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WolfensteinCGA

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First post, by DosFreak

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https://github.com/jhhoward/WolfensteinCGA

This project is a modification to the original Wolfenstein 3D source release which renders the game in CGA video modes. The engine has also been modified so that it can be run on 8088 based CPUs, allowing it to be run on a wide variety of old PC hardware.

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Reply 1 of 42, by Gmlb256

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Nice! 😀

Previously, someone recompiled the Wolfenstein 3-D executable to run on 8086/8088 CPUs without these CGA video modes but it required a fast XT computer to get a playable experience.

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Reply 2 of 42, by DosFreak

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Wondering if we are in the beginning of a "fastwolf", I seem to remember decreasing the view size on my 286 12mhz back in the day for more speed or mabye I forgot to press the turbo button or press ctrl alt +. heh

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Reply 4 of 42, by BitWrangler

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Yah, think I needed a couple of levels of frame when I last ran it on a slow 286... I did get to run it on a Harris 25Mhz 286 once and that was glorious. Should be okay on V20, V30 XTs at 8Mhz or better I would think, without going full postage stamp. Only battle ready XT class here is a portable with a laggy LCD, which I am not sure it would be worth running on, it may only support a subset of modes too, I've had scrambled characters trying some things on it.

edit:clarity note, referring to original Wolf3D release, think it was 1.4 at that time.

Last edited by BitWrangler on 2023-01-29, 18:34. Edited 1 time in total.

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Reply 5 of 42, by Tronix

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Excelent! It would be cool to add support for MPU-401 from this project: wolfmidi+wolfdosmpu - Wolf3D/SoD music in General MIDI (fully-automatic converter) + WOLF3D.EXE with MPU-401 support

https://github.com/Tronix286/

Reply 6 of 42, by keenmaster486

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Is there something similar for EGA? I wonder how this would run on my PC/AT.

The VGA version already runs pretty darn slow on my 286 12 MHz machine.

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Reply 7 of 42, by Cyberdyne

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Hope someone will make an EGA version. I know there was a Beta EGA just can not find it anywhere. VGA beta is available.

I am aroused about any X86 motherboard that has full functional ISA slot. I think i have problem. Not really into that original (Turbo) XT,286,386 and CGA/EGA stuff. So just a DOS nut.

Reply 8 of 42, by jhhoward

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Hi author of the project here! Someone pointed me to this thread so thought I'd chime in.

I hadn't seen the wolfmidi project before, it certainly looks like an interesting mod. A couple of people have asked if Tandy 3 voice sound could be supported, since I supported the 160x200 16 colour Tandy mode. As far as I understand, the music format used is basically just a stream of OPL commands which makes it tricky to target other sound devices so having something that converts it to general MIDI could be really helpful.

I'm sort of surprised nobody has made an EGA version yet since from a cursory glance there are a lot of similarities to the Catacomb 3D engine, at least with the way compiled scalers work. Certainly a possibility! There are a couple of EGA style sprites that Romero posted a few years ago but I've never heard of an EGA beta.

I'm also considering a Hercules mode which could potentially be faster than CGA if I can use page flipping. Plantronics ColorPlus mode is also a possibility, although would likely be slow due to the way the memory is arranged. I've also had a request on Github to support 640x400 monochrome mode too, which has a similar memory layout to Hercules with 4 line interlace.

Reply 9 of 42, by Hezus

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This is really cool! I've played Wolf3d in VGA on XT machines before (with the exe patch) and it was sort of playable until you get to the later levels. Wonder how the CGA version will compare.

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Reply 11 of 42, by Gmlb256

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Cyberdyne wrote on 2023-01-22, 06:42:

Hope someone will make an EGA version. I know there was a Beta EGA just can not find it anywhere. VGA beta is available.

It is actually the alpha version that had an EGA renderer and only the VGA one was leaked. 😉

jhhoward wrote on 2023-01-22, 10:25:

I'm sort of surprised nobody has made an EGA version yet since from a cursory glance there are a lot of similarities to the Catacomb 3D engine, at least with the way compiled scalers work. Certainly a possibility! There are a couple of EGA style sprites that Romero posted a few years ago but I've never heard of an EGA beta.

I'm not surprised given how many years it took to get a proper source port for Wolfenstein 3-D that doesn't require DOS since the release of the source code.

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Reply 13 of 42, by Gmlb256

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jmarsh wrote on 2023-01-22, 20:50:

It already has a 16 color tandy mode so I'm sure adding full blown EGA wouldn't take much more work.

EGA uses planar memory layout, so it does take some work to optimize for performance.

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Reply 14 of 42, by sledge

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lolo799 wrote on 2023-01-22, 13:28:

That's nothing short of awesome!
Too bad I don't have a HP 200LX anymore to try it on...

Well, I do! 😀

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RqfhRRwcWPk

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Reply 15 of 42, by BitWrangler

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Heh, that was great. Looks as good as any action game is gonna get on that. About twice speed I was expecting.

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Reply 16 of 42, by clb

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Absolutely awesome! Just wanted to say that it is so great to see the 16-color CGA composite artifact video mode to see some love. That makes me curious, how did you design the color mapping mode/support for the composite artifact mode? Conceptually, do you map pairs of two horizontal pixels in the framebuffer to a single color, or some other way?

I'll have to give this a go for sure!

Reply 19 of 42, by jhhoward

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clb wrote on 2023-01-22, 23:33:

Absolutely awesome! Just wanted to say that it is so great to see the 16-color CGA composite artifact video mode to see some love. That makes me curious, how did you design the color mapping mode/support for the composite artifact mode? Conceptually, do you map pairs of two horizontal pixels in the framebuffer to a single color, or some other way?

I'll have to give this a go for sure!

For composite mode it tries to best match the original VGA colour to a pair of composite colours and uses a checkerboard dithering pattern to approximate the original colour.

There are some videos on my Twitter thread of the different modes in motion (emulated) here:
https://twitter.com/Jameshhoward/status/1616182105087557641

There is also a video of an older build running on real hardware in composite mode here: (the old build uses only vertical stripes rather than checkerboard dithering)
https://twitter.com/Jameshhoward/status/1612900164745981953