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Author Topic: Dwarf Fortress: The Movie... Soundtrack. (Help needed!)  (Read 839 times)

KainInt

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Dwarf Fortress: The Movie... Soundtrack. (Help needed!)
« on: March 16, 2012, 03:58:20 pm »

Hello Urists.

In my spare time (e.g., while not day trading or playing DF), I enjoy making music.

While usually I deal with noise/experimental/house/hip-hop stuff, I've taken an interest in composing a theatrical score. The problem is, it's hard to write a score, if you have no clue what the movie would be about.

Luckily for me, I began playing Dwarf Fortress. The music in the game itself is wonderfully simple, and every single fort I have ever played has given me inspiration for music.

Sadly, I am but one man. The not sad part is, you guys aren't. I have near limitless time and supplies, backed with rudimentary knowledge of music composition, and you all have inspiration, and the ability to say 'Dude, this sucks, it should be more like BWAAAAA', or whatever this situation entails.

So, I need you guys to help me out. How can you help?
  • Provide examples of dramatic theatrical scores to steal learn from.
  • Give me every single possible story you can that seems movie like, whether adventure or fortress mode.
  • Tell me what you think of the progress I post. Too loud? Not loud enough? To simple? Too complex? Tell me!
Also, anybody with any amount of musical talent is welcome to contribute as well. I am in desperate need of orchestral and symphonic samples, mostly percussion, and am always looking for help with building tension.


First community progress update:
http://soundcloud.com/duct-tape-membrane/dfthemovie-wip2

(wip1 was posted in a different thread, before I decided to make this a community effort)

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Fayceless

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Re: Dwarf Fortress: The Movie... Soundtrack. (Help needed!)
« Reply #1 on: March 16, 2012, 05:38:33 pm »

(I'm not sure what your level of expertise/knowledge is, so if you need me to clarify anything I will)

EDIT: made a comment about drums that was due entirely to my mistakes not the song lol

Some ideas:

-add more percussion, gradually.  I know you said you were lacking though, so that may be the cause.  If you can, some syncopated rhythms would be great.

- The second half is a bit odd, feels rather empty.  There may be too much space between the hits (experiment with it) and maybe make the chords bigger.   Some strings added to the brass in the upper and lower registers could make it feel bigger - the brass alone feels kind of thin right now.

- If you want tension, more complex, dissonant chords in the first half could help.  Again, you can gradually build up to that starting simple and getting more complex.  Some higher parts, like violins or woodwinds if you can, moving quickly in runs or arpeggios could add to the excitement.

As for samples, decent free stuff is a bit hard to find.  Sonatina Symphonic is one I found recently, just looking at what was out there, it seemed to be alright, though not without it's problems.  Not sure how much percussion it has with it but you might check that out.

Overall I like the potential here, keep working at it man.
« Last Edit: March 16, 2012, 05:42:24 pm by Fayceless »
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KainInt

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Re: Dwarf Fortress: The Movie... Soundtrack. (Help needed!)
« Reply #2 on: March 16, 2012, 06:25:02 pm »

(I'm not sure what your level of expertise/knowledge is, so if you need me to clarify anything I will)

EDIT: made a comment about drums that was due entirely to my mistakes not the song lol

Some ideas:

-add more percussion, gradually.  I know you said you were lacking though, so that may be the cause.  If you can, some syncopated rhythms would be great.

Working on getting some percussion samples, I'll definitely flesh it out.

- The second half is a bit odd, feels rather empty.  There may be too much space between the hits (experiment with it) and maybe make the chords bigger.   Some strings added to the brass in the upper and lower registers could make it feel bigger - the brass alone feels kind of thin right now.

It's a very basic chord structure at moment, fleshing that out when I remember where I put the rest of my strings, could only find my staccatos.

The spacing is definitely something I'll be looking at. I'm hoping to fill it with timpani rolls, but if I can't find any I'll find something to fill it/make it shorter.


- If you want tension, more complex, dissonant chords in the first half could help.  Again, you can gradually build up to that starting simple and getting more complex.  Some higher parts, like violins or woodwinds if you can, moving quickly in runs or arpeggios could add to the excitement.

Luckily, I used to play flute, so getting some natural sounding arpeggios from woodwinds should be easy (again, once I get samples).

Until I get more of a clear idea, I'm keeping the chords simple, and more true to the in-game music. One I get all my samples, the chords will be easier to flesh out without having too many similar sounds.


As for samples, decent free stuff is a bit hard to find.  Sonatina Symphonic is one I found recently, just looking at what was out there, it seemed to be alright, though not without it's problems.  Not sure how much percussion it has with it but you might check that out.

Definitely gonna check that out, thanks!

Overall I like the potential here, keep working at it man.

Comments in italic.

My level of expertise is kind of vague.

I've been 'producing' for 4 years, playing guitar for 3, bass guitar and flute for 2.

Your comments are greatly appreciated, I'd love if you could follow the project as it continues onwards.
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Fayceless

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Re: Dwarf Fortress: The Movie... Soundtrack. (Help needed!)
« Reply #3 on: March 16, 2012, 06:42:34 pm »

Sure thing.  I'm a composer of sorts myself (working on someday being professional - still got a ways to go) so I love this kind of stuff and will be sure to keep an eye on it.
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KainInt

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Re: Dwarf Fortress: The Movie... Soundtrack. (Help needed!)
« Reply #4 on: March 16, 2012, 06:44:46 pm »

I'm more of a performer (marching, specifically), but it's kinda hard to come by marching bands post-high school, so I picked up composing.
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XxoriginxX

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KainInt

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Re: Dwarf Fortress: The Movie... Soundtrack. (Help needed!)
« Reply #6 on: March 16, 2012, 08:10:24 pm »

Let me provide some orchestra songs that would go great for theatrical scores-

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-OAXCy3YS54

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-ENf4VEhI40
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=phbYpnPlYq0

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Cp0-FVuLtOk

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yctfXIqugXc

Hey, you said "dramatic."
I took a quick look at all of those, and can say that the 4th movement is EXACTLY what I'm looking for.
I'll look more into the others later on, when my dogs aren't sleeping.

Some stuff I'm using as inspiration (for later pieces in the score), for the curious minds.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UUf6LpwHYPM
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t6W8Z-g3fPw (All movements)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZIbCpIfmZmI (I have a better performance)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VjI-KBL7iYU&feature=related (and sorta the other movements too)
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XxoriginxX

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Re: Dwarf Fortress: The Movie... Soundtrack. (Help needed!)
« Reply #7 on: March 16, 2012, 10:05:42 pm »

Here's another, from the film Alexander Nevsky. The particular piece is called, "Battle on the Ice."

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Xy84N_U5jw0
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=h6IXRYBPc_g
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"Those who can make you believe absurdities can make you commit atrocities." - Voltaire

"I have never made but one prayer to God, a very short one: 'O Lord, make my enemies ridiculous.' And God granted it."- Voltaire

If you're dealing with spam, the ignore list is your friend.

KainInt

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Re: Dwarf Fortress: The Movie... Soundtrack. (Help needed!)
« Reply #8 on: March 17, 2012, 04:52:00 pm »

Good news!

One of my best friends is a concert percussionist, one of the best in the state, and has agreed to help me in writing the percussion parts for the score.
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