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Lightbulb Widescreen aspect ratio icon misplacement fix?

August 18th, 2016, 19:07

As you may know, widescreen aspect ratio is possible for Boiling Point: Road to Hell now. However, there is a problem with the alignment of the icons in inventory, chat and vendors. It also makes the menu buttons unresponsive, forcing you to click elsewhere near the button to actually perform its action. I'm planning to find what is responsible for the alignment of the icons, and change them according to aspect ratio to make the widescreen experience properly functioning. Here is all I know, kind of copy pasted from the link at the top.

Look at the pictures in the link. 4:3, bottom left corner, you can see a bullet icon next to bullet count. In the rest of the aspect ratios, you can see the icon is missing, which is the problem. Icons in the inventory, slots and portraits are severely offset/gone. They seem to scale right with size, but their alignment is offset and wrong (but not scattered). At 1920x1080 on aspect ratio 16:9, they are completely not visible. At 1024x768 - they are about a row/line above their original slots (vendors and backpack). At 1680x1050, they are exactly a row below where they are supposed to be (vendors). At 800x600, only the upper row is visible (backpack). Keep in mind that HUD placement is perfectly fine - it's just the icons that seem to disappear/go outside the screen borders, thus I doubt it is userinterface problem.

Now, I used Dawn of War (first series) as an example of completely and properly changing game aspect ratio for all its elements. You have to change the 4:3 aspect ratio hex value (AB AA AA 3F) to 16:9 aspect ratio hex value (39 8E E3 3F) for its .exe file, Platform.dll, spDx9.dll, and UserInterface.dll. So I decided to do the same for Boiling point. I have searched for all .dll files, and if they had the AB AA AA 3F hex value, changed it to 39 8E E3 3F. I only managed to find 2 files that have AB AA AA 3F, and that's DX8RENDER.dll and vital.dll. Rest .dlls didn't have them, neither did Xenus.exe. However, changing those did not help the icon alignment. I think vital.dll is from Vital Engine (game's engine), but changing the value for it did not affect anything, so I'm not sure of its purpose.

Thus I believe Boiling Point has a file that dictates the alignment of the icons that is independent of HUD placement, as HUD is aligned properly. Something to note is the icons change size with different resolutions. I think that means something but I have no idea. The icon placement must be a "code-rule" (I don't know proper terminology), instead of, say, a readily made picture with all icons permanently in place and spaced stationary, with the game blocking an icon out if it is not in the player's possession. That's because you can rearrange icons in any way you want. So there must be a code that dictates their alignment - the position on the screen, the spacing, etc. If we could somehow find this code/file, we could have ourselves a fully functioning widescreen, classic game.

Two files interest me so far. The kir_interface.mat file in Boiling Point\materials\inventory - but I don't know how to open it or understand it. And the vital.dll - what effect it has on the game if changing its 4:3 hex value did nothing.

It would be nice to get some interested people to help me. I know this game is rather an obscure gem, but there are many fans of it. Together we may figure something out. The outcome will be worth it - playing the game 16:9 and beyond properly. While experienced people are very much welcomed, anyone can help researching the effects of each file on the game to isolate the needed element. Any effort will help in this. Hopefully, someone will join my cause. Thank you for you time!
Last edited by xspy70; August 20th, 2016 at 22:50.
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August 21st, 2016, 22:03
UPDATE: I think I tested all files that seem relevant for the 4:3 hex value. Files newgrp.grp and newgrp1.grp had LOTS of AB AA AA 3F hex values, but after changing them all, nothing changed in-game.

The problem at least can be easily described. As shown in the video, the icons have their y-coordinate alignment wrong. At y=0 (middle of the screen), icon is where it should be (inside its box). At y=+/- # (any value other than 0), the icon moves away from its box. The further you take the box on the y=axis, the larger separation between the box and the icon will be. Any ideas?

Note: I use the Russian version of the game, that is the latest version (more recent than other language versions and patches) and two of its official mods (The Legend Lives and Great War). I also have an English version (latest patch but still older version compared to Russian) for comparison, and it does have more files than the Russian version, albeit I'm not sure how relevant. So even if I said I tested all, I would appreciate if you were to check yourself too. I use the HxD program to find the hex-values. Resource Tuner can also be useful to read files (like the .dlls).
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Join Date: Apr 2012
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16:9, icons, resolution, support, widescreen
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