Tales from Executable Ocean
realMyst as proto-Mudpie?
I’m obsessed with squeezing the last few tricks out of realMyst, so I occasionally spend an hour or so trying silly things. I’ve always wondered why there’s so much more stuff in the init.dat files that came with the realMyst demo than there is in the same files for the real game -- references to all sorts of behavior, and so on and so forth. So I thought I would try the following: Copy the three dni files from the real game into the demo directory, and see what happens. Maybe the demo exe file would mesh with the bigger dni files from the real game and voila! We would be able to jump, swim, and shift in and out of third person mode!
No. You can guess what happens: The demo doesn’t run. Cyan appears to have renamed a bunch of files that are in the dni files, so the demo exe program can’t find them.
BUT! In the process of doing this, I noticed something: The demo realMyst.exe file is WAY bigger than the game realMyst.exe file. Some of this comes, I think, from packing the dll files into the exe file (does that make sense? I’m not a programmer, so I’m guessing, but there are no dll files in the realMystTest directory, so they must be somewhere). But what else might be in there, I wondered. And I recalled something that Marack had posted in Rivenguild (which I use as a stupid realMyst trick). Marack noted that there were some extra references in the realMyst.exe file, which produce strange effects when you put them in some of the init.dat files. Awhile ago, I had tried to find those references in the realMyst.exe file but couldn’t; I suddenly realized that I had been looking in the wrong file. So I opened up the realMyst.exe (demo version) file.
WOHBA! A veritable treasure trove of strange and tantalizing references, many of which I believe are insights into Mudpie. None of them is earthshattering or totally new, but they give strong evidence to support some of the guesses we’ve been making based on Cyan comments. Now, it might be that all of them are just Plasma/Headspin leftovers, but I don’t think so -- there are too many references to actions and items that we’ve learned will be in Mudpie.
So I've laid out lots of my discoveries below. Some refer to things that are in realMyst, while others refer to things that look like they'll be in Mudpie. On to the juicy stuff!
1) The Camera
realMyst is always first person – you see the action from the point of view of the player. We’ve been trying to find a way to get a third person view, and I think I know what it is, although it is probably crippled in the realMyst.exe programs. It is CamMode – here are some of the references that are in the exe file:
I’ve tried putting those sorts of references in various init.dat files, but either nothing happens or the game doesn’t run.
2) More stupid realMyst tricks?
As I noted above, Marack from RG came up with two ways of adding something to the realMyst init.dat files and changing the game. One of these involves adding a couple of lines (actually, they are data for the exe file to use) in the game_init.dat file; the other changes a line in the win_init.dat file.
Here are all the references I found that can, it appears, be used in the game_init.dat file. Many of them are references that are already in that file:
But there are others that look like they could, possibly, be added:
lodall and lodcolor are the ones Marack used for the color trick. lonelyto25 has discovered how camfovmult works -- you can take a look at the results in stupid realMyst tricks. I’ve tried using some of the other ones, but no luck. You need a 1 or 0 following the reference get the program to notice the addition, and in some cases the result is a total freeze.
For the win_init.dat file, Marack suggested substituting “firstpersondrunken” for “firstpersondeadcenter” – this gives the “drunken” stupid realMyst trick. Here are all the “firstperson” references in the realMyst.exe demo file:
I’ve tried them all. “Classicplus” gives a zero dead zone (that is, moving the mouse always moves the camera view); lonelyto25 found that "firstpersonnewmousenosteer" makes the mouse become semi-transparent when you move it to the edge of the dead zone; I can’t figure out what the other ones do.
3) Multiplayer capability
There are several references to a multiplayer mode in the realMyst.exe demo file. I don’t know if this means that realMyst was playable that way (for Cyan) or whether that’s just left over from Mudpie practice. Here’s a few of these references, where %s is a stand-in for something like a player number:
multiplayer command %s
Adding Player %s to your game.
Player character %s is exiting the game
4) Mudpie actions
There are tons of references to types of movements, some of them very sophisticated. These can't be from realMyst, unless we really can bring life to Mr. m3dplayer. So, can we say, Mudpie?
sb:Switch to surface mode
sb:Switch to dive mode
Actions using hands
5) Mudpie inventory
We know Mudpie will have an inventory. The following references give some substance to what it will be like:
6) Firemarbles in Mudpie
There are no firemarbles in realMyst, correct? Well, there appear to be some in Mudpie. Here are some references:
7) Brain, brain, what is brain?
There are lots of references to brains and brain states. I think this is the game’s way of telling the program how to perceive things, or how certain commands are translated into actions. For example, doing something while you are on land (normal brain state) might produce an action that is different from what would happen if you were swimming (swim brain state). Here are the different brain states:
Notice one that is in the middle: Scarab. There are lots of Scarab references. Dusante in the Mudpie Obsession forum suggested this might be a digger, or perhaps it's just a vehicle of some sort -- note the references to "get in", "turn left", "drive fwd", and so forth:
Well, that's all for now. If anyone gets any of these tricks to work, let me know and I'll add it to the eggsite.