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Enhanced Client - Early Classic Client Music Addon for Pinco's UI

Discussion in 'UO Enhanced Client Discussion' started by A Thought Elemental, Nov 23, 2011.

  1. A Thought Elemental

    A Thought Elemental Journeyman

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    Download location:

    2shared - download EC-Classic-Music.zip

    One additional update file for Pinco's UI version 5.1a
    http://www.2shared.com/audio/4zd18s2U/Lord_British_Castle.html

    Enhanced Client - Early Classic Client Music Addon for Pinco's UI

    Version 1

    assembled by "A Thought Elemental" from the UO Stratics forums, November 22, 2011.

    This addon causes the Enhanced Client version of Ultima Online to play a recreation
    of the music which the Classic Client utilized from 1997 until a few years after.
    It requires Pinco's UI version 5.1 or later (due to the updated EC Playsound).

    With this addon, you will hear:

    Stones as the login screen music,
    The classic zone cities' (Britain, etc) music as it was,
    Various other music (forest/wandering music, and more) similar to how it was.

    Depending upon how you install it, you can cause the War-mode music to never play,
    and you can choose to include or exclude the other music that was included with Pinco's
    UI version 5.1. Instructions on the 2 installation methods are in a separate file within the
    zipfile.

    ;-----------------------------------------------------------------------

    Ultima Online (as of its 1997 music version) had a rich history surrounding its music.
    The musical themes within that version of the client date back to the Ultima series,
    which predates Ultima Online. This music was included with the first release versions
    of the Ultima Online "Classic Client", and then was replaced some years later with
    different music. The "Enhanced Client" never had this early version music.

    I have had a great appreciation for this early version music since I first heard it in 1998.
    Back then, I even created several MP3s utilizing a professional-quality soundfont
    for my own personal, out-of-game listening.

    I was disappointed when I logged into Ultima Online in 2006 and found that the music had
    vanished from the game. I could not understand who thought it was a good idea
    to strip that amazing music out. After all, it could have been realized with a great soundfont
    (the way I had years before) and shipped in whatever format the more modern client needed
    (instead of old midi, of course). So each time I logged in, I missed hearing Stones, and
    the wilderness music, and Trinsic, and... all of it.

    Jump forward quite a few years.

    On March 5th, 2011, professional sound designer Scott Lee
    (Scott Lee | LinkedIn) released a realization of the
    1997-era Ultima Online music. Part of his original description is below:

    The release location for that project is here: Original MP3 Download

    Jump forward 7 months.

    I was searching for some of the original game's midi files and stumbled upon the Scott Lee MP3
    release. I listened to it - all of it - and found it to be more than just a high quality realization of the original
    UO midis. A musical interpretation had been applied to some of the instrument selections as well as
    what sounded like some clean-up work. The result was a high quality version of the original music
    which was sensitive, and stayed true to the music while having a unique sort of sound. The sound was
    in most cases lighter than the first 1997 producer's was. All in all it was a superb, quality realization.

    Jump forward 2 more weeks.

    November 22, 2011, Pinco's UI (an addon for Ultima Online's "Enhanced Client") version 5.1 was
    released. One of the new features was that Pinco's EC Playsound executable had been expanded
    to be able to play custom game music. Before this, it had been impossible to link custom music
    into the Enhanced Client.

    Pinco's UI came with its own large selection of MP3s for use - - none of them were actually the Ultima
    music, however. Right then, I knew what I had to do ...

    ..and that was, create this mod.

    As I did this, I found EC/EC Playsound to have some bad habits with music, some of which I was able
    to correct.

    One of the problems was that it starts playing the music the very moment a zone loads instead of
    waiting a few seconds. This means that the beginning of the music is obscured by the sound of the
    character's last-casted spell. I was able to address this by adding a 2 second silence at the beginning
    of each track.

    Another problem is that the EC Playsound would loop certain music tracks without pausing in between
    the repetitions, or in some cases would cycle among tracks without pause. This sort of music handling turns
    the music into an annoyance after a while if the user cannot turn it off (and the Classic Client did not do this).
    I added several-minute-long silences after the MP3s which mimics the original Classic Client's playback
    characteristics in this regard, giving periods of silence in between the music selections.

    It was necessary to amplify the original MP3s in order for them to play back in the EC Playsound at a
    comparatively correct sound level. Some of the amplifications were complicated because of dynamic
    variation within pieces which essentially had to be leveled by hand. I used Audacity for the necessary
    sound edits.

    There are not enough "slots" to be able to play back all of the "wilderness/wandering" themed pieces
    that the classic client naturally did. This EC Playsound has 5 slots for this type of music but the old client
    was utilizing at least 8. So, some of the wandering sort of music which you would have heard in the old
    client do not appear at this time (you have a chance to hear those while entering a tavern, for the time
    being).

    Also, there is music available for Lord British's Castle but this EC/EC Playsound seems to have no slot
    for it.

    My personal preference is to have no "war-mode" music, no death music, and no dungeon music. This
    release version 1 is a match for this personal preference and does not include those selections.

    I might do further version of this where I use some of the more or less unimplemented Scott Lee MP3s for the
    cities which presently have no music.
     
  2. Pinco

    Pinco UOEC Modder
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    you are insane, the mp3 should be no more than 64kbps or they can cause lag... :p
     
  3. A Thought Elemental

    A Thought Elemental Journeyman

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    Well.... the way they were released by Scott Lee has them at a bit rate of 160kbps and 44KHz audio sample rate. They were intended for use with the Classic Client in that form. When I remastered them (it was necessary to add silence to the files and do other things), Audacity seems to have set my files to 128kbps and 44kHz, which is a touch downgraded (but hopefully not audible as downgraded to anyone - wasn't to me, anyway).

    Pulling it down to 64 kbps isn't something I thought of doing.. but don't think I would have anyway.. The music is too nice and beautiful as it is to deliberately damage in that way... :)

    But thanks for the heads up in any case. Let's see if anyone reports lag-ish problems after using it. I felt no lag in my own game when I was checking it but it is true I've got a beast of a soundcard. If there's a problem for some people, I could take the MP3s and make a batch of 64kbps ones for them.
     
  4. Pinco

    Pinco UOEC Modder
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    those musics are already in low quality and lowering to 64 doesn't damage them :p
    other than lag, 160MB for a 32 files is too much...
     
  5. A Thought Elemental

    A Thought Elemental Journeyman

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    Okay so I tried some things and it's hard to hear for sure, at least for me. I exported one of the 160kbps ones as 64kbps and then brought it back into audacity like that, and compared the track with the original 160kbps.

    The only thing of interest I discovered was that the re-import was very slightly off in terms of the timeline. And when I mixed both the 160k and 64k one together, I got a really nice sounding reverb in Linelle! Totally off the original topic, go figure.

    Not an overpowered reverb, just a nice and slightly more full sound.

    So... I donno. You could be right. I donnoooo. I like this version of Linelle tho. The 4-tracks-(stereo 2x2)-mixed-into-2 one.

    Edit: Here. http://www.2shared.com/audio/ovP5Iyxi/Linelle-reverb.html . May be the nicest sounding Linelle .mp3 on the planet. Enjoy =p
     
  6. Pinco

    Pinco UOEC Modder
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    Use MP3 Quality Modifier, it will change all the tracks to 64 at once :p
     
  7. A Thought Elemental

    A Thought Elemental Journeyman

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    Convenient, if it'll parse a whole directory and do it, which it sounds like it will.

    Making my own reverb is cool. I stacked 5 of Linelle and skewed the gain down as I increased the offset of each track by like a millisecond each. It's made the sound a touch warmer than the 2 mix. I'm not sure that's the direction Linelle should go but it does sound neat this way.
     
  8. A Thought Elemental

    A Thought Elemental Journeyman

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