Adding Music To Maps - Unreal Tournament 3

For level designers in Unreal Tournament 3, music can be added either in whole, part, or in a mix-and-match style between two or more different songs. It is important to maintain the integrity of the original music being referenced by your map. Just like any other asset that come with the game, you will never want to overwrite these packages with a modified version. Doing this will prevent you from joining multiplayer games and even prevent anyone else from playing the content you created using modified assets. There are easy ways to customize music in your map without destroying the compatibility.

One Stop Shop

Music is usually the last thing some level designers will add. Until then the only sounds are that from the player and the environment. It may go as far as a decision being made to not use music at all. While some maps can get away with this certain gametypes make use of music stingers. Lacking these audio cues for special events will have a negative impact on players. So you may (or may not) be convinced that music is important now but would rather not spend too much time bothering with it. That's fine, whether is retail or custom music is easy to add.

While in UnrealEd use the Generic Browser to open one of the music packages located in \Program Files\Unreal Tournament 3\UTGame\CookedPC\Sounds\ or load the custom music you plan on using. Here you can give a listen to some of the sections and judge if it fits the map. If you're using the retail music, to add it to your map you'll need to open one more file. A_Music_Arrangements.upk contains arrangements for every song that came with Unreal Tournament 3. You should be able to find the arrangement that matches the title of the song you want. If you're using a custom music the arrangement should have been included with it. Whatever the case, click the arrangement for the song you're using and in the top main toolbar go to View and World Properties. A small window should pop up that will let you expand the WorldInfo section and then the MapInfo section. If this is not expandable click the blue down arrow then click UTMapinfo. Expand the UTMapInfo section and you will see a field for MapMusicInfo. If the arrangement you're using is still highlighted just click the green left arrow to the right of this section to assign the music. That's it.

Recap

  • Browse through retail or custom music to choose an appropriate song.
  • Select it's arrangement.
  • Enter the arrangement into World Properties \ WorldInfo \ MapInfo \ UTMapInfo \ MapMusicInfo

Breeding and lobotomizing

As mentioned earlier you can combine two or more songs, using different music sections and stingers from each. It's even possible to remove a music section or stinger; leave it blank or replace it with something else. The best part is doing any of this doesn't involve changing the original assets one bit. The drawback is, it's not as painless for you as the above method. All the retail music comes with pre-written arrangements, custom music should come with arrangements as well since they contain information you would not otherwise know unless you wrote the music. A working knowledge of what arrangements are and how to rewrite them is necessary. The Music Importing tutorial has a whole page dedicated to the arrangement if you'd like to read more. Customizing the music that is used in your map is made possible by writing a new arrangement. This arrangement will be saved in your map (similar to MyLevel in earlier engines, now the map name) so there is no need to modify any existing packages. Go ahead and create your arrangement.

To start off you will need to decide which music sections (not stingers) you will be using and open the arrangement(s) for the songs you wish to combine/decimate. Take note of the tempo for each song you are using as this will need to be recorded somewhere in your arrangement. If you have several music sections that all share the same tempo, enter this into the main Tempo in your arrangment. After that assign the music sections you want to use. For every music section that has a different tempo than the one listed in your main Tempo, this will need to be entered into that section's TempoOverride. Again, only do this for music sections that don't match the tempo that was entered for the main Tempo. If each music section has a different tempo pick one to enter as the main Tempo and leave it's TempoOverride blank. You can also adjust the CrossfadeToMeNumMeasures to your liking for each section.

After the MapMusic section has been setup it's time to move on to the MapSinger section. Aside from choosing appropriate stingers almost anything goes here. This is simply assigning sounds to events. Unless you're looking to mirror the stingers used in another map or song there's not even any need to reference any prior arrangements. Just pick stingers from whichever song(s) you like to play during whatever events you want. The same could be said in removing stingers. This would be in the more likely case that a level designer likes the music but not the use of stingers because they were either not used enough or used far too much. There is a section on music stingers that covers the gameplay importance of several audio cues that should always be added located here. The level designer would use the original arrangement as a reference to rewrite their own arrangement as they see fit. The new arrangement is saved in the map. Level designers can customize the arrangement to suit their specific needs without penalizing the players by creating multiple versions of external assets.

Recap

  • Do not modify the original assets. Create a new UTMapMusic \ Arrangement in your map (MyLevel)
  • Use the prewritten arrangements as a reference to enter information in your arrangement on music sections you will be using.
  • Choose music stingers you'd like to use.
  • Enter your arrangement into World Properties \ WorldInfo \ MapInfo \ UTMapInfo \ MapMusicInfo


If you'd like to tell me how wrong I am or that by some mistake you actually found this tutorial useful, let me know here.