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Thread: thief remastering project idea

  1. #1
    New Member
    Registered: Jul 2019

    thief remastering project idea

    Im wondering if anyone has tried or would be interested in collaborating to make some automated tool(s) for extracting data from the original games? (sort of like how those engine port mods work for the elderscrolls games)

    I know there are manual ways of doing this, and i intend on seeing if i can extract bafford's manor from thief gold and seeing if i can import it into the unreal 4 engine. To be clear, im not intending on remastering a whole game or even a completed level (nor do i intend on "releasing" any copyrighted materials), im just curious to see if i can get the geometry working in ue4, then just mess around with it, and see where i can take it from there. I dont have much experience with software development, that said my day job is software developemnt (as a junior, not been at it long) so my programming skills are lacking to say the last (but i am some what handy with the ue4 editor).

    So, since the source for the engine has leaked a number of years ago, im wondering if anyone has tried to make some tools for "converting" the game data (animations, models, sound files etc..) into somthing that would be more readily usable/recognizable by modern game enignes? If thats a solid no (like theres not even some half started attempt someones tried at one point) does anyone know quite how ridiculous of an undertaking it would be? and if theres any materials they could through my way on where or how to even start figuring somthing out? Cheers.

  2. #2
    Desperately Dodgy Moderator
    Registered: Nov 2001
    Location: Dragonsreach
    I moved this to The Editor's Guild where you should be more likely to get responses as this is a technical question.

  3. #3
    Registered: Oct 2004
    Location: Ireland/Poland
    If you need to get a level geometry - that's trivial. Open up the .mis file in Dromed and type in a command:
    It saves out an obj file with a material file(s) into the Thief main folder.
    You can do a search for this command on the forums - it's been discussed before.

    Exporting out lights directly from the MIS file can be done as well, and I did that while ago for my (never completed) 3dsmax script.

    Other formats are also known like BIN meshes or BIN objects. There are plugins for importing these for different software:

    Blender Toolkit:
    (I think RSoul is currently remaking this one for newer version of Blender)

    Dark Animation Tools
    (this is for working with meshes (AI) and motions

    There's more than that, I believe.

    The knowledge is out there, but the question is, what's your ultimate goal? There has been a couple of attempts to recreate some Thief levels in different engines, with different level of accuracy and interpretations.

  4. #4
    New Member
    Registered: Jul 2019
    aw sweat thanks, thats really helpful. Any plans to finish your script? Or is there not much point to now?

  5. #5
    Registered: Oct 2004
    Location: Ireland/Poland
    In terms of geometry import - no, there's no need to, since New Dark has this command mentioned above.
    Besides, I don't work much with 3dsmax anymore.
    I might do a similar thing for Maya one day though.

  6. #6
    Registered: Sep 2000
    Location: ZylonBane
    If ImpliedPedoPhil wants to see how classic Thief gameplay would look in a more modern engine, there's already The Dark Mod (Doom 3 engine) and Thievery (UT engine).

  7. #7
    New Member
    Registered: Jul 2019
    Quote Originally Posted by ZylonBane View Post
    If ImpliedPedoPhil wants to see how classic Thief gameplay would look in a more modern engine, there's already The Dark Mod (Doom 3 engine) and Thievery (UT engine).
    cool i've not heard of thievery, the dark mod is pretty awsome but doesnt quiet hit the spot. The main reason i want to work on this is, is for VR, i know there was a VR doom 3 mod but as far as I know no ones build one compatible with the dark mod (and made fan missions with actual levels from thief). Im making a VR game separately anyway (completely different genre) so everything i do with that i can just plugin, probably more interestingly for a normal 2d mode, ue4 has lots of new interesting features that would be amazing for thief, steam audio does some pretty amazing sound propagation/simulations and now with real time raytracing for the lighting, it could look phenomenal. Of course would be a lot of work to get half of this stuff working, and juggling projects with my limited free time will mean progress is slow, but i think it would be worth it.

  8. #8
    New Member
    Registered: Jul 2019
    just a little update on what i've been upto incase anyone finds this interesting, I got all the original textures (it would look a lot better with HD/enhanced or other texture mods but this was just easy) appiled to the level geometry of mission 5 (assassins, my favorate early thief gold level) in the ue4 editor, however i just guesstimated the proper texture tiling amounts so those are probably quite off in a lot of places.

    I havnt baked the lighting, somthings a bit borked with that as everything turns black for some reason. I've figured out how to use someones belnder import export plugin to get object models out, but the naming convention of the game files are a bit trial and error for me, I dont suppose theres a wiki for that or somthing?

    next up: going to start figuring out steam audio for HRTF positional audio, and put some footstep sounds in, and wall around the level in VR, probably make a little video and show u guys
    Last edited by TouchyUnclePhil; 5th Aug 2019 at 03:45.

  9. #9

    Registered: Jun 1999
    Hey, that looks cool! The textures and lighting look a bit washed out compared to Thief though. Did you place the lights by hand?

  10. #10
    New Member
    Registered: Jul 2019
    thanks! I did place the lights by hand, not sure how to export them from the game but im sure it'll be easier to just do it this way, the texture materials dont have the proper values applied yet so thats y they are currently washed out, probably should have spent more time on it before taking screens

  11. #11
    New Member
    Registered: Jul 2019
    incase anyone is interested in helping out with this I created a github project: (I also made a discord if anyone wants to organise:

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