Editing Rules: Recordings

From Video Game Music Preservation Foundation Wiki
Jump to: navigation, search

Recordings of video game soundtracks can be submitted by any user but they must adhere to the following rules. For an example of a recording that meets the VGMPF standards, see Bionic Commando (NES).


Not all games are allowed to be recorded.

  • All games must be at least 15-years-old
    • The majority of video game soundtracks are still owned by their respective copyright holders, and a 15-year-long buffer will help alleviate legal issues. We will immediately comply with all copyright holders who ask to have their intellectual property removed and added to the blacklist.
    • The 15-year buffer may be ignored if the game is not protected by copyright (freeware, GPL, public domain, etc.).
    • It may also be ignored if the music's copyright holder has given explicit permission to the VGMPF to showcase their music.
  • Songs MUST be recorded from the game
    • Do NOT upload music from official soundtrack CDs, remixes, arrangements, etc.
  • Don't add duplicated soundtracks
    • Games with soundtracks that are identical to earlier ports should not be included.
    • For example, many games are emulated in virtual consoles, but, since the sound chips are also emulated, they sound identical, and should not be added.

Audio Format

  • Music MUST be recorded into Ogg Vorbis format.
    • If you don't know what Ogg Vorbis is, see the Vorbis Tutorial.
    • If you want to know a simple way to convert your existing music into Ogg Vorbis, see Foobar2000 Conversion Setup.
    • Songs should be encoded with a quality level of 4 ( -q4 ).
    • It is recommended that you keep your original recordings in FLAC format in order to have a lossless master file to work with.
  • Strive for the most accurate sound
    • Because this site is meant to preserve video game music as a historic media, all music should be recorded using the software that offers sound quality most accurate to the original.

Meta Data

Meta data is important for identifying a song. If the songs don't meet the meta data requirements, use the Issue Meta template.

  • Update the file's meta data
    • Use foobar2000's meta data editing for consistency.
    • Meta data gives listeners important information about the track they're listening to.
    • It also lets you use the Make List program to quickly generate the Wiki code.

File Names

The audio files should meet the following standard. If they do not, use the Issue Names template.

  • Use the following naming convention for Ogg files
    • "Track - Game Title - Platform Code - Song Title.ogg" The track should be two digits with leading zeroes, with the platform in all caps.
    • For example: "05 - Chrono Trigger - SNES - Green Memories.ogg"
    • For games that support multiple hardware outputs, add a disc number to the file name and put the highest-quality output first.
    • For example:
      • 102 - Ultima 6 - DOS - Ultima Theme.ogg (Roland MT-32 recording)
      • 202 - Ultima 6 - DOS - Ultima Theme.ogg (AdLib recording)
      • 302 - Ultima 6 - DOS - Ultima Theme.ogg (Creative Music System recording)
      • 402 - Ultima 6 - DOS - Ultima Theme.ogg (Tandy 3 Voice recording)

The disc number should also be applied to console games that have differing soundtracks from each other, with the ordering being from the first game's release to the second game's release. See Al Unser Jr. Turbo Racing (NES) as an example; The first release was the Japanese version which featured a completely different soundtrack from the US version, and the PAL version plays the music at 50Hz as opposed to the NTSC's 60Hz, resulting in a slowed-down version of the song with a slower tempo and tuned down a half-step. PAL versions should only be recorded if the game was released in PAL regions such as Europe.

In addition, for platforms that have timing differences between regions, but were only released in one region; the developer's region should be recorded as well. For example, Loopz (NES) was developed in England (PAL format), but only released in North America (NTSC format), so the PAL format should be recorded as well, as that is what the composer intended for it to sound originally.


Recordings should meet the following timing rules. If they do not, use the Issue Timing template.

  • Songs that are looped in the game, should have looped recordings. To remain consistent, record two loops (one full play through, and then one full loop), and then a fade out of the first ten seconds of the third loop.
  • Record non-looping songs as is.
  • If a song's first play-through is over 2 minutes in length, don't bother with the second loop, just have a ten second fade out when the second loop starts.
  • The 2-minute rule is not set in stone and you may want to forego it to keep consistency with a soundtrack (if all songs are 1 minute, but one song is 2:30, go ahead to loop it twice). You may also want to ignore it if the soundtrack has a small number of songs (if the entire soundtrack is a single 3:00 minute song, go ahead and loop it twice).

See Also