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Baldur's Gate 1 & 2 Widescreen HD GUI in 1280 x 720


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#1 ikonomov

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Posted 28 July 2016 - 01:44 PM

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File Name: Baldur's Gate 1 & 2 Widescreen HD GUI in 1280 x 720
File Submitter: ikonomov
File Submitted: 28 Jul 2016
File Category: Miscellaneous Released Mods

BG1:

Many of us prefer the look and feel of the original BG1, but find the resolution of 640x480 not ideal.  The widescreen mod makes the game playable at higher resolutions, but the GUI conversion is handled a bit crudely.  There exists a mod that somewhat rectifies the problem TWM_GUI (http://athkatla.cob-...opic.php?t=3257), but among its available resolutions it does not have a true 16:9 support and also has some added graphical elements which I think change the overall aesthetic of the game.  Inspired by TWM, I decided to create this GUI mod to add a much needed 16:9 support and attempt to preserve the graphical elements of the game in their original form as much as possible.

This mod makes the following changes to the GUI:

1. All menus have been centered at their original 640x480 resolution for all game views except when at the play screen, where it is at 1280x720.

2. The bottom GUI elements in play view have been centralized and the widths of the text and message windows have been resized to 800 pixels for easier reading.

3. The new text and message windows (bottom GUI elements during play) use a custom font created using bam generator (http://www.shsforums...onts-for-pt-pl/) and edited for correct spacing between lines.  I tried to find a font that resembles the original font.  Small height adjustments to the text fields that use the new font have been made to allow text to show correctly in all fields.  Every other text element in the game is left untouched and uses the original fonts.

Known issues:

1. The loading and CD loading screens are not centered.  Thanks to Zed Nocear (TWM) and pb1866 for the offset values, but there are more elements on those screens with unknown offsets.

2. The sliders in the options panel had to be moved to the left. Thanks again to Zed Nocear for the great solution which I replicated.

3. When moving more items between the inventory and a container (or the ground) the image of the last moved item sometimes flickers.

4. There is a white border on the right and bottom edge (outlining the 640x480 square) in the tavern at Nashkel (AR4809).  Also in some of the transitional areas when being ambushed there is black on the right edge of the area, but the terrain is supposed to extend to the edge of the map in open areas.

5. Centering during dialogue is as per 640x480.  This is again hard coded into the game's exe file and could be edited if the offset values are known.

Here is a possible install order since this mod requires certain things to be installed and also modifies BGMain2.exe.

1. BG1 + TotSC (custom install with all options checked)
     Skip step 2, 3 and installing no CD crack for GOG.com version as they are included.
          If Setup.exe does not start:
               1. go to Task Manager/details tab
               2. right click on setup.exe and 'analyze wait chain'
               3. close the program (end task) that is blocking the installation.

2. BGTalesUK5512.exe (or BGTalesIntl5512.exe) http://www.sorcerers.../index_misc.php

3. BGTalesDX8Intl.exe http://www.sorcerers.../index_misc.php
     Optional:
          No CD crack (infinitycracker_v1.1) http://gamecopyworld...durs_gate.shtml
          BG1FixPack11.exe http://www.baldurdas...1/bg1fixes.html
          Other mods

4. Run the game once and exit.

5. widescreen-v3.07.exe http://www.gibberlin...net/widescreen/
     1280x720, disable multiple resolutions

6. BG1_GUI_720_v1.2.rar (this mod)

7. ddraw.zip (DDrawCompat v0.2.1) https://github.com/n...Compat/releases
     This makes the game compatible on newer OS, including Win10.  Place ddraw.dll in BG1 folder.

Some suggestions for configuring the game:

Cache Size 1024MB (max)
Path Search Nodes 400000 (max)
Mouse scroll speed (max)
Color depth 32-bit
 
BG2:
 
Widescreen-v3.07.exe (http://www.gibberlin...net/widescreen/) at 1280x720 is required prior to installation.  This mod makes the following changes to the GUI:

1. The bottom GUI elements in play view have been centralized and the stretched text and message windows have been resized to the original width of 800 pixels for easier reading.

2. In BG2 regardless of resolution when in dialogue mode, if the text window is scrolled up, the right side of previously shown text is cut by 40 pixels sometimes hiding whole words.  To fix this NPC portraits that might show during dialogue have been moved to the left, which allows the text area to have uniform width across all views.

3. The new text and message windows (bottom GUI elements during play) use a custom font created using bam generator (http://www.shsforums...onts-for-pt-pl/) and edited for correct spacing between lines.  I tried to find a font that resembles the original font.  Small height adjustments to the text fields that use the new font have been made to allow text to show correctly in all fields.  Every other text element in the game is left untouched and uses the original fonts.

Click here to download this file

Attached Files



#2 The Imp

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Posted 28 July 2016 - 03:23 PM

Nice. Very much so. I don't personally play the BG1 anymore, but it's always nice to have it as an option.

Edited by The Imp, 28 July 2016 - 03:23 PM.

Yep, Jarno Mikkola. my Mega Mod FAQ. Use of the BWS, and how to use it(scroll down that post a bit). 
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#3 ikonomov

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Posted 10 August 2016 - 10:27 AM

Thanks mate.



#4 James M

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Posted 10 October 2016 - 06:45 AM

1280x720 is exactly what I was looking for! Thank-you very much for this fabulous work! I've been playing BG1 for a couple of hours now and it works great on my old Vista laptop. Your install order is flawless.

 

Gameplay potential room for improvement: centering during dialog seems to not be centered; I think during dialog your mod currently "auto-moves"/centers as per 640x480.



#5 ikonomov

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Posted 15 October 2016 - 01:44 PM

Thanks man.  I have been playing BG1 myself and also noticed the centering during dialog.  Unfortunately it's not something that we'll have an easy fix for, as this is one of those things that has been hard coded into the .exe file.


Edited by ikonomov, 14 January 2017 - 09:44 AM.


#6 ikonomov

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Posted 23 November 2016 - 09:22 PM

Recently I had to reinstall BG1 and for some reason setup wasn't starting as normal, so I found a solution:

If Setup.exe does not start:
        1. go to Task Manager/details tab
        2. right click on setup.exe and 'analyze wait chain'
        3. close the program that is blocking the installation.



#7 ikonomov

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Posted 14 January 2017 - 12:04 PM

I finally finished my playthrough in BG1 and I found some graphical glitches which I thought at first were due to playing the game at a different than the original resolution, but after some testing confirmed that they exist in BG1 by default.  I really enjoyed playing the game with its original engine and thought about reporting the bugs that I found so that maybe somebody in the future might have a go at fixing them.  The subtle differences between the original engine and EE/BGT/Tutu make for a substantially different gameplay experience.  The more general weapon proficiencies and slower walking speeds in particular made me really appreciate the original engine and feel of the game.

 

Edit:  I listed all the bugs I found on the main download page.


Edited by ikonomov, 23 November 2017 - 09:06 AM.


#8 ikonomov

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Posted 14 February 2018 - 09:27 PM

I updated the guide for running BG1 with a new DirectDraw wrapper (DDrawCompat) which should work better on more systems and updated the readme inside BG1_GUI_720_v1.2.rar.  Nothing else has changed, so I've kept the same version 1.2.



#9 -Soku-

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Posted 22 February 2018 - 06:13 AM

The new font added by the mod lacks Polish characters. Can I fix this somehow?



#10 ikonomov

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Posted 07 March 2018 - 02:29 PM

Hah, I knew this would eventually come up lol.  When I did the font I noticed that the fonts that I found similar to the ones used in the game had larger than normal spacing between lines.  It is just the way these fonts are made, their styling.  I think that they used custom fonts for the games with capital letters made smaller specifically to allow smaller spacing between lines.  I assume you are referring to some of the capital letters like A with symbols on top not showing.  I had to chose a compromise; use the font as is, which will allow less lines to show in the dialog window, use another font, which would differ significantly from the ones used in the game, or make a small adjustment of the font, crop the symbols on top of some of the capital letters, which are not used for the English alphabet...

 

There is an easy fix however, download another font:
ghostdog
Corvias
Delfosse

open the archive files for the font mods, rename normal.bam (norma1.bam for ghostdog) to normalN.bam and place in the override folder of BG1 or BG2 after you install my mod.  This will replace only the font in the dialog windows, just as it does in my mod.

 

Edit: Also I'm not sure if all of their fonts support Polish characters, but ghostdog has a font that shows correctly in Polish.


Edited by ikonomov, 07 March 2018 - 02:33 PM.


#11 Lorfean

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Posted 05 June 2018 - 11:39 PM

First of all, thank you SO much for this! I am one of those players who vastly prefers the look and feel of vanilla BG and have, for years now, been looking for a resolution solution that doesn't result in blurry scaling or other issues. This looks to be it. Thank you! It was very cool to find out that there are still creators out there who are passionate about vanilla BG.

 

2nd, in the readme you mention that some known issues are caused by unknown offset values. They seem like minor issues but it seems you are open to fixing them if the offset values could somehow be found. If I'd want to help out, how would I go about finding these offset values? I imagine it might be more complicated for centering the camera during dialogue than it would be for the loading screens...

 

3rd, how easy would it be to adept this mod for other resolutions? Maybe you could share which tools you used to create the mod?


Edited by Lorfean, 06 June 2018 - 03:07 AM.


#12 ikonomov

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Posted 12 June 2018 - 11:56 AM

Thank you so much Lorfean for the kind words.  I'm happy you enjoy vanilla BG.  I've played BGT and tried BGEE, and finally made this mod coming to the conclusion that nothing can beat the vanilla experience.

 

I am not quite sure how pb1866 found the offset values in BG1.  I've tried opening the .exe file in a hex editor, and it looks nearly impossible to locate anything.  I'm sure there are people that might be able to help, but I don't think it'd be an easy task.  I wish I can point you in the right direction, but I can't, if I knew a bit more I would have tried to find them myself.  The best suggestion I can offer is if you know somebody who has worked on a trainer or hack for an older game to ask them.

 

The reason I chose this resolution is two fold.  First I tried how the gameplay screen looks in a few 16:9 resolutions.  My monitor is 2560x1440, so I tried a few between my max resolution and 800x600.  I came to the conclusion that since the visible radius around the characters is only so big, there is not much point to try to zoom out the view too much beyond that.  It's just a dark screen when you do.  Too close and everything looks too pixelated and you have to move the view around too much, which is also not ideal.  The second consideration was I wanted to pick a resolution that is standard.  When I played BGT I played at 1366x768, but that's not exactly 16:9.  Anything around that to me looked good, so I tried the standard 1280x720, and as soon as I tried it things just looked perfect, with enough view, and still preventing pixelation.  So the limitation mostly has to do with the graphics and the format of the game itself, not so much with our monitors anymore.  You can test a few resolutions with BG2 and the widescreen mod.  If you are still convinced you want to try something else, here is what I used, and how:

 

- Near Infinity to import/export the .mos files into .gif files that I then changed in Photoshop.  I don't remember if it was .gif or .png, but it has to be lossless.  This is also where I changed the values of the placement of the interface elements in the .chu files.

 

- The values that you have to change in both x and y direction are many, but usually they had to be increased by the same number, so in order to automate the process, I used AutoHotKey.  I made a few scripts that copy, then increase some value, and then paste it at a certain mouse pointer location.

 

- The .gif or .png I had to edit into Photoshop.  They are all the different user interface elements that had to have different dimensions.  In all cases they had to be made bigger, so you have to take some part of the graphic from somewhere else to extend it.  In some cases I took parts of some other image that I found used in the game somewhere else in order not to change the theme of the graphics.  To make everything look seamless it takes some patience in Photoshop.  In the end things seemed to look pretty good, so after I finished with BG1 I looked at the files generated from the widescreen mod in BG2 and found some artifacts that I decided to correct, and upload in a BG2 version of the mod.

 

- The custom fonts that I made I had to also edit in Photoshop.  First I used the bam generator, and then exported each letter into a separate .gif file with Near Infinity that I cropped in Photoshop.  I used recorded Actions in Photoshop to automate the process.  Then reconstructed the font back in Near Infinity.  I did a similar thing with the clock in BG2, which is an animation made of different images that I slightly edited in Photoshop.

 

All in all, it took quite some time.  Zed Nocear (the creator of TWM) probably used a better method, as in his mod he allows couple of different resolutions.  You might want to contact him as well before you try this.