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Setting up the Game

Get the game

Bloodlines is available on Steam, GOG, or through alternative means. Since Troika Games is no longer in business, the developers of the game no longer receive pay for the product regardless of how you acquire it. However, White Wolf has been purchased by Paradox Interactive so the idea of a sequel is in the works. The distribution rights may still remain with Activision.

Get the files

After installing you'll need to replace some files to make the game playable.

You can download them here.

This includes

vampire.exe // from the Unofficial Patch  
cfg/autoexec.cfg //
cfg/config.cfg //lurk's configuration files
engine.dll // hexedited to fix less than 15mb issue
shaderapidx9.dll // hexedited to fix low detail
vampire.dll // from the Unofficial Patch

Install the game

To speedrun Bloodlines you need to use the official versions of the games, 1.1 or 1.2, in order to go fast. If you purchased the game from GOG, then you need to uninstall the Unofficial Patch which comes preinstalled.

It is helpful to make a backup of both the clean install of Official 1.1 & 1.2 in case you'd like to explore mods later, or something happens to the files.

Replace files

In order to make Bloodlines run on modern systems, we need to replace a couple files.

The Source engine used in Bloodlines is a very early version which operates entirely within the confines of a 32bit program, so running in 64bit can be an issue. When vampire.exe checks to see how much memory your system has upon initially loading, it expects a 32bit INT number as a result. However, since a 64bit number returns, the extra bits are seen as a negative flag which tells the program that you have a negative amount of RAM, or less than 15mb. This can also occur on 32bit systems if it has more than 2gb of RAM, since Bloodlines will loop back to negative numbers beyond 2gb.

To fix this, an edited engine.dll is used which fixes the base problem. Do not use the unofficialengine.dll unless for some reason the hexedited engine.dll does not work.

Another issue the engine has is how it loads models/textures/maps/objects/etc. This is done in a brute force fashion: all of your memory is filled with dummy textures, then once finished the game takes the total result from that and figures out how much memory it needs to use. If you have more than 2gb of RAM, a negative number is returned. Since the Source engine was designed to work with different hardware setups automatically to meet the needs of whatever it's running on, the game decides to blur most of the textures to an extremely low detail since it believes you have negative RAM, and therefore a shit system.

To fix this, an edited shaderapidx9.dll makes the program think the system only has 2gb of RAM, and so correctly displays the textures.

Finally, Microsoft turned off the secdrv service because of security exploits. Unfortunately, Bloodlines (and many other games) depend on the service to load. To fix this, instead of using the usual vampire.exe, we use the vampire.exe from the Unofficial Patch, which has fixed the program to run without the need of the service.

So, replace:

..\Activision\Vampire - Bloodlines\vampire.exe
..\Activision\Vampire - Bloodlines\Bin\engine.dll
..\Activision\Vampire - Bloodlines\Bin\shaderapidx9.dll
..\Activision\Vampire - Bloodlines\Vampire\cfg

Run the game and watch the intro

Run the game and make sure it works. You have to watch the introduction cutscene at least once before you can get the skip intro button. You can usually use the console command vskip_intro “1” to skip the intro.

Setup game configuration files

Bloodlines game configuration files are found in

..\Activision\Vampire - Bloodlines\Vampire\cfg

Autoexec.cfg and config.cfg are the two main files that store game settings. If you do not have an autoexec.cfg, you can create one with Notepad by saving a file named autoexec.cfg - don't save a text file named autoexec.cfg.txt! Autoexec.cfg is loaded as part of the game's starting sequence, with config.cfg immediately after. Some game settings are loaded into default settings regardless of how they're stored in config.cfg, so putting commands into the autoexec.cfg is advised.

fov "90" // field of vision
default_fov "90" // field of vision
mat_drawwater "0" // turns off water textures which are buggy
cl_bob "0" // turns off the swaying while moving
cl_showpos "1" // useful info panel in upper right corner
cl_showfps "1" // shows the fps by the info panel
autosave_on "0" // turns off autosaving,
vchar_skip_intro "1" // enables the skip intro button when setting up a character
vskip_intro "1" // for v1.1, skips intro but only the 1st time each startup

Next you need to setup keybinds for controls. In addition to movement controls, we'll need to setup binds for changing the FPS, using items, and quick saving/loading.

Config.cfg contains all of the keybinds in the game. You can also edit these with the console by inputting the command

bind "<key>" "<action/item/discipline>"

for example, bind “u” “use item_g_eldervitaepack” binds the key u to use an Elder Vitae Pack item.

Open the config.cfg with notepad and edit the following keybinds. These won't change to the default value upon restart.

bind "o" "save quick" // quicksave
bind "p" "load quick" // quickload
bind "t" "use item_g_bloodpack" // use regular bloodpack
bind "y" "use item_g_bluebloodpack" // use blue blood pack
bind "u" "use item_g_eldervitaepack" // use elder vitae
bind "SHIFT" "+duck" // i like shift for ducking
bind "MWHEELDOWN" "+jump" // mousewheel to bhop
bind "MOUSE4" "fps_max 60" // limit fps to 60 with side mouse button
bind "MOUSE5" "fps_max 300" // brings fps back to default 300

These are all a matter of personal preference, but make sure you have a way to do these things.

setting_up_the_game.txt · Last modified: 2017/08/07 15:37 by lurk