Continuous background music in Storyline 360

May 23, 2017

I am creating a Storyline project that has multiple slides with Engage interactions. In Presenter I could add continuous music by making a Playlist. However, this option doesn't seem to be available  in Storyline. I tried adding the audio to each individual slide, but then whenever the user clicks on a different part of the Engage module the audio would simply restart. Is there any solution to this? 

Pinned Reply
Lauren Connelly

Hi everyone!

Good news! I'm happy to share that we just released Storyline 360 (Build 3.81.31200.0), which includes a feature to control the background audio for each slide using triggers to play, pause, or stop the playlist.

This was highly requested, so we hope it serves you in your course creation! If you run into any snags, don't hesitate to contact our team in a support case.

59 Replies
Diane Morris

I think it must be terribly difficult to write the code that would allow continuous background music in Articulate. It has been a request for years and it still hasn't "bubbled up" to the top of the request pile! Wow - that is unfortunately making this Storyline customers want a different solution! My simple course without narration sounds very clunky as the music restarts on every click. :-(

Math Notermans

In fact its easy enough to do in Storyline as is with some Javascript.

Here you can see a sample.

And for some other user i made a simple sample. Very easy for not-experienced Javascripters to get this working. You only need to do 2 things to get background audio working properly.

- Replace the audiofile in the resources.
- Change the variable 'audioFile' into the name of your audiofile.

And then all works.

Working sample added.

Kind regards,

Diane Morris

I appreciate the help very much! There are 2 audio files but I only put the second one in so it wouldn't seem so disjointed when the users were "zooming" into the information on the layers in each subsequent slide. I would prefer only one track that loops throughout the whole story.

Thanks again! I am looking forward to seeing it work and the explanation about making it happen.

Math Notermans

Im sorry that i only now had time get this working.


Basically there is an extra slide not used in the flow, but adding resources that in the end will publish to the storyline_content. A variable with the 'filename.mp3' is set so in the end you only need to change that variable and add any wanted audio to the resources.

At start a Javascript is executed adding the needed code to the HTML and then another Javascript is needed on a trigger to start the background audio playing. As is you cannot use the default Storyline volume button as this only works with inline Storyline audio. I added buttons to pause/play audio. Thats the easiest solution for that. Offcourse you can add the pause/play and the volume control functionality to the default Storyline button, but thats another journey.

Kind regards,

Math Notermans

If clients ask me something thats not default in the tools at hand, i tell them... well anything is possible..but that is not default in the tools. So we can make it happen ( and with Javascript you can make anything happen in Storyline up to multiplayer games ! ) but we have to develop that ourselves. Sometimes clients dont want it then... and sometimes clients get enthusiast and want us to make it.

Bill Pickard

I happen to be well versed in Javascript and need a solution using
StoryLine that’s guaranteed to work on all platforms (including mobile) so
my hands are tied. I can certainly include the file in a webobject and use
html5 audio but that in itself brings desktop only and additional problems
and complexity. What if my users want to control the volume of the bgm?
Mute it when a video plays? It’s not accessible by triggers and now I will
have to write additional javascript play/pause/resume complexity that is
*not maintainable* by the non-javascript staff who will be inheriting the
project. I can certainly fix these problems with JavaScript, it’s just not
a good idea. If my client runs into problems down the line they can’t ask
Articulate for help because Javascript is “not supported”.

Math Notermans

Yes, all true. Those are the limitations of rapid authoring tools like Storyline. The competiting tools have the same flaws. They might have some benefits on specific parts, but in the end your limited to what the tool gives default. And in the end you then have to i stand up with the limitations a specific tool has... do i check out competitors if some might be better ( i have worked in the major 3...Lectora, Captivate and Storyline...they all arenot perfect ) or develop your own toolset. Quite some companies i worked for did this. Some with succes...some not.

Personally i love extending the limits of rapid authoring tools and make things happen that aren't in the box.

Shane Allen

Hi Math, thank you for the prompt reply and for all of the wonderful help in this thread. I do have it working, however my one issue that remains is that an action from the learner is required to initiate the audio. I was hoping to have my audio synced with visuals, but this does not seem to be possible with this approach. I commend your brilliant workaround - I'm sure this is a HUGE help to many. I do feel strongly that this feature still needs to be added into the program, and hope it gets the attention it deserves in the near future and we don't have to wait many more years.

Math Notermans

Hi Shane,
In fact this is quite default behaviour on browsers nowadays. That said... you can workaround that by using my workaround for the bigblackbutton in Storyline. Describing that one here...

Using this workaround your projects can start audio straight away... im not 100% certain this helps fix your issue, but i do think it might. If you can't get it working, do share a sample of your project and i see if i can.