Arma 2 – Re-upping a classic.

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Even though Arma 3 is coming down the road the modders of Arma 2 are still churning out a ton of great content for users to enjoy.

Just in the last couple of weeks a really exciting mod has reached 1.0 beta status – Cold War Rearmed2. This mod brings all the islands, units and missions from Flashpoint into Arma2, so that includes Lost Squad and Desert Ambush!

Click the thumbs for bigger versions.
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Steam – Y u no work?

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Two more reasons to hate Steam.

1. I didn’t fancy downloading 13GB of LA Noire when I knew a friend had it. So I leeched it and then when I click “Install” in Steam it tells me it’s going to “convert it to a more efficient format”. Sounds great but what Steam really meant is – “I’m going to just delete all those old files and redownload completely new ones without consulting you”. 13GB! FUUUUUUUUUUUUUU!

2. I bought a shiny new 2TB hard disk to dump Steam and all my other games onto. I did a quick search for the best way to move Steam which involved deleting everything in the Steam folder except the Steam.exe and the Steamapps folder. Unfortunately these guides forgot to mention that some Steam games (in my case Dishonored and Deus Ex: Human Revolution) store their saved games in the userdata folder and not in My Documents or My Saved Games or somewhere sensible. BAM! All progress wiped.

Here‘s a site with a list of savegame locations in case you hit a problem like this.

Games from the Attic #1 – KOTOR.

This feature will look at games from around 10 years ago and newer (OpenGL/DX9) and see how good they can look with todays graphical bells and whistles. I’ll be applying as much of the Better Visuals guide stuff as I can.

First up, Star Wars – Knights of the Old Republic . Knights of the Old Republic (KOTOR) was released for the PC way back in 2003 and the combination of Bioware and Star Wars proved to be a hit. A lot of the core features of KOTOR were carried over to the Mass Effect series.

Playing KOTOR out of the box would give you a 4:3 resolution of up to 1600×1200. But our good friends over at Widescreen Gaming Forum (WSGF) have done the leg work to get it running at a few 16:10 and 16:9 resolutions. Some other fans have provided updated higher resolution textures which up the eye-candy nicely.

If you have the Steam version of the game then do yourself a couple of favours. First, disable the in-game overlay by right-clicking the game in steam -> properties -> general -> uncheck ‘Enable Steam Community In-Game’ and also disable the automatic updates on the updates tab so you can download the ‘fixed’ exe v1.03 by Fairlight which isn’t encrypted like the steam version.

Installing the widescreen mod is fairly straightfoward after that and a nice guide can be found here.

After I got the widescreen mod up and running I did a search for texture updates and found KOTOR Ultimate v0.1. It looks like the author will be releasing a v0.2 soon so check for that if you get this far.

Finally I used RadeonPro to apply 16x Anisotropic Filtering and FXAA.

The results (click for a larger version):
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