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DassiD - Vtastek - Left4No - PoodleSandwich

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About this mod

A more vanilla looking water shader for OpenMW.

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One of the things I found most beautiful about Morrowind as a kid (and still to this day) was the look of the water with "Pixel Shading'' turned on. I want OpenMW in my life for a number of reasons; it doesn't trigger my motion sickness, I can recommend Morrowind to my Mac-using friends, I don't get stuck in things as much and it's nice to think it will help MW live on further into the future.

But I don't half miss that vanilla water shader! :'(

So, with the help of people who actually know things about shaders, I cobbled this together. It is not a perfect match, OpenMW's water shader has a bug that means the reflections don't attach properly to the water's edge, and at the time of writing it’s also missing the dynamic normal map generation that let the vanilla shader respond to the player character (thusly: but to me it looks nicer than the default OpenMW water and invokes some nostalgia.

How's it Done?

DassiD tweaked the tweakables to bring it closer, then vtastek extracted a normal map from a frame of the vanilla shader using PIXWin which he also used in his OpenMWLightingBeta mod (discord only atm). Then DassiD, myself and Left4No dicked around with the tweakables some more. 

I pestered vtastek for a few years on ways to bring the shader even closer, with things like how it looks when you're underwater looking up, by changing things outside of the "tweakables" section. But unfortunately I found that any changes made outside tweakables left the shader prone to breaking on a Mac or after installing a new version of OpenMW.

So this is what you get! It’s nay bad tbh.

But How do I INSTALL IT?

- Go to your OpenMW folder. No not that one. The one with a folder called "resources" in it. Where is it? I dunno, somewhere on your computer I'm sure.

- Open said "resources" folder then open the "shaders" folder. In it you will find a file called "water_fragment.glsl" and "water_nm.png" you probs wanna make a copy of these somewhere as a backup.

- Replace the water_nm.png file with the one from this mod.

- Then open the water_fragment.glsl file in a text editor such as Notepad. Once opened you wanna delete everything between:

// tweakables -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- --


// ---------------- rain ripples related stuff ---------------------

- And replace it with the text from this mod's .txt file.

- If you're feeling especially adventurous, you should also search for the //fresnel section (line 202 atm) and change

float ior = (cameraPos.z>0.0)?(1.333/1.0):(1.0/1.333); // air to water; water to air
float ior = (cameraPos.z>0.0)?(1.455/1.0):(1.0/1.333); // air to water; water to air

NOTE: You could also compare the two blocks of text using something like this:
and change the numbers one at a time. This might be a better option if you're installing this mod several months/years in the future when OpenMW might have changed the water shader.


In the Options Menu, go to "Video" then "Water". Make sure Water Shader is set to ON.

I reccomend setting refraction to OFF, Texture Quality to LOW, and reflection shader detail to WORLD.