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Author Topic: Recommendations for software to compose game music  (Read 357 times)

Hobbes

  • Swashbuckler
I was wondering if anyone here has any particular recommendations to make regarding composing software. I've got a MIDI keyboard and can compose some basic tunes myself. Where I struggle is with timing so I would ideally want an interface to easily correct my wrongly timed compositions afterwards.

I'm not too concerned about the initial capture/edit program's ability to load patches etc. If it can export / save as a MIDI file, I can easily load it into other software for final composition and OGG file generation to use in AGS. It's that initial place to capture multiple melodies, fix my mistakes & save as MID.

If it works on a Mac, that's a big bonus, but Windows is fine too.

Thanks in advance everyone and anyone with any thoughts about this.

Re: Recommendations for software to compose game music
« Reply #1 on: 27 May 2021, 08:40 »
Are you looking for free or paid software? I use Cubase myself and that's a professional piece of software but it's not so complicated to get started with though. A lot of people usually recommend Audacity(I think that's the name) but i've never used it so I can't say anything about it :-)
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Hobbes

  • Swashbuckler
Re: Recommendations for software to compose game music
« Reply #2 on: 27 May 2021, 09:02 »
Thanks for responding! Paid software is OK, I'm in a luxurious situation where I can afford to spend some money on this. I've looked at Cubase and it would definitely be a step up. I finished my first few compositions in GarageBand at this point. And whilst not ideal, it was... OK.

Would you say for some "easy" composing to start with things that Cubase Elements would be enough? I'm a bit hesitant to spend 300-500 euro on a piece of software straight away. I would potentially want to load some VSTs into it at some point... some good orchestral VSTs. Affordable ones. Which seems to be rather tricky to find!

Re: Recommendations for software to compose game music
« Reply #3 on: 27 May 2021, 14:04 »
Ableton Live (paid, but it's cheap, specially taking into account how expensive this kind of software is) for composing and Reaper for sound editing (free, but it's professional software). You could use 100% Reaper, but I prefer the midi editor and workflow of Ableton when composing.

Re: Recommendations for software to compose game music
« Reply #4 on: 27 May 2021, 14:34 »
A lot of people usually recommend Audacity(I think that's the name) but i've never used it so I can't say anything about it :-)

Audacity is a  sound editing software. For instance, if you've recorded a bang and want to add an echo to it or if you want to normalize the loudness of your music or if you've got several music clips that you want to overlay and stitch together, then Audacity is the tool to go for.

It's very versatile. But it won't do at all as a composing tool. Plus, it's wave form only, it won't handle MIDI.
« Last Edit: 27 May 2021, 14:37 by fernewelten »

Gilbert

  • * KILL* * KILL * * KILL *
    • Lifetime Achievement Award Winner
Re: Recommendations for software to compose game music
« Reply #5 on: 27 May 2021, 16:24 »
PaintCAD, a free Russian graphics programme.

...

...

Don't laugh. It is not a joke.

This weird little(?) app has extra functions such as a WAV audio editor(!), procedurally generated random MIDI music(!!), a web browser(!!!) and an IRC client(!!!!) alongside some even more weird features that at least are more graphical related but no one at first glance would even think of ever using.

It has a very ugly UI but don't let it fool you, it has a lot more than you expected.
One great feature is that it can be fully controlled by keyboard (including drawing like using the "tank" control in a 3-D game, or like driving a car) which could be great for pixel pushing in pixel arts.

Hobbes

  • Swashbuckler
Re: Recommendations for software to compose game music
« Reply #6 on: 28 May 2021, 00:26 »
These are all great suggestions so far - thank you! I'm looking seriously at Ableton Live at the moment... I think I'll wait a bit longer, since their Mac compatibility is in the works with the new M1 processor.

In the meantime, I'll have a go at PaintCAD on my Windows PC. Looks bonkers! And Gilbert, I remember seeing you around the forums for aaaages. And I seem to have ended up on your side of the world now!

I'll take a look at Reaper next...