BStone

Unofficial source port for Blake Stone series (Aliens Of Gold and Planet Strike).

Contents

  1. Disclaimer
  2. Overview
    2.1. Overview (PS Vita)
  3. Installation
    3.1. Windows (GOG / Steam)
    3.2. Windows (Generic)
    3.3. Addons
  4. Required assets
  5. Profile
  6. Audio
    6.1 OpenAL driver
  7. External textures
    7.1 Aspect ratio
    7.2 Transparency
    7.3 Naming conventions
    7.4 Supported file formats
    7.5 File format search order
  8. Taking screenshots
  9. Compiling
    9.1. Generic instructions for Linux-based system or build environment (MinGW)
  10. Command-line options
  11. Cheat key
  12. Debug keys
  13. Third party use
  14. Credits
  15. Links
    15.1. Essentials
    15.2. General
    15.3. Add-ons for Aliens Of Gold (full)
    15.4. Add-ons for Planet Strike

1 - Disclaimer

Copyright (c) 1992-2013 Apogee Entertainment, LLC
Copyright (c) 2013-2021 Boris I. Bendovsky (bibendovsky@hotmail.com)

This program is free software; you can redistribute it and/or
modify it under the terms of the GNU General Public License
as published by the Free Software Foundation; either version 2
of the License, or (at your option) any later version.

This program is distributed in the hope that it will be useful,
but WITHOUT ANY WARRANTY; without even the implied warranty of
MERCHANTABILITY or FITNESS FOR A PARTICULAR PURPOSE. See the
GNU General Public License for more details.

You should have received a copy of the GNU General Public License
along with this program; if not, write to the Free Software
Foundation, Inc., 51 Franklin Street, Fifth Floor, Boston, MA 02110-1301, USA.

For a copy of the GNU General Public License see file LICENSE.
For an original source code license see file “Blake Stone source code license.doc”.

2 - Overview

BStone is unofficial source port for “Blake Stone” game series: “Aliens Of Gold” and “Planet Strike”.

Features:

Supported games:

2.1 - Overview (PS Vita)

See README-PSVITA.md for details about the source port on PS Vita.

3 - Installation

3.1 - Windows (GOG / Steam)

3.2 - Windows (generic)

3.3 - Addons

4 - Required assets

Since all titles are not free (except shareware) you have to own a copy of the game in order to play.

Required files for each game:

AOG SW AOG PS
AUDIOHED.BS1 AUDIOHED.BS6 AUDIOHED.VSI
AUDIOT.BS1 AUDIOT.BS6 AUDIOT.VSI
  EANIM.BS6 EANIM.VSI
  GANIM.BS6  
IANIM.BS1 IANIM.BS6 IANIM.VSI
MAPHEAD.BS1 MAPHEAD.BS6 MAPHEAD.VSI
MAPTEMP.BS1 MAPTEMP.BS6 MAPTEMP.VSI
SANIM.BS1 SANIM.BS6  
VGADICT.BS1 VGADICT.BS6 VGADICT.VSI
VGAGRAPH.BS1 VGAGRAPH.BS6 VGAGRAPH.VSI
VGAHEAD.BS1 VGAHEAD.BS6 VGAHEAD.VSI
VSWAP.BS1 VSWAP.BS6 VSWAP.VSI

Legend:

Both all lowercase and all uppercase (default) file names are supported.

The port auto-detect assets of some digital distribution services. Note that option --data_dir disables auto-detection.

Supported services:

5 - Profile

Configuration file, saved game files, etc. are stored in user’s profile. The path to those files depends on platform. To override the path use --profile_dir option.

On Windows, the path might look like C:\Users\john\AppData\Roaming\bibendovsky\bstone\

On Linux, the path might look like /home/john/.local/share/bibendovsky/bstone/

On Mac OS X, the path might look like /Users/john/Library/Application Support/bibendovsky/bstone/

Configuration file name: bstone_config
Log file name: bstone_log.txt
High scores file name: bstone_<game>_high_scores
Saved game file name: bstone_<game>_saved_game

Where <game> is:

6 - Audio

Provides default stereo driver and optional 3D one.
Use option GAME OPTIONS - SOUND - DRIVER to change the driver.

6.1 - OpenAL driver

Supports any OpenAL v1.1 compatible implementation (Creative Labs, OpenAL Soft, etc.).
Implementation driver should be available system wide (i.e., via oalinst.exe) or should be placed along with port’s binary.
Expected driver name is OpenAL32.dll on Windows or libopenal.so on non-Windows system.
Set configuration string snd_oal_library to use another name.

The port uses default device name.
Set configuration string snd_oal_device_name to open specific device.

7 - External textures

Allows to replace stocked textures with custom ones.

Supported targets: wall, sprite, flooring, ceiling.

Option GAME OPTIONS - VIDEO - TEXTURING - EXTERNAL TEXTURES enables or disables them on the fly.
WARNING Changing the option may take some time if the dimensions of loaded textures are high.

7.1 - Aspect ratio

Both vanilla games ran only in a 320x200 video mode. On monitors, widely available at the time, this video mode took up the entire screen, which had a 4:3 physical aspect ratio. This meant that the 320x200 display, with a 16:10 logical ratio, was stretched vertically - each pixel was 20% taller than it was wide.

In-game graphics have been specifically designed for the 320x200 resolution as stretched to a 4:3 physical aspect ratio.

The port stretches the geometry (world, objects) vertically by 20%. That means if you created a wall or sprite texture, for example, with physical dimensions 1024x1024 it will be rendered as 1024x1228, i.e. stretched.

Flooring and ceiling textures has always 1:1 aspect ratio.

TLDR

7.2 - Transparency

Images with alpha channel should be exported as premultiplied.

7.3 - Naming conventions

All letters should be lower case.

“Aliens Of Gold” resources are goes into aog directory. “Planet Strike” resources are goes into ps directory.

Sprite name format: sprite_xxxxxxxx.ext. Wall name format: wall_xxxxxxxx.ext.

Where:

Examples:

7.4 - Supported file formats

7.5 - File format search order

  1. PNG
  2. BMP

8 - Taking screenshots

Default key is F5.
Use menu to modify bindings.

Taken screenshots are placed in the profile directory.

Supported format: PNG

9 - Compiling

Minimum requirements:

CMake variables:

Notes:

9.1 - Generic instructions for Linux-based system or build environment (MinGW)

  1. Install minimum required software described above.

  2. Obtain source code and extract it (if necessary) into some directory. For our example we will use working directory ~/bstone-x.y.z.

  3. Make directory ~/bstone-x.y.z/build current.

  4. Generate Makefile.
    cmake ../.. -DCMAKE_BUILD_TYPE=Release -DCMAKE_INSTALL_PREFIX=~/bstone-x.y.z/build/install

  5. Build and install: cmake --build . --target install

  6. On success you will find executable and text files in the directory ~/bstone-x.y.z/build/install.

10 - Command-line options

11 - Cheat key

J A M Enter
Press specified keys sequentially. Shows message “NOW you’re jammin’!!”, and gives to you all keys, all weapons and restores health to 100% but zeroes score points. Not available in shareware version.

12 - Debug keys

Add option --cheats to enable these keys.

13 - Third party use

14 - Credits

15 - Links

15.1 - Essentials

15.1 - General

15.2 - Add-ons for Aliens Of Gold (full)

15.3 - Add-ons for Planet Strike