Well, in principle I do agree with you. There is no argument that
there is a dramatic difference in fidility between a 22500 KHZ sound
file and a 44100 KHZ sound file. That said, there is technical reasons
why a programmer may choose not to use a 44100 KHZ sample rate in his
To begin with let's try and remember why it was I converted the sounds
from 44100 KHZ to 22500 KHZ in the first place. At the time beta 14
and beta 15 were released I was using a different mixer, OpenAL, which
is used by SFML Audio. I noticed when attempting to load 44100 KHZ
sound files in OpenAL there was a huge increase in system load on both
Windows and Linux platforms. By reducing the sample rate to 22500 KHZ
I nearly reduced the system load by half, and made the cross-platform
version of the game run smoother and better by doing so. So while
your criticism is justified I'd just like to point out that there were
good solid technical reasons why I chose not to continue using 44100
KHZ sounds at the time, and that particular issue couldn't have been
resolved by using ogg files or some other compressed file type.
Compressing a file only makes it smaller on the hard drive, but when
you load it into memory it has to be decompressed which means it will
use roughly the same amount of memory as a straight PCM wav file
As for the future of MOTA I can tell you right off that beta 17 is
using 44100 KHZ sound effects not 22500 KHZ. Since the engine no
longer relies on OpenAL and uses Philip's Streemway API all I had to
do was drop the original sounds back in the data directory and the
audio quality was restored to the way there were in beta 13 and
earlier. The 22500 KHZ sounds were nothing more and nothing less than
a temperary test to see if I could make the cross-platform engine work
better which it did and didn't.
So while I welcome your criticism and suggestions it just feels as
though you were missing the point of why I had to do that at the time,
and the fact you are not a private tester left you completely out of
the loop regarding current development changes in beta 17. Basically,
I just wanted to say that don't worry about it, because MOTA beta 17
is going to be a much better release than the previous ones because
I've gotten serious about completeing the game, and am willing to
admit and recognize that not using DirectX is a mistake from a
technical point of view.
For example, let's consider joysticks. If I use DirectX I can support
force feedback devices like the Philips 2909 game pads. Although force
feedback support is optional it is still a feature that would improve
the G3D engine and could be used to make your joystick vibrate in your
hands when you activate a light saber or jurk when the player is hit
etc. In other words it could add an extra sensory experience to the
whole way we do gaming.
Unfortunately, when we look at an open source operating system like
Linux joystick support is largely experimental and not very good. SDL
offers extremely generic joystick support, and currently does not have
force feedback support at all. So you might be able to move the
character around, fire, etc using a gamepad under Linux you'll never
get that force feedback experience until someone upgrades SDL with
that ability. I've heard it is suppose to be coming in SDL 1.3, but
who knows when or if that will happen. For right now it is a feature
we simply do not have with Linux game APIs. Which means SDL is
infurior in ways to the Windows APIs.
What that means to you, the customer/gamer, is that if I don't support
DirectX I'm going to have to leave out features like force feedback or
use some lower quality sample rate etc that may be less desirable in
order to maintain cross-platform compatibility. If you don't own a Mac
or Linux computer and I happen to leave some feature out because of
reason x you are going to basically lose out on features even though
you have no interest in supporting other operating systems. On the
flip side there is the Linux and Mac user who will not mind the loss
of features as their personal operating system is directly supported.
It is a difficult compromise, and one I truly have not figured out how
to resolve yet.
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