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Old 28 July 2020, 07:11   #41
Valken
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Actually, this is true. I know people use EOB resources even in other games, Doom, Dungeon Master Remake because many have an attachment to their RPG party characters. It is a known fact RPG players love their characters, histories and stories, more than X-Com Squad Leaders!

With the pandemic, it is good to be able to see our childhood friends again to keep us company and thank you so much for make it available again.
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Old 03 August 2020, 14:01   #42
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Eye of the Beholder 3 certainly didn't live up to the two previous Westwood developed EotB games, still it would be nice to have the whole trilogy playable on the Amiga.

Agree about the downgrade in art too.. but then the main artist in the first two Eye of the Beholder games was the great Rick Parks. He got a fair bit of attention for his Amiga Deluxe Paint pixel art works before getting hired by Westwood, did absolutely gorgeous work in Eye of the Beholder, the Kyrandia adventure games and the first Lands of Lore games. One of the best game artists back in the day for me.

Some examples of his Amiga work: http://amiga.lychesis.net/artist/RickParks.html

Some info about the guy: https://www.reddit.com/r/PixelArt/co...ods_pixel_art/


Oh, and great work you've done on the portraits Sleeper Grey! Such a massive improvement on original EotB 3 portraits.

Last edited by LeChuck; 03 August 2020 at 15:18.
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Old 11 November 2020, 21:22   #43
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Thanks a lot for your spiritual support!

Version 7_27 portraits w/NPCs is ready.

https://www.old-games.ru/forum/threa...4#post-1683705

I think I have found means to balance and improve it further. Ver. 6_24 was a good start. But many problems remained.
Now, in 7_27 some more balanced solutions are found.

As one may guess I had to deal also with some "old" problems which were even in EoB-1 portrait versions, which were meant for small screens and EGA and even CGA compatibility mode.

So, some pictures were (even in EoB-1) too blocky...
In VGA-only EoB-3, this is obsolete. So I dealt with it, smoothing things up, very delicately.

The final 7_27 version of "Dark Girls" is an example of it:



*

The last portrait to conquer was the Blue Mage... He was OK in EoB-1



but terribly disfigured (plus some red nose) in EoB-III:



now it is fixed:



*

Perhaps all portraits now have even smaller details fixed OK.

Congratulations, as it was a long way
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Old 11 November 2020, 21:52   #44
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Valken View Post
Actually, this is true. I know people use EOB resources even in other games, Doom, Dungeon Master Remake because many have an attachment to their RPG party characters. It is a known fact RPG players love their characters, histories and stories, more than X-Com Squad Leaders!

With the pandemic, it is good to be able to see our childhood friends again to keep us company and thank you so much for make it available again.
And I think this is right to have such attachment.
Otherwise, why bother with RPGs.
Sure, I have considered this Doom thread with EoB texture rooms...

https://forum.zdoom.org/viewtopic.php?f=37&t=63994

Here I found some inspiration to restore ~Anya~ NPC portrait for use in EoB-III, this lady:



As she was in EoB-III like other "old" NPC portraits but was spoiled in 10(!) ways...
Now Anya is restored.

Yes, available means "available in good condition, as it should have been done long ago".
I strive towards this.
EoB-3 designers did not do it so we must do it.

Please see the link to new version 7_27 in the post above.

Also I see EoB series are not really forgotten now.
Youtube videos are made and forums discuss it.
So even new friends might be made. (Considering some characters will -not- be spoiled in EoB-III any longer.)

Actually it prevented me from using some portraits in my parties. Now this hindrance is gone.

Last edited by Sleeper Grey; 11 November 2020 at 22:16.
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Old 11 November 2020, 22:11   #45
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LeChuck View Post
Agree about the downgrade in art too.. but then the main artist in the first two Eye of the Beholder games was the great Rick Parks. ...
Oh, and great work you've done on the portraits Sleeper Grey! Such a massive improvement on original EotB 3 portraits.
Thank you so much for the links - and your kind words!

Somehow I thought it was Mr. Hewitt himself in charge of EoB-1 portraits. Actually, those "old" artists were all
of very high standards... Quite like those "old" era composers with their MT-32 and Roland SC midi music.

This terrible EoB-III designer surely was of another generation - or not an artist at all.

Bad changes he made were so many
But I even made another version, 7_27 with even smaller details fixed.

Plus Anya, Tyrra (moved the right way) and that "oriental" warrior.
As usual the download is here:

https://www.old-games.ru/forum/threa...4#post-1683705

Mainly happy with the result.
But -reasonable criticism is always welcome.

Last edited by Sleeper Grey; 11 November 2020 at 22:20.
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Old 27 October 2021, 23:16   #46
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I did it, ~Ver.8~ Portraits file for EoB-3 is available! :)

Hello everyone!

The story of fixing poor EoB-III portraits is not over. I could not fix it all completely in EYE.RES version 7_27. So, Version 8_28 plus 8 is available! ^^

Now I fixed all those complex big or small things there that still troubled us.
It will not be a disappointment for EoB lovers.

Also now I know some people even transfer Amber from EoB-2 to EoB-3 so something remains to be done later.

What is done in Ver. 8 is simple. Beside fixing minor problems I completely dropped the attempts to fix or embellish EoB-3 versions of certain portraits. Making better copies of EoB-1 portraits, instead. It looks better. ^^

This is about the Green Elf mage, whose complex portrait composition was simplified by EoB-3 designer, also the Blue Mage who was totally remade in EoB-3 making him ugly and very yellow.
No longer I tried to correct his face, a better copy of EoB-1 Blue Mage is better.
Also it's the case of the Dark Girl. Keeping her "simple" as in EoB-1 is the key.

I added a completely repainted portrait of the Dark Warrior, with horns.

(Never fixed it in the past but it had to be done. I'll mention as to why.)

Please see these cases below.

And the "Plus 8" part, these are totally new 8 portraits that I never touched before.
They were only marginally spoiled in EoB-3, EoB-3 bad artist mainly did it by dimming their eyes. Uhuh, the Dimmer of Eyes is his name...

Now I fixed some details about these portraits and their eyes.
So now they are usable or even just great! As they did not suffer much in the first palce.

The total is ~36~ Portraits fixed in this version.

A short summary of things to feel good about:

Sure, the Green Girl picture where it all started, as it became even less crooked. Can't help but see it was a little crooked in the EoB-1 original.

EoB-1:


EoB-III, reptilian horror with huge nose



Ver. 8



Well, nearly it's EoB-1 in EoB-3 colors. Might be even more agreeable than the original. Cute!

*
The Dark Warrior, with horns, the new one.

Let's see what's the problem with him...

EoB-1


EoB-3


EoB-3 version is crude, the right part. As it was repainted in EoB-3 with -one- continuous steel-grey color instead of 3 or 4 blue colors used in EoB-1.
And more greys.
EoB-3 palette lacks some blue colors, so it was simplified and never corrected before.

Now I used all blue colors and less steel/grey as in the original. The color transfer result is smooth now and looks nice as in EoB-1. And yes, I have fixed the portrait centering... No tilt to the left, now. Ver. 8:



Looks good in the game. Otherwise EoB-3 version was more primitive than that of EoB-1.

*
The problematic Green Elf mage and the Blue Mage.

The Elf had a more complex portrait composition in EoB-1,



Turned primitive (and ugly-faced) in EoB-3:



In my Ver. 7 I restored his face but it was not enough. The portrait composition was still primitive:



Now I have returned the "proper" EoB-1 clothes and composition.
Well, this Elf is much more impressive. Ver 8:



Not to mention authentic.
How good was that EoB-1 artist/designer!

*
The Blue Mage, was the pixel art perfection in EoB-1:



In EoB-3 he was majorly re-painted as an ugly (and yellow) individual.



in Ver. 7 I fixed his face but it was still "not quite" and too yellow.

FIXED! I totally repainted the picture using another color set. It's now as the original or even better, as I use more face colors than EoB-1 (lucky here, huh.)



It's Victory! ^_^

*
The Dark Demihuman Girl,

Was small and simplistic/disheveled in EoB-1,



Turned big, half-elven and sort of posh in EoB-3 but wrong color eyebrows etc.



Now I didn't try to fix these EoB-3 features to make them fit, just returned as much EoB-1 as I could. Including the background and the jagged hair line in the left part. Ver 8:



To me, she looks just great now. Also authentic.

*
Paladin

His kind (EoB-1) face I returned in early versions like 5, that task was clear

EoB-1


EoB-III, unkind face and spiteful as if he has eaten a worm



But I could not remove that ultra-shiny pixel on this right shoulder (pauldron) where his armor collar goes behind this neck.
Now I moved some parts and this pixel shines moderately, all in place



*
Gnome (Demihuman) Girl

A standard case but special in a way... A problematic portrait that was -not- changed by EoB-3 artist. Even the eyes were not dimmed.
Somehow the EoB-3 butcher "artist" did not spoil portraits that were already problematic. ~__~

This lady had a face badly angled (just like the One-eyed Fighter Girl), also neck nearly broken and a very badly painted left eye. Ugh. Bad centering also.



(EoB-1 and 3 are the same here.)

I fixed the face in ver 7 and the neck. But the eye and the centering, well, only now. Ready!

Ver. 8:


She looks just great in the game. So nice.

*
The complex, Gruffy Dwarf with no eyes

In EoB-1


In EoB-3:


The EoB-1 dark violet background color doesn't exist in EoB-3. Not found in the palette.

I tried many other colors but they don't fit the character. Look just dead and boring at best.
By users' comments, blue fits well.

Plain Dark blue is also boring, so, a gradient color change like in One-eyed Fighter Girl portrait:



Mainly the character spirit is there and it's not boring! (as with grey/steel background).

*
Now the rare and sort of weird, Anya.

As it was with the Paladin, the face and the background I corrected long ago but the armor...
It was complex.

Like the Paladin's, this problem originated from EoB-1. It's easy to see Anya's armor shifted somewhere to the middle(!) of her chest.

I expect that happened as these portraits were made with EGA and CGA in mind as EoB-1 supports them. Minor shifts like 1 pixel in VGA were not easily seen on smaller screens, 14" or less. The portraits were very small on these.

EoB-1


EoB-3


EoB-3 has no old modes, olny VGA. The screens by 1993 got bigger. So the picture had to be repainted, I agree. EoB-3 poor artist just removed her exotic armor.
Also spoiling her hair (in 3 ways) her face (in 3 ways) and her body (in 3 ways). Plus the "new" dull background. One may find the differences by comparing these pictures.
Pity.

At last I moved her armor back and it fits! Ver. 8:



All the other problems created by EoB-3 bad artist I removed and fixed. Anya is ~just gorgeous~ now.

Very complex portrait but great in a way.
I have heard more people take Anya to EoB-3... She is very charismatic!

*
To sum it up I corrected, compared to ver. 7, many dozens of big and small issues.

With hair, background, armor pieces and even faces. (And eyes, those 8 portraits.)

All results are much more agreeable now.


I am happy to upload the ready EYE.RES game file, all portraits included:

https://www.old-games.ru/forum/threa...4#post-1767908

Please see the end of this post for download.

Also there is separate portraits archives set in .bmp and .bin EoB-3 formats.

Congratulations! Indeed, ~many~ changes to the best were made.


My gratitude to dim568 as your converter program allowed a miracle to happen!

Last edited by Sleeper Grey; 27 October 2021 at 23:22.
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Old 28 October 2021, 07:34   #47
Valken
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Thank you Sleeper Grey for this!
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Old 28 October 2021, 22:30   #48
Sleeper Grey
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Originally Posted by Valken View Post
Thank you Sleeper Grey for this!
Thank you so much! Great you noticed this new gallery!

As it becomes a whole gallery of OK, EoB-1 restored portraits.

I must admit I could not fix -completely- those 27 portraits in ver. 7 so only now we have 28 completely nice and OK in ver. 8.

And some 8 newer ones to add up to it. Now with brigher eyes that this villain "artist" has dimmed out many years ago.

What is amazing I have read RPG.CODEX forums and I see the heroes from EoB2 - sometimes Amber and even Shorn - get a transfer to EoB-3.

I fixed 4 EoB-1 NPCs (like Tyrra, Anya, Illeria and Kirath) but, well, we might think of fixing EoB-2 NPCs too.

*
Well, this game reminds of that Dead Princess fairytale. It was always a "stepchild" to SSI.

And it was abandoned for what seems like forever - but never forgotten! - without proper portraits and even without proper 16 to 32 bit game engine patch promised by SSI. (That DMA sound stuttering problem.)
Tragic story indeed.
One of my favourite groups made a song about that. A sad song but nice ending

"When the princess was still a child
Her stepmother abandoned her in the forest.

In a silent confinement that not even the wind passed through

The princess stubbornly refused to die in her coffin.

Even after an eternity have passed,

The girl does not fade from everyone's memory.

The dream the girl was dreaming,
Is the despairing illusions of the fleeting world.

Even knowingly that the knights on white horses would not come,
She waited still for her awakening.

(But)
We can change the ending to this fairy tale!"

[ Show youtube player ]

*
Indeed. Let's say the great coffin of graphic ugliness finally fell to my tinkering.


P.S.
32-bit patch for the engine was also made and seems to work according to Vogons forums.

Last edited by Sleeper Grey; 30 October 2021 at 08:00. Reason: heartfelt story Youtube song added :)
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Old 29 October 2021, 16:54   #49
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Great work !! Where is the download ?
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Old 29 October 2021, 18:02   #50
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It is located at this website where Sleeper Grey had posted:

https://www.old-games.ru/forum/threa...4#post-1767908
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Old 29 October 2021, 19:34   #51
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Thanks! Got the files and will replace the Eye.res file in my Eotb3 folder!
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Old 30 October 2021, 07:41   #52
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Thanks! Got the files and will replace the Eye.res file in my Eotb3 folder!
You are welcome!

I just hope you use 1993 DOS (16-bit) version of the game. The ready downloadable EYE.RES is intended for this "classic" version.

AFAIK the EoB-III game sold on G.O.G has the newer, 32-bit (patched) AESOP engine.
And some players might be using this. Didn't make a ready EYE.RES for this version, yet.

But sure it is possible to include the edited portraits into this version, its EYE.RES file.
It will just also require a "convert old bitmaps" command (in daesop.exe packer) on top of adding portraits... (To make the grapics compatible with the updated 32 bit AESOP engine.)
It once was done already with my older, limited portrait set.

With the old DOS version, just please go ahead and change the file Ver. 8 is pretty solid!


P.S.
on a marginally related note, I added to my post above a Youtube link to that "Missing" song... That describes the hard (but not hopeless) fate of this game. The singer is not too tall but might drive in nails with her songs.

Last edited by Sleeper Grey; 30 October 2021 at 08:04.
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Old 30 October 2021, 16:16   #53
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It works great! I just got a old dos version from the web, but i am not sure what version it is, any way to check ? Some searches did not give me any success yet ..
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Old 30 October 2021, 23:08   #54
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It works great! I just got a old dos version from the web, but i am not sure what version it is, any way to check ? Some searches did not give me any success yet ..
Congratulations, it seems you are in luck! As 32-bit EoB-3 can not work with DOS version EYE.RES at all. It would not start.

It might well be that DOS version was only one. Namely "V1.1"
Just to remove doubt, that's what I have on the "Choose Your Destiny" menu screen.

Over the words "Role-Playing Saga", literally above the letters "la" there is a mark "V1.1"

AESOP.EXE file (if we "view" it without launching, F3 button in old Commander programs) contains text:
"AESOP/16 Runtime Host Interpreter V1.00 Copyright (C) 1992, 1993 Miles Design, Inc."

That's DOS Aesop 16-bit "classic" engine .exe file.
Its timestamp/creation is "Wednesday, April 14, 1993, 14:43:22"

Finally, my unmodded DOS "EYE.RES" has the timestamp "Tuesday, July 06, 1993, 14:25"
It produces the menu screen with those "V1.1" letters.

P.S.
If there are other versions it might be nice to know.
But generally all 16 bit AESOP versions should work with my V1.1 patched EYE.RES just OK.

Last edited by Sleeper Grey; 30 October 2021 at 23:39.
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Old 31 October 2021, 00:04   #55
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Ok, it says v1.1 on the menu screen so I guess im good to go Thanks a lot for your work on this
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Old 31 October 2021, 21:42   #56
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Ok, it says v1.1 on the menu screen so I guess im good to go
Indeed!

I found -one- person using v1.0

https://threadreaderapp.com/thread/1...178657794.html

but 1.1 in our case will be better. "0" versions tend to be less stable.

Quote:
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Thanks a lot for your work on this
You are most welcome! I'm very happy too about this portrait crisis being over After many years of this changed-not changed-ugly-barely acceptable EoB-III portrait mess.

At least I edited most, nearly all portraits that suffered bad changes. BTW I wonder what's the party (in terms of portraits) that you use? Are they OK?
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Old 31 October 2021, 22:41   #57
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I have just tried it out, but I saw something strange.. In the generator it showed the old pictures, but in the game it showed the new ones ? Check images:
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Old 01 November 2021, 00:37   #58
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I have just tried it out, but I saw something strange.. In the generator it showed the old pictures, but in the game it showed the new ones ? Check images:
That's OK, the patch was mainly intended for those parties who transfer from EoB-2 or 1. To avoid the shock of seeing these "new" EoB-3 portraits...
(Instead of familiar good ones from EoB-1/2.)

EoB-3 Character Generation has its own portrait gallery with a different - and hardly understood - color palette. Very dark. I can not place my portraits there.
It might be solved but not now.

So when someone generates a -new- party in EoB-3 he will see the "default" awful EoB-3 portraits. It's not easy to remove this.

A "seamless move" to see better portraits is by transfering one's old party from EoB-1 or 2


P.S.
But it's hardly a problem, even in case of new EoB-3 party the game -will- use the updated portraits.
After the "chargen" stage.
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Old 01 November 2021, 16:58   #59
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Ok, just thought i should report it Working great, thanks again @Sleeper Grey
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Old 01 November 2021, 22:09   #60
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Ok, just thought i should report it Working great, thanks again @Sleeper Grey
Thanks! Good to know that!

The techie details about the chargen program are like this...

The "chargen" part is a separate game directory with its own palette file. Maybe it is possible to make it use the, uh, more standard EoB-3 palette that my portraits use.
(This will also require to convert a couple of chargen graphic screens for use with this palette, though.)
Way 2 might be converting my entire portrait gallery into that special chargen palette colors. That would require some automatic color remap program... "palette standard" to "palette chargen".
Or maybe rather "my 24-bit .bmp source to eob3 .bin" transformation (which I did all the way) but now I will use another (that dark) palette to code the portraits.

And, huh, all these ways would require to pack all "chargen" gallery portraits into just 1(!) .bmp file as this chargen program operates it now.

This .bmp looks like an archives file and can be browsed by XWE editor...
Perhaps with some technical assistance it's all not too hard anyway.

But first I should still "polish" a couple of standard PC portraits and certain NPCs, not many, like Amber.
(As she gets transfered from EoB-2 sometimes and is badly changed in EoB-3.)

Having a complete, edited portrait gallery we (as a retro/gaming community) might think of technical details! And use some of the abovementioned ways to fix the chargen program also.
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