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Andytizer

Blade Runner (1997) is now playable on modern machines thanks to ScummVM

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Blade Runner (1997) is the classic PC game from the developers Westwood of Command & Conquer fame. The studio was eventually acquired by Electronic Arts and the subsequently shuttered down. It's no surprise that a movie licensed game from a collapsed studio under Electronic Arts has no modern digital distrubtion to speak of, however we hope that it one day appears on GOG.com or Origin.

Therefore if we have any hope to have the game running on modern systems, we rely on the hard work of developers like the ScummVM team to make sure these games work and are preserved for future generations. ScummVM has been around for years allowing modern computers and devices to play classic LucasArts adventure games like Monkey Island and Day of the Tentacle. In more recent times, ScummVM has expanded compatibility to many non-LucasArts games like Beneath a Steel Sky and 7th Guest. 

Still looks fantastic even with black bars on my 21:9 monitor

If you are lucky you may have the original 4 CD release of Blader Runner lying around (mine is in the attic in my parents' house), and if you do you are in luck. You'll need to make copies of files from all 4 CDs and place them into a folder. Then download the latest development build of ScummVM and load up the game. In addition to compatibility fixes, there are options to add subtitles and also 'restored content' mode.

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I did have a try running the game, and was extremely impressed at how well it worked everything worked, but did experience several crashes. Be aware that the game is not fully supported by ScummVM and is really more of a test, and the ScummVM team are looking for help chasing bugs. Here's the news post from the ScummVM website.

Quote

Our ScummVM team is looking for Blade Runners who will help find, chase, and retire bugs which escaped from the off-world data colonies. These bugs are not dangerous and they won't stop you from discovering more secrets and choosing your fate. Your spinner, gun, ESPER machine and Voight - Kampff machine will be at your disposal.

We are announcing that Blade Runner is ready for testing. The following languages are supported - English (both CD and DVD releases), German, Italian, French, Spanish, and the unofficial Russian version by Fargus Multimedia.

Find your copy of Blade Runner, grab the latest daily build of ScummVM and copy the necessary files.

Now you can play the game with subtitles! Just download subtitles.mix and place it among the rest of the Blade Runner files. So far we have only English subtitles, however, if you want to help us transcribe other languages from audio, please contact peterkohaut & praetorian.

Note that when you add your game directory in ScummVM you'll be presented with two choices for the game. The first option is for the original game and will simply be named "Blade Runner"; we're mainly interested for your feedback for this version of the game, since it is considered feature complete. The other option is for importing the game with restored content and is named "Blade Runner with restored content"; this version is still work-in-progress and not yet complete. If you're testing this version please specify it explicitly in your feedback and bug reports.

If your version of the game is not supported, please create a feedback report with MD5 so that we can add support for it.

For our up to date fixes article please check the wiki article for Blade Runner.

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Hello, @Andytizer you mentioned that you've experienced several crashes running the game. Did those occur with the ScummVM build? Could you maybe provide some details so that we can debug?

Thank you.

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On 6/18/2019 at 5:27 PM, Andytizer said:

Beneath and Steel Sky

Beneath the Steel Sky.

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On 6/18/2019 at 11:18 PM, praetorian said:

Hello, @Andytizer you mentioned that you've experienced several crashes running the game. Did those occur with the ScummVM build? Could you maybe provide some details so that we can debug?

Thank you.

Will do!

14 hours ago, DSeyka said:

Beneath the Steel Sky.

Haven't you heard of those classic games Beneath (1992) and Steel Sky (1989)? 😄 Just kidding, thanks for pointing it out, I've fixed the typo.

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I've had my eye on this game for ages, it's been in my backcatalogue of "games that will never see the light of day during your lifetime."  If progress keeps going with this, hopefully the current license holders (probably EA and/or Warner Brothers) will find it worth their while to sell the game once again on GOG/Origin/Steam with a simple ScummVM setup should a company like Night Dive approach them.

 

It's still a bit of a pipedream, but at least 1% based in reality now.

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