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  #1  
Old 12-08-2013, 06:54 PM
Wizardo Wizardo is offline
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Default How important is volume control in a game?

Hey guys.

So my game if finally "complete" and I hope to have it on sale after the holiday rush. However, during recent play testing we got a complaint about the lack of volume control.

Our game is a first person point and click adventure game with a pretty amazing soundtrack. I hate the idea of people turning the music off, but apparently this is an important issue to some players.

Unfortunately, we never considered this until right now. My programmer tells me this could take weeks to implement across all platforms (he has a demanding day job).

I realize we will get some complaints about this because most games appear to have volume controls, but my question is how big a deal is not having them?

Also, he said a slightly easier alternative would be to add a mute button for the music, but not the sound effects. Would this be good enough?

I've tried googling, but I can't find a good discussion on this.

Thoughts?

Last edited by Wizardo; 12-08-2013 at 06:58 PM..
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  #2  
Old 12-09-2013, 12:47 AM
takemuraori takemuraori is offline
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in our game we have no sound control, we only have ambiance background and sound fx, we target tablet users and phones first of all and on those I believe it is more intuitive to use hardware buttons. however if you have a lot of music and not just ambiance that could be something that some players may want to turn off.
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  #3  
Old 12-09-2013, 04:23 AM
Appvism Appvism is offline
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For me personally, I don't think its that important - you can just use the volume and/or mute controls of the phone itself (with iOS devices at least, not sure about Android devices but i assume all devices have volume on the side?).

However, if you do implement it in a game, maybe its more to do with the ability to mute music or sound effects separately? For eg, the bg music may not be to their taste but still want to hear the clicks/pings/beeps, etc...

Cheers,
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Old 12-09-2013, 04:31 AM
cloudpuff cloudpuff is offline
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I very rarely use in game volume controls as if I need to shut sound off I use the iPad buttons, I'll only use in game controls if the sound effects are annoying or irritating and I'd want them them permantly off, it's only ever happened once though.
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Old 12-09-2013, 10:54 AM
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GlennX GlennX is offline
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I think it's vital. I've not played certain games because they won't coexist with music/podcasts. Ideally I like to be able to turn music off completely and adjust the effects volume to a level where I can hear them but they are behind whatever i'm playing.

It's very tempting to say "the music is part of the game, it stays on" but why would you when it's easy to offer the option.
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Old 12-09-2013, 07:29 PM
Wizardo Wizardo is offline
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Thanks for the responses.

GlennX: Yup, we're learning that some people do like to have itunes going while they play. I should have known considering I used to crank my Slayer tapes while playing NES as a kid (I'm old). That's why we're considering adding it.

If it was easy to do we would just throw it in there, but the problem is the game is going to run on several platforms and adding it to all of them would be a big deal.

It's looking like we may have to forget about adding it TBH.
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  #7  
Old 12-09-2013, 07:59 PM
Echoen Echoen is offline
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I like toning down the music to around 10-25% and I do that in almost every game that has that option. I keep the sound effects going at a normal level. I don't really like mute toggles alone because the music is a part of the overall design.
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Old 12-10-2013, 07:31 AM
Wizardo Wizardo is offline
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I realize why volume controls are important on a PC, but what about an iPhone. I don't play a lot of iPhone games, and when I do I find the universal controls on the phone itself to be good enough. Is this mostly a PC issue?
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  #9  
Old 12-10-2013, 08:50 AM
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GlennX GlennX is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Wizardo View Post
I realize why volume controls are important on a PC, but what about an iPhone. I don't play a lot of iPhone games, and when I do I find the universal controls on the phone itself to be good enough. Is this mostly a PC issue?
Some of us like to listen to music, podcasts, radio, whatever and will only play games that coexist. How many of us are there? It's possibly just me but that's enough for me to have put individual sliders for mp3 music and openAL sound effects. Given that I already had a slider control in my UI and was already saving settings it was a few minutes work though I did take this further in my last game. It detects if 'other audio' is playing as it starts and automatically disables the music if it is. If the user presses the button on the remote the 'other audio fades out and the game music fades in. Press it again and the music/podcast/radio/whatever fades back in. All very easy to do and the fading is all handled for you by Apple.
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Old 12-11-2013, 01:50 AM
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Ovogame Ovogame is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GlennX View Post
If the user presses the button on the remote the 'other audio fades out and the game music fades in. Press it again and the music/podcast/radio/whatever fades back in. All very easy to do and the fading is all handled for you by Apple.
Nice, I didn't go that far. If I detect that audio is playing on your Apple device, then the music won't start in my game (but the sounds will still be played).

if anyone is interested here is my code for my main.mm file:

#import <UIKit/UIKit.h>
#import <AudioToolbox/AudioServices.h>
#include "VD.h"

int main(int argc, char *argv[])
{
NSAutoreleasePool * pool = [[NSAutoreleasePool alloc] init];

// check if IPOD is playing music
UInt32 isPlaying = false;
UInt32 propertySize = sizeof(isPlaying);
AudioSessionInitialize(NULL, NULL, NULL, NULL);
AudioSessionGetProperty(kAudioSessionProperty_Othe rAudioIsPlaying, &propertySize, &isPlaying);

CAudio::GIsMusicAuthorized = (isPlaying==false);

CSystem::Open();
int retVal = UIApplicationMain(argc, argv, nil, nil);

CSystem::Close();
[pool release];
return retVal;
}
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