Westwood’s Blade Runner (1997) is finally available for purchase as a digital copy

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sev
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Westwood’s Blade Runner (1997) is finally available for purchase as a digital copy

Post by sev »

We are thrilled to announce that the Blade Runner point and click adventure game, developed by Westwood Studios and originally released in 1997, is now available again for purchase, thanks to the efforts of GOG.com. This new digitally distributed version includes the officially dubbed versions of the game (English, French, Italian, Spanish and German).

Of course, it runs on top of ScummVM, which means it contains various bug fixes and quality of life improvements (like mouse-scrolling in KIA and fan made subtitles support) over the original 1997 version of the game.

You will find subtitles for the English and French versions of the game on the Games section of the ScummVM website.

We still have plans to complete the restored content version for the game, which is built from content and code segments that are already in the game’s resources but left unused or untriggered.

PS. If you use the link above we will get a commission from your purchase.

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pykman
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Re: Westwood’s Blade Runner (1997) is finally available for purchase as a digital copy

Post by pykman »

Damn it! If I only read this first... Sorry no commission from me :( I was to eager to buy this.

miracle.flame
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Re: Westwood’s Blade Runner (1997) is finally available for purchase as a digital copy

Post by miracle.flame »

Thanks to you I actually found out such brilliant game exists!

However seeing it for the first time these days I find the graphics quite blocky. I am aware how praised the graphics are using the revolutionary technology and looking all quite cinematic however the heavy blockyness is undeniable. Would there be some enhancing filter available to smooth the blocks a bit? There are some impressive techniques already available for some previous hi-res titles, wondering if any of that could be usable for Blade Runner.

Praetorian
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Re: Westwood’s Blade Runner (1997) is finally available for purchase as a digital copy

Post by Praetorian »

miracle.flame wrote:
Mon Jan 13, 2020 11:20 am
Thanks to you I actually found out such brilliant game exists!

However seeing it for the first time these days I find the graphics quite blocky. I am aware how praised the graphics are using the revolutionary technology and looking all quite cinematic however the heavy blockyness is undeniable. Would there be some enhancing filter available to smooth the blocks a bit? There are some impressive techniques already available for some previous hi-res titles, wondering if any of that could be usable for Blade Runner.
For me, the most noticeable change is when enabling or disabling the "filtering" checkbox option for the game. In GOG's installation, it is disabled by default, so you either have to edit the configuration file for the game to change it, or run the game via ScummVM directly and change the option in the Graphics tab for the Blade Runner game.

I think it looks smoother that way, and I kind of prefer it like that.
Your mileage may vary, of course.

Other than that, I should note that even at the time of the original release, back in 1997, most of the character models did look block-y and left something to be desired. Apparently, this was due to the compression that the developers had to apply on the models, which they didn't have the time to optimize.

I don't think that modern filtering / upscaling (like the neural network variety) techniques can "reverse" or improve that significantly, and it would be too much work for a doubtful result. It also probably wouldn't work in real-time with today's hardware...

For me, the only chance to get a proper high res looking Blade Runner would be for the lost Westwood assets to resurface -- one can hope. From the few material that has been shared in the previous years, they had quite high resolution versions of everything to work with:
http://deadendthrills.com/future-imperf ... de-runner/
http://deadendthrills.com/gallery/?gid=105

miracle.flame
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Re: Westwood’s Blade Runner (1997) is finally available for purchase as a digital copy

Post by miracle.flame »

I actually found out HQ2x scaler does some work in deblocking this to extend which is acceptable, just stopped by to make this obvious for anyone interested.

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