Music To Our Ears
by Jeff Walters
Ok, put your hand up if you're sick and tired of hearing the music from Secbase in every add-on level made. The fact is that a good percentage of level authors don't even think of changing a level's music. I should know, because I was one of them. Music just never seemed important to me until one of my beta-testers for Mt. Kurek, Geoffrey Elliott, asked me why didn't I change the music of the level.
It was then as I changed the level's music that I realised not just how easy it is to change music around, but also how music really impacts on a level. So here is the steps to take in order to get rid of that tired old Secbase tune -
- The first thing to do is load up the original Dark Forces levels and then flip through them until you come across the music that you feel suits your level.
- Next, use WDFUSE's GOB File Manager to open up the file 'sounds.gob' located on your Dark Forces CD Rom.
- Now, for each of the 14 levels in Dark Forces there are two music files. The first is fight-XX.gmd, where the XX in the filename is a number that corresponds to the number of the level. For instance, for level four it would be - fight-04.gmd. The second file is stalk-XX.gmd, and like the first file the XX in the name is a number corresponding to a level number. So for level four, you'd have - stalk-04.gmd.
- Anyway....once you know the number of the level who's music your after - simply extract the corresponding stalk and fight GMD files into your level's WDFUSE directory.
- The last thing you need to do is also the simplest. Simply rename the two extracted files. For example, if your level uses secbase (like most levels) and your replacing it with level 7's music.....simply rename the two files stalk-07.gmd and fight-07.gmd....to stalk-01.gmd and fight-01.gmd. Simple.
Now that you know how to change Dark Forces music around, you can not only swap one level's music for anoher, BUT also you can create your own music and use it!
- Then simply GOB your level, run it and enjoy the difference it makes.
One final word. In the next month or so, a level called Tie Phantom Base will be released. Download it straight away when it comes out. It is an absolutely perfect example of what is possible with music in Dark Forces. The way the author (Mike Rajotte) implements the music within the level is simply stunning.....It makes you feel like you're actually *in* the Star Wars movies.