Blog Post

5 years ago

Weekly Update

◊ Posted by A β Pseudolonewolf
I didn't write one of these last weekend because that last post was getting quite a few lurkers to comment every day. It still sort of is, but I've got more to report this week than I did last week!

I read every comment on that last post, though there were too many for me to actually reply to; I wanted to reply to some, but it just got so overwhelming!
It's very interesting though to see that people don't post on things for the same kinds of reasons that I don't. I always assumed I was a rarity for not wanting to have my say on every blog, website, or whatever that I came across. But maybe it's not uncommon after all.
I wonder if any of you who posted on that thing will be more active in future? There's no need for you to all go back into hiding!
Thanks a lot for commenting, either way! The response exceeded my expectations by far!

I want to write some more posts like that, addressing specific groups to hear their thoughts, so I might do another soon. I know what it'll be about and everything.

Anyway, Miasmon! I've actually been making really good progress on the main thing that's been holding me back! That is, the music.

I've been struggling with the music for *months*, trying dozens of variations of some 'Main Theme', but nothing was *juuust right*, so I was never satisfied. I thought that once the Main Theme was done, the rest would fall into place naturally enough.

And that indeed seems to be the case!
I finished the Main Theme on Friday after a sudden epiphany about how I could approach it, then yesterday I managed to do a further three pieces.
There are only two left now for this chapter, apart from some jingles for things like a victory fanfare, game over, etc... Annoyingly though, the two that are left are the generic Wild and Trainer Battle pieces. Battle music is always much more difficult for me than area music or character themes, and I've had several failed attempts to do a Wild Battle theme so far...
I've been learning more about composing recently though, both from reading about additional theory stuff that I was unaware of, and from experience with these now-finished new pieces, so maybe my next attempt - today - will be more successful... I hope so!

Once the music's done, there's still quite a lot left to do... but it seems to pale in comparison, and I'll be far more motivated to get around to it if the game has music in it.

So yes! Good! That! It still seems to be 'quite a while away', the release, but hopefully not too long now.

I've also been thinking at length about, and planning in detail, the next game I'll work on after a couple of Miasmon chapters are released.
I'll write about it soon, maybe. It'll be a continuously updating monster catcher game, updated on a weekly or daily basis rather than released all in one go. The setting and title might be that of Beast Signer, but the mechanics won't be the same as the old alpha.
Alternatively, I could come up with a new monster catching setting... but maybe people would prefer me to use that old idea instead, and it'd save planning time and stuff.
Anyway, that's a topic for another post!

Actually, hmm... I wasn't really planning on doing this, but eh, why not?
I'm going to actually include the Main Theme that I made!
It's enclosed in an swf, since I don't want to link to the mp3... I've added a special bit of code that should make it appear here in this post:

One reason I don't much love linking to music I've just freshly composed is because of some specific types of feedback I can get...
I rather like hearing what people think of it, but sometimes music-savvy individuals use the opportunity to show off their thorough knowledge of music jargon and so on, and point out ways I could 'improve' specific bits... That usually makes me end up feeling bitter about the music for various reasons, rather than acting on their, uh, 'advice', so I'd prefer it if you didn't leave any 'this is how I would have done it better' sorts of comments... I mean, I'm satisfied with how it is in all its imperfection, since it's very... mine, even if there are some bits that could be 'better'. I form such a strong emotional bond with my music; more than anything else that I make, so it almost feels like a personal affront when people suggest 'improvements'; moreso than with drawings or my games or whatever.

Anyway! The Main Theme was so very hard to de because I didn't really have a clear idea about how it should sound; the mood I wanted to create. I didn't know what I wanted to accomplish.
Games like Pokemon have energetic, adventurous themes, so I wanted do that for ages... but nothing seemed right. I also wanted to create a sort of mysterious and moody feel, since the game IS about exploring ancient ruins on some fractured corpse of a world; it's all rather darker than Pokemon.
The title screen (which you can see amongst the screenshots on the page for Miasmon in the Games section) is purple and melancholy, so energetic music didn't really fit it...
I seem to naturally tend towards these moody main themes anyway, perhaps because of my own personality? MARDEK's wasn't exactly a lively jig, and Raider's was perhaps ludicrously and inappropriately maudlin.
CBC's totally takes the biscuit though; that was like a funeral dirge!! Totally!1 o_O

But yes, it has some sort of 'mysterious' and 'contemplative' feel, meant to be evocative of old ruins, of mysteries, and so on.
I'm just glad it's done.

Oh, and it loops. Forever!1

on 61 Roots



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Thx for sharing the intro music. I liked it.

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MoosW 19 Netherlands CholericPhlegmatic INTP 694 60C
Holy crud! This is such a calming song! It's even more calming than the Raider Theme. Wish I had the CD so I could play it on the radio to put me to sleep... But then I wished my radio had an infinite loop button.

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This song is haunting, peaceful, sleepy, and touching. The song could kinda haunt you in depression, the music is like someone discovered the meaning of life, and that the meaning of life is good. If it was 2:00 and has not had ONE hint of caffeine, and were wearing headphones, they'd be sleeping as soon as 7 seconds pass. The music is touching, like someone has just discovered a deity in the physical world, who cares about them so very much, they would use themselves to guard the person from a spell of absolute death, or something. Summarized, it is beautiful.

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Interweaving lone flute and low violin... genius. I admire how much attention has been paid to the harmony/accompaniment in this theme, you could say it differentiates this from most other game themes. Best of all, the piece flowed so smoothly that it took me a couple loops to realise that I was listening to the same theme again and again. Definitely bodes well for the game, since we'll be listening to that music hundreds of times over!

To digress a little, I appreciate that Pseudo puts so much effort into his music. I feel most Flash games on the web would see an enhancement in the atmosphere of the game, simply if the developers invested a little more energy in sourcing good background music. Then you have Pseudo, whose musical creations are all works of art, and as a bonus, double up as great game music. Truly unique indeed.

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Hmm... Interesting.
I'd say my favorite part is the use of intervals such as 6ths and 9ths- they definitely set the mood.
However, I'm not sure what to think about the Dm-Cm progression in the bridge- it sounds a bit atonal...
Nonetheless, the ornaments on the piano part manage to maintain a certain amount of energy in the piece. Imagine if the melody was only written with the counterpoint strings in the background- it would probably sound a bit more dull. However, nothing against the counterpoint- they manage to add wonderful complexity.
Finally, with my soundcard, the .swf file sounds much better than a MIDI would- allowing me to appreciate the melodies to their full extent. Thanks.

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For me, this piece creates the same mood of exploration that Pokemon does; oddly enough, the memory that strikes me hardest from the piece was from Halo, when the Master Chief steps out of his crashed escape pod and gazes onto the ring shaped world of Halo...

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I played this while doing my Spanish homework, i found myself staring at the ceiling on occasion complementing life.... that's scary how this music does this too you. It made want to fall asleep... peacefully....

I have nothing else to add....

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i think it sounds a little like some of the music in zelda, except it is more mystyrios, and since i like both those i think it`s rather good.

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ThirdParty 34 United States PhlegmaticCholeric INTJ 514 177C
Now I feel guilty that the first thing I do when I open a flash game is seek out the mute button so that I can listen to my own music collection instead. So many developers put so much work into their music, and the most impression it ever leaves on me is "gee, this game took a long time to load for no apparent reason".

But I guess I needn't feel any guiltier about it than about all the other art in the world that I'm not appreciating. At least I'm paying attention to some of what you're creating, which is more than can be said for the painter whose painting I walk past in the museum without giving it a second glance...

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I don't understand how people can do this... Not in a 'how can you be so unappreciative?! D:' kind of way, but because for me, the music is basically 'half of the game'. It's a massive aid to immersion, it sets the mood, it changes as events change, and so on. I'd be unable to play a lot of games mute since it'd be almost like playing them blind; I'd be missing out on an enormous chunk of the experience.

Though I suppose I'm only speaking about good games here, hmm. I suppose it's different with Flash games that use crude ten-second generic rock or ambience loops nicked from some website rather than made by the developer. Even so, I personally never mute those... but I don't play them very often either.

With my own games, the music is the bit I put the most heart into. Rather than making it because 'games need music', it's more accurate to say that I make games so then I have something to compose for.

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It's not as energetic as Pokemon, but the melody is soft. It seems to lull me to sleep. A really nice sleep.