Interplay's Star Trek

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LooZee
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Interplay's Star Trek

Post by LooZee » Thu Jun 11, 2009 5:49 pm

Hi there,

I have done a lot of work related to Star Trek 25th Anniversary and Star Trek Judgment Rites in the past, disassembling parts of these games and understanding and "decrypting" the data files. I have developed tools to help me in this quest and can provide source code and information if someone wishes to implement support for these classics into ScummVM.

My initial intent was to create a ScummVM-style emulation, but I'm now working on a "deluxe" remake using my own custom engine, although this is going to be a copyright issue and will probably never be released to the public. As I understand, Interplay no longer holds the Star Trek license and isn't even allowed to sell these games anymore, so there's no chance they'll ever make them freeware or open source.

I would really like to see these games supported in ScummVM.

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DrMcCoy
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Re: Interplay's Star Trek

Post by DrMcCoy » Thu Jun 11, 2009 6:35 pm

LooZee wrote:I would really like to see these games supported in ScummVM.
Still, it would probably be better if you could take up this part. Devs are kinda rare since you've already dug deep, why not go further? :P

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Longcat
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Post by Longcat » Thu Jun 11, 2009 6:37 pm

I was so betting all my money that DrMcCoy was gonna pick this one up:P

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Laserschwert
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Post by Laserschwert » Thu Jun 11, 2009 7:29 pm

"I'm a doctor, not a ScummVM developer!"

Wait... he is!

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MeddlingMonk
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Post by MeddlingMonk » Thu Jun 11, 2009 8:07 pm

"He's a dev, Jim!"

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bobdevis
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Re: Interplay's Star Trek

Post by bobdevis » Fri Jun 12, 2009 3:19 am

LooZee wrote:Hi there,

My initial intent was to create a ScummVM-style emulation, but I'm now working on a "deluxe" remake using my own custom engine, although this is going to be a copyright issue and will probably never be released to the public.
If you brew something that takes the original datafiles as input but uses your own engine, there is no copyright issue as far as I can see.
The datafiles remain property of their owners and the new engine to run them is free (if you go the GPL way). Players would still need to obtain the datafiles in the way they did before. You would be basically using the same legal construction as the ScummVM project does.

If you do not wish to continue with the project anymore yourself, I suggest you document all of your source code and findings properly and then throw it public. Someone just might want to dig in to it AFTER they inspected what you already accomplished.

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sev
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Re: Interplay's Star Trek

Post by sev » Fri Jun 12, 2009 7:30 am

bobdevis wrote:
LooZee wrote:Hi there,

My initial intent was to create a ScummVM-style emulation, but I'm now working on a "deluxe" remake using my own custom engine, although this is going to be a copyright issue and will probably never be released to the public.
If you brew something that takes the original datafiles as input but uses your own engine, there is no copyright issue as far as I can see.
What I see in his comment is that he is going to enhance the game, thus called it "deluxe." In this case it will indeed be a copyright infringement on the story, the caracters and probably musical score. Thus, he is correct that this will never be release to the public.

Although it is really difficult for me to justify these efforts, and in your situation, LooZee, I would concentrate on bringing the engine to ScummVM :)


Eugene

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bobdevis
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Post by bobdevis » Fri Jun 12, 2009 10:59 am

Aaah, semantics....

When I red "deluxe edition" I was thinking about improving the way the game interacts with the player, the OS, the window manager and such... Just like the ScummVM offering of the 2xHQ/3xHQ filters so to say.

I was not thinking about altering the story, or remixing sound or graphics.

If what LooZee is doing is the former, he should be in the clear, right?
If what he doing is the latter then yeah; I guess he could get a valid cease-and-desist order at any point then....

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marticus
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Post by marticus » Fri Jun 12, 2009 12:05 pm

I can't imagine Paramount being that protective over some minor IP :P

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MeddlingMonk
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Post by MeddlingMonk » Sat Jun 13, 2009 1:26 am

Paramount actually has a kind of interesting attitude toward the ST franchise. Take fan films. Most studios get really, really tetchy about that sort of thing. But then there's Paramount and things like New Voyages/Phase II: they've plugged one or two of their episodes on the offical ST site, some props were borrowed off them for the mirror universe episodes of Enterprise, and the guy financing the whole operation was given a tiny little part (or maybe he just filled out a crowd scene) in the new movie.

As long as no one tries to make money off this sort of thing, Paramount seems amazingly cool about it. Very unusual in a corporation, I think. The normal practice is to try to stamp it out or frostily pretend it doesn't exist.

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Red_Breast
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Post by Red_Breast » Sat Jun 13, 2009 4:11 pm

I've got the CD version of 25th Anniv. A good game although my favourite is A Final Unity.
A couple of years back I thought about trying to find Judgement Rites but noticed on a wiki that it had an expansion (Movies and Sounds Pack) which probably put me off at the time as I'd prefer to play the more complete version but knew it would probably mean hunting down 2 separate games/purchases.
I couldn't find the expansion on Ebay and I guess I forgot about it.
I noticed LooZee ends the post with "I would really like to see these games supported in ScummVM."
Maybe a safe version for ScummVM could be made and then if he/she wants to make a deluxe version for him/herself then he/she gets the best of both worlds.

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eriktorbjorn
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Post by eriktorbjorn » Sat Jun 13, 2009 5:00 pm

Red_Breast wrote:A couple of years back I thought about trying to find Judgement Rites but noticed on a wiki that it had an expansion (Movies and Sounds Pack) which probably put me off at the time as I'd prefer to play the more complete version but knew it would probably mean hunting down 2 separate games/purchases.
I've never heard of an expansion (and it's not mentioned here, at least), though it's of course perfectly possible that there are versions that I'm not aware of. There was a Collector's Edition which apparently had some extras outside of the game itself. Could that be what you're thinking of? I've played the CD version, and at the time I thought it was at least as good as 25th Anniversary. I've been meaning to replay them for some time now. (And I haven't even gotten around to playing A Final Unity, yet.)

It's a pity the third game was cancelled.

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Red_Breast
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Post by Red_Breast » Sat Jun 13, 2009 7:24 pm

When I read your post at first I thought OK it's not a typical expansion (extra levels/missions) but it adds to the original.

Checking Moby though I think you might be right.
"Description:
A cinematic expansion for the original diskette version of Star Trek: Judgment Rites, Movie & Sound Pack enhances the adventure with over 10 megabytes of added sound effects and new story transition sequences."

http://www.mobygames.com/game/dos/star- ... sound-pack

It's an expansion for the floppy version only. Moby doesn't say if this pack is a CD or floppies though. But I guess it includes the stuff which came on the CD version of J.R.

Going back to the time of these releases let's say I had the floppy J.R. and this pack was a CD. I'd need a CD reader anyway to use it and if I purchased a CD reader I think I would prefer to buy the CD version of the main game anyway. Unless this pack was a lot cheaper maybe.

Fascinating

vasyl
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Post by vasyl » Sun Jun 14, 2009 2:47 am

Moby doesn't say if this pack is a CD or floppies though.
Five HD floppies. Later CD release included most of it but IIRC there were some differences.
There were several games that had extra sound/voices/etc packs of this kind -- Ultima VIII comes to mind.

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eriktorbjorn
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Post by eriktorbjorn » Sun Jun 14, 2009 5:08 am

vasyl wrote:Later CD release included most of it but IIRC there were some differences.
Sounds reasonable. One of the screenshots on MobyGames looked at least very similar to what I get with the CD release.

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