Feature suggestion: PAL timing option for Amiga (Atari, C64?) versions

General chat related to ScummVM, adventure gaming, and so on.

Moderator: ScummVM Team

Post Reply
Posts: 1
Joined: Sat Jul 27, 2019 7:58 pm

Feature suggestion: PAL timing option for Amiga (Atari, C64?) versions

Post by Windfisch »

Hi, I am new here but have been using ScummVM for a long time now. Great piece of software to replay some of my absolute favourite games of the early 1990s.

I usually played the PC versions of the LucasArts/Film adventures with ScummVM but yesterday I had a go at the Amiga version of Zak McKracken. It felt "off" somehow, music was too fast and the sound effects were missing the glitches here and there. But on the other hand, it felt "right" at the same time, as the main theme was as fast as in the PC version.

Then I remembered, I played the original on a PAL Amiga back in the days which had slightly different timings. This caused the music to run slower and some sample timings were incorrect there as well - it was as if the samples were played in loop mode and cut off after a certain amount of time, with this amount of time being longer on PAL machines, the sample looped and was cut off then. For example, the buttons on the Mars face doors just sound like bongo drums with NTSC timings, but they include a second, shorter "bang" with PAL timings. The two-headed squirrel has a similar effect, the "bang" when killing it, as well.
And the huge doors on Mars have like an echo on the Amiga which is absent when played with ScummVM, I don't know if the echo is produced due to a bug that comes into play with the PAL timings or if the sound emulation in ScummVM can't do this - but they really added to the atmosphere.

This different sound may indeed be wrong, but for me who grew up with this version, it is the right thing and the "correct" version sounds off to me. I'd appreciate a timing setting for the Amiga versions (and maybe also C64 or Atari) where I can set sound timings to PAL to recreate the slower playback speed of music and the sound glitches with some sound effects.

To explain what I mean, here is a YouTube video of the Zak McKracken intro as it shows on a PAL Amiga (the link starts playing at 3:00 where you can hear the music):
Post Reply