Sea of Stars mimics a SNES audio limitation for authenticity

Now you're playing with 8 channels

20 February 2023
by rawmeatcowboy 0

Sea of Stars is a love letter to the classic 16-bit RPGs that continue to inspire developers today. Everything from the graphics to gameplay of Sea of Stars is 16-bit through and through, and that is never more obvious than in the game’s soundtrack.

The tunes heard in Sea of Stars so far are absolutely fantastic, taking major inspiration from 16-bit RPGs to creating something wholly unique. Not only do these tunes sound similar in instruments and composition to 16-bit titles, it turns out they also mimic the audio limitations of the SNES as well.

For those who don’t know, the Super Nintendo had just 8 audio channels. This meant some games had to mute drums or other instruments during songs in order to play sound effects. You hear this in countless SNES titles throughout the system’s library, and now you’ll hear it in Sea of Stars as well.

The team behind Sea of Stars wanted to pay tribute to this SNES audio limitation, so they’re using a special audio filter in their game. This means Sea of Stars is using a theoretical audio limitation, and you might notice select aspects of songs getting muted when sound effects play. If anything, this just goes to show how deep the Sea of Stars developers’ love for the SNES goes!

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