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Guest Blog: The Creation of Revision

Posted by Sacha Ramtohul

In this first guest blog on the Revision mod, John French (lead composer) talks about the creation and the different contributors of this reimagining of the original Deus Ex by the community. To learn more and get the latest information and news about the project, visit www.dx-revision.com.

About 14 years ago, Deus Ex was released. At the time, it was praised for near seamlessly blending stealth, action, and role-playing genres into a narrative-driven experience, providing players with a rare degree of flexibility in a globe-trotting, conspiracy-laden adventure. Over the years, the community has stepped up and provided a wide range of upgrades for the game, such as high-resolution texture packs, stability tweaks, gameplay adjustments, and in some cases entirely new spinoff story-lines.

In 2007, the Revision project started to take shape. At first, it was just going to be a short exercise in improving the layout of a few game locations. It steadily expanded into something much bigger; the goal being to take the idea of upgrading the game experience and apply it to level design across a substantial portion of the entire game.

Over the last two years, the team has expanded, and now, Revision includes redesigned versions of nearly all environments, a new (optional) end-to-end soundtrack, and world-building narrative detail. Beyond it’s own “first party” content, the project is partnered with the people behind some of the best work put out by the Deus Ex community over the years: the finished version will come bundled with high-resolution textures, improved object models, optional gameplay modifications, enhanced UI scaling support, a Direct 3D 9 Renderer, and finally a customized game launcher. These will come courtesy of the New Vision team, Project HDTP, Unified Deus Ex, Chris Dohnal and Marjin Kentie, respectively. The resulting bundle will bring the unmodified version of the game to a completely enhanced state with a single installer, while also delivering several stability fixes to improve the game experience on modern computers.

The project was first created by Harris Bizer, a fellow from Finland who enjoys his privacy. He has been responsible for nearly all of the environmental improvements and design work in Revision. Björn Ehrby, the team’s resident Swede, has been responsible for quality assurance and programming support. Logan Felber is one of two composers on the project and responsible for the majority of combat music in the game. Cecilia Raffaeli is the team’s graphics editor, responsible for nearly every piece of custom 2D texture work in the project, ranging from fictional advertisements to datavault images. For my part, I’m responsible for the majority of  music composition and in-game sound effects.

We’ve faced numerous technical and creative challenges along the way, and Revision isn’t done just yet. But we’re close. And we can’t wait to share our work with the world.

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