Scream Tracker 3 Module

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Revision as of 16:07, 31 January 2010 by GreaseMonkey (talk | contribs) (basically, how tremolo works.)
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  • Extension: s3m

A normally 16-channel module format for MS-DOS on the PC, it can also support OPL2 FM synthesis (9 melodic channels + 5 drums). While the format itself can technically support 32 channels, only the 30 mentioned have any meaning assigned to them, and they are usually not all used at the same time.

File Format

TODO this section - there's a file which comes with ST3.21, "TECH.DOC", which gives you the info. Effects are A=1, B=2, et cetera.

Playback Notes

Aspects which are easy to get wrong with this format are in bold text.

Note w/o sample results in retriggering the note without resetting the volume.

Sample w/o note results in resetting the volume and switching samples w/o retriggering the note. If the C4 speeds differ, this could potentially be out of tune as it does not convert the internal period values. If the note is off, it will stay off - it will not retrigger.

Vibrato and tremolo have a full cycle length of 256.

Theoretically, both the period and the volume have "stored" values and "active" values.

Volumes actually peak at 63, and not 64. Setting the volume to 64 will actually make it go to 63.

When a note is selected, tremolo is retriggered.


TODO the rest


Volume slide. If one of the values are 0, then we slide on all nonzero ticks. If one of the values are F, then we slide on all zero ticks. That means that D0F slides down 15 on all ticks and DF0 slides up 15 on all ticks.

However, if fast slides are enabled (if they are set as a flag or the version is less than 0x1320), then, unless we're doing a fineslide, we slide on all ticks.

When we do a volume slide, we slide the active volume without modifying the stored volume, and we retrigger tremolo for that channel.

The checking order is as follows:

  • Dx0 (slide up)
  • D0x (slide down)
  • DxF (fine slide up)
  • DFx (fine slide down)

So DFF slides the volume up 15 notches each nonzero tick.


Tremolo. x*4 is speed, y*4 is depth. This is possibly the screwiest effect of the lot. While XMPlay seems to be quite good with IT support these days after Storlek released his abuse tests, it gets several aspects of this S3M effect wrong.

  • If xy is nonzero, load up the speed and the depth into this channel's tremolo speed & depth values.
  • Set the active volume to the stored volume plus (depth * value) / max_amplitude, and for each nonzero tick increase the tremolo position by the speed. The stored volume is untouched.
  • When this effect is retriggered, the depth and position are set to 0 while the speed remains unaltered.
  • Tremolo will not work if the stored volume is 0.