The Purser Stole My Gun
The title was mentioned in Pelit 1988, a Finnish magazine which Salovaara wrote for.
The C64's original 6581 sound chip can play three synthesized voices and one sample (ideal for drums and distorted guitars). One of Salovaara's first steps was to mix multiple samples at different pitches together into one. Somehow, a minimalist demo of this (20 bars in 32 seconds) and the game's title screen came out.
Finding that it works, Salovaara implemented pitch bends for samples (possibly a first on the C64), composed an 8-bar interlude, and two synthesized tracks: a bass on two voices, slightly detuned to achieve a chorus effect, and a lead guitar on the remaining third voice. He must have been experimenting, considering it sounds more "electro". A preview of the whole game, featuring this arrangement, was leaked around June.
Finally, he moved the chorus effect from the bass to the lead guitar, added two bass drums at 0:00.00, and eight bars as a bridge from the interlude. This third version was officially published around September.
On PAL C64s, the song is tuned at 433 Hz (a common mistake for European C64 programmers). On NTSC, it is tuned at 440 Hz and plays 19% faster than intended (except on old NTSC where it plays 22% faster instead, arguably too similar for extra recordings).
Samples are only clearly heard on the original 6581 model of the SID chip. On the 8580 revision, they are almost mute. The samples come from:
- Arcade Classics (C64) (guitar)
- Rockmonitor II (tom, also used for final snare drum)
- Chip War (C64) (final and preview bass drum)
- Rockmonitor 4 (preview snare drum)
- Microdisco (unused demo snare drum)
- BMX Kidz (C64) (demo snare drum)
- Rockmonitor 3 (demo bass drum)
Two loops plus 10 seconds were recorded from following versions and devices:
- the finished game in VICE 3.2 with C64 PAL, as the composer intended.
- the finished game in VICE 3.2 with C64 NTSC. The song got wide recognition beyond the C64 after the Angry Video Game Nerd played two excerpts on September 25, 2021.
- the finished game on a real C64C PAL with an 8580 R5 4091.
- the finished game in VICE 3.2 with C64C NTSC.
- a leaked preview in VICE 3.2 with C64 PAL.
- a leaked preview on a real C64C PAL with an 8580 R5 4091.
- a leaked demo in VICE 3.2 with C64 PAL.
- a leaked demo on a real C64C PAL with an 8580 R5 4091.
Nigel Pritchard noticeably re-arranged the preview version. He changed the genre and added some melodies of his own.
To record one loop plus 10 seconds, the game was started in Hatari v2.2.1. It sounds the same on PAL and NTSC.
The Amiga game credits both Adrian Waterhouse and Nigel Pritchard for music. Most likely (though unconfirmed), Waterhouse arranged Pritchard's Atari ST arrangement. Either way, it was done using SoundTracker III. The LED filter is left on. The samples are:
- fuzzguitar (unknown source)
- Strings3 (all six from The Ultimate Soundtracker (AMI))
- unknown (5 chars)
- unknown (7 chars)
On September 24, 2004, Salovaara commented:
To record one loop plus 10 seconds, the game was started in WinUAE 4.4.0 with NTSC off, Audio filter Emulated (A500), and Stereo separation 100%, the latter two as per real Amigas of the day.
The official NTSC release is not identified yet, so it is unknown whether it plays faster than on PAL, or was adjusted by the developer to play at a closer tempo. Until known, no NTSC recording is made.
- csdb.dk/release/?id=200456 - Commodore 64 demo.
- deepsid.com/?file=/MUSICIANS/Y/Yip/Netherworld_preview_1.sid&tab=visuals&sundry=osc - Visualization of C64 demo arrangement.
- deepsid.com/?file=/MUSICIANS/Y/Yip/Netherworld_preview_2.sid&tab=visuals&sundry=osc - Visualization of C64 preview arrangement.
- deepsid.com/?file=/MUSICIANS/Y/Yip/Netherworld.sid&tab=visuals&sundry=osc - Visualization of final C64 arrangement.
- demozoo.org/music/155742/ - Salovaara's Amiga MOD.
- youtube.com/watch?v=hztGbO8mvNk - Fan remix of Waterhouse's Amiga arrangement.
- youtube.com/watch?v=2BHjvaSKo3o - Fan remix of Atari ST arrangement.
- youtube.com/watch?v=N7ljZbuS75k - Fan performance of final C64 arrangement, with respect from Salovaara.