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Baldur's Gate For posts concerning the first part of the Baldur's Gate saga and the Tales of the Sword Coast expansion.
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Old Wed, 29th Feb '12, 5:03am   #1
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Greetings everyone,

I am new to these boards and I have some interesting possibly great news. I just read at Blue's News about a new Baldur's Gate site that's just popped up. Apparently it's owned by BeamDog a company co founded by Trent Oster, who said, he hopes to announce something very soon! Could be good news!

http://www.baldursgate.com/

Good Journey
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Old Wed, 29th Feb '12, 8:45am   #2
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Temporarily Unavailable!

Damn, I really got curious!
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Old Wed, 29th Feb '12, 11:04am   #3
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Look at the page source:

Quote:
<!-- February 28, 2012 --> <!-- Shadowy Figure- Raise Dead : Infinity Engine --> <!-- For years, I clung to the memory of it. Then the memory of the memory. --> <!-- And then... it returned. Better than it was before. --> <!-- Pore over the tapestries and works of art hanging from our walls if you wish, Child of Bhaal... perhaps you will find a clue. But patience, ah... patience would reveal it all. -->
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Old Wed, 29th Feb '12, 1:30pm   #4
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I've actually seen this yesterday but couldn't post until now. Here's some more insight.
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Old Wed, 29th Feb '12, 2:26pm   #5
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Heck I would be happy if they rereleased it with some upgrades such as BG2 kits and abilities (and I personally would not mind the upgrades found in IWDHoW either) plus new dialogue (especially character quests for BG1 characters). That would make my year for sure (as if ME3 was not enough).
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Old Thu, 1st Mar '12, 2:02pm   #6
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It'S not an easy situation.
I rather see a HD make-over than a brand new BG, fearing a new BG it will sully the great saga as we know it.

But on the other hand, there is something in me, that madly craves more D&D the way it used to be in BG.
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Old Thu, 1st Mar '12, 4:29pm   #7
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You won`t get d&d the way it used to be, Darion. Any d&d game that gets produced now will use the 4th ed rules (has to do with the rights). And YES. That will sully the series. An HD remake, however, sounds great. Keeping my fingers crossed for that possebility.
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Old Fri, 2nd Mar '12, 12:16am   #8
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If we are going by the rights then this is not happening in the first place as I believe Atari owns those rights and so any new game would have to come through them and not Bioware or at least that is what I understand is the case.
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Old Fri, 2nd Mar '12, 7:04am   #9
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If it is a remake then I hope it is in 3D. Let's not forget that Baldur's Gate was made almost entirely in 3D, it was simply pre-rendered to sprites because computers of the time were not fast enough to render it in real-time.

Besides, what's there to "enhance" if they make it 2D again? BG's graphics are already highly detailed and visually pleasing, what I want is to see Durlag's Tower in the distance when I'm in Nashkel, and stand at the bottom of the Gnoll Stronghold and get a sense of its true height, etc. It'd have to be a new, richer experience of the same game - not just the same game.

Chances are, actually, that Bioware still has the original 3D models of BG's various regions, characters and monsters, so it's conceivable that they could be simply imported into a real-time 3D engine.
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Old Fri, 2nd Mar '12, 7:48am   #10
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I dont mind if its 3D, but it absolutely has to be fixed overhead view. No third person camera, no ways. I dont want World of Baldurs Gate: Wrath of the Bhaal King, I want Baldurs Gate HD.
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Old Fri, 2nd Mar '12, 8:33am   #11
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While I agree that an overhead view equivalent to the "camera" in BG1 should remain the preferred camera mode, I'd definitely want to be able to look at my surroundings freely as well. Anyway having multiple camera modes is standard fare in 3D RPGs (NWN1-2, The Witcher, etc), so I don't think that would be an issue.
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Old Fri, 2nd Mar '12, 3:43pm   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dr_Asik View Post
Chances are, actually, that Bioware still has the original 3D models of BG's various regions, characters and monsters, so it's conceivable that they could be simply imported into a real-time 3D engine.
I very much doubt that everything from the animations to all the map elements was made in 3D when the whole game is completely 2D... and even if it was, most of the 15 year old 3D models would be so outdated and low-res that they'd need to be upscaled to today's standards.

Unless they had substantial funding, it's far more likely that they'd go the ToEE way, keeping the 2D backgrounds and only going 3D with the objects on top. Basically one step further in faking full 3D from BG's original isometric perspective.
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Old Fri, 2nd Mar '12, 4:52pm   #13
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Agreed - I'm almost positive BG maps are simply 2D illustrations. You can usually see signs of 3D when maps are made in 3D and turned into 'isometric,' such as very mild degrees of depth (non-parallel lines, theoretical vanishing points way off in the distance, etc.). BG has no depth whatsoever that I recall.
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Old Fri, 2nd Mar '12, 6:30pm   #14
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All the IE games used pre-rendered backgrounds.

The maps themslves are composed of four "layers"
The map itself which is what the player sees.
The lighting map which tells when pointy eared races should turn everything red/white and rogues should shimmy somewhere darker.
The terrain map which uses different colours to denote different sorts of floor and impassible terrain - this is why in BG running amok in the Umar Hills sounds different to running amok in a tavern (with footstep sounds enabled) and also some spells in the IWD series only work on certain surfaces IIRC
The height map - which as it's a 2d game just changes where the character sprites appear on their little circle (like I said, their 3d efforts were subtle )
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Old Fri, 2nd Mar '12, 11:11pm   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gaear View Post
Agreed - I'm almost positive BG maps are simply 2D illustrations. You can usually see signs of 3D when maps are made in 3D and turned into 'isometric,' such as very mild degrees of depth (non-parallel lines, theoretical vanishing points way off in the distance, etc.). BG has no depth whatsoever that I recall.
That just means they used an orthographic rather than perspective projection. That's exactly what "isometric" means in this context: there is no vanishing point and parallel lines stay parallel.

It's just a fact, have you guys never looked at the credits?
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qazBBNCx5S0

There's a whole "3D art" section which not only lists all the modeling and texturing artists, but also shows a wireframe model of a building. One of the later screenshots shows a wireframe render of the Nashkel Mines exteriors.

Trees were definitely 2D though (they appear on the "2D Art page"), and to what extent terrain art was drawn directly in 2D is unclear to me, but definitely most of the buildings and dungeons are 3D.

As for the character and monster animations, it's not explicit in the credits that they were 3D, but it would just have made sense to do it in 3D. When you have to produce 150 frames of animation for 6 different races in 50 different possible combinations of equipment, doing it in 3D allows the process to be largely automated and much less error-prone. Also remember that the number of frames per second was doubled for BG2, something that would have come free with 3D models, but would have required double the amount of work if each was hand-drawn.

For all these reasons I think it's unlikely that character models were hand-drawn. And likely the same approach was used for monsters.

It might very well be that these models are not detailed enough for use in a modern 3D game, but they could still be used as a starting point and retextured/tesselated etc.


Quote:
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All the IE games used pre-rendered backgrounds.
They are pre-renders, but pre-renders of 3D models.
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