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Morrowrift - Morrowind VR (CV1/1.3 alpha! v. 3.0.2)

superllama
Level 4
6/6/16 - I finally rewrote the OP... editing this literally gave me a migraine but it's finally cleaned up! If you want to look at the old one for some reason, I archived it here pastebin.com/VDfZgTvB
*ahem* anyway.

DISCLAIMER
- Tested with Disk (GOTY) and Steam copies-- should theoretically work with other versions like the GOG version but this is untested (if someone can confirm that it works I'll remove this disclaimer)

WHAT THIS IS
This is a program that hooks into Morrowind + MGE 3.8.0 and, with certain settings disabled, adds fully playable (except character creation) support for the Oculus Rift.
This is different from configurations for vireio and vorpx because it actually decouples the view from the menu and draws the menu as a 3D projection, meaning you can look around separately from where you're aiming and lean forward to zoom in on game text, and it automatically levels your view pitch so you can play it standing up without getting dizzy.
It's written from scratch in C, so there are no dependencies other than Morrowind + MGE 3.8.0 and the Oculus Runtimes.
Here's a badly recorded gameplay video showing off the features (and bugs) in the already-out-of-date version 3.0 (one of the bugs in the video is already fixed!)
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rIMBYREr9yg
(NOTE: if somebody with a decent GPU and recording program wants to take a video of their game window running the latest version of Morrowrift, I'll put it here-- right now all my videos are laggy and ugly because my GPU is old and I don't know how to use OBS)

WHY 3.x?
You might be wondering how this is version 3 when it's so basic... short answer: this one is (theoretically) way more stable and optimized than before due to it using an entirely different structure and coding scheme. Long answer: the first one was DK1 only and was a direct fork of MGE, meaning you had to actually replace MGE with my DLL. Version 2 added DK2 support, and was an extra layer on top of MGE that worked the same way-- that is, by pretending to be DirectX. This version is a standalone program that injects a DLL directly into Morrowind much like VorpX or Vireio, except this program is specifically made for Morrowind/MGE and doesn't have any other dependencies.

WHY ALPHA? (BUGS)
There are still a multitude of bugs present in this version, some of which were even fixed in an older version, but as I've abstracted the code more and more in an attempt to make my edits more portable to other games, certain things got harder to fix. Here's a list of all known bugs that I can think of right now:

  • Overlay ZOrder Bug - Any game overlays (or at least steam) come up behind the main menu or HUD. If you're playing with a steam controller and you can't move the mouse on the main menu, try pressing Shift+Tab to see if you accidentally invisibly opened the steam overlay. Luckily it's completely usable in-game since the menu is transparent there.
  • Native Aspect Loss - The game is currently forced into a Rift-shaped aspect ratio, which applies to in-game menus too. I'd like it to obey the game's starting aspect ratio when it comes to drawing in-game menus eventually but that might not be possible if I want the mirror window to show both viewports correctly.
  • Race Selection Bug - The race selection menu is effectively unusable-- I recommend creating your character outside of VR mode and then running Morrowrift afterward and loading a save.
  • NPC Shadow Bug - You have to set Real-Time Shadows to None in-game or else NPC's will flicker like a banned pokemon episode if you're not staring straight at them. I think they use their own clipping planes and I'll have to locate those to transform them.
  • Weapon Clipping - Weapon/hand models have messed up clipping. Probably a similar cause as above.
  • Water Clipping - Water sometimes disappears when you're not aiming at it, and also looks pretty terrible with reflections and shaders turned off which is still required for the hack to work. Also, if you have Pixel Shaders turned on, water reflections don't look right and sometimes draws twice with incorrect headtracking.
  • Sky Movement - Positional headtracking affects clouds and stuff in the sky, which isn't really that big of a deal but looks stupid and can be a bit disorienting if you try to breakdance ingame (or anything else requiring a lot of positional movement). Also, the sun is rotated based on player aim instead of camera position.
  • Loading Freeze - Since the game renders the progress bar during frozen loading screens, the background freezes but still moves with your head which feels really weird. I honestly have no idea how to fix this.
  • Tracking Asymptotes - If you're looking straight up or down, the headtracking gets pretty weird and overdoes roll. This is because of some really old code I wrote back when I didn't understand quaternions, I'll fix it eventually.
  • Elusive Crosshair - The in-game crosshair is hard to see on most backgrounds, and since headtracking is decoupled from the menu it's easy to lose it. In the future I'll probably add a custom crosshair that renders on top of it and is easier to see.
  • Annoying Menu Placement - Not exactly a bug but a side effect of view auto-levelling still transforming the menu so the crosshair lines up correctly: if you're trying to loot something on the ground the menu will come up down there, which is a pain to read or use and also suffers from the trackign asymptote bug. In the future I'll probably fix this by leaving the game menu level and only transforming the aforementioned extra crosshair and weapon model based on in-game aim. I'm also planning on implementing a system eventually where recentering the view actually moves the crosshair to where you're looking, instead of the other way around, which will make it easier to find it.

Even aside from all that, I'm not 100% sure how well this will run on varying systems, so until a few people test it and confirm that it works, it'll be an alpha. Once enough people are able to run it (which may entail some bugfixing) and I improve the launcher a bit, I'll call it a Beta again.

DOWNLOAD
You can download 3.0.2 Here-- Google was yelling at me for uploading an EXE or something so I had to encrypt it so it wouldn't try to scan it. The password is simply "uh" because that was my reaction to Google taking my first upload down. (Just ask this scientician)

If you have a DK2 and you'd rather run the old unstable 0.8 version for some reason, you can still get it Here. There are instructions for using it somewhere in this old archived post.

SETUP
I recommend starting with vanilla morrowind (goty is fine) since I don't know how different mods (especially MGE and MWSE mods) will affect this. Once you've got it working you can start adding things in and making sure they don't break it.
The first thing you'll need to do is install and set up MGE 3.8.0.
Eventually I want to try to add support for MGE XE and some of the more popular shader mods, but that's a long way off.
Make sure your game has this message in the top left corner before proceeding.
If you're running the Steam copy of the game you'll need to set Morrowind.exe, Morrowind Launcher.exe, and MGEgui.exe to all run as Administrator before this will work.
Next, since this version is still a bit finicky, you have to make sure you run it with the right settings or it will probably just sit there and not draw anything, or render everything totally wrong. Unless you want your game to look that way (or like nothing), you'll need to disable the following MGE features in MGEgui:

  • Distant Land
  • Anti-Aliasing
  • Probably any mods adding shaders

I'm working on getting these features supported but it's very very difficult to do unless I actually modify MGE, and I'm trying to avoid doing that in this version in anticipation of someday retrofitting other games (yes, including skyrim) that don't have open source graphics extenders that I can just rewrite. That's the only reason the ancient DK1 beta version seen on my youtube channel had Distant Land-- I actually modified MGE to add support for it.
If the font size is too small for you, you can choose a lower resolution like 1024x768 and the in-game text will be bigger, but you may get extra aliasing if you do that. Some resolutions render incorrectly right now though like 1600x960.

RUNNING
Just make sure Morrowrift.exe and Morrowrift.dll are in the folder with Morrowind, and run Morrowrift.exe (not Morrowind or Morrowind Launcher). If you're running a Steam copy of the game, you need to make sure Morrowrift.exe is set to Run as Administrator.
If you need the Steam Overlay for any reason (for instance if you use a Steam Controller) You should be able to add Morrowrift.exe to steam as a non-steam game too and still have steam inject its overlay, and if you want to do it with an actual Steam copy of the game you may have to Steam itself as Administrator before it will let you do this (and you still have to add Morrowrift as a non-steam game and run it that way). This may not work for everyone but I was able to run both steam and non-steam copies of Morrowind with Rift support and Overlay support simultaneously.
One caveat with the Steam Overlay though-- for some reason it draws underneath the Morrowind menu right now, so if you accidentally open it on the main menu or during a cinematic, you won't be able to see it. If you can't move the mouse on the main menu try hitting Shift+Tab and see if steam overlay was open invisibly behind the menu.

COMMAND LINE ARGUMENTS
If you run Morrowrift.exe with -nolevel you can disable the auto pitch levelling, but I don't really recommend it since it can make you dizzy. However if you absolutely cannot stand the menu moving up and down all the time when you aim independent of your head position, this feature can be disabled.

This is currently the only command line argument but I'll probably add more options as time goes on, depending on what needs to be customized.

DONATE
If you love my project and want to throw in some motivation for me to continue to add new features, new hardware support, and maybe even new games someday, you could make a Paypal Donation and give me a great excuse to work on this project instead of other stuff ๐Ÿ˜›

PLANS
First things first, I need to fix bugs. If I can get distant land, anti-aliasing, shaders, and MGE XE working well, I'll consider it a major, major victory. Once I have at least MGE working perfectly I may also try to tackle Oblivion and Skyrim support alongside of MGE XE, since they'll have similar shader setups. MGE XE has the benefit of being open source so I can actually look directly at how it works, which may help me structure the code so it works with newer games.
As a side goal, I'd also like to implement SteamVR support instead of just Oculus support to my codebase. Right now I'm saving up for a GTX 1070 and HTC Vive so I can do this, so that's probably what any donation money will go towards. My current GPU is an old GTX 770 which can barely even run things on the DK2, so if I'm going to get a Vive which has no Async Timewarp I'll definitely need a better GPU to go with it.
If I do get a Vive, another pie in the sky goal would be to hack the game so much that your hands and weapon are drawn based on motion controls, and one of the four weapon moves is performed depending on how you move your hands. This would be so insanely awesome I'm kind of afraid to even mention that I'm planning to try it, since it's probably nearly impossible, but hey, I can dream.
299 REPLIES 299

superllama
Level 4
The pause/break recentering is just a personal preference of mine because I have back problems and sometimes I like to play games laying down-- because of the way headtracking works in my beta dll, it's actually possible to lay on your back and look at the ceiling and have that be "forward" ingame. This will be configurable in the new dll when I do finally get it working-- same goes for vertical mouse movement. Sorry for the large amount of time I've spent without uploading anything-- if it gets to the point where the new dll might not be feasible I'll just go back to working with the d3d8 dll and adding features that way, but I did want to try to also support skyrim and other games through a heavily configurable d3d9 wrapper if I can.

artemarva
Level 2
I gotta say, this is brilliant. Where or how did you get started? where are your sources for programming like this?

I am so impressed with the HUD layout. However, I gotta admit I keep having to press pause break because my crosshair gets lost behind my head.

superllama
Level 4
For the beta dll I just downloaded the MGE source code and hooked some code into it to make it work with the rift. Not sure what you mean by "programming like this" though.

That's weird that you're having trouble with drifting-- I never saw that happen when I was using it because of magnetic yaw correction but I guess your environment might be different than mine. Eventually in the new dll there will be a setting to aim the crosshair with your head when not in a menu instead of having the forward position decouple from the view.

As for progress with the new dll I'm afraid there's still little to report. I've had a lot of classwork to deal with and I also haven't been feeling well for the past month or so, so I spend most of my time studying and resting. I did start to take the D3D9Ex thing out of it though, it shouldn't be too long until I can get it drawing the way it was before on all games instead of just one.

superllama
Level 4
Very sorry for the nothingness. Class this semester is killer and I just don't have the energy to do something this complicated for some reason. Once midterms are over I might get a break but I can't really promise that I'll have time until May... again very sorry about this nonexistence I've been doing, right now I'm having some crazy problems with stress and trying to just make it from day to day is difficult enough. Even though I do have some free time, I have to spend it actively de-stressing or else it just builds up. I'll keep you posted if anything improves.

grodenglaive
Level 2
no worries, take some well deserved R&R after school - read a book, watch movies.
GA-Z97X-gaming gt; i5-4670k; Nvidia780Ti; 16GB PC3-17066; win7-64 bit; DK2

Almondbun
Level 2
Love the project. However, I do not get it working.

I downloaded your Beta-dll and copied it into the morrowind folder. I use a heavily modded morrowind (with MGE) and first I thought that I got the wrong MGE version or a mod conflict. So, I made a fresh installation of morrowind with both addons (via Steam). Then I downloaded the MGE 3.8.0 version from the Morrowind Nexus (and later from the official homepage), copied your dll and started the game. Sadly, nothing happens. The game runs just like the normal game without any graphical changes (no stereo mode) or response from the oculus rift.

Here's my question: Do I need a keyboard shortcut to activate the oculus rift mode? Is there a setting in MGE that is needed to activate it? I don't know what could have gone wrong.

superllama
Level 4
Are you running it through steam, or from the Morrowind.exe file? As I recall it was kind of an ordeal to make MGE work with steam in the first place, but theoretically if you have MGE working then you should be able to replace their d3d8 with mine and it should work. Where are you putting the dll, and does a d3d8.dll already exist there? The way it's supposed to work is the already-present d3d8.dll from MGE needs to be moved or renamed and then my modded d3d8.dll needs to be put in its place.
EDIT: also no, there's no action necessary to activate it once it's been installed. the only keybinding is the pause key for recentering headtracking.

Taylooor
Level 2
Hey Llama, I'm an equally avid rift enthusiast and TES player. Playing morrowind in vr has been my dream for a few years. I'm very excited for the progress made here. I'd consider this more playable than skyrim simply because the menus are actually readable. Looking forward to future updates for Morrowind and other scrolls games. I'm sure you are aware of issues in the mod but I'd be happy to give feedback if you are interested. Thanks again, T

Taylooor
Level 2
Also, I was wondering if I'd set things up right. Within MGE, I've got it set to 1200x800. But what about the other in game menus that allow changing of the resolution. I've noticed that I can see a lot of black on the sides, making me think it's been forced into 768p or something. Also the warping feels odd and not sure if that's a resolution thing also. I'm not a modder so have no technical abilities, can only try to relate my experience playing.

Dracul13007
Level 2
Its a big chalenge to addapt Morowind in the Rift ! I will follow it and I wish you good luck! ๐Ÿ˜‰