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How to access Dragon's Eye in BG normally and some good news for the unmerged

A few days ago I experienced a strange bug in the first Baldur's Gate - the abandoned house in the area NW of Nashkel (where Drizzt is) opened its doors to me. From there I was able to enter the cellar, and from the cellar a vast dungeon that turned out to be a shadow copy of Dragon's Eye from Icewind Dale. All text, dialogues and NPC names and sounds, however, were garbled. Apparently I was able to enter the house because I had not known to run modmerge on my modded BGEE before putting SoD on top of it, so the CHITIN.KEY file had become corrupted. While this did not change anything in the regular game and I was able to leave the dungeon the way I had come and play on, the garbling affected all mods I had.

I was afraid that I would have to start a new game to get the mods back to normal or ignore them this playthrough, but a fresh reinstall helped. I removed SoD, then BGEE, keeping the saved games folder; installed BGEE again, then the mods, ran modmerge, added SoD - and my saves work perfectly. The mods are entirely fixed, although some left-overs from a few mods I had not liked but had not been able to cleanly uninstall remain, e.g. the Morninglords in Beregost etc., and their names are garbled. But everything installed afresh works. This is good news for two reasons:

1) Those of you who have made the same mistake and put SoD on top of an unmerged installation can rejoice at that you may very well be able to keep playing your old saves with the new CHITIN.KEY. Just reinstall the whole setup.

2) You can play through Dragon's Eye, a large and fairly lucrative dungeon, by reproducing my error and then using the method above to fix it. Unlike me, however, you will get normal text and sound bits, because you can now fix CHITIN.KEY after you have entered the house. I tried this on another save and it works. To get to this shadow content you can either do what I did - uninstall your setup keeping the games, install BGEE, then the mods, then, without merging, SoD - just back up your regular CHITIN.KEY first so you can put it in the place of the jumbled file later; or simply use my CHITIN.KEY attached here. It may the better option because my file may have been garbled uniquely by the combination of mods I used.

Back up your own CHITIN.KEY just in case. I am giving no guarantees that my file will work on your setup, but I pretty much guarantee that even if it does not, you can undo any damage by restoring your old CHITIN.KEY or, at the most, with a clean reinstall. Your saved games are not going to suffer even if you overwrite them, but you should save to a new slot. So the how-to is:

1) Get inside the abandoned house with the "bad" CHITIN.KEY and save there;

2) Bring back the "good" file or reinstall;

3) Go downstairs and play the dungeon.

As a side note, this is not quite the Dragon's Eye from Icewind Dale. It is, on the whole, easier and I was able to beat it with a level 4 party, although some parts are harder than others. The monsters you will encounter are different from what spawns in the original. For example, you will not meet any Yuan-Ti, Trolls or Lizardmen, but you will encounter some nasty monks, and instead of bombardier beetles and other fauna in the cave levels - undead. Beware of Doom Guards! They will challenge you even if you breeze through the rest. Whether some creatures fail to appear because the in-game resources are absent or for some other reason, I cannot say.


  • Mr2150Mr2150 Member Posts: 1,170
    Sorry, I may have misunderstood but are you suggesting to use files from a corrupted install to play a new area from a different game? And then to revert, and carry on playing with your save games?

    My understanding, which is limited, is that your save games 'store' a certain amount of the game as you play, and whilst it may be safe to do and play the new area for a bit, you might end up later finding a game breaking bug due to your save game storing information from the corruption.

    I'd really hate to do this and then continue through the game run, only to find that I can't get the cure to the poison in Baldur's Gate, or whatever.

  • chimericchimeric Member Posts: 1,163
    edited July 2016
    Maybe I wasn't clear: you can use your old saves to get to the area, nothing affects the saves. You just need this corrupted CHITIN.KEY (or perhaps go the long way through the unmerged SoD installation, try it). Now you can go inside the house - but your mods will be garbled, so stop there and save in a new slot. Then put the good file back in. Your mods and Dragon's Eye will be normal again, and the house will be accessible from that point onwards. As for regular game content, it does not seem affected in any way.

    Obviously I haven't been able to do much testing, but a huge dungeon is pretty cool, no? Right now I have two installations - one fixed, which is what I play, and a copy of the old, corrupted one in another folder. Modded content and Dragon's Eye in the fixed game read fine, in the old version garbled, of course. They both refer to saves in my Documents folder to load, only I am careful not to overwrite these files from inside the corrupted install.

    Of course there are no guarantees, but I wouldn't worry. Use a separate slot before you change anything just in case. I've played for a while after getting out of Dragon's Eye, and there are no indications that this bug affects anything outside.

    The only thing I have doubts about is skipping chapters with the Cheat Console. If you hit Ctrl + Space and choose to go to a later-chapter area on the left, like -


    then you get different chapter intros scrolling before you one after the other. But this may not be related to the bug, it's just something I found out after the bug, so I mention it. Can anybody confirm this? Does the game "normally" behave weird when you jump to a later area with the console?

  • joluvjoluv Member Posts: 2,136
    This makes very little sense. Calling this a "bug" in BG:EE is wildly inaccurate, and you're able to access that area because it was added by the Caina mod you installed, not because of some bizarre glitch.

  • mf2112mf2112 Member, Moderator Posts: 1,919
    Probably a bit easier to just grind out some basilisks, although I can't say I have ever had a problem reaching the XP cap in BG with a 6 member team. ;)

  • AstroBryGuyAstroBryGuy Member Posts: 3,414
    It's not a bug, and you did not stumble upon some hidden "secret" level. You installed @DarkDogg's Caina/Zarra mod. That mod makes the abandon house Fisherman's Lake accessible and includes copies of some IWD area files, which it uses for added dungeons to BGEE.

    Since you installed SoD *after* installing mods, the game was using the SoD dialog.tlk file rather than the modded dialog.tlk from your original BGEE install. This is why the dialogs added by mods were screwed up. The string references were pointing to SoD strings rather than the mod-added strings.

    Also, another user cannot just use your borked CHITIN.KEY file to access these areas. These mod-added areas aren't even in the CHITIN.KEY file unless you ran Generalized Biffing. If another user doesn't have the Caina/Zarra mod installed, they won't be able to access these areas. What they would need to do is install the Caina/Zarra mod (on a properly modmerged SoD install or a non-SoD BGEE install). That's it. No swapping in "bad" CHITIN.KEY files. Just install things in the proper order.

  • chimericchimeric Member Posts: 1,163
    edited July 2016
    Well then, that's what it is. Caina's mod doesn't explicitly list the areas it adds, I think, so I didn't see it advertised. Kudos to her, I guess.

    I still made sure saves aren't corrupted from an unmerged installation, at least.

    This topic can be closed now.

This discussion has been closed.