Realtime Associates

From Video Game Music Preservation Foundation Wiki
Jump to: navigation, search
Realtime Associates
Realtime Associates - 02.png
Founded 1986
Headquarters El Segundo, California
Other Names Realtime Associates, Seattle Division
INTV Corporation

Realtime Associates is an American game development studio founded by David Warhol. In April 1994, a division in Seattle was created by Steve Ettinger (under the request of Warhol), which had been sold to KnowWonder, which eventually became F9E, which was then changed to Griptonite. Now, the studio is Glu Mobile.

The company started out developing for the Intellivision, and subsequently started developing NES, Game Boy, SNES, and other various consoles.

Besides game development, various game developers would outsource audio to Realtime. Some of these companies included Interplay, LucasArts, and Ironwind Software.


Music Development

Game Boy

The composers would write MIDI files which were converted to David Warhol's sound driver. Warhol's sound engine was very picky where if a note overlapped another on a channel in the MIDI file, the converter would hang said note and play it forever. David Warhol also designed a custom chip which could connect the Game Boy sound chip to a MIDI keyboard.


The company used GEMS, except for Barney's Hide and Seek, which uses a custom sound engine, possibly by David Warhol.


David Warhol created the sound drivers and wrote a MIDI conversion tool.


MIDI files were created by the composers (mostly in Cakewalk), and then were given to David Warhol to arrange for the NES' four sound channels. Then Warhol would use a tool he wrote that would convert MIDI files to his sound driver. The DPCM was almost never used in games with this driver due to Warhol not knowing how it worked.

Warhol arranged the composers' songs in an interesting way; rather than use the triangle channel of the 2A03 for bass, Warhol used one of the square wave channels instead, while using the triangle channel for melodic and harmonic parts.


David Warhol created the SNES sound engine at Realtime Associates. MIDI files were converted to his sound driver. The instruments were taken from various SNES games and they were provided by Sony.

AAAHH!!! Real Monsters uses SLICK/Audio sound engine from Bitmasters.

Audio Personnel

The following composers worked at Realtime Associates:

Logo History