Blood Omnicide blog
Soon, really soon
Yet another milestone is reached. New installer supports PlayStation version of Blood Omen and wide range of setup options:
New installer also introduces game cache rebuild system, which will be utilized in future patches and can be used to switch between different releases of Blood Omen without re-installing the game.
Blood Pill 1.1
Improved version of Blood Omen resource extraction and transformation tool, BloodPill v1.1, adds support for map lighting and updated description on Blood Omen map format.
Blood Omen maps now can be exported with lighting shown. Lighting format was a 'blank page' for a long time, preventing us from creating full featured 2d maps renderer, which is an essential part of Blood Omnicide. Now lighting format is unveiled and 3D artist can inspect any corner of original design and implement a faithful 3D representation. But what is more important, is that creation of made-from-scratch legacy 2d renderer is now possible, and all-chapters gameplay could be implemented on original 2d levels, with enhanced graphics and features (such as xBrz texture upscale and more).
On the techinical side, Blood Omen uses a pretty modern lighting system for the era it was created. It supports two types of light sources - omnidirectional lights and spot lights. Omnidirectional lights have width and height, while spot lights have a radius of starting point, distance to spot zone and direction (top, right, left or down). Lights also can have an optional animated sprite (a fire sprite) and 'glare' flag, which adds a blink animation effect, or can be spawned only at night, or implement thunder flashes and more. Pretty nice!
Lighting format not the only thing progressed with map description. Structure members storing map type and music track was unveiled as well. Some fancy stats on music files usage: most used music track is Avernus (played in 100 locations), then goes Oracle's Caves (96 locations), Mausoleum (94 locations), Malek's Bastion (91 locations), Dark Eden (62 locations), Solemn Dirge (35 locations), Vorador's Mansion (30 locations), Road To Vengeance (12 locations). Most rare tracks are: Awakening and Elzevir with 9 locations each.
Another one of the sub-goals of v0.1 development was finished yesterday: a final locale system which supports all game text and some other features.
One of the hardest things to do was to get all Blood Omen text in a single file. We would like to thank The Lost Worlds for the published NPC Dialogue Script, and Legacy of Kain: Dark Chronicle for unused dialogue scripts, which help us to get all the text together.
The second big advantage is timing marks. Timing marks are required to display only a part of speech text in subtitles. Blood Omen has a number of rather long monologues, up to over 50 seconds. Which, if shown entirely, fills half of the screen with subtitle text. In order to handle this, it needs timing marks to be placed in the subtitle text, to show only a portion of Kain's monologue at a time.
There is a number of differences between speech in PC and PlayStation version of the game. Some phrases are shorter in PlayStation version, so they need to be supported in a special section of subtitles description file:
Another thing was that PlayStation version has some phrases that are not present in PC version. These phrases will be included in the locale pack. So both PC and PS-based installation of Blood Omnicide will match.
In order to support old style 2d maps and to get rid of the problem of duplicate subtitles all text is now stored in global console-variable space, and loaded when the game starts. It also provides a minor speed increase, as a previous localization system was loaded on each map change. Also, missing strings are handled correctly now - they got default locale (so partial localization is possible).
So, by introducing a new localization system, it is now possible to produce locale packs for Blood Omnicide which will cover all of the game, without need to re-develop localizations each time new location is added.
BloodPill v1.09 update
Hooray for a new day! Although things is REALLY going slow due to real life affairs, we are NOT DEAD. We can't be dead because of so many messages sent to us ;)
Its hard to say how soon v0.1 will be ready, but it will definitely happen. Attaching a plan for the rest of stuff to be done for v0.1 and a fresh tech video showing pine texture (the pines are undoubltedly the most common nosgoth object ;)):