With the announcement of OpenMW version 0.39 around 5-6 months ago, some users booted their game up to find an unpleasant surprise – shiny rocks. But they were told that this wasn’t a bug at all. Everything was working as intended.
So what led to this? Morrowind was initially released in 2002, a time when texturing techniques were not as advanced, and there were no normal maps. As years went by, the community created more and more complex mods on an engine that was frozen solid to the state that it started with a decade ago. At a certain point, the methods began to exceed engine limitations and newer technologies simply couldn’t be applied anymore.
Since the Morrowind engine isn’t open source, it’s not like someone could just edit the code and update it to modern standards. But what they could do is essentially “hack” the engine by datamining for information and make code injectors. This spawned the loved MGE XE distant lands, Morrowind Script Extender, and, last but not least, Morrowind Code Patch. While they have served the community well, they’ve also produced some unwanted side effects such as crashes, instability, memory leaks, and strange methods of texturing.
The latter in particular is caused by Morrowind Code Patch, and is also the reason for our shiny rocks. MCP enables a sort of “fake” bump mapping by using an environmental map to give textures the appearance of being bump-mapped. But no other engine does it this way – and if you were to port a “fake” bump-mapped mesh into Unity engine, Skyrim, or OpenMW, a shiny weird-looking object is what you would get.
So what do we do with these shiny rocks? Do we throw them out? No! Fortunately, they can be redeemed, and we now have Lysol’s detailed and comprehensive guide to lead you through the process. Most bump maps can be fixed with a few easy steps that even the average player with no modding experience can handle.
But only the author of a mod reserves the right to upload their content, so any user who wanted to play your mod would have to repeat the same process. If you are an author, I encourage you to take a little time to update your mod to OpenMW. Or if you’re short on time, post on our forums and give permission for users to update it and see if someone picks it up. Let’s rid Vvardenfell of those shiny rocks!
For a long time scrawl has been the main driving force behind OpenMW. So when the news came that he’d be going on a hiatus to improve his health, many of us thought that the progress would halt, and that the next releases of OpenMW would only include bug-fixes, if anything…
But we were so utterly wrong! Out of the woodworks appeared Allofich and MiroslavR. The duo has not only solved many bugs but also implemented several new features. In addition, scrawl is still active in the community – accepting pull requests, reading the forums and occasionally closing an issue when his health allows it. While the pace is a bit slower now, our project still makes progress, and OpenMW steadily continues its journey towards version 1.0.
On the OpenMW-CS side of things there have also been several improvements. Previously, the scene window was a static view of the world where you couldn’t really do anything besides looking around with the camera. Aeslywinn came in, reworked the camera system, implemented pathgrids, water rendering and object movement, rotation and scaling sub modes. While he has now left the OpenMW project to do other great things, he has also left our editor with the capability to create new worlds.
It should be noted that, although what you see in the above screenshot was made using OpenMW-CS, there are still some features that need to implemented for the editor. Remember – If you have skills in C++ or QT and are interested in contributing to the OpenMW project, then you too can be an OpenMW hero.
If you’ve never heard of this before, that might be due to the curious fact that this is used only once in the entire game of Morrowind – with Trueflame, the legendary sword of Nerevar Indoril.
As you can see, having the sword equipped lights up a small area around the player. The blade itself isn’t the actual source of light. It has a script attatched that adds an invisible light item into the player’s inventory, which then makes the player glow.
This got me thinking. In many games a radius of light surrounds the player. If one were to make a mod or an entirely new game, they could use the abovementioned mechanic for exactly that purpose. So I did. But what I saw was not what I expected…
I found a bug. Seemingly anything that uses a normal map gets lit up to full brightness, achieving an albino look. The bug report is filed here and will hopefully get a fix some time in the future.
3 hours later Scrawl has already fixed it! I retry my experiment and go for a small pink aura for my invisible character.
The OpenMW team is proud to announce the release of version 0.40.0! Grab it from our Downloads Page for all operating systems. This release brings some small new features, but mainly bug fixes and improvements. We’re winding down on implementable features, these are exciting times for OpenMW, even if releases have a little less user-visible changes. The game is basically fully playable, and future releases will bring mostly more fixes and optimizations.
The OpenMW team is proud to announce the release of version 0.39.0! Grab it from our Downloads Page for all operating systems. This release brings background cell loading and caching, which is a feature not to be missed. Initial support for object shaders has found its way back into our engine, and a host of bugs have been smashed. See below for the full list of changes.
The venerable Atahualpa has bravely stepped up to fill WeirdSexy’s boundless shoes as our video producer, check out the video for this release and OpenMW-CS 0.39.0. Check our blog or Youtube channel if you missed his videos for versions 0.36, 0.37, or 0.38.
Shadows are not re-implemented at this time, as well as distant land
Implemented background cell loading and caching of loaded cells
Implemented support for object shaders in OSG
Implemented interpolation for physics simulation, smoothing rendering of statics and fixing some collision issues
Implemented support for sphere map NiTextureEffects
Implemented the FixMe script instruction
Implemented support for RGB and RGBA embedded textures in NIF files
Implemented corpse clear delay
Implemented per-creature respawn time tracking
Fixed Dark Brotherhood Assassins, ghosts in Ibar-Dad, and other creatures spawned with PlaceAt spawning inside world geometry
Fixed Activate / OnActivate script instruction to match vanilla behavior
Fixed player spawning underwater when loading a game saved while swimming
Fixed NPCs not using correct animations with Animated Morrowind mod
Fixed Riekling raider pig screaming continuously
Fixed Vivec’s hands in the Psymoniser Vivec God Replacement mod
Fixed NPCs spamming restoration spells instead of defending themself
Fixed a crash caused by local script iteration
Fixed AI packages to not stack when duplicates are added
Fixed actor animations not being rebuilt on resurrection
Fixed dialog boxes for non-standard NPCs not scrolling correctly
Fixed wandering NPCs disappearing or getting teleported to strange places
Fixed missing NPC name in journal entry when given Pilgrimages of the Seven Graces quest
Fixed bounding box used for items when dropping them from the inventory
Fixed spells exploding on an actor being applied twice
Fixed Azura’s missing head
Fixed potion effect showing when ingredient effects are not known
Fixed hands turning partially invisible when chopping with a spear
Fixed fast travel breaking save files made afterwards
Fixed crash after casting recall spell
Fixed constant effect enchantment animation playing on dead bodies
Fixed spell effects to not persist after the caster dies
Fixed corpses that are submerged at the beginning of the game to stay submerged
Fixed “when strikes” enchantments to not launch a projectile from the attacker when they apply
Fixed camera snapping to straight up or down after teleporting
Fixed alchemy window ingredient count not decrementing when combining ingredients that don’t share effects
Fixed mods corrupting the hasWater() flag for exterior cells
Fixed a crash with mods that define bip01 spine1 but not bip01 spine2
Fixed class image display when an image for the class is not found
Fixed possible infinite disposition through exploit
Fixed glitch causing removed clothing to still be rendered on the character on the inventory paper doll
Fixed statics and activators not being able to cast spell effects on the player
Fixed cells not loading when using Poorly Placed Object Fix mod
Fixed female characters incorrectly using the male base animation skeleton
Fixed “use best attack” punches to match vanilla behavior
Fixed crash when clicking through the class selection menu a specific way
Fixed save list jumping to the top when deleting a saved game
Fixed the selected class and race not being cleared when starting a new game
Fixed crash when water normal map is missing
Fixed an issue with handling stray arguments in scripts
Fixed Drop script instruction to match vanilla behavior
OpenMW-CS: Implemented GMST verifier
OpenMW-CS: Implemented info record verifier
OpenMW-CS: Implemented rendering cell border markers in Scene view
OpenMW-CS: Implemented point lighting in Scene view
OpenMW-CS: Implemented optional line wrapping in script editor
OpenMW-CS: Reimplemented 3D scene camera system
OpenMW-CS: Implemented scenes being a drop target for referenceables
OpenMW-CS: Implemented rendering cell markers in Scene view
OpenMW-CS: Implemented Instance selection menu in Scene view
OpenMW-CS: Implemented Move sub mode for Instance editing mode in Scene view
OpenMW-CS: Implemented behavior for changing water level of interiors to match exteriors
OpenMW-CS: Implemented using “Enter” key instead of clicking “Create” button to confirm ID input in Creator Bar
OpenMW-CS: Fixed objects dropped in the scene not always saving
OpenMW-CS: Fixed objects added to the scene not rendering until the scene is reloaded
OpenMW-CS: Fixed land data being written twice
OpenMW-CS: Fixed GMST ID named sMake Enchantment being named sMake when making new game from scratch
OpenMW-CS: Fixed creator bar in Start Scripts subview not accepting script ID drops
OpenMW-CS: Fixed using the “Next Script” and “Previous Script” buttons changes the record status to “Modified”
OpenMW is an attempt to reimplement the popular role playing game Morrowind. It aims to be a fully playable, open source implementation of the game. You must own Morrowind to use OpenMW. You can watch short video-faq or read detailed information on our FAQ page. OpenMW is an attempt to remake the Morrowind - brilliant role playing game. We're trying to remade Morrowind using open source tools and libraries. You won't need any Morrowind patches, because OpenMW will fix most common Morrowind engine bugs. It's worth to mention that OpenMW is open source Morrowind engine remake which allow much greater modability: change game rules, create new spell effects, etc. through scripting. With OpenMW you will be able to run Morrowind overhaul mods, texture replacers and much more like with original engine.