Need help ripping XBOX version of Riddick Escape From Butcher Bay (XWC WAV, probably wrong WAV header) by marcoxD95 at 6:20 AM EDT on August 18, 2020
I wanted to try ripping the XBOX version of Riddick Escape From Butcher Bay. The reason is that I want to make a full HQ rip of the music since the ones being available online are only 128kbits. From my experience XBOX games usually have the highest quality for music files. That was also the case with Riddick Assault On Dark Athena, which I ripped as well. The PC version had OGG files, the PS3 MP3 files and the XBOX some sort of XBOX Media files and comparing the spectrums I could see that the XBOX ones are almost lossless and even have audio information above 20khz.

Dark Athena sadly doesnt include the music from Escape From Butcher Bay. There is also no extracted music for the game available here, only for Dark Athena. I also played around with quickbms and that Dark Athena XWC script but obviously didnt do anything. I was able to extract the big XWC packages which are named DVD0.xwc (~300mb) with Dragon Unpacker but I cant playback them and they have no file ending. I got files like "mus_pa2_ev11" or "trks_pa2_hangar_amb" but cant play or convert them, even with VGMStream foobar plugin.

Does anybody here know something? Would really like to check out the music quality of the music and compare it to the PC ogg versions. I wanna provide the best soundtrack rip ever so far for these games. The music from Gustaf Grefberg is just amazing.

I know I could just use the PC and ogg files, which I already extracted and work fine. The way how you extract music from the PC and XBOX version is very similar, files are even named the same but the PC version has directly playable ogg files while the XBOX version has the same files but without file ending or codec name to them. Maybe they would playback fine but I dont have a working plugin for it. VGMStream should be able to handle it but it doesnt for some reason. If not VGMStream what else...

Maybe its a waste of time to some people but I just want to check out the spectrums and see if the XBOX has higher quality audio files. Its just curiosity.

edited 6:33 AM EDT August 18, 2020

edited 9:05 AM EDT August 18, 2020
by marcoxD95 at 8:18 AM EDT on August 18, 2020

I was able to extract some WAV files with a tool named EkszBox-ABX v2.1. However, these files dont playback in Foobar2000 and VGMStream. Maybe something is wrong with the WAV Header but that is where my knowledge is at an end.

I was able to open these files with Spek and wow, these are actually 100% lossless! Also way better than the PC OGG files. Now I would like to be able to make them playable even more and use them as source for my soundtrack release.

I hope somebody can help me out here.

Here are also 2 screenshots from the spectrum of the files and also a Hex code view from one of the WAV files.

My guess is that I need some sort of script since these extracted audio files have a wrong header, similar to Dark Athena I guess. Sadly this doesn't seem to exist and I dont have the knowledge to figure this out alone.

edited 8:45 AM EDT August 18, 2020
by marcoxD95 at 12:33 PM EDT on August 18, 2020

I was playing around with the header and was able to playback it with Foobar by changing the 0x0069 hex to 0x0011, which is the standard IMA ADPCM value. However, Foobar/VGMStream still failed at converting it to Flac...

I actually went ahead and randomly tried it with Audacity and FFMPEG library installed and BOOM! It worked. It could open and export the file as a FLAC or normal PCM 16bit Wav file. And now I can perfectly playback it in Foobar and it also has its proper track length (The xwc extraction for some reason adds tons of hex 0 at the end of the track).

So yeah. It seems everything works now and I can go ahead to tag and mix the tracks. I think that is the first time somebody managed to get lossless files for the Riddick EFBB soundtrack. At least I never saw it on the web, aside of these bad 128kbit MP3s. Super happy about lossless audio! I actually wanted to already resort to the OGG V0 PC rip but luckily I dont need to anymore.
by skyboxeye at 12:33 AM EDT on August 2, 2022
VLC can play the EkszBox outputs, for what it's worth. The files are definitely some kind of IMA ADPCM under the hood. My own experiments with TXTH files:

codec = IMA
interleave = 0x1
channels = 2
sample_rate = 44100
num_samples = data_size
interleave_last = auto


codec = XBOX
channels = 2
sample_rate = 44100
num_samples = data_size
interleave_last = auto

Give similar, seemingly valid results.

I tried a couple of other extraction methods (Dragon Unpacker and a dedicated program called UnXWC). The results disagree only on the header of a given file. What's odd is that these files sound inferior to the PC versions despite being twice as large.

edited 1:41 AM EDT August 2, 2022
by marcoxD95 at 3:44 PM EDT on August 17, 2022
They indeed sound worse than the PC ogg files. I noticed this problem too and guess they used a very crappy Xbox Wav codec. Even the frequencies show a lot of noise all over the audio and you can hear it clearly. I changed my rip to PC ogg files too once I noticed this problem. Shame but the PC files sound perfectly transparent anyway.

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