Xeen and Roland synths

Emulation of old PCs, PC hardware, or PC peripherals.

Re: Xeen and Roland synths

Postby TURRICAN0 » 2011-9-25 @ 17:08

HunterZ wrote:TURRICAN0:

Thanks for sharing that info and DOSBox patch! I put down Xeen not long after last posting in this thread because it was a bit too cheesy to keep me interested, but it's good to know what's going on and that there's a workaround available thanks to your efforts.

I would also guess that the DOSBox developers would not be interested in incorporating the patch, but there is a healthy community of DOSBox users who like to incorporate unofficial patches into unofficial builds. I'm sure your efforts will be appreciated by people one way or another.


Well, it's already appreciated by other people, here : http://queststudios.com/smf/index.php?topic=2483.0


robertmo wrote:TURRICAN0, Munt emulates cm32-l/lapc-i perfectly so no need for your patch :)
(you can test that in latest ykhwong's dosbox build)


Jan3Sobieski wrote:So for the sake of argument, will any of these external Roland devices play World of Xeen correctly at default with all correct sounds present? I mean with no modifications?

1. MT-32 1st gen
2. MT-32 2nd gen
3. SC-55
4. SC-55MKII
5. CM-32L
6. CM-64
7. CM-300
8. CM-500


Both "Might and Magic IV : Clouds of Xeen" and "Might and Magic V : Darkside of Xeen" (= "Might and Magic : World of Xeen") are meant to be played (and then work fine) with the original Roland Sound Canvas SC-55/SCC-1, and with any other Sound Canvas product based on it, like the SC-155, CM-300 and CM-500 (in GS mode of course).

These games make use of many instruments that the MT-32 based synthesizers don't have, one of the most noticeable being the Choir : if these games also have MT-32/CM-32L/LAPC-I support, it's for the same obvious reason that they also have FM synthesis (OPL2/OPL3) support too.

However, the prequel, called "Might and Magic III : Isles of Terra", is a game meant to be played with the MT-32, or rather the CM-32L/LAPC-I : it makes heavy use of most of the extra sound effects, like the Footsteps, Punch, Thunder, Stream, Bubble, Heartbeat, Screaming ... in fact, unlike the 2 sequels, it doesn't play any digitized sound effect at all with the Sound Blaster cards.
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Re: Xeen and Roland synths

Postby tikalat » 2013-5-07 @ 16:37

Made ips patch from TURRICAN0's info. Can be used with MM4 + MM5 (standalone or world xeen).

Not fully tested. Haven't done Swords of Xeen.
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world of xeen - roland midi fix.7z
mm4 + mm5 rolan midi fix
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Re: Xeen and Roland synths

Postby robertmo » 2013-5-08 @ 05:28

Why games meant to be played on sc-55/scc-1 use instrument variations which don't exist on those modules? Developers bug they didn't care about as it worked correctly? or music was actually written for some other module?
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Re: Xeen and Roland synths

Postby HunterZ » 2013-5-08 @ 15:43

robertmo wrote:Why games meant to be played on sc-55/scc-1 use instrument variations which don't exist on those modules? Developers bug they didn't care about as it worked correctly? or music was actually written for some other module?

If I understand correctly, it does play as intended on first-generation SC-55, but only because they were depending on an anachronism of its design to avoid having to send Bank Select events to switch from using a non-capital instrument A to a capital instrument B.

Unfortunately the fallback behavior is different/absent in later SC synths, causing the music to play back improperly without those Bank Select events being present.

What I don't understand is why a Program Change without a Bank Select wouldn't implicitly result in selection of Bank 0. Why would you even want to switch between instruments/programs within the same bank? Most of the bank numbers have unique meanings for each instrument.
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Re: Xeen and Roland synths

Postby KainXVIII » 2015-6-25 @ 09:26

So the way its meant to be played (if you can't use real soundcard) in dosbox is to use virtual sound canvas? Or some soundfont (which?) for bassmidi? Or even cm-32l emulation through munt?
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Re: Xeen and Roland synths

Postby HunterZ » 2015-6-25 @ 14:24

Best option is probably CM-32L via Munt.
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Re: Xeen and Roland synths

Postby KainXVIII » 2015-6-25 @ 14:44

HunterZ wrote:Best option is probably CM-32L via Munt.

Thanks!
Too bad it will sounds not as cool as in this video
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2n4U-mZ-uho
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Re: Xeen and Roland synths

Postby lordskylark » 2018-11-23 @ 04:48

I know this is a very old post. But I do have contacts with some of the game's creators, specifically with the music composers. All of the music for Xeen (with an exception of the alternate Sound Canvas versions) were made for MT-32 NOT SC-55. So the MT-32 version of the soundtrack is the version that the original composers composed. It was later adapted into an enhanced Roland Canvas version by some programmer who was NOT the original composer. (You can see some relics of this too, such as in "outday4" where the MT-32 instrument is a "timpani", but the SC-55 instrument is "tinker bell". They are the same midi channel, but the ROland Enchancer did not change the SC-55 version to the proper "timpani".) I think the SC-55 versions overall sound better, but they are not how the music was originally intended. And Darkside has much more problems with the SC-55 version than the MT-32 does. The main problem is that SC-55 only has 24 polysnyth, whereas MT-32 has 32 polysnyth. So many of the notes keep dropping out due to this polysnyth problem. (It actually doesn't have much (if at all) to do with capital tones when dealing with the music.) And because they were originally MT-32 midis, merely with the instruments changed for the SC-55 version, some of the SC-55 instruments are not entirely properly balanced. The SC-55 versions of Clouds seem to be nearly perfect, but Darkside are not. But Todd Hendrix did the sound programming for Clouds and Mike Heileman (or something) did it for Darkside. And Todd definitely did a much better job.
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Re: Xeen and Roland synths

Postby HunterZ » 2018-11-23 @ 05:58

lordskylark: Thanks for the info. It's odd that you mention the MT-32 rather than the CM-32L, though, as it appears that the games take special advantage of the latter.
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Re: Xeen and Roland synths

Postby lordskylark » 2018-11-23 @ 06:58

The music for MM3 (most), MM4 (all), MM5 (most) and Planet's Edge (50%) were all done by Tim Tully and his friends, even though he is not credited in MM3. George Sanger did the title theme for MM3 and Planet's Edge. I have no idea who did the rest. Both of them composed using MT-32 (I am in personal contact with both of them). It is possible that the game itself was designed for CM-32L, even though the music was composed on MT-32 (except for the alternate Canvas version of the MM4 and MM5 Openeing -- those were designed for SC-55 by Tim Tully -- someone else, probably the sound programmers designs the Canvas versions for the rest of the music).

There is also a strange programming error with all of those four games. The programmer of .M music format used in those games, made a programming error. So ALL of the music tracks play 2 semitones lower than the original compositions as composed.
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Re: Xeen and Roland synths

Postby KainXVIII » 2018-11-23 @ 08:30

One day maybe we will play M&M games with intended music (dare to dream!)
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Re: Xeen and Roland synths

Postby lordskylark » 2018-11-23 @ 09:09

I purchased an MT-32 (new -- must use to avoid buffer error, and quieter for sound quality) and SC-55 (original make ROM 1.20) to record the music from MM3~5 in order to preserve it properly. I'll be doing both the MT-32 and SC-55 soundtracks. I am also going to be recording each instrument channel completely separately, in order to avoid all polysynth problems, and then combine them into one file. At the moment, I will plan to upload it to youtube when I am finished.
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Re: Xeen and Roland synths

Postby KainXVIII » 2018-11-23 @ 09:34

lordskylark wrote:I purchased an MT-32 (new -- must use to avoid buffer error, and quieter for sound quality) and SC-55 (original make ROM 1.20) to record the music from MM3~5 in order to preserve it properly. I'll be doing both the MT-32 and SC-55 soundtracks. I am also going to be recording each instrument channel completely separately, in order to avoid all polysynth problems, and then combine them into one file. At the moment, I will plan to upload it to youtube when I am finished.

Thanks, looking forward to hear it!
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Re: Xeen and Roland synths

Postby lordskylark » 2018-11-27 @ 11:22

Also, does anyone have an actual Soundblaster Pro or 16 (I'm not sure what was the intended soundcard for the FM version) they could use for recording? For this project, I would be interested in getting the music recorded with an authentic non-emulation SBPro/16. I have a DOS music player for playing the unique .M file format associated with Xeen. (And the might and magic 3 files shouldn't be too difficult to record by playing the game itself). I would much rather have something like that for the project than using my previous emulation rip. (I did one back in 2000 on my old computer then, but the encoding was only 128 and features some errors as well as missing some unused tracks.)
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Re: Xeen and Roland synths

Postby lordskylark » 2018-12-07 @ 07:14

KainXVIII wrote:
lordskylark wrote:I purchased an MT-32 (new -- must use to avoid buffer error, and quieter for sound quality) and SC-55 (original make ROM 1.20) to record the music from MM3~5 in order to preserve it properly. I'll be doing both the MT-32 and SC-55 soundtracks. I am also going to be recording each instrument channel completely separately, in order to avoid all polysynth problems, and then combine them into one file. At the moment, I will plan to upload it to youtube when I am finished.

Thanks, looking forward to hear it!


I have the MM4 SC-55 soundtrack recorded and uploaded (both as an individual playlist and as separate tracks) to my youtube account:

Single file soundtrack: XXXX (EDIT - new URL)
Playlist for separate files: https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=P ... nh1RIXAWzb

I am planning for the SC-55 MM5 one to be done by next weekend.
Once the Roland MT-32 arrives, I will be working on MM3~5, plus Planet's Edge, and some other misc. stuff. Since the MT-32 are the original versions, this version will have more alternate and unused tracks than the SC-55 one.

EDIT -- FULL LIST OF SOUNDTRACKS I RECORDED WHICH INCLUDE TIM TULLY'S MUSIC

MM3 MT-32 https://youtu.be/BigCkpgCW3U
MM4 MT-32 https://youtu.be/W9Bs7IWNAAc
MM4 SC-55 https://youtu.be/5ihLBARqf6g
MM5 MT-32 https://youtu.be/SGQXdv4DtsU
MM5 SC-55 https://youtu.be/vBcMeW_Ep0k
Planet's Edge MT-32 https://youtu.be/wy1_Hbtrk_w
AMbush at Sorinor MT-32 https://youtu.be/60k4gGNk8E0
Last edited by lordskylark on 2019-2-25 @ 02:40, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Xeen and Roland synths

Postby KainXVIII » 2018-12-07 @ 08:27

lordskylark wrote:
KainXVIII wrote:
lordskylark wrote:I purchased an MT-32 (new -- must use to avoid buffer error, and quieter for sound quality) and SC-55 (original make ROM 1.20) to record the music from MM3~5 in order to preserve it properly. I'll be doing both the MT-32 and SC-55 soundtracks. I am also going to be recording each instrument channel completely separately, in order to avoid all polysynth problems, and then combine them into one file. At the moment, I will plan to upload it to youtube when I am finished.

Thanks, looking forward to hear it!


I have the MM4 SC-55 soundtrack recorded and uploaded (both as an individual playlist and as separate tracks) to my youtube account:

Single file soundtrack: https://youtu.be/5ihLBARqf6g
Playlist for separate files: https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=P ... nh1RIXAWzb

I am planning for the SC-55 MM5 one to be done by next weekend.
Once the Roland MT-32 arrives, I will be working on MM3~5, plus Planet's Edge, and some other misc. stuff. Since the MT-32 are the original versions, this version will have more alternate and unused tracks than the SC-55 one.

Thanks, what a great work!
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Re: Xeen and Roland synths

Postby lordskylark » 2018-12-25 @ 03:25

Does anyone know exactly which version of Soundblaster (regular, 16, Pro, etc.) that Might and Magic 3~5 were designed for? (And it is possible that not all were designed for the same one either. I could see MM3 being different than MM4~5). Because I would like to pursue recording that version of the soundtrack with the authentic equipment too, if possible.
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Re: Xeen and Roland synths

Postby citrixscu » 2019-1-15 @ 17:54

@lordskylark

Good question. MM3 sounds good with the CM32L. If I had to guess, I'd say MM3 would be Sound Blaster and MM4/5 SB Pro or SB16, but that's just looking at the release dates of the cards and games.
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Re: Xeen and Roland synths

Postby clueless1 » 2019-1-17 @ 10:41

lordskylark wrote:I have the MM4 SC-55 soundtrack recorded and uploaded (both as an individual playlist and as separate tracks) to my youtube account:

Single file soundtrack: https://youtu.be/5ihLBARqf6g
Playlist for separate files: https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=P ... nh1RIXAWzb

I am planning for the SC-55 MM5 one to be done by next weekend.
Once the Roland MT-32 arrives, I will be working on MM3~5, plus Planet's Edge, and some other misc. stuff. Since the MT-32 are the original versions, this version will have more alternate and unused tracks than the SC-55 one.

Thank you! This is awesome. :cool:
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Re: Xeen and Roland synths

Postby lordskylark » 2019-1-31 @ 21:06

lordskylark wrote:The music for MM3 (most), MM4 (all), MM5 (most) and Planet's Edge (50%) were all done by Tim Tully and his friends, even though he is not credited in MM3. George Sanger did the title theme for MM3 and Planet's Edge. I have no idea who did the rest. Both of them composed using MT-32 (I am in personal contact with both of them). It is possible that the game itself was designed for CM-32L, even though the music was composed on MT-32 (except for the alternate Canvas version of the MM4 and MM5 Openeing -- those were designed for SC-55 by Tim Tully -- someone else, probably the sound programmers designs the Canvas versions for the rest of the music).

There is also a strange programming error with all of those four games. The programmer of .M music format used in those games, made a programming error. So ALL of the music tracks play 2 semitones lower than the original compositions as composed.



So I think I should update this thread.

Tim Tully suffered some serious memory problems, so he actually does not recall everything all that good.

So, going through his personal notes:
- The original commission from Jon Van Caneghem to Tim Tully requests for the music for MM3~5 & Planet's Edge to be composed for MT-32.
- The midi files seem to be designed for MT-32 (but CM-32L should sound the same)
- However, in another paper, Tim Tully responds to two potential clients, where he states that he will be sending them demo reels of his music, which includes tracks from MM3~5 and PE. In these letters, he states that the tracks were recorded on the demo reel with a CM-32L.
- The MM3 game does add an CM-32L SFX -- chimes -- to the game version of the temple music, but this is NOT present in the original midi - which means that the sound programmer (Todd Hendrix) must have added it. So, this is not decisive.
- For MM5, in one of the original midi files, there is a track labeled "horse" -- which is probably referring to the CM-32L horse soundeffect. The track is blank, which means it was deleted by the time the midi was finalized and submitted to NWC. However, it shows that the MM5 track must have been composed with the extra instruments from CM-32L.

- Now, most of the tracks for those games were actually composed by Greg Alper under Tim Tully, and then Tim Tully revised them.
- While many of the original versions before Tim Tully got ahold of them did not exist, I did find one that exists accidentally (usually the original sequences seem to have been deleted from the Performer files after Tim Tully edited them, but one file seems to have retained the original sequence by accident?). The original version of the "inn" music from MM4 (used in the title screen) which Greg Alper sent to Tim Tully, consists of 16 channels - which is obviously more than the MT-32. This was then downsized to the MT-32 version which would then have been submitted to New World Computing (so NWC would never have received the original 16 channel version).

- When I talked with Greg Alper, he does not recall having an MT-32, but he does recall having an SC-55 (which he clearly used for Warcraft 1 for example)
- NWC specifically comissioned for unique versions of the MM4 and MM5 opening themes to be composed for SC-55 (in addition to the MT-32 versions). Greg Alper also made these, so he must have had an SC-55 to do so. (NOTE: Except for the alternate opening themes for Canvas, all of the other Canvas versions were made by the sound programmer from the MT-32 versions submitted by Tim Tully). If the Canvas is set in MT-32 mode, it has all of the extra instruments from the CM-32L.

- Therefore, my conclusion is:
- Greg Alper composed some tracks either for SC-55 (any 16 channel versions, which may only have been with MM4 and the opening themes) and/or tracks with SC-55 set in MT-32/CM-32L mode
- Tim Tully had a CM-32L and converted the tracks from Greg Alper into their MT-32 versions though using a CM-32L
- The MT-32/CM-32L versions were submitted to New World Computing, along with the SC-55 versions of the opening themes.
- For MM4 & MM5, the MT-32 versions were used, and then the sound programmers (MM4 - Todd Hendrix / MM5 - Mike Heilemann) made SC-55 versions from those by changing instruments -- resulting in some tracks that didn't sound the best all the time, because the velocity difference between notes is much more drastic on the SC-55 than the MT-32. Since the volume differences and levels sound correct on the MT-32 and NOT the SC-55 (except for the opening themes specifically composed for the SC-55), even if Greg Alper originally composed any tracks with the SC-55 in regular mode, Tim Tully clearly converted and optimized them for the MT-32/CM-32L.

This would be the original untouched version of the Inn (though I recorded it with MT-32 instruments in parts, even though I now think it was originally composed for SC-55):

https://www.youtube.com/edit?o=U&video_id=11WgR3pCMEQ

EDIT:
I also need to add the following information:

George Sanger did ONLY the opening theme for MM3 & PE.
These were made with an MT-32 (not sure if old or new) and submitted in that form.


I have NOT been able to discover the identity of the original composer for the following, and have not yet been able to recover any of the original MIDIs:

#1 - The other 50% of the music to PE not done by Tim Tully & Greg Alper (may be Rob Wallace, since all of that music is actually scrapped music from the Genesis version of King's Bounty by Rob Wallace -- Rob Wallace did NOT save anything, so I cannot confirm yet)
#2 - one track from MM3 (seems to be same composer as the rest of the PE music)
#3 - Any Sci-Fi Theme AFTER #2 from MM5 - they were not done by Tim Tully/Greg Alper (even tracked down multiple game designers/programmers and none of them can recall or have any idea)
Last edited by lordskylark on 2019-2-02 @ 19:03, edited 3 times in total.
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