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OpenMW 0.37 released, now with the new OSG renderer

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It seems to be the season for new versions of excellent open source gaming projects. OpenMW, the open source recreation of the Morrowind engine, has a new version which brings important rendering updates.

Most of the previous OpenMW releases have been full of all kinds of features but in the last couple of versions things have been different. There are numerous bug fixes and some optimizations but there are very few new gameplay features. This, however, seems to be due to OpenMW quickly approaching a point where there simply aren't new features to be implemented.

That doesn't make this release a boring one though. The absolute star of the show is the new OpenSceneGraph renderer, which yields quite massive performance improvements over the older Ogre3D renderer. In the past, playing OpenMW has been pretty annoying at times due to frequent drops to under 30 FPS. Even more powerful hardware had trouble reaching framerates that many consider to be the absolute minimum for a playable experience. The new OSG renderer should improve this situation and you might find that OpenMW now works on your hardware even if it didn't use to do so in the past.

The new OSG renderer does have some downsides though. Shadows, distant land and object shaders are not yet implemented, so this version of OpenMW doesn't necessarily look as modern as 0.36 for example. However, considering the performance of the non-OSG builds I am not going to complain too much about the lack of cool shadows.

You can read the full changelog and announcement here: https://openmw.org/2015/openmw-0-37-released/ Article taken from GamingOnLinux.com.
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I'm a Linux gamer from Finland. I like reading, long walks on the beach, dying repeatedly in roguelikes and ripping and tearing in FPS games. I also sometimes write code and sometimes that includes hobbyist game development.
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Hori 1 Dec, 2015
So as far as I understant it is only the engine, but the game data is taken from the original game installation... Is there another project/fork that uses this engine but also provides the rest of the game? Not necesarily the Morrowind game, maybe someting new or whatever... This engine looks very good and it would be a shame to be only used as a clone for an old game that people can also play as Skywind (when it will be released)
ziabice 1 Dec, 2015
They are releasing also OpenCS, an editor to create new adventures/mods based on this engine. From the site FAQ:

QuoteOpenMW is a new and modern engine based on the one that runs the 2002 open-world RPG Morrowind. The engine (OpenMW) will come with its own editor (OpenCS) which will allow the user to edit or create their own games.
Magamo 1 Dec, 2015
There is also slow work on a demo environment. I'd recommend having a look through their forums. Also, there's a LOT of game mechanics differences between Morrowind and Skyrim/Skywind. Skywind also is taking a lot of liberties with their assets, it doesn't feel to me as though it will be anywhere near the same game to me. Also: OpenMW runs on Linux. Skyrim does not.


Last edited by Magamo on 1 December 2015 at 2:47 pm UTC
Hori 1 Dec, 2015
I hope to see new original games made in OpenCS :D
I like that Skywind uses new assets. It will make the game look modern. If I wanted to play with the original assets I would just play the original game. But... yes, id dosen't run on Linux, not without WINE.
Julius 1 Dec, 2015
I agree, a fully FOSS game based on this engine would be great, but at the moment that still seems far off.
Xzyl 1 Dec, 2015
Quoting: MagamoThere is also slow work on a demo environment. I'd recommend having a look through their forums. Also, there's a LOT of game mechanics differences between Morrowind and Skyrim/Skywind. Skywind also is taking a lot of liberties with their assets, it doesn't feel to me as though it will be anywhere near the same game to me. Also: OpenMW runs on Linux. Skyrim does not.
wine runs skyrim native dx9... performs like a champ so....
Samsai 1 Dec, 2015
Wine is not a recommended solution though.
Magamo 1 Dec, 2015
There's a lot of things that run under Wine. I like Wine. But running under Wine is not the same as running natively under Linux. In saying things like 'Then I'll just run the original version' to play the original game, kind of invalidates the whole purpose of this project, which is, in addition to making Morrowind cross platform, to extend the engine to allow it to do even more. Graphically, previous versions also did things that the original engine couldn't do ( muuuch better shaders) that will need to be ported up to the new graphical stack.

There are some standalone games in development for use with the OpenMW engine as well. (Ports of Age of Apocalypse + Desert Region 2 are underway, as well as OpenMW's own testbed project)
oldrocker99 1 Dec, 2015
For an example of a FOSS game engine, check out Arx Liberatis, which uses the data files from Arx Fatalis (available from GOG.com, and works like a champ. You're very unlikely to see a version of OpenMW which doesn't use Bethesda's data files.
IcyEyeG 1 Dec, 2015
Quoting: HoriI hope to see new original games made in OpenCS :D
I like that Skywind uses new assets. It will make the game look modern. If I wanted to play with the original assets I would just play the original game. But... yes, id dosen't run on Linux, not without WINE.

For me Skywind has a huge problem:
In my opinion their assets are in "licensing hell". If the project colapses for some reason (for legal reasons, a main dev passing away, sudden lack of funding or interest, some catastrophic host failure, etc) it's impossible to fork it to finish it. All that fan work has a pretty good chance of becoming esoteric abandonware in my opinion.


Last edited by IcyEyeG on 1 December 2015 at 4:39 pm UTC
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