Monday, July 10, 2017

Wolfenstein:ET Modern Linux

Wolfenstein:ET is an interesting first-person shooter. Trying to capitalize on their success with the online part of Return to Castle Wolfenstien, they developed an online component for RtCW and farmed out the single-player mode. Turns out, the SP mode sucked, so they ditched that and gave away the online game. The Game's PAK files remained proprietary (as always) and they released the source code for the game engine.

The original release had a Linux version as well as Mac and Windows version and can still be downloaded from SplashDamage. The problem with the Linux version is that Linux changed sound subsystems (OSS->ALSA->PULSE) and the sound component of the game is no longer compatible with a modern Linux.

Never fear, several kind souls have updated the Linux binaries in two versions: ET-Legacy which tries to keep true to the original game and ETXreal, which modified the format for the game's maps and added hi-res textures.

There was no point to installing Wolfenstein:ET since the Linux version's sound is broken.

I installed ET-Legacy on 64-bit Mageia6, 32-bit Mageia6 and 32-bit Windows7. ET-Legacy has different installers depending on what OS you will be using it with. The game is installed with a shell executable made with makeself, so make the script executable and launch it AFTER you have placed it in the root directory you want. I prefer ~, but you can put it anywhere handy. The installer will create a ~/.etlegacy which is where I suggest you put any custom PK3 files, maps, mods and total conversions. ET-Legacy tries to be compatible with as many mods as possible, but some may not work or need tweaking. There is an active community supporting this game, so that would be the place to ask questions. I tried using ETXreal's graphic with ET-Legacy and sadly, it's not compatible.

I have not been able to locate any hi-res texture packs for ET or ET-Legacy and would be grateful if someone knew if any existed.

ETXreal, on the other hand, include the binaries for all supported operating systems in the single 7zip archive. Install the p7zip package to extract the contents of the archive. Extract that to you home directory. Then it is necessary to find the appropriate binary and move it to the game's root directory, the one that contains the /etmain directory. The installer creates a ~/.etxreal directory which is where I prefer to place any custom PK3 files, maps, mods and total conversions. Be aware that ETXreal may not be compatible with all your old mods and you might not be compatible with Wolf:ET or ET-Legacy servers, but with hi-res textures, it sure does look swell and ETXreal has its own servers. There is an active community supporting this game.

In both cases, you can launch the game from the command line with the full path to the binary, or create a startup script in ~/bin if that is in your path.
Is ~/bin not in your path? Add this to your .bashrc file:
## Add ~/bin to my pathexport PATH=$PATH:$HOME/bin
TIP:
For a custom resolutions,  the cg_fov for 16:10 resolutions (i.e. 1440×900, 1680×1050 and 1920×1200) should be 100.39 and for 16:9 (1920×1080) 106.27.

Edit etconfig.cfg in your home directory.
Here is the example for a 1920×1080 resolution:

seta r_mode “-1”
seta r_customwidth “1920”
seta r_customheight “1080”
seta cg_fov “106.27”

RESOURCES

SplashDamage - Original Wolfenstein:ET Download

ET:Legacy Homepage

ET:Legacy Download

ETXreal

ETXreal Download

Resolution Source

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