Electronic Arts MUS

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File Format
Name Electronic Arts MUS
Extension(s) .mus
Released 1989

Electronic Arts MUS files were used, in several variants, in some Electronic Arts games in the 1989-92 period, including Cartooners (which was actually an animated-cartoon creator rather than a game, per se), Ski or Die, The Lost Files of Sherlock Holmes, and (apparently in a very different format, perhaps compressed) The Immortal.



It appears that Joel Yliluoma (Bisqwit) managed to figure out how to play these music files: [1]. The page containing the source for this player: [2].

Sound Drivers

The music files that come with Cartooners appear to have sound hardware specific sections in their headers. See below for more information. Cartooners supports the following hardware for playing music:

  • AD LIB: adtoons.smb
  • CMS: cstoons.smb
  • PC Speaker: n/a
  • Roland MT 32/LAPC: mttoons.smb

All of the above should work with DOSBox v0.74 default sound settings except for "CMS". Set "sbtype" to "=sb1" under the "[sblaster]" section to enable "CMS" support. Whether or not a driver is used by Cartooners depends on whether the file present in the same directory as "Cartoons.exe". How the program selects a drive when there are multiple drivers present is unknown.

Music File Information

Endianness: big???

Extenstion: *.mus

Software: Cartooners 1988/1989 - by: Electronic Arts & IDTA

Music File Layout

[Music and Sounds]

Endianess: big.

Extenstion: *.mus

[File Layout]

Begin Structure: Header.

0x00 WORD Absolute offset of MIDI track data. 0x02 BYTES Header data [0x00] - 0x02 bytes in length. Purpose unknown.

End Structure

Begin Structure: MIDI track data.

0x00 BYTES MIDI track data.

End Structure

Begin Structure: Footer.

0x00 BYTE MIDI event "Stop playback".

0x01 BYTE Indicates whether or not the music/sound is played again when the end is reached: (0x80 = repeat, 0x81 stop.)

End Structure


The headers typically contain the following string: "rsxx}u".

[Other games with similar file midi music files] See the file "Electronic Arts Music Files.ods". Note: *** = Same for all files.

Other games with similar file midi music files

-"Ski or Die has" a music file called "Ski2.bin" which Cartooners appears to play correctly when added to an animation. Ski or Die can play a Cartooners' music file when "Ski2.bin" is substituted with one, although it is played about two times too fast.

-"The Lost Files of Sherlock Holmes: The Case of the Serrated Scalpel" music files (when extracted from the file "Music.lib") can be played by Cartooners when the first 0x0B (ASCII 0x20 characters (spaces)) of bytes has been removed from their headers.


-"Car and Driver" (in c&d.lib as *.bin files)

-"Hard Nova" (as *.bin files)

-"Lakers versus Celtics and the NBA Playoffs" (the files "o", "r", "s", and "v")

-"Populous - The Promised Lands" (pop_tune.dat)

See also


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