First post, by HunterZ
So I'm currently revisiting Might & Magic: Worlds of Xeen (aka MM4: Clouds of Xeen + MM5: Darkside of Xeen) via DOSBox in combination with my real Roland MT-32 and SC-88 synths.
The Wikipedia list of MT-32 games lists these as primarily MT-32 games, and the game sends to send a small amount of SysEx data to the MT-32 on startup. However, I'm not 100% convinced that the soundtrack is actually composed originally/primarily for the MT-32 versus Roland GS, mainly because I'm noticing a lot of sounds that are present in Roland GS (Sound Canvas) mode with my SC-88 (in GS mode) but missing in MT-32 mode with my MT-32:
- The bug that dies to the dragon's spray can on the logo screen makes a little "dink" sound when it lands and bounces on the logo.
- Doors make a convincing creaking a sound when you open them.
There are also some things that sound clearly better in GS mode than MT-32:
- Some of the Darkside intro music notes are out of place on MT-32.
- The Darkside intro music gets almost too quiet to hear with MT-32 when the game reduces the music volume during the spoken dialogue section.
- Parts of the music in Vertigo sound pretty...random on MT-32 but relatively coherent on SC-88.
- The Vertigo Blacksmith's hammer hitting the anvil sounds much, much more convincing with GS than with MT-32
On a side note, I also noticed that if I initialize my SC-88 to GM (General MIDI) mode (instead of GS), certain things sound wrong. The most noticeable is doors, which sound like telephones that keep ringing after you go through them until you move again.
I'm actually wondering if the game wasn't composed primarily for GS (as opposed to MT-32 or even General MIDI), with the MT-32 sounds and soundtrack being considered as having second-tier support. At the very least, it's obvious that they tuned the soundtrack and MIDI-based sound effects quite a bit to sound good on GS synths.