Series: Robot Music I, Robot Music II: Modes, Robot Music III: The Circle of Fifths, Robot Music IV: Scales of the World
(This post features the hip guitar stylings of none other than ME! I’ll play some real life, randomly generated, Robot Music! The link is at the end.)
I’ve wanted to see more procedural music in games for a long time, but the most we see are pretty sorry attempts. I’m not just talking about “shifting volume on pre-recorded riffs” procedural, I mean “the game is writing its own live soundtrack” procedural.
“But Chris, that doesn’t even happen on consoles! We can’t do it in flash, no way!” Sounds difficult or even impossible, but it isn’t. The only problem is it takes an understanding of tricky programming concepts and tricky musical concepts. Without programmers that also study music theory, we just don’t see procedurally written music.
Well, I’d like to help change that. I know a thing or two about music and a thing or two about programming so in this article I’m going to do my best to tip off any programmers interested in putting together a simple music generator. Today’s generator won’t be truly procedural, but it’ll start things off in that direction.
And if you play a little music, but don’t know how to write a song, maybe this article can help you out too.