Baldur’s Gate: Enhanced Edition was coined as a straight HD port at one point, but a search around EA’s servers for the original game’s assets proved unsuccessful when the art was nowhere to be found. Overhaul Games head Trent Oster has shed light on the steps his team took to recreate BioWare’s original magic in a new interview.
Speaking with Eurogamer, Oster explained that a lack of assets let to the final game being more than a straight HD touch-up, and that initially he asked his contacts at EA and BioWare to have a root around for the material needed to get the project rolling.
He explained, “We were going to take Baldur’s Gate, we were going to take the original area artwork and we were going to re-render it out with new settings and render it to a much higher resolution and then rebuild the engine around displaying that new higher resolution.
“We went through contract details, we spent a bunch of time, money, effort on lawyers getting the agreement part-way, got to a pretty happy place, got a dump of all the assets that BioWare had, and we looked through and we couldn’t find any of the art source.”
However, when no assets could be found, Oster went to EA personally and had a look for himself, certain that the team there weren’t looking in the right places. He still didn’t have any luck though.
“I spent a couple of days over their with their system admin guys who I’m good friends with and we dug through everywhere,” he continued, “But we couldn’t find a single source asset for the area art.
“At that point we came back to Atari [D&D licence holder] and said look, the deal we proposed can’t happen: we can’t make a Baldur’s Gate HD. So right there we actually shut down and the deal wasn’t going to happen. For about three weeks, Atari and us never spoke.”
Without assets, Oster and his team decided to go one better than an HD update and just remake the whole thing from scratch. Thus, Balder’s Gate: Enhanced Edition was born. Check out the rest of the tell-all interview over at Eurogamer.
The game has been met with praise since it launched on PC and iPad. Get the details here.