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Neverwinter Nights: nwnbink2ogm 0.3.2
Now with SoU and HoTU support!
Last updated: 17 May 2009

Version 0.3.2 is out! (premium module and Darkness at Daggerford support)

Welcome!

Since i first created this "project" (ha!), many things have happened. RAD has ported BinkPlayer to Linux (it's pretty slow though, and Bioware doesn't support it). Also, TuxGames sell NWN, SoU and HotU cds with the movies converted to mpeg format (so, consider buying it from them if you haven't already), and David Holland has done a hack called NWMovies that allows people to actually play the movies within the game. It supports both the files created by nwnbink2ogm and the ones distributed by TuxGames, as well as RAD's BinkPlayer.

Anyway, if you already have the non-TuxGames cds and don't want to buy the game twice to be able to watch the movies, and RAD's BinkPlayer is too slow (it's supposed to run smooth at 166mhz cpus according to their site, but it's having big trouble at P3 500mhz...), this is the tool for you. nwnbink2ogm is a makefile i threw together to automate the conversion from Bink to something playable. By default it converts to XViD encoded video with Ogg Vorbis sound, using the Ogg container format. If you want anything else, you're free to modify the makefile.

Warning: This works by decoding the Bink files and then re-encoding to the new format. The new video and audio codecs do their best to encode the decoded result, including artifacts left by the Bink video and audio codecs. This means that the result will have artifacts from both Bink and whatever codec you encode to (in other words, lower quality). Another thing to note is that if you want to use this to convert non-NWN Binks, you need to find the framerate manually and code it into the makefile, at least for now.

You will need:

  • The Neverwinter Nights .bik movie files (on NWN cd 3 / play disc).
  • Optionally, the expansion packs' .bik movie files.
  • A decent shell and make. You probably already have this.
  • Wine (Standard wine is fine, and you don't need a real Windows installed. Whee.)
  • The RAD Video Tools for Windows.
  • mencoder (part of mplayer).
  • Codec for mencoder - default used is XViD, but you can use something else (like DivX) if you want.
  • oggenc (from the vorbis tools).
  • ogmmerge (from the ogm-tools).
  • A couple of gigs temporary hd space, and patience. If you're using tga as temporary files, you need around 3 gb. Using png is much slower, but saves a gig or two.

Once you've got that, do this:

  1. Install the above programs if you haven't already done so. If you're compiling from source, i think you have to install XViD and Ogg before mplayer. It doesn't hurt, in any case. Gentoo has ebuilds for all except Bink. Use Wine to install the RAD video tools.
  2. Open a new shell, make a new directory on a partition with some gigs free space, enter it.
    $ mkdir nwnbink2ogm; cd nwnbink2ogm
  3. Make sure this directory is accessible from within Wine.
  4. Download this (warranty-less, etc.) makefile: nwnbink2ogm.mk (right-click and save), and put it into this directory.
  5. Make (symbolic) links to the NWN movie files into this directory.
    $ ln -s /path/to/nwn/movies/*.bik .
  6. Run the makefile without any targets for usage info. Note that 2-pass encoding is disabled by default as it doesn't really help much with these movies.
    $ make -f nwnbink2ogm.mk
  7. If you want to edit the makefile, do it now. Then run it with the options and targets you want (or set the options within the makefile).
  8. When the Bink Converter window pops up, wait. The progress meter doesn't work (I've been told it works in Cedega, though). If you want to make sure it hasn't crashed, open another shell and list the contents of the directory. It should be filling up with naughty image files.
  9. When the "Cancel" button changes to "Done", press it. You'll have to do this twice for each file, first for video, then for audio extraction.
  10. After the extractions are done, wait for the encoding to finish. Prepare to press those "Done" buttons again when it's the next file's turn.
  11. Then copy the resulting files to the NWN movies dir and go get NWMovies to enable in-game movies!

If you survived, congratulations.

- Gerry

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