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Resident Evil 5 Steam edition "ripped out" code needed for splitscreen mod

UPDATE: GFWL version to be reinstated.

UPDATE 9/4/15 1.50pm: Capcom will reinstate the previous GFWL version of Resident Evil 5 on PC, after complaints that the new Steam edition no longer supported the fan-made split-screen mod.

Writing in a new post on NeoGAF, Capcom community spokesperson wbacon explained that the Steam version would also continue to see improvements:

"We understand some users would like the option to go back to the original GFWL version in order to play using existing fan-made mods, DX10 executable (for the Nvidia 3D glasses), or continue working on those Live Achievements," wbacon wrote. "We plan on reinstating the original GFWL build later this week which will become accessible through Steam's Beta tab. A step-by-step guide on how to access the beta branch will be posted on Steam forums when the branch becomes active.

"In addition, stay tuned on the Steam Community announcement for an upcoming patch which will address some of the issues that came to light post Steamworks migration. The patch will also include the save data import functionality."

UPDATE 9/4/15 9.40am: Capcom's new PC release of Resident Evil 5: Gold Edition is missing both a splitscreen mode and the dormant code which modders previously used to enable the feature in the game's earlier Games for Windows Live version.

Fans have waited more than six years for a complete PC version of Resident Evil 5 - and there had been some hope that this new Steam incarnation of the game might support splitscreen as standard.

Instead, developer notes found within the game's files have detailed how the splitscreen code was "ripped out" during the port process.

Responding to the discovery via NeoGAF, Capcom community spokesperson wbacon referenced the "unfortunate oversight" of the release notes being left in the game, but added that the splitscreen code was already "orphaned" and broken on PC.

"The crux of the issue is that the PC code base has no concept of multiple controllers," he wrote. "In other words, if you plugged in two Xbox controllers, RE5 has no way of figuring out which gamepad controls which character - or what happens if one player uses a KB+M versus a gamepad.

"It's a difficult problem to solve since the original game's logic wasn't designed with multiple controller devices in mind."

But two fans who worked on the earlier Resident Evil 5 splitscreen mod have since replied and disagreed.

Enabling splitscreen was a simple process, they said, and in the earlier Games for Windows Live PC version they had simply switched it on.

"I don't understand why you claim the code 'simply does not work on a PC'," modder TheBlade responded. "As I was one of the key people who worked on the splitscreen mod that enabled it on the GFWL initial release version for PCs.

"I can confirm that all the code is FULLY functional and it worked flawlessly for the GFWL version. We did not add anything extra to the game at all, it was simply enabled. The only problem was that the keyboard would control both characters so it was forcibly disabled. The game has no problem at all distinguishing between two controllers.

"Evidently the game knows to assign PAD1 to Player1, PAD2 to Player2 vice versa. Otherwise no characters would have moved at all.

"As for the Steamworks version. I got into the split-screen menus and can confirm that all the code has been removed to enable splitscreen functionality (through the menu itself). Within the menus the second controller will work fine but it just loads the standard 1P game. Why can't this feature be added into the PC version?"

The second modder, Sectus, added:

"PC version does at least have some code for handling multiple controllers. There's an array defining which controller ID each player is using, and if you change player two's ID from -1 to 1, then you'll have two controllers controlling player 1 and 2. As you said, that won't work with kb/m (similar to the limitation in Rev 2), and I've only tested this with xinput controllers.

"I was able to get splitscreen coop working fairly well except for a major problem with the game thinking player two is supposed to have their own savegame. I have no idea how difficult this would be to get working overall, but it's a shame the feature isn't there. I really wanted to play through the game in splitscreen with my girlfriend like I did with Rev 2."

Resident Evil fans recently reacted in anger when it emerged that there was no local co-op in the PC version of Revelations 2, despite it existing on other platforms.

A community-made mod quickly enabled the mode, before Capcom changed its mind and decided to enable local co-op officially.

In a new statement provided to Eurogamer, Capcom blamed the porting process for disabling the mod due to difficulties getting the original game and DLC content to work together.

"As the original Resident Evil 5 release on GFWL didn't officially include local co-op, the mode is therefore not supported by the recent Steam release," a Capcom spokesperson said.

"Some game code from the original GFWL release did have to be changed in the porting process so both Resident Evil 5 and the new Untold Stories Bundle add-on content worked seamlessly together. Unfortunately this has meant the latest release currently does not work with the previous local co-op mod."

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Tom Phillips


Tom is Eurogamer's Editor-in-Chief. He writes lots of news, some of the puns and makes sure we put the accent on Pokémon.

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