Another week, another post for you, dear readers. This summary includes the most significant changes by our veteran developers, but there are some folks doing important work that is not credited here. So thank you to all our contributors.
Last week, I wrote about the shaders used in terrain rendering. This week scrawl, using shaders, reduced the amount of code for terrain implementation by 75%. THREE CHEERS FOR EFFICIENCY!!!
OpenMW employs shaders for our skybox, water, and soft shadows. Scrawl has worked on refining the first two, resulting in marked visual improvements over the original Morrowind. The process of refining shaders will continue, so expect many perty pictures and videos. Great work Scrawl!
Speaking of great work, Chris pushed a large number of code revisions (50!) towards integrating .nif animations into Ogre3d’s animation system. Once complete, this will prove to be a more efficient method for animations and boost OpenMW’s frames per second. It works… to some extent. Currently, animations are lacking integration with the physics system, some meshes (for unknown reasons) are not animated, and other meshes occasionally ( and seemingly randomly) are not animated. However, clothes (including robes) are working, as well as the majority of creatures. We cannot give you an exact date when it will be finished, but what needs to be done to get physics integration working is mostly understood. The other issues are cryptic and it is difficult to tease out their causes.
Meanwhile Zini, our fearless leader, finished the magical effects drain and fortify. Also, the bug in the auto-equip logic was fixed, as well as a few other bugs in various areas. Zini also refactored the code for dynamic statistics and merged a lot of branches into the main development branch.
Reverse engineering formulas is going well. The ingredient eating formula appears close to completion (some things still need to checked and verified) thanks to Lazaroth. The acrobatics task is also progressing nicely, BrotherBrick is using his powerful server to calculate data points and Epsilon is a very dedicated worker, designing formulas to test. It may be finished as early as next week.
You can expect the release of 0.13.0 in the near future. An impressive feat as 0.12.0 was released less than a month ago. All development for 0.13.0 finished last week and what remains is packaging, testing, and bug fixing.
Our team member, WeirdSexy, has made a wonderful demonstration video for 0.13.0.
We’ve picked up another language: Dutch!
gus finished dialogue tasks allowing us to get 0.13.0 released so soon. Yeah buddy!
Our wonderful packagers (K1ll and brotherbrick for linux, ace for windows, corristo for mac) are currently packing up neatly all the improvements into downloadable form for you.
Kromgart, sort of OpenMW’s masked hero, who has helped us by solving bugs hasn’t shown up on irc or spoken a single word on the forum all week
Zini completed his work on containers.
scrawl migrated OpenMW to MyGUI version 3.2. There have been large changes in MyGUI and one such change allowed scrawl to get the player arrow on the minimap working. Check it out http://dl.dropbox.com/u/2899105/mini.jpg.
pvdk added a new font for the gui. Morrowind’s original pixel font is still not really usable. If you come to our site often, you’ll notice we changed our front page to the new font as well. It looks very good in game with a great variety of glyphs for all the languages. Our team members especially love the capital Q.
Chris continues on the large sound rewrite. He is VERY effective and is making some great progress.
Jhooks1 made good progress on the physics (but we can’t guarantee when it will be finished).
Look, you can read news in four languages! It would be great if we could get volunteers to write Spanish, Mandarin, and Hindi versions. If you would like to make news posts in your native language, then please send Lgromanowski a private message on the forums and he’ll help you get started. You may either do a direct translation from the English news OR you may write a more detailed one yourself. sir_herrbatka prefers people write their own versions because:
Thank you all! I’m proud of you.
a quote from our main writer, sir_herrbatka, about the additional news languages.
Let’s turn now to development news.
Coding for OpenMW is easier than ever as submodules have been merged into the mainbranch repository. Werdanith presented the idea to Zini and he happily agreed but corristo is the person who did all the job. The submodules were a remnant of a bygone, they were not useful, and complicated maintaining code. Here is a quote from Chris about the change,
“… that’s actually what drew me back to start hacking on OpenMW again. Modifying and maintaining those submodules was rather bothersome.”
There you have it; all you c++ programmers have one less excuse for joining the OpenMW team.
This brings me to my topic, welcome back Chris (KittyCat on irc)! Chris was previously a developer with openmw and is returning in grand fashion by undertaking a large redesign of the openmw sound system. The current design is a mess with the mwsound subsystem, openengine, mangle, and the output and input backends all used in various capacities to render sound. The redesigned sound system will have the soundmanager handle all sound rendering instead.
scrawl made another commit on github to the skybox and is now working on adding the minimap. At this stage there is no arrow functionality. Terrain is also missing because terrain rendering is in a separate branch. Here’s a screenshoot.
zini has finished with the inventory backend and distinguishing armor types (which determines the correct sound effect after pickup). There is still no auto-equipping for npc’s, which means no clothed npc’s. Hopefully this will be done shortly.
werdanith completed the task for rendering sounds when picking up items and also solved the sound regression from openmw 0.12.0.
Corristo continued working on path grid rendering, a feature needed for debugging AI in pathfinding.
jhooks1 is still on the monumental physics redesign. He recently got movement to work in noclip mode and will soon start working with collisions. God speed jhooks1!
gus is getting close to finishing his work on dialogues, but filters still need to implemented.
There has been a lot of linux love this weekas artorius created 32 and 64 bit rpms for Fedora. Detailed instructions on getting things setup can be found here; viewtopic.php?f=8&t=599
Also on the linux front, K1ll and brotherbrick finished making the ubuntu ppa. You can now install openmw on Ubuntu using Automagic and also, hopefully, update it.
With the help of K1ll we now have a few PPAs that people can use.
I’m proud to say that our ‘official’ Ubuntu packages can be found here:
^– includes 32 and 64bit packages from Lucid to Precise that is statically compiled and does not need users to worry about libbullet nor libogre.
For those wishing to use static (*.a) libraries:
For those wishing to use dynamic (*.so) libraries instead:
As you’re probably aware, we recently debuted OpenMW 0.12.0. to gamers across the world. It was delayed by bugfixes and documentation, but not nearly as much as some of our previous versions. We are very proud of it, but as the saying goes, “There’s no rest for the wicked,” and this first post-0.12.0 week proved quite productive for the team! So let’s talk about this week’s news.
The website received two new features thanks to Lgro. The first is the link on the top right of the page that says “#openmw”. This will take you to our irc channel at freenode. The second new feature is a button that swaps languages for the news section. These both continue our trend of lowering barriers for user engagement with the team and our community.
Up next, Werdanith finished cleaning up the soundmanager which allows for the addition of new features! Scrawl got right to work and successfully added water and rain sounds. Werdanith is in the planning stage for enabling sound effects for picking up items.
Gus continued his work on dialogues, a task made possible after Zini got dialogue scripts working. This is good news as dialogues are one of the main feature for version 0.13.0
Our leader Zini has taken two new tasks. The one that interests me most is item equipment. Once it is implemented the current “underwear party” you’ve seen in the 0.12.0 demo video will come to an end, and NPCs will begin dressing more modestly as we finally see jhooks1’s fine work on animating clothes (robes were especially tricky).
Meanwhile jhooks1 continues refining the physics system and already the changes are extensive. J’s using the physics of Project Aedra (another Morrowind reimplementation) as a model and should soon have a solution to the issue of players falling through floors.
Pvdk continues working on the launcher. A regression on linux platforms has been addressed and will soon be fixed. Also the launcher will no longer spawn unnecessary consoles on windows platforms.
Corristo is also active, but his engine work is not visible to end users, but are indeed necessary.
K1ll and BrotherBrick are preparing an Ubuntu ppa for openmw. Lot’s of work have gone into making it work correctly and risk free, but it’s almost done for all you Ubuntu users out there.
… and we have *.deb packages! Thank you BrotherBrick! At the moment I can’t see them under downloads section but this is probably a matter of time. This packages where build for 32 and 64 bits ubuntu.
And jhooks found the major problem behind poor performance of animations? Animations runs, faster reaching the openmw standard (read as “runs still slow but not so terrible slow as before”)
Zini finished both 0.12.0 tasks that was reserved for him. Doing 200% while other developers slips away makes him almost heroic. Well, now zini is doing code maintaining stuff in the engine class.
Bullet performance. Although k1ll problems where caused by bug in the bullet itself GUS found idea to increase physics performance? I’m not sure if we will get better FPS since this is probably not a bottleneck now. At least It may help in future to speed rendering up.