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Thread: Built-in FM loader in Thief version 1.19 and beyond

  1. #1
    Southquarter.com/fms
    Registered: Apr 2000
    Location: The Akkala Highlands

    Built-in FM loader in Thief version 1.19 and beyond

    Edit: The following info applies to Thief version 1.19 and all updates to it (currently up to 1.24)

    Hey -

    Thought I'd start a separate thread on this, there appears to be a built-in FM loader (just like Darkloader or Garrettloader) in the new Thief patch that was released (current version 1.24). All the details you will need are in a document called FMSel.pdf located in the \doc directory of the new_dark.zip file that comes with the V1.24 patch. You should definitely read through that, but here's the short version:

    1. Install the latest New Dark patch, either manually or by using Tafferpatcher/Tfix.
    2. In the directory where you installed Thief, find a file called "cam_mod.ini." Open it up with Notepad or any other text file editor.
    3. Right below the line where it says "always start the FM selector", remove the semicolon in front of ;fm. It should look like this when you're done:

    ; always start the FM Selector (if one is present)
    fm
    4. Save.

    The FM selector will now open up whenever you start Thief. But, we have to tell it where to look for FMs. Start up Thief (which should open up the FM Selector automatically). At the bottom of the window, there's an icon of a gear (see the image below for reference). Click it, and go down to "FM Archive Path." Here you can specify where your FM zip files are located. The Selector should have no problem with sub-directories.

    At this point, you can click the refresh button in the upper right corner of the window to update the display. All of your FMs will have an zip/archive icon to the left of them, that means they are not currently installed. You can just double click them to install, they must be installed before you can play them.

    All installed FMs are stored in the the /fm directory of your Thief install directory by default. This location can be changed in the cam_mod.ini file if you choose to do so. In simple terms, this is where the FM Selector unzips all the mission files so Thief can access them. It's all transparent and behind the scenes, so you really don't have to worry about it if you don't want to.

    There's a whole bunch of other options in the FMSel main window that we can mess with, so have fun. Post any questions or comments regarding the FM Selector in this thread. Of particular interest is a section in FMSel.pdf regarding conversion for missions containing MP3 files, I'll have to experiment with this later and report back.

    Edit 1:

    OK, so it seems you need a specific .dll in your Thief 2 installation directory in order to convert mp3s to .wav format for any missions that use them. For some reason it is not included in the patch package due to copyright issues (which seems strange to me, considering this is an anonymous, unofficial patch released to the public under cover of darkness with a hacked .exe but hey, what do I know). The file you need is libmp3lame.dll, and it needs to go into your Thief 2 installation directory.

    Edit: It's been pointed out that the 64 bit version of libmp3lame does not work, likely because FM Selector is a 32 bit program. So even if you're running a 64 bit system, use the 32 bit version. (Thanks LarryG).

    You can download a package from these sites that has the file you need. Just to be clear, these are freely available downloads, you are not stealing anything here or doing anything illegal:
    http://lame.sourceforge.net/links.php#Binaries
    http://www.rarewares.org/mp3-lame-libraries.php

    I also mirrored the Windows package that has the file on Southquarter:
    LAME libraries (Win32)

    Once this file is in place, and you "install" an FM using FM Selector, you'll see a notification on-screen that the mp3 is being converted.

    Last edited by Brethren; 14th Mar 2017 at 18:12. Reason: Fixed some typos, added image of FMSel

  2. #2
    Moderator
    Registered: Apr 2003
    Location: Wales
    Thanks for all that info, Brethren. Hopefully I'll get to have a good look at everything tomorrow.

  3. #3
    Southquarter.com/fms
    Registered: Apr 2000
    Location: The Akkala Highlands
    I'm going to be doing some comparisons between the new FM Selector and Darkloader, but one simple thing I noticed right off the bat is that if you're playing several FMs at the same time, you can have all of them installed and there are no delays when starting up each mission. This is nice if you're playing, for example, Black Frog, which on my computer takes a couple of minutes to install all the files through Darkloader.

    Now I can switch between (again by example) Black Frog, Reunion With Basso, and Finals At The Academy within a couple of seconds.

  4. #4
    Member
    Registered: May 2002
    Location: The Netherlands
    There're angels who playThief and angels who don't ........ both go to heaven ............
    Dare to join .............

  5. #5
    Desperately dodgy geezer
    Registered: Nov 2001
    Location: The Wailing Keep
    Mike, that sounds awesome! I guess the only disadvantage of leaving them installed is the disk space they take up uncompressed. I'l have to play with the FM loader once I've finished mucking around in Dromed.

  6. #6
    Smooth game-play with this update.

    Breaks my cheat engine, but, what the hell.

  7. #7
    Member
    Registered: Jul 2012
    Location: Montreal
    Just to make sure, this works for both Thief Gold and Thief 2, correct? I'm currently using MLoader for FMs, is there any pressing advantage for using this new built-in loader, or is it simply a convenience for those with freshly installed Thief games?

  8. #8
    Thiefmissions.com
    Moderator

    Registered: Mar 2001
    Location: Houston, Tx., USA
    I don't see why it wouldn't work for T1/G, but I guess it would have to work a bit differently than darkloader or I guess most other loaders would work. Darkloader at least shows you a bunch of FMs for T1 and T2, and runs the appropriate executable. Since the built-in FM selector is, well, built-in, I guess you'd have to run the proper executable first, which would then show you the various FMs for that game. (And you'd probably have to keep your FMs in separate directories per game, too.)

    I guess it's always possible there's more magic in there than I think there is; I don't actually have T1 installed these days so I haven't tried.

  9. #9
    Southquarter.com/fms
    Registered: Apr 2000
    Location: The Akkala Highlands
    I still need to experiment a little bit with Thief 1 and Thief Gold, hopefully tonight. FYI though, I added a little bit to the first post about what you need to do to install and play FMs that contain mp3 files.

  10. #10
    Member
    Registered: Jan 2001
    Location: Formby, NW England
    Quote Originally Posted by Brethren View Post
    I still need to experiment a little bit with Thief 1 and Thief Gold, hopefully tonight. FYI though, I added a little bit to the first post about what you need to do to install and play FMs that contain mp3 files.
    Burrick's Head Inn v2 uses MP3s - I remember it well because of the delay in loading the wavs in game

    I downloaded the mirrored package. It works file (tested with the above FM). Do we need the .lib and .exp files too, or just the .dll?

  11. #11
    Southquarter.com/fms
    Registered: Apr 2000
    Location: The Akkala Highlands
    The only file I used was libmp3lame.dll, and everything worked great, so that should be the only file you need. I tested with some of the Lord Alan series FMs, which I remembered used mp3s, and had no issues.

  12. #12
    Member
    Registered: Jul 2012
    Location: Montreal
    Thanks Epithumia, I'm just a little worried about chaning my FM setup now, unless there's some must-have imporvement. I'm excited to see what Brethren can find out about it working with Thief.

  13. #13
    Member
    Registered: Sep 2003
    Location: Cambridgeshire UK
    I just discovered that if you have previously been running Darkloader then you need to install original Thief 2 before running the new FM selector.

    I hadn't done this, so when I loaded Assault at the Gas Station it gave me the Under Templehill starting screen. After installing the OMs with Darkloader all was OK.

    I imagine that the same thing will apply to Garrettloader.

  14. #14
    Thiefmissions.com
    Moderator

    Registered: Mar 2001
    Location: Houston, Tx., USA
    That's because darkloader overwrites a bunch of stuff in the game directory (and keeps backups), whereas the new FM selector just sticks everything in a subdirectory and uses what I assume is some new path mechanic in the new engine to make use of it. That's also how it can switch between installed missions so fast; it doesn't have to uncompress anything to do so. The darkloader method, in comparison, is quite fragile. Not that someone couldn't make darkloader do its thing better using the new engine, of course, if someone really wanted to, as the source code is available. Anyone still remember Delphi? Then again, the source to the new FM selector is also available.

  15. #15
    Desperately dodgy geezer
    Registered: Nov 2001
    Location: The Wailing Keep
    I've yet to try it out, but based on what I'm reading here I don't see much point in continuing to use Darkloader with 1.19. The advantages seem to outweigh the pain of migrating... but that's just me, I imagine plenty of players will want to stick with DL.

  16. #16
    Southquarter.com/fms
    Registered: Apr 2000
    Location: The Akkala Highlands
    One nice thing about Darkloader over the new FM Selector is that the readme file for each mission is always viewable when a specific FM is highlighted. You can still access the readme in FM Selector by right clicking the FM in the list, but you have to bring it up in a separate window using notepad/Word.

  17. #17
    Desperately dodgy geezer
    Registered: Nov 2001
    Location: The Wailing Keep
    Well, the source for the FM selector was included, so that kind of change could be made by someone knowledgeable.

  18. #18
    Moderator
    Registered: Jan 2003
    Location: NeoTokyo
    I'm having two issues with it.
    1) It is not recognizing sub-folders in my main FMs folder. If I click a folder with subfolders, it treats it as if it's an FM itself (what it looks like, e.g., if you click "info files" it shows files from multiple FMs in there), and then it just starts the vanilla game.
    2) If I drop a .zip file in the top folder, even if I click refresh, it's still invisible in the FM Selector.

    The only way I've gotten it to run an FM is if I manually unzip the .zip in the top FMs folder myself. Then it can see that and I can play it from there when I click on its folder.

    I also had a question, where do the saves go? Would it possible to migrate my old saves into a new folder so I could still use them with FMSelector?

  19. #19
    Member
    Registered: Aug 2007
    Location: LosAngeles: Between Amusements

    libmp3lame.dll 32 bit vs. 64 bit

    If you select the Tools icon (a gear at the bottom of the window) and select "About" it says:
    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	FMSel2.jpg 
Views:	21 
Size:	47.4 KB 
ID:	1237

    My question is, has anyone tried the 64-bit version of libmp3lame.dll and verified that it works? I wonder if it has to be the 32-bit version like it says. Anyone know? How about anyone know a good test mission with guaranteed mp3s to decode so I can test it on my 64-bit machine?

  20. #20
    Member
    Registered: Mar 2009
    Location: Germany
    Its not working. First i tried the 64bit Version but i become an Errormessage about the mp3. With the 32bit Version it work fine. You can check it with zappens Reunion with Basso there are mp3s to decode

  21. #21
    Member
    Registered: Sep 2008
    Location: Deutschland/Germany
    Quote Originally Posted by Firehawk View Post
    You can check it with zappens Reunion with Basso there are mp3s to decode
    Sorry but definitely not in my FM ...
    My FM campaigns Garrett's Young Years XTra, Reunion With Basso
    Want your upcoming FM translated in foreign languages?

  22. #22
    New Member
    Registered: Oct 2006
    Question regarding the 1.19 FM Loader.

    I have T2X installed, testing if i could have it used as a fan mission by the 1.19 FM loader, i moved the "t2x" folder created by the installation into the FMs directory.

    Launching the 1.19 FM loader has "t2x" being listed and selectable.
    I can launch it from there and start a game.
    I played 5 minutes so far without obvious problems.

    But should i expect problems from doing this or should it play OK ?

  23. #23
    Member
    Registered: Jan 2007
    Location: Germany
    Quote Originally Posted by LarryG View Post
    My question is, has anyone tried the 64-bit version of libmp3lame.dll and verified that it works? I wonder if it has to be the 32-bit version like it says. Anyone know? How about anyone know a good test mission with guaranteed mp3s to decode so I can test it on my 64-bit machine?
    I can confirm Firehawk's finding: using the 64bit version does not work. It still says "Mp3 to Wav conversion not possible".
    Using the 32bit version however works.

  24. #24
    Member
    Registered: Apr 2002
    Location: Rockwell, NC
    Quote Originally Posted by Yandros View Post
    Mike, that sounds awesome! I guess the only disadvantage of leaving them installed is the disk space they take up uncompressed. I'l have to play with the FM loader once I've finished mucking around in Dromed.
    Yandros, we all know how much you love Dromed though!

    Mike, thanks for the input. I'll have to give that a go.

  25. #25
    Desperately dodgy geezer
    Registered: Nov 2001
    Location: The Wailing Keep
    I imagine that the FMSel program is a 32-bit program, and that's probably why it can't use the 64-bit decoder.

    @Larry, some of my older FMs used mp3s, try Burrick's Head Inn v2.

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