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Old 12-16-21, 07:38 PM   #1
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radar Downgraded graphics in Silent Hunter 2

Hello, everyone! I haven’t played SH2 for quite a long time and I watched some videos on YouTube about the gameplay. Then I noticed that the game in these videos looks a lot better, than my installation. For example, clouds and 3D waves are missing, and the weather doesn’t change even in the mission editor. So, there are no waves, no rain, no significant fog, etc. It’s so weird when I choose storm and there is just flat water and the U-boat doesn’t even shake. Later I found that all these features actually exist on the official screenshots of the game. It’s like no matter what settings I use, the graphics just falls back to minimal. Another thing that annoys me is that the hotkeys screen is empty. I have to use a smartphone to look through the manual in order to find key bindings. The file KeyCmd.txt for this screen exists in SH2 install folder and is filled properly, but for some reason is not viewed in the game. I consider it’s a videocard or DirectX 8 problem, but I don’t know what I can do with it. Does anybody know how to solve it? I haven’t found anything related here at SubSim, nor in Google. I am using Windows 7 x64 and AMD Radeon HD 6700M if it’s important. The game version is 1.1. I would really appreciate any help, as getting back those SH2 memories from childhood is invaluable.

Last edited by DiTRay; 12-16-21 at 08:02 PM.
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Old 12-16-21, 10:38 PM   #2
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Default Welcome aboard,


"Only two things are infinite; The Universe and human stupidity; And I'm not too sure about the Universe"
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Old 12-17-21, 06:13 PM   #3
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Icon1 Update

Alright, after many hours of research I was able to solve all issues. Well, kind of...

Firstly, today I accidentally found a patch that fixes the problem with the hotkeys window text. I tried it and it works! Here is the link:

Secondly, the problem with waves is actually a side effect of a missing weather issue. I'm using a Russian CD version of SH2, which is what causes all that. After a few more hours I found an ISO of the original English SH2. When I installed it, the weather began to work perfectly, even with 1.1 patch. Voila! The hotkeys window is viewed correctly as well.

However, it would be better if I could bring back all these features to the Russian version. I tried to copy Russian translation to the English SH2 installation folder, but as expected it breaks fonts in the game. Looks like the localizer/publisher just broke the weather engine, while making the game to work with Cyrillic letters. Honestly, I've never seen such failure before.

Anyway, if anyone has some thoughts on how to properly fix this issue it would be interesting to read. I hope, this helps someone with the same problem.

Last edited by DiTRay; 01-06-22 at 05:51 PM.
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Old 12-31-21, 08:01 AM   #4
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Re : SH2/DC weather. I can’t help with the Russian/ English conversion or their specific differences, however I can tell you something about how the weather is coded in the English version.

The weather for each scenario is defined in the “.SDF” file. Specific weather types are defined in the weather.ini file. The .SDF is a script file in English ( I’m not aware of another language version) . This script is read by the game engine to set up each scenario’s details including the weather. By writing to this script you can create a variety of weather conditions and even weather fronts (clouds, rain, fog etc )that move through the scenario as it runs . The game’s weather system was never fully utilize on initial release. I’m guessing the reason was because the average PC couldn’t handle it , and multiplayer was desired at the time. The game also needed to be simpler to understand for the average user. The weather engine is pretty good and I’ve had a good time playing around with it in DC. I find DC interesting sandbox to play with.

Hope this helps with your project, and keep us informed of your progress.
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Old 01-06-22, 05:48 PM   #5
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Icon1 Reply

Ahoy, Aktungbby, Vox165!

Thank you for the reply!

Wow! I didn't know the weather engine in this sim is so sophisticated. That's really great, especially for the time of the release. Could you tell me, where I can find more info about how to write weather fronts in the scenarios? I like sandboxes and simulation games with advanced scenario editors. It would be interesting to see full potential of SH2.

Speaking of the ".SDF" files, I compared a few of them in Russian and English versions and they seem to be identical. The only difference is that the names of the missions, ships and bases are in Russian. Weather conditions are also the same. There is also "Ships Galore" scenario missing and an extra SDF file in Random scenarios in the Russian version, which couldn't affect the game so much. It's just an interesting fact. Looks like the localization didn't go right.

Well, I guess I'll have to parse both Russian and English versions with a HEX editor or a disassembler to see the changes and hopefully get everything to work properly.

I'm also aware that Ubisoft opened the source code of the game to the Subsim community but I could not find it. The only thing I found is the "Projekt Messerwetzer" patch. I thought it cold help me to find the problem in the binary, but I'm absolutely unsure if I really need it.

Anyway, if there are any updates I'll post them here right off. I'll see what I can do...
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Old 01-06-22, 07:55 PM   #6
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I don't remember what weather specific information it provides, but you might want to see the SHII Scenario Hand Edit Guide that was formerly available on McBeck's site. Here is a Wayback Machine link to the document:
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3d waves, graphics, silent hunter ii, weather

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