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Area modding: dispelling the .pvrz myth
You've probably heard that BG:EE areas are now created with a new tileset format called .pvrz and you're wondering how to get around this problem because DLTCEP can't create them (yet).
You do not
need to be able to create pvrz tilesets to create new areas in BG:EE and BG2:EE. The existing area creation techniques are sufficient using .tis tilesets. These will still show up in both games provided that you also deliver the required area files.
So what's the difference? In visual terms, absolutely nothing. In package terms, .pvrz files occupy approximately 25% of the space occupied by a .tis file so this makes complete sense when trying to package the game for iPads etc.. The Infinity Engine still knows almost nothing about .pvrz files; what Overhaul have cleverly done is to modify the .tis file so that when the Infinity Engine calls for an area tileset the .tis file modifies the call to load the .pvrz files. I say almost nothing because the IE will load .pvrz files without the .tis shim file but the result is an on-screen train wreck.
One last thing: there are commercial and demo tools that will convert from .bmp to .pvrz but they are of no use here because the end result is a slightly different format. Sort of like Windows .bmp and DIB; most graphics programs will display both but when you start to look closely at the format, a Windows bitmap is not the same as a Linux/Unix generated bitmap.
Someone want to sticky this?