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StoryHarp Kurtz-Fernhout Software
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Adding music

Unlike sounds, which will usually be short, music can create a longer theme for different rooms and characters. Because music can loop, the player can hear a theme song for a context the whole time the player is at that context. This gives you more opportunities to make the auditory landscape of your story understandable, navigable, and enjoyable for players.

Adding music to replies

To add music to a
rule's reply, click to place the text cursor somewhere in the reply field in the rule editor panel. Make sure the cursor is at the beginning, or end, or in the space between words. Then click on the Music button, or choose the Edit | Insert Music menu item. A dialog will appear asking you to pick a MID or RMI file. (Some of these files may be available in your Windows Media directory.) After you select a file, text will be inserted into the reply, like this:

{music FileName}

If there is no file extension, MID is assumed. You can cut or edit this text, but make sure you keep the beginning and ending braces.

How music is played

Unlike sounds, music will start playing as soon as the reply starts to be said, so it doesn't matter exactly where in the reply you put the music. This is because Microsoft Agent maintains a backlog of things to say, but the music is handled right away by another system.

The music will continue to play in a loop until a new piece of music is started or a reply with just:

{music }

is said. That will turn off the music. If you want a song to play once and then stop, edit the macro to read:

{musiconce FileName}

As with sounds, in order for the music file to be found, it must either have an absolute path, or it must be in one of the directories searched for sounds or music.

Tips on adding music

In order for a music file to be found, it must either have an absolute path or it must be in one of the directories searched for sounds or music. Normally, sounds and music are searched for in the world file directory, the executable directory, and the Windows media directory. Use Settings | Extra Sound & Music Directory in the player window to set an extra search directories. Putting in absolute paths is not recommended because then others will not be able to use your adventures on different computers.

gif/storyharp00090000.gif You can test to see what your reply sounds like by either clicking on the icon next to the label for the reply field, or by choosing the Rule | Test Reply menu item. If Agent is installed, the text will be said and the music played even if you have those options turned off in the player settings. You can also test this by doing the command in the player. In that case Settings | Play Music in the player window would have to be checked in order to hear the music.

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Updated: March 10, 1999. Questions/comments on site to
Copyright © 1998, 1999 Paul D. Fernhout & Cynthia F. Kurtz.