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Client Modifications / Graphics / Atmosphere Improvements - Summary

oppahansi

Authorized
Joined
Apr 14, 2015
Likes
100
#1
Hi all,

since I posted my video of Taerar server first kill by Synced & Horizon several people sent me a private message asking for the Darker Nights "addon"/modification and the console commands to improve ingame graphics.

I am going to summarize several points which I found on this and Bugstalrius forums to improve ingame graphics / atmosphere.


More Sound Channels

What do I gain from this?

"This patch comes in the form of a standard WoW.exe file, you use this executable rather then your original one (the icon you double click to get into WoW), for the modification to work.
All it does is open up more channels for sound so you can hear most things at once. Currently the original client only allows you to hear up to 12 'noises' (so spells, music, ambiance, armour clinks etc.) simultaneously.
This mod allows you to hear 256 'noises' at the same time. Much better when raiding.
" - Struckd

How to install:
  • Back up your original WoW.exe !!! Always back up up your original files!
  • Download the modified version and extract it into your World of Warcraft folder
  • Start the game

The discussion about whether it is legit or not is here:


Gurky's confirmation for acceptance of this modification can be found here:


Gurky's download link to the modified WoW.exe:


Credits going to:


Known bugs:
  • none
Darker Nights

What do I gain from this?

You will get darker nights. Some areas are more affected by the modification than others. I think this results in a really improved atmosphere and gameplay feeling. The feels.
See for yourself:

How to install:
  • "Download patch-T.MPQ and place it in the \World of Warcraft\Data folder. Then, if you don't like it or have some problems, just delete it for uninstall." - Struckd
  • Clear your WBD folder. You can just delete the WDB folder in your World of Warcraft installation folder.
  • Start the game and wait for night time(server time ofc :w00t:).

Is this legit?

I have replied to Struckd's forum thread, no reply yet. Tho, I have been using this now for over week and nothing happened. Struckd has been using this even longer.
There should be no problem with warden.

This is my personal conclusion! If you are still unsure or afraid, contact a GM. I am not in the position giving any green lights for usage.

Download link:


Credits going to:


Known bugs:

  • "Since this patch is optimized for Cata, some zones or objects may not be shown properly.
  • Though I don't have it deeply tested yet, I think there might be problems with zones which has been removed or heavily modified in Cata. - I noticed only Orgrimmar yet.
  • It's not working with weather. When starts raining in some zone, darkness fades and you have just classic night, until rain stops. Is not known yet how to fix it. That's big problem in Elwynn and other rainy zones." - ​Struckd
  • I myself(Oppahansi) did not discover any huge problems. Except that if you dont clear the cache it may not work everywhere or the lantern/torches lights wont show correctly. Just delete the WDB folder once installed.

Further comment:

I dont have before - after screenshots. All screenshots have been taken after the modifications. If anyone can provide before - after screenshots, please share with us.


Maximize Quality and Smoothness using developers console
(Copy + paste + my own additions from Bugstalrius forum since good post and I am too lazy)

It has been over ten years since the launch of World of Warcraft and in that time there have been tremendous advances in computer technology. I assume that the majority of you have upgraded your computers since 2005 and have modern hardware that can run most new games smoothly. Modern hardware is overkill for this antiquated game engine. This guide is here so you can push the game's visuals to the max because our computers can handle it! Ready to get started?

There are two methods to edit your configuration. The first method is in game via the console. I prefer this method because it allows you to see in real-time what effect the changes are having on the visuals of the game. You can also manually edit your config.wtf file (located in the WTF folder of your World of Warcraft directory).

A compilation of these commands (and many more) is available on Google Docs!
To view this document and commands explanations, visit:
Google Document

Table of Contents

Developer Console

  • Enabling the Developer Console
  • Using the Developer Console
  • Commands For Maximum Quality
  • Commands For Maximum Smoothness
Config.wtf File

  • Copy and Paste Version
Before and After
Frequently Asked Questions
Notes

Developer Console

Enabling the Developer Console

These steps apply to PC's running Windows. Different steps may have to be followed to achieve the same results on a PC running Mac OS.



  1. Create a shortcut to WoW.exe. You do this by right clicking on WoW.exe in your World of Warcraft directory and selecting "Create Shortcut".
  2. Right-click the newly-created shortcut and select "Properties". This will open the Properties window.
  3. In the "Target" field, add a space after the last quotation mark followed by -console. The result should look like this photo. Hit "Apply" and close out of the properties window.
  4. Open World of Warcraft using the shortcut.
  5. To open the developer console, press the tilde key. It looks like ~ and is located to the left of the 1 and above the Tab key on a US keyboard layout. Refer to Ike's post below if your keyboard does not have a tilde key.

Using the Developer Console

You can type commands into the console to change certain game settings. The basic syntax is:

Code:
[COLOR=#FFBF00][FONT=Arial][B]command [/B][/FONT][/COLOR][COLOR=#FF8000][FONT=Arial][I]value[/I][/FONT][/COLOR]
So for example if I want to change the command MaxLights to a value of 4, type the following into the console, followed by the Enter key.

Code:
[COLOR=#FFBF00][FONT=Arial][B]MaxLights[/B] [COLOR=#FF8000]4[/COLOR][/FONT][/COLOR]
Don't worry! This guide is here to tell you which commands to modify and what values to set them to. Now that you know how to modify the configuration through the console, let's make the game look pretty!

Without the Developer Console

Code:
/console command value
- if I (oppahansi) am correct

Commands for Maximum Quality

Ensure you are logged into a character first!

Enter each of these commands individually. After all the commands are entered, type the command gxrestart in order for the changes to be fully applied. Commands that are bolded may have an extreme effect on performance and are optional. Commands that are underlined are dependent on your hardware. You must have knowledge of your computer's limitations in order to properly assign values to underlined commands.
Code:
[COLOR=#FFBF40][FONT=Arial]
anisotropic 16
baseMip 0
detailDoodadAlpha 100
DistCull 888
doodadAnim 1
farclip 777
ffx 1
ffxDeath 1
ffxGlow 1
ffxRectangle 1 
footstepBias 1.0
frillDensity 256
gxColorBits 24
gxDepthBits 24
horizonfarclip 2112
lod 0
lodDist 250
mapObjLightLOD 2
mapObjOverbright 1
mapShadows 1
MaxLights 4
maxLOD 3
nearClip 0.33
occlusion 1
particleDensity 1
pixelShaders 1
shadowLevel 0
showfootprints 1
showLowDetail 0
showShadow 1
showSimpleDoodads 0
SkyCloudLOD 1
SkySunGlare 1
SmallCull 0.01
specular 1
spellEffectLevel 2
texLodBias -1
textureLodDist 777
trilinear 1
unitDrawDist 300
waterLOD 0
waterParticulates 1
waterRipples 1
waterSpecular 1
waterWaves 1
weatherDensity 3

[B]gxMultisample 8[/B][/FONT][/COLOR][COLOR=#ffa07a][FONT=Arial](1 is no anti-alising, 2 is 2x, 4 is 4x, 8 is 8x)
[/FONT][/COLOR][COLOR=#FFBF40][FONT=Arial]
[B]gxMultisampleQuality 1[/B]

[U]gxResolution  [/U][/FONT][/COLOR][COLOR=#ffa07a][FONT=Arial]<your monitor's native resolution> e.g. gxResolution 1920x1080[/FONT][/COLOR][COLOR=#FFBF40][FONT=Arial]

showCull  [/FONT][/COLOR][COLOR=#ffa07a][FONT=Arial](re-enter this command until the output in the console says "Terrain culling disabled")[/FONT][/COLOR]
Enter the command gxrestart to reinitialize the graphics engine and apply the changes.
This should also be possible when not using developers console:
Code:
/run RestartGx() 
/run ReloadUI()
Commands For Maximum Smoothness

Ensure you are logged into a character first!

These commands do not affect visual quality. They have the potential to optimize the game engine for smoother gameplay (refer to the Frequently Asked Questions for the definition of "smoothness"). These commands are optional and are entirely dependent on your computer's specifications. Commands that are bolded may have an extreme effect on performance and are optional. Commands that are underlined are dependent on your hardware. You must have knowledge of your computer's limitations in order to properly assign values to underlined commands.
Code:
[COLOR=#FFBF40][FONT=Arial]
bspcache 1
gxTripleBuffer 1
gxVSync 1
M2UsePixelShaders 1
M2UseZFill 1
M2UseClipPlanes 1
M2UseThreads 1
M2UseShaders 1
M2BatchDoodads 1

[B]gxFixLag 1[/B][/FONT][/COLOR][COLOR=#ffa07a][FONT=Arial](fixes mouse lag at expense of frames per second)[/FONT][/COLOR][COLOR=#FFBF40][FONT=Arial]

[B]timingModeOverride[/B] 1 
[/FONT][/COLOR][COLOR=#ffa07a][FONT=Arial](uses GetTickCount) 2 (uses RDTSC) 3 (uses QueryPerformanceCounter) 4 (uses timeGetTime). 
Experiment with which timing method gives you the smoothest gameplay. 
Set the value, then restart the game completely. Apparently RDTSC is the most precise timing method.[/FONT][/COLOR][COLOR=#FFBF40][FONT=Arial]

[U]gxRefresh[/U] [/FONT][/COLOR][COLOR=#ffa07a][FONT=Arial]<your monitor's maximum refresh rate> e.g. gxRefresh 60 (for 60hz monitor)[/FONT][/COLOR][COLOR=#FFBF40][FONT=Arial]
[U]M2Faster[/U] [/FONT][/COLOR][COLOR=#ffa07a][FONT=Arial]<CPU physical cores - 1> (Dual-core = 1, Tri-core = 2, Quad-core and above = 3)[/FONT][/COLOR][COLOR=#FFBF40][FONT=Arial]
[/FONT][/COLOR]
Enter the command gxrestart to reinitialize the graphics engine and apply the changes.

Config.wtf

Copy and Paste Version

This version of the tweaks allows you to simply copy and paste the following into your config.wtf file. This doesn't include some of the commands listed above because they are specific to certain computers. But the ones below should be applicable to pretty much any computer. The reason that I don't list this easier method as the preferred one is because you don't get to see the differences that each command makes. It becomes harder to troubleshoot issues when you dump a bunch of new commands into the config at once.

Code:
SET anisotropic "16"
SET detailDoodadAlpha "100"
SET farclip "777"
SET frillDensity "256"
SET gxColorBits "24"
SET gxDepthBits "24"
SET lod "0"
SET lodDist "250"
SET mapObjLightLOD "2"
SET maxLOD "3"
SET nearClip "0.33"
SET particleDensity "1"
SET pixelShaders "1"
SET shadowLevel "0"
SET SmallCull "0.01"
SET SkyCloudLOD "1"
SET SkySunGlare "1"
SET specular "1"
SET textureLodDist "777"
SET texLodBias "-1"
SET trilinear "1"
SET unitDrawDist "300"
SET weatherDensity "3"
SET waterParticulates "1"
SET waterRipples "1"
SET waterSpecular "1"
SET waterWaves "1"
SET ffxDeath "1"
SET ffx "1"
SET ffxRectangle "1"
SET ffxGlow "1"
SET spellEffectLevel "2"
SET occlusion "1"
SET footstepBias "0.125"
SET showfootprints "1"
SET horizonfarclip "2112"
SET baseMip "0"
SET waterLOD "0"
SET mapObjOverbright "1"
SET MaxLights "4"
SET DistCull "500"
SET mapShadows "1"
SET doodadAnim "1"
SET showShadow "1"
SET showLowDetail "0"
SET showSimpleDoodads "0"
SET gxTripleBuffer "1"
SET M2UsePixelShaders "1"
SET M2UseZFill "1"
SET M2UseClipPlanes "1"
SET M2UseThreads "1"
SET M2UseShaders "1"
SET M2BatchDoodads "1"
SET bspcache "1"
Before and After

Echo Isles
Before
After

Durotar
Before
After

Mulgore
Before
After

Frequently Asked Questions



  • Can I get banned for doing these modifications?
    Absolutely not! All of these commands are present in the game engine and are free to be modified. None of them provide an advantage and are merely there to control aesthetics and game performance. You can have absolute peace of mind when editing your configuration.
  • Will these commands raise my overall frames per second (FPS)?
    No. The values I have assigned to these commands are geared toward visual quality only. You are free to modify the values of these commands to provide more performance if you wish.
  • What exactly does "smoothness" mean?
    Although nothing below is guaranteed, these types of commands tend to have the following benefits (even if subtle):
    • Reduced microstuttering. Even with high FPS, certain factors can create a "stuttering" effect that is extremely annoying to look at.
    • Reduced mouse input latency. By taking a more aggressive approach to GPU synchronization, mouse input lag can be reduced. The drawback is added overhead which reduces FPS.
    • Screen tearing reduced or completely eliminated. By limiting FPS at a value your hardware can constantly maintain (via Vertical Synchronization and Triple Buffering), frametimes stay constant. When FPS is not fluctuating drastically, the resulting image is much more fluid and appealing.
  • Where can I find more information about timing modes?
    Game Timing and Multicore Processors
    RDTSC (Time Stamp Counter)
    TimeGetTime vs. GetTickCount

Notes

  • If you do go into the Graphics Settings for any reason after applying these changes, do not make any changes there. Doing so will change some of the commands such as frillDensity back to very low numbers.


Credits going to:

Shadowlurk from Bugstalrius for sharing.



Cheers,
Oppahansi

PS: If you have anything you would like to add or comment, reply in thread :)
 
Last edited:

Aurigon

Authorized
Joined
Nov 21, 2014
Likes
180
Location
Italy
#7
I'm not sure how anticheat systems generally work, but I'd say if you're not banned in few minutes after logging in you should be safe for good. And I also see it unlikely that future updates could lead to false positives.

Anyway, I'm using Darker Nights and I'm totally loving it... it's truly marvelous. To me, best mod ever hands down, definitely. It provides a fix to what has probably always been the only severe graphical turn off of WoW to me, nights so bright that you could barely tell them from daytime. Now evenings and nights are so atmospheric, locations are immersive like never before... and Duskwood feels even more 'timburtonesque'.
 

Doofoos

New Member
Joined
Jul 27, 2016
Likes
1
#12
Hi, thanks for sharing this mods! Can you please explain at which times you can see if the Darker Nights patch is working? I installed it 2 days ago, and i still cant see the difference, but im playing at +3 hours to ST server zone, so im going sleep at ~22:00 ST and waking up at ~04:30 ST. Can you please confirm is Darker Nights effect enabling within this range?
 

lupeh

New Member
Joined
Nov 8, 2014
Likes
8
Location
netherlands
#13
is there a console conmand to change ur own char into another race, while still showing the gear it has equiped?

And that only your character changes race and not the race of other players and npc's?

And the last question would be is this allowed what i am asking for on kronos?

thanks

Verstuurd vanaf mijn PLK-L01 met Tapatalk
 

oppahansi

Authorized
Joined
Apr 14, 2015
Likes
100
#14
Hi, thanks for sharing this mods! Can you please explain at which times you can see if the Darker Nights patch is working? I installed it 2 days ago, and i still cant see the difference, but im playing at +3 hours to ST server zone, so im going sleep at ~22:00 ST and waking up at ~04:30 ST. Can you please confirm is Darker Nights effect enabling within this range?
No idea, try to go to duskwood and see for yourself, there it is darker even on day time. Ofc read the guide -> delete caches!


is there a console conmand to change ur own char into another race, while still showing the gear it has equiped?

And that only your character changes race and not the race of other players and npc's?

And the last question would be is this allowed what i am asking for on kronos?

thanks

Verstuurd vanaf mijn PLK-L01 met Tapatalk

AFAIK there is no such command. Try Improved Models - search forum.
 

Dreamhaze

Authorized
Joined
Mar 6, 2015
Likes
12
#16
I didn't quite test this yet, but setting weatherDensity to 0 might be a fix to Darker Nights bug. Since I've done it I didn't get a single snowstorm in Winterspring and therefore no lighting bug during night.
It's a pity that Darker Nights mod doesn't add any new light sources to lanterns and stuff like that.
 

oppahansi

Authorized
Joined
Apr 14, 2015
Likes
100
#17
I didn't quite test this yet, but setting weatherDensity to 0 might be a fix to Darker Nights bug. Since I've done it I didn't get a single snowstorm in Winterspring and therefore no lighting bug during night.
It's a pity that Darker Nights mod doesn't add any new light sources to lanterns and stuff like that.
Good point, gonna test this later. Thank you!
For some reason I cannot edit my starting post to add this information.
 

Dreamhaze

Authorized
Joined
Mar 6, 2015
Likes
12
#18
Actually I've had a snowstorm today, so that didn't work. I was reading the thread of that mod and there was some kind of fix that could be applied to server core to make weather have the same illumination, but I cba to find out if devs will agree to implement it and if that fix is even suitable for this core.
 

Dreamhaze

Authorized
Joined
Mar 6, 2015
Likes
12
#19
Is there a way to increase grass draw distance? Increasing it's density is a questionable improvement when draw distance becomes more noticeable.
 

sycvil

New Member
Joined
Sep 7, 2016
Likes
2
#20
Instead of using a modified WoW.exe for more sound channels you can just change a pair of CVars (and restart the game):
Code:
/console SoundMaxHardwareChannels 256
/console SoundSoftwareChannels 256
Found info on another CVar that may affect sound as well ("Using this command help me to get less skip sounds"):
Code:
/console SoundMemoryCache 8
They suggest 8 (default is 4), but you can try more. The info on SoundMemoryCache is from TBC though, but this CVar exists in vanilla client as well. I have not tested the commands in raid environment, but my Sound.log looks promising:
Code:
Channels: 319 (256 software, 32 2D hardware(dsound), 31 3D hardware)
And that's with the original WoW.exe.

Another interesting command I found when playing with console is "violenceLevel" which changes amount of blood when fighting and such:
Code:
/console violenceLevel 5
I had no idea that it was even possible in WoW. Default value is 2, max is 5 according to WoWWiki. The difference between 2 and 5 is not that great though (I expected more blood raawwrrr :D).
 
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