Author Topic: CD-Quality Video-Game Music Revisited  (Read 234 times)

L. Spiro

  • Freak
  • *
  • Posts: 798
  • Karma: 13
    • View Profile
    • http://www.memoryhacking.com/index.php
CD-Quality Video-Game Music Revisited
« on: 2018-10-18 23:42:27 »
As many know I have been working on creating modern high-quality versions of songs from many Nintendo 64 games. These are all the actual songs from the games (not from the CD or USF, nor are they remixes).
My goal here is to be completely faithful to the original songs, but to produce the highest-quality versions so we can enjoy them in very crisp and clear detail.

Here is the full set:
https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCCtX_wedtZ5BoyQBXEhnVZw/playlists

Individual:
Banjo-Kazooie: https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLWsnao9n727OWhQxTNtrJFWvan9ENsowK
Mario Kart 64: https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLWsnao9n727N0kvUyaQ8bVsEw7PKIfZYi
GoldenEye 007: https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLWsnao9n727PT17V5AzCkZYEQqeuVm01E
Star Fox 64: https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLWsnao9n727Ny5RG7siCJVaImhFg0d_pZ
Killer Instinct Gold: https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLWsnao9n727N6eMJQCouQ-UpAx3DlzpT0
Super Smash Bros.: https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLWsnao9n727NlIzmfwrm5qVORx7J9M8k_
Diddy Kong Racing: https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLWsnao9n727OwZvkCbzk4zhHish0rt1DX
Super Mario 64: https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLWsnao9n727P3kRO3cVBODM2In05sHW5s
Blast Corps: https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLWsnao9n727P409h_v2pItgObGSMxdZ1A

Perfect Dark coming soon.


I would like to do the same thing with Final Fantasy VII.  Has anyone made a "best and most accurate" set of samples, MIDI files, and bank data for Final Fantasy VII?  The original PC release had some problems in that department and I didn't see this exact thing in the audio section here.


L. Spiro
« Last Edit: 2018-10-19 00:00:51 by L. Spiro »

Covarr

  • Covarr-Let
  • Administrator
  • No life
  • *
  • Posts: 3995
  • Karma: 122
  • Just Covarr. No "n".
    • View Profile
Re: CD-Quality Video-Game Music Revisited
« Reply #1 on: 2018-10-18 23:47:25 »
You've pasted your links wrong. All of them got truncated in the middle with rogue ellipses inserted in their stead. Did you copy this from a post on another forum? If so, it's better to copy the post's source than the final rendered post, because many boards have a tendency to shorten URLs for display.

L. Spiro

  • Freak
  • *
  • Posts: 798
  • Karma: 13
    • View Profile
    • http://www.memoryhacking.com/index.php
Re: CD-Quality Video-Game Music Revisited
« Reply #2 on: 2018-10-19 00:05:12 »
Fixed.
Do we have the original samples and MIDI files for the music on the PlayStation version of Final Fantasy VII?  If so I can do this same thing to the entire Final Fantasy VII OST as well.


L. Spiro

faulked

  • Fast newbie
  • *
  • Posts: 26
  • Karma: 9
    • View Profile
Re: CD-Quality Video-Game Music Revisited
« Reply #3 on: 2018-10-19 06:17:12 »
This is great work. Never heard Star Fox 64 sound as good! Could you possibly do Ogre Battle 64? I'd loved to hear it in HQ too.  ;D

Another question. Would it be feasible to apply this same technique to GBA games? All the GBA soundtracks are spoiled by the compressed samples which causes hissing. To hear GBA music in HQ would be remarkable.
« Last Edit: 2018-10-19 06:25:39 by faulked »

L. Spiro

  • Freak
  • *
  • Posts: 798
  • Karma: 13
    • View Profile
    • http://www.memoryhacking.com/index.php
Re: CD-Quality Video-Game Music Revisited
« Reply #4 on: 2018-10-19 06:39:50 »
I believe I can do this for GameBoy Advance, Nintendo DS, Nintendo 3DS, etc., and do have plans to look into it.
To do any given game I will need a copy of the game in some form.  Ogre Battle 64 is not a game I have.


L. Spiro

Kaldarasha

  • No life
  • *
  • Posts: 2270
  • Karma: 135
  • Prince of Model Editing
    • View Profile
Re: CD-Quality Video-Game Music Revisited
« Reply #5 on: 2018-10-19 06:52:31 »
I think you can get the midi of the psx from this site: https://musical-artifacts.com/artifacts/588

L. Spiro

  • Freak
  • *
  • Posts: 798
  • Karma: 13
    • View Profile
    • http://www.memoryhacking.com/index.php
Re: CD-Quality Video-Game Music Revisited
« Reply #6 on: 2018-10-19 07:25:46 »
To be 1,000% clear, these are the actual samples from the PlayStation version?  And all the SoundFont parameters (pan, vibrato, fade times, etc.) are correct?
How does this compare to the SoundFonts used in the old PC version by Eidos?

How compatible are these with the PC SoundFont MIDI files?  Don’t the PC MIDI files have tracks missing and other alterations?  So shouldn’t I need a PlayStation rip of the MIDI as well, or are the PC versions good?


L. Spiro

Kaldarasha

  • No life
  • *
  • Posts: 2270
  • Karma: 135
  • Prince of Model Editing
    • View Profile
Re: CD-Quality Video-Game Music Revisited
« Reply #7 on: 2018-10-19 09:11:08 »
As far as I have investigated it, these are midi files converted from the PSX midi. I can't say if the parameters are correct since the PSX SPU does modify them in real time depending on the info it gets from the game (AKAO instructions I guess).
There are tools to rip them from the psx game, but honestly I have no experience with those things.
https://www.romhacking.net/utilities/679/
https://www.zophar.net/utilities/psxutil/psound-soundreaver2.html

L. Spiro

  • Freak
  • *
  • Posts: 798
  • Karma: 13
    • View Profile
    • http://www.memoryhacking.com/index.php
Re: CD-Quality Video-Game Music Revisited
« Reply #8 on: 2018-10-19 09:23:41 »
I am not seeing MIDI files on that site, just a SoundFont.


L. Spiro

sithlord48

  • No life
  • *
  • Posts: 1479
  • Karma: 33
  • Dark Lord of the Savegame
    • View Profile
    • Blackchocobo
Re: CD-Quality Video-Game Music Revisited
« Reply #9 on: 2018-10-19 17:22:35 »
Just wondering why not release as FLAC? I don't think that the youtube mp4a codec is using lossless mode.

L. Spiro

  • Freak
  • *
  • Posts: 798
  • Karma: 13
    • View Profile
    • http://www.memoryhacking.com/index.php
Re: CD-Quality Video-Game Music Revisited
« Reply #10 on: 2018-10-19 17:36:28 »
I release as WAV instead of as FLAC with no particular preference for either other than to remain consistent, so they will continue being released as .WAV.
https://www.dropbox.com/s/v7jf2d5z3odqr7g/GoldenEye%20007.rar?dl=0


L. Spiro

Covarr

  • Covarr-Let
  • Administrator
  • No life
  • *
  • Posts: 3995
  • Karma: 122
  • Just Covarr. No "n".
    • View Profile
Re: CD-Quality Video-Game Music Revisited
« Reply #11 on: 2018-10-19 18:36:11 »
Would it be feasible to apply this same technique to GBA games?
GBA is really, REALLY weird for audio. It's got six sound channels. Four are literally chiptune stuff such as square waves carried over from the GB, present for backwards-compatibility, but also used in several GBA games. The other two channels don't have any sequencing capability. Rather, they are fed an audio stream from the CPU, which handles all sequencing and sample-based mixing in software. This means a few things:

  • There is no guaranteed, defined format for music. A lot of games use the "Sappy" engine for mixing music, and it's well enough documented that it's not too hard to rip its samples and sequences, and then reassemble it in a modern DAW for higher quality. But a lot of games don't, and a lot of games' sound engines are not really understood or documented (or in many cases even begun to be researched, if it's a game nobody cares about). There is no consistent format like you'll see on other systems.
  • Games that use the holdover GB audio channels don't have samples to rip, making accurate reproduction of their particular square waves, noise waves, etc. more challenging. Not impossible, as emulators have done a generally good job, but it does create substantially more effort for someone trying to recreate songs than sample-based music would have.
  • Several games use GB audio and GBA sample audio in tandem, which means all of the challenges of each individual type of audio, plus the added challenge of mixing them together and getting volumes right. This can be easier or harder depending on the sound engine in use.

That said, for games that DO use the Sappy engine, GBAMusRiper will create MIDIs and rip the samples to .sf2 soundfonts, which can make for VERY easy ripping. Here are several GBA soundtracks done like this (as well as several dead links).

L. Spiro

  • Freak
  • *
  • Posts: 798
  • Karma: 13
    • View Profile
    • http://www.memoryhacking.com/index.php
Re: CD-Quality Video-Game Music Revisited
« Reply #12 on: 2018-10-19 19:49:23 »
To make any set I need 3 things:
  • Samples
  • Bank Data (sample key ranges, velocity ranges, pans, etc.)
  • MIDI
(Note that a SoundFont is #1 and #2, and although I do not use SoundFonts, if I am given one I can extract the bank and sample data from it.)

Because Nintendo 64 synthesizes so differently, I have had to make a program to translate a Nintendo 64 MIDI to an actual standard MIDI (so for example I adjust all the Main Volume controls to apply a volume curve that is otherwise handled differently on modern MIDI devices, control 77 (tremolo) is changed to control 1, etc.), so I already have a foundation for modifying the MIDI data directly (this is also how I determine when to fade out based on playing 2 full loops), and due to some patches I have had in the distant past to make to the samples I also have a foundation for custom sample creation and modification (to be clear, as faithfulness is vital, my changes to samples so far have been lossless and non-corrupting; my synthesizer can't play samples with too few samples between loop points, so my tools will detect a loop smaller than 42 samples and simply copy the loop contents (manually playing the loop out) until the loop gets large enough my synthesizer can play it).
I've also been working on my own Nintendo Entertainment System emulator, so I have looked into how some of these tones are generated.

That was a lot just to say these 2 things:
#1: I currently need samples, bank data, and MIDI (and the game/system do not matter).
#2: But I have a good foundation for being able to add support for generated sounds, and I have an interest in this.  If I have a set that needs this to be done, and I am motivated to do the set, these limitations will cease to be.

But those kinds of games will need potentially significant work and I would plan to do that work slowly in the background while getting results from other platforms out, so I am unlikely to take GameBoy Advance too seriously for the moment.
So for now I am more interested in Nintendo DS and Nintendo 3DS.  I am especially motivated to convert this song (for obvious reasons): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RRIum3YdzyU&index=13&list=PLBBDC59D582B26E41


Of course Final Fantasy VII—and any MIDI/sample-based game music—is of interest here as well.
I am trying to be as clear as possible regarding the sample/MIDI assets for Final Fantasy VII because there are so many copies of both the samples and the MIDI files, and most of them are a low-quality set, and since some of the low-quality sets are on the Eidos PC version some of the low-quality ones get touted as being very official and high-quality.
I got the SoundFont in the link given above (https://musical-artifacts.com/artifacts/588).
Is my accounting correct?
  • Samples from the actual PlayStation version: CHECK
  • Accurate bank data from the PlayStation version: CHECK
  • Accurate PlayStation MIDI: NO CHECK

My current plans are:
#1: Finish Perfect Dark (1 day).
#2: The Legend of Zelda: Majora's Mask and The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time (4 weeks total).
#3: Whatever next.

If I have all of the Final Fantasy VII files I need, I will instead do this:
#1: Finish Perfect Dark (1 day).
#2: Final Fantasy VII (1.6 weeks)
#3: The Legend of Zelda: Majora's Mask and The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time (4 weeks total).
#4: Whatever next.


L. Spiro


Note:
I see the link above with GameBoy Advance games has a lot of sets with seemingly accurate SF2 files and seemingly ripped MID files.
That means everything there is a candidate for eventually being put up in HQ as I am doing.
So those are at least some GameBoy Advance songs I can do now.
And maybe I can do more in the future once I have made enough tools to properly mix sample-based and generated tones (and at the very least I can record generated tones and use them as samples if I become really desperate).
« Last Edit: 2018-10-21 02:38:01 by L. Spiro »