do you mean in the main theme or the others? I was conscious not to make the vocals too loud in the others since when they were up front, they kind of made it feel like it wasn't level music anymore - a little bit too distracting in my opinion.   Another track down! Bonus level: https://soundcloud.com/calumbowen/super-ubi-land-bonus-boogie
  15. Alrighty! Here's mine: https://soundcloud.com/calumbowen