Not sure where to post this Music Q.

TheGreatEater

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I don't know exactly where to post this.

But what is the best Music Creation program to use to make music for a game that I can buy on Steam? My spend limit is 50 USD, but with all the options out there, I have no idea what's good to use.

As for what exactly I'm looking for. Something with preset instrument loops that I can drag / drop (and either a recording feature to add new ones, or download loops online and add them to what I can do).
 

Andar

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It depends on what your skill with music making is. And the way you ask I unfortunately assume that this skill and experience is rather low, or you would know better programs already.

So my advice is:
DON'T spend the money. you need to test the different programs to learn which one is easiest to use for your. You can get semi-professional programs for that price, but those are likely to overwhelm you. You need at least some background in music to be able to use professional programs correctly.
So go through the free trials (sometimes they are only on the developer's website, not on steam, so you'll have to search.

But you need to test that or your money will be wasted - the most expensive pots for cooking will not make a nice meal if the person using them doesn't know how to cook.
 

TheGreatEater

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It depends on what your skill with music making is. And the way you ask I unfortunately assume that this skill and experience is rather low, or you would know better programs already.

So my advice is:
DON'T spend the money. you need to test the different programs to learn which one is easiest to use for your. You can get semi-professional programs for that price, but those are likely to overwhelm you. You need at least some background in music to be able to use professional programs correctly.
So go through the free trials (sometimes they are only on the developer's website, not on steam, so you'll have to search.

But you need to test that or your money will be wasted - the most expensive pots for cooking will not make a nice meal if the person using them doesn't know how to cook.
You are right in my skill is rather low. I mean I have a good ear in music placement, and if I have sounds to work with I can arrange them to sound good.

But I have a massive inability to play any actual instruments. Which is why a good drag and drop premade selections would work best for me. But then again I'm 20 years out of practice so ... you're right in free trials would be best to look for.

Any good idea on a drag and drop loop software that's either n00b friendly / semi-friendly? Since atm I have no idea on where to look at. None the less, thank you very much for your reply.
 

standardplayer

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Years ago I used Acid Loops and it was exactly what you've described. It's been years, I don't know how it is now
 

TheGreatEater

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Years ago I used Acid Loops and it was exactly what you've described. It's been years, I don't know how it is now
There was ACID Studios 10 in Steam, with mixed reviews. But it wasn't to expensive. So I'll try that out.

Mostly was asking about Steam since I'm tight on money, but have a Game Stop Credit Card (which I got a Steam Gift Card with). So that'll work out perfectly. Thanks for the suggestion ^_^.
 

standardplayer

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Make sure you look up videos and articles on it to get a look first. You'll be able to see some of what it can do, and have an idea of whether or not it would help you.

Back when I used it, there was three discs worth of premade samples
 

slimmmeiske2

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I've moved this thread to Useful Development Tools. Please be sure to post your threads in the correct forum next time. Thank you.

 

Dreadshadow

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Ummm, this is tricky. There is no easy answer to this.
It's better to get public domain or under creative commons music rather than try to make yourself music.
A program NEAR your budget.

Renoise is an advanced tracker that will cost you $75
https://www.renoise.com/products/renoise

while there are open source alternatives of course
https://openmpt.org/

But you gotta learn how to use such a tool. It's not very easy, it needs effort.

If you wanna go to better programs, Propellerhead Reason, Ableton Live, Fruity Loops
are expensive huge and hard to master programs. It needs time for sure.

If you go with a loop sequencer like acid, you MUST make sure you get loops under a license that will be royalty free.
Otherwise you can not use any productions anywhere. And your options will be limited to your loops anyway, thus it's not music making in my opinion.
 

TheGreatEater

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Ummm, this is tricky. There is no easy answer to this.
It's better to get public domain or under creative commons music rather than try to make yourself music.
A program NEAR your budget.

Renoise is an advanced tracker that will cost you $75
https://www.renoise.com/products/renoise

while there are open source alternatives of course
https://openmpt.org/

But you gotta learn how to use such a tool. It's not very easy, it needs effort.

If you wanna go to better programs, Propellerhead Reason, Ableton Live, Fruity Loops
are expensive huge and hard to master programs. It needs time for sure.

If you go with a loop sequencer like acid, you MUST make sure you get loops under a license that will be royalty free.
Otherwise you can not use any productions anywhere. And your options will be limited to your loops anyway, thus it's not music making in my opinion.
So the loops that come with Acid Studios aren't Royalty Free, and I won't be able to use them? Or is the base package allowed for production? But yeah, thought about Creative Commons and Public Domain ... but I honestly feel like with my luck I'd stumble upon a site that's not exactly legal and end up in hot water XD.

That and it'd give me something to do so I'm not burning myself out on doing art (which is already a hard skill for me to pick up XD, but've put a good 6 years into learning DIY and through trial and error.).

Still thank you for the program info. Some things I'll definitely need to look into and save up for.
 

Dreadshadow

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You should read the Acid's EULA to understand the license of those loops. I don't know since I don't use it.
 

TheGreatEater

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Sweet! Again, thank you for the info and the help. It's greatly appreciated.
 

aegisninja

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Hope I'm not too late to help answer your question. As someone who is about to finish a degree in audio and is actively seeking a career in the field, I can tell you that there are a ton of great options, but none of them are going to be available for $50 (you CAN have Reaper for $60 without a commercial license though, which is a fantastic deal) and you aren't going to find any of them on Steam. If you have a Mac, Logic is a fully featured DAW for $200 that will have everything you need and then some, and is also on the more user friendly side of things. If you don't have a Mac (or even if you do), I highly recommend Reason (what I personally use for pretty much everything), it's super simple to use and will also include everything you need, and you can get the intro version for around $100. FL Studio is also a good option at a fairly reasonable price. That said, I don't recommend trying to compose music just by placing loops together, as you will not actually own said music, as you have not composed the melody. At that point you are going to have to make sure you have the licenses for every loop you use, and you are probably going to be better off just commissioning someone to compose music for you, which will be much higher quality and made specifically for your game; or licensing a track from here or licensing from a stock library. Don't let that get you down though, it is great fun to experiment with writing music, and if you give it some time and some effort, I think you will find that you don't need to use loops at all (I was in the same situation just a couple of years ago, having played guitar for years but knowing absolutely nothing about MIDI music or music theory).
 

TheGreatEater

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@aegisninja Thanks for all that info ... yeah I was originally thinking that the mini cord loops (like the few repeating bars of music) since they aren't an actual melody just a riff or two, and I'd have the place them to make music. Would be mine ... sucks that it isn't though.

I'll probably have to go and hire then (I can put stuff together (and I had tons of fun younger with MTV MUSIC Generator, and that one 1990's cheap music generator for the PC (forgot the name). But I can't for the life of me play any instrument. Sucks that laws now are basically, "yeah we'll let you make something, but you don't own it." XD). Thanks for the heads up, after I get things up and running, I'll definitely be looking for a person to make music.
 

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Magix Music Maker is another good choice, and if you have a Mac the GarageBand tool is built-in. Both work the same way and provide soundpool services (AppleLoops in GarageBand speak) though Magix does stick you with a DLC charge at varying costs if you need more soundpool content, or more features in general.
 

aegisninja

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Magix Music Maker is another good choice, and if you have a Mac the GarageBand tool is built-in. Both work the same way and provide soundpool services (AppleLoops in GarageBand speak) though Magix does stick you with a DLC charge at varying costs if you need more soundpool content, or more features in general.
Music Maker unfortunately has a ton of issues.... Not only does it not come with that much in terms of synths and virtual instruments, but it does not include the licenses for the loops that it comes with. Not only that, but it is also, in my experience, super unstable when you start doing larger projects. Garage Band, on the other hand, is pretty rad for the price of free, pretty limited though.
 

BreakerZero

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That can definitely be a clarity issue, particularly after checking things on my end. That being said, they both have virtual keyboards for manual composition purposes and the interfaces are ridiculously similar.
 

TheGreatEater

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Music Maker unfortunately has a ton of issues.... Not only does it not come with that much in terms of synths and virtual instruments, but it does not include the licenses for the loops that it comes with. Not only that, but it is also, in my experience, super unstable when you start doing larger projects. Garage Band, on the other hand, is pretty rad for the price of free, pretty limited though.
That can definitely be a clarity issue, particularly after checking things on my end. That being said, they both have virtual keyboards for manual composition purposes and the interfaces are ridiculously similar.
Should probably add that I have an ASUS (and use Windows). Never really got into Macs.
 
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The following options are free only! However.... with "free" comes limitations, and you'll have to use multiple things in combination to get good results.

Audacity - an all-purpose audio file editor. This is good for for combining your final audio (seeing as you can't reasonably play MIDI in RPGmaker!) with any other recordings you might want to use, and general audio tweeking.

onlinesequencer - A personal fave. Lets you make midis in your browser and download them. On the downside, if you save files, theoretically anyone can access them. Interface is nice, although you can't type to input unless you have a midi keyboard plugged in, but you don't have piano experience so you probably won't care.

beepbox - an in-browser maker that'll let you make chiptunes. Has a lot of safety features for beginners. The URL itself is the save file for loading back into beepbox, which is pretty neat! This one can export directly to audio for that chiptune flavor, or as a midi, which I have not tested at all in terms of results.

famitracker - an authentic tracker (program for making chiptunes). It has a better instrument customization interface than beepbox IMO, but may not be..... very friendly to beginners....

LMMS - Short explanation: why pay money AND have to learn all the controls for FL studio when you could just learn how to use this instead?

Good ol' ingenuity - ohhoho, can't play an instrument, you say? Can you make sounds come out of your mouth? Do you have ears that can listen, and some mic, even on a phone, that can record? That's all you need. Find spots (or times, or situations) with interesting ambient sound and record that; record yourself singing (or yodeling, or howling, or inadvertently slipping into falsetto; even if you're a bad singer) patterns you think could be interesting; tap different materials with different objects. All these sounds are fodder for programs like audacity that let you layer and overlap them into interesting soundscapes.

also, anyone who can breathe can play the harmonica with a little practice. there's always that.
 

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