Author of a map can set a background music to be played in the map. Users can choose to play a different music.

Infos for players[]

Users can control sound volume and background music volume by using SETUP -> SYSTEM -> SOUND menu, or by using /s_volume and /s_musicvolume variables (0.0 is no volume, 1.0 is full volume). At least with OpenArena 0.8.8 under Microsoft Windows, relationship between the two volume kinds differs if you are using OpenAL or not: please read OpenAL#OpenAL and volume controls for more infos.

Setting music volume to 0 completely prevents the game from computing the music: this can act as a workaround if you experience a "hitch" (the game "stuck" for a short time) each time background music track re-starts.

The /music <music path/name> command allows players to play a different song than the one pre-defined by map creator. It's useful if you like playing the same map, but you don't like hearing the same music each time, or if you are playing a map that does not play a song by its own. Just type /music music/oa01 in command console to try it (for available songs, you can refer to Available musics section in this page). Specifying an unexisting music file name will just stop music.

Trivia: if you wish a key to cycle between background musics, we prepared a "Jukebox script" configuration example for you!

Infos for developers and map creators[]

Song format[]

Since we're using ioquake3 and we compile it with Ogg support, .ogg files are supported. You don't need to fear about 22khz 16bit stereo WAV files anymore! It would not be a good idea to use a patent-encumbered format like MP3.

Making a song[]

If possible, try to do it in a tracker format (.it, .s3m, .xm, etc) and try to use legal samples such as freepats. (old website version here through Internet Archive)

Song filenames[]

NOTE: Time length is of the original song, it's no guideline but an idea


Bolded are replaced with new OA music. :) (the descriptions are about the q3 music, not OA's)

  • music/loss - 00:17, plays when you lose a single player botmatch in campaign mode
  • music/win - 00:19, plays when you win a single player botmatch in campaign mode
  • music/fla22k_01_intro - 0:41, intro of a ingame level song
  • music/fla22k_01_loop - 1:07, looping part of the above song
  • music/fla22k_02 - 1:38, quick and popular industrial song
  • music/fla22k_03 - 2:21, hellish ambience with some synth noise at parts
  • music/fla22k_04_intro - 0:19, very annoying song
  • music/fla22k_04_loop - 1:51, looping part of above song that's now less annoying (not many maps use this song and just play the intro only instead, at least for 1.1x)
  • music/fla22k_05 - 1:59, mostly ambient fitting for gothic setting
  • music/fla22k_06 - 2:09, like the song above (same synth beat) but more fitting for a hi tech base
  • music/sonic1 - 3:05, industrial, only used in one level in q3 and in team arena menu
  • music/sonic2 - 2:22, industrial
  • music/sonic3 - 3:36, industrial
  • music/sonic4 - 4:14, industrial
  • music/sonic5 - 3:15, industrial
  • music/sonic6 - 3:30, industrial, ambient until 1:50


(we're not there yet but we'll describe anyway)

  • music/fla_mp01 - industrial ambience
  • music/fla_mp02 - industrial ambience
  • music/fla_mp03 - industrial ambience, used for the submenus
  • music/fla_mp04 - industrial ambience
  • music/fla_mp05 - industrial ambience
  • music/fla_mp06 - industrial ambience

Available musics[]

These are the "stock" background music files available for mappers (and for players who want to hear a different one) in OpenArena 0.8.8:

  • music/OA01
  • music/OA02
  • music/OA06
  • music/OA07
  • music/OA08
  • music/OA13
  • music/OA14

Just ignore the "WARNING: music file xxxx/yyyy is not 22k stereo" yellow warning in console when the music files above are played in the game. This will be hopefully fixed in future OA versions. If you don't want to see it anymore, for the moment you have to disable music.

Quick notes about adding music in maps[]

  • Music path (music name, e.g. music/OA01) has to be specified in the "music" key of "worldspawn" properties.
  • Don't add the extension in the path so it can seek for either ogg and wav if available (for the sake of vanilla compatibility).

See also[]