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[VGM Packs] Master System Mega CollectionPosted: Fri Mar 13, 2015 10:10 am
Last edited by sherpa on Sat Mar 14, 2015 3:29 am; edited 4 times in total
***update new packs uploaded, most split properly, even tried relogging some but problems persist.
Also, the solution detailed below is not as effective as hoped, but does relate to the problem.
update: Ignorance is expensive.
So it turns out the culprit behind these problems is not the game engines themselves but ignorance on my part as to how they work.
I had been under the impression that if most of the ram values related to music aren't moving or zeroed out and the game is silent, that that is equal to a wait (long string of 62s, 63s).
But no. What actually happened was that I misguidedly set the value of the trigger to something that stopped the music while at the same time it reset the sound engine every frame. Silly me.
So, in the future, when logging, know that you should set the trigger to 80 (where appropriate). I overlooked this since it rarely stops music and in SMPS and pre-SMPS games it seems it never does. The proper thing to do is to set the trigger to a value that stops the engine (usually 00-7F or DF-FF) and then set it to 80...then it will not be spamming a reset every frame as it does if you set to 00. Had to have this carefully explained to me several times before it made sense. But vgm txt shows exactly that...it is spamming silent values every frame...the fact that some games also spam YM2413 data even where it was just a psg log should have alerted me to something strange going on. But I thought it was a programming oversight where it was really a feature.
I will leave my old misconceptions up for the benefit of others. I am going to be reworking these packs. I was a bit disappointed initially, but happy it seems it will not be difficult to fix most of these.
Not sure why some games worked well, as far as I know I used very similar if not identical methods to log. Only variation was whether a pause hack worked or not, or games that seem to time out and return to the title screen after a period of time. GG games did not have this issue, so possibly this is fixed. Also some rare games have 80 as a valid song value (not smps).
Ok, so it seems 8 out of the 35 Packs split well, so the issue of sms games that keep the sound channels open (but silent) is a common one, not surprisingly. This prevents splitting vgms based on long waits. Each track has ~10 seconds of silence between its end and the beginning of the next, but nevertheless due to this issue will not split properly with existing automated tools for vgm processing.
GG games, being newer, seem not to have this issue, or perhaps only in very rare cases. This is an added challenge in dealing with sms games, which seem to have this problem in the vast majority. There doesn't seem to be consistency even among games in the same family (developer/franchise).
I'm not sure what the best solution is, but it may be important to find one or explore different methods to bypass or address this challenge.
These games split properly with sptd,
there are multiple files and a playlist:
As Aventuras da TV Colosso (SMS)
Danan the Jungle Fighter (SMS)
Golf Mania (SMS)
Laser Ghost (SMS)
Pat Riley Basketball (SMS)
Scramble Spirits (SMS)
Tensai Bakabon (SMS)
World Cup Italia '90 (SMS)
The rest do not. Like the SG thread, it may become necessary to redo everything from scratch if a solution is not readily available. This undesirable outcome was partially anticipated when I started, but hopefully this will help to highlight some issues. Originally it was hoped to have the packs at a much more advanced stage of processing before submitting.
Some SMS games also seem to resume despite the initial successful use of a pause hack. I have not isolated the cause. Some games pause for a short while, then resume after a bit, some pause a long time, most pause permanently.
Posted: Fri Mar 13, 2015 10:37 am
Last edited by sherpa on Sat Mar 14, 2015 3:50 am; edited 2 times in total
**update most packs split
Marksman Shooting & Trap Shooting & Safari Hunt
& Rescue Mission
Scramble spirits seems to have been one of those games that resumed despite the use of a pause hack, though I am going by its output as I have forgotten. Normally I would redo it as I redid some GG games (which sometimes reset after a period of time), but due to the overwhelming amount of issues currently afflicting this set overall, I will postpone until some solutions are found.
||Posted: Fri Mar 13, 2015 2:22 pm|
|I'm not familiar with the splitting tool but I guess it would work better if you optimised the files first.|
||Posted: Sat Mar 14, 2015 12:26 pm|
Hmm didn't try that. I suppose it might have improved results in a few instances. Not sure how optimizing would affect the results.
Forgot to mention, alot of these games have some portion of the fm code enabled. When the sound engine spams a reset every frame, some games that have official FM support initialize the registers to 00, but so do other games which have no support, and for which you cannot enable fm. In some cases the game does nothing, in others, it reboots if you enable FM manually and set a new music id that isn't 80.
I guess they're good enough for a listen. I was able to break up most of them so the vast majority of files are the right length.
||Posted: Sat Mar 14, 2015 5:51 pm|
|If the split fails due to busy writes of silence then an optimiser will turn that into a big pause.|
||Posted: Sat Mar 14, 2015 8:59 pm|
I wish I had tried that solution earlier. In actual practice it fails to work for some games (same results). It could be there is somethings else that is at issue in those cases. On the plus side, it worked excellently with some that were previously problematic. Unfortunately along the way, I failed to preserve the originals of most of these. Unless attachments also get stored in the history of the site, there's no way to re-test some of these files as they were originally.
Wish I'd thought of that. Oh well. I might have spent alot of time just to make another goof. I'm largely satisfied with the results, but they have some issues I suspect this method would have handled well.
||Posted: Thu Dec 03, 2015 5:02 am|
These have been waiting in the main directory for a while. You might recognize some of them as recent GG releases.
I double checked and speedball and gun.smoke seem to be complete, though it's been a while since I worked on them, and I forget the fine details.
I'm including an irregular item: an FM log of Where in the World is Carmen Sandiego? The game only has one song. It doesn't have full FM instruments, you mainly get drums and a few tones. The instruments don't seem to be available. The game normally prevents you from setting the FM and even tends to reboot if it is enabled. I had to hack in a few places in order to get this log. I'm putting here since I don't know where else to put it.
Terminator 2 was meant to be released as a pack a long time ago. The music tends to be so self similar there are multiple places where loops are detected, some invalid. I ended up postponing working on it.
update: added Three Dragon Story..which was close to being posted, but i never resumed, mainly because I misplaced the files in a directory I rarely access anymore.
Ultima IV was logged back in Feb. I intended to release it as a pack, but I think the FM aspect and the fact I don't know if I logged it at the wrong speed also led me to forget about it. Nice use of FM.
update 2 (01/05): Terminator has the same music as the GG version. Some song lengths are the same while some are a little different, probably some feature of the engine and how it works in 50/60hz. Song use is different. Alot are unused, but I tagged those used by the GG version as such even though they tend to differ a bit in practice. Not sure whether to join or keep them separate.
update 3 (01/17): 11 packs added mostly korean and a few pal. Fire and Ice was originally meant to be released in europe. It was logged at 50hz. It is possible it is meant to run at 60hz, but I thought it sounded better at 50hz and Tec Toy sometimes does not redo the sound engine for their region, so I went with the apparent original intention (similar to battletoads).
||Posted: Tue Jan 19, 2016 1:11 am|
A lot of Korean Titles, and some Sega and Sims games that weren't logged and have no GG counterpart.
I'll be focusing on titles that don't have gg counterparts in general. I'll save those that do for later.
||Posted: Tue Jan 19, 2016 11:19 pm|
Another set. Some of these were hard to log even with the published hack (mainly korean ones).
Also includes a good number of Pal titles.
||Posted: Wed Jan 27, 2016 10:05 pm|
Worked on these a while ago. Was going to wait till I had more, but the titles that remain aren't all that much fun to figure and work with, particularly as I don't have the benefit of a robust debugger to easily test my suspicions at times.
Most of what remains are the msx clones and korean titles.
A few others remain as well.
There is no great rush for me to finish here, but I'll add titles as I go along.
Some of these have nice music. They should be complete.