Thursday, June 2, 2011

Music in Android. (Nothing to see hear Googlers)

(Yes I'm cheating from my bye-week on Blog posting for a mini rant)

I have to put music in my game. Why? Because games have music. I almost always disable the music, and often the sound on a mobile device if I am playing a game. Most mobile games do not do music well, and frankly I have low hopes for my game, since I have no musical talent. But it's just one of those things, that make a game complete, and lest ye forget, my main goal of making my game is self education and improvement. (Making a few bucks would be nice, but I'm not exactly reserving chartered jets at this point). So I have just a slight hope that maybe I can pull something off musically that ends up being pretty neat. The hard part with music in a game is that it has to be complementary and subtle, not obnoxious, but at the same time catchy. Nintendo does this masterfully. (obnoxious is in the ear of the beholder)

The Jet Creator tool/API in the Android SDK, is really a neat concept. You import music files(midi) and slice and dice them into "segments" that you can queue and play. You can also trigger clips(segments?) to play, and get callbacks in your code when certain events happen with the music.

The big letdown with all of this (besides my realization that making good game music is really really hard), is that the implementation and documentation for the system in the android SDK is seriously lacking. Most web searches result in 1) duplications of the SDK doc, or 2) other forums/blog lamenting the lack of documentation. My sincere apologies if Google brought you here seeking the same knowledge. Add this post to the list of the latter type of search hits.


P.S. yes the misspelling in the post title is a lame pun.

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I welcome you're thoughts. Keep it classy, think of the children.