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C'est la vie (Chameleon the game that never reached us)
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Muggy

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PostPosted: Wed Feb 11, 2015 11:06 pm    Post subject: C'est la vie (Chameleon the game that never reached us) Reply with quote

Pity really as this looks pretty damn good as a game.

Chameleon was developed by a division of Illusion Softworks called
Silver Wish Games.

The game engine is LS3D and is a police, espionage
TPS and FPS action/stealth game. Unfortunately it was only released
in Bohemia, Russia and Poland and I am guessing in the Czech
Republic. If any one knows of an English version.






There are plenty of videos on Youtube.

Another Example


From what I have read although no official review has been given Chameleon was around the 7.8 to 8.4 mark.

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PostPosted: Thu Feb 12, 2015 9:15 pm    Post subject: C'est la vie (Chameleon the game that never reached us) Reply with quote

I have this game on my HDD. You can't notice LS3D Engine here Smile Btw, it has English language (sold in Slovakia and Czech Republic)
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PostPosted: Sat Feb 14, 2015 8:14 am    Post subject: C'est la vie (Chameleon the game that never reached us) Reply with quote

Looks very interesting! I'm always fascinated to see any of the handful of other games that were created on Mafia's LS3D engine. The Vietcong 2 files can actually be opened in DC||ED Laughing
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PostPosted: Sat Mar 14, 2015 11:24 pm    Post subject: C'est la vie (Chameleon the game that never reached us) Reply with quote

Does anybody have an idea where to get this game with English audio apart from going to Slovakia? Or at least the english audio files? I wasn't only able to find Russian Sad

Edit: Never mind

Last edited by linukkis on Sat Apr 11, 2015 12:14 pm; edited 1 time in total
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 27, 2015 11:50 am    Post subject: C'est la vie (Chameleon the game that never reached us) Reply with quote

I find it amazing just how seamless an experience the engine provides considering the resources they had at the time. And a glimpse into a world where not every game involved the player character cowering behind cover until their health miraculously returned.
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PostPosted: Sun Jan 08, 2017 6:36 pm    Post subject: C'est la vie (Chameleon the game that never reached us) Reply with quote

Hey guys, if you're still interested, I've made a full translation of this game to English! You can download it here: http://www.moddb.com/mods/chameleon-full-english-translation-10/downloads/chameleon-full-english-translation-101

It is just a mod though, if you want a link to the game as well, message me Smile
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PostPosted: Sun Jan 08, 2017 10:35 pm    Post subject: C'est la vie (Chameleon the game that never reached us) Reply with quote

Is this game good? Laughing

I gather you like it, but...I don't know. I'm seeing a little splinter cell, maybe just a dash of no one lives forever...hitman?

But is it fun, is the story at all interesting?
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PostPosted: Sun Jan 08, 2017 11:48 pm    Post subject: C'est la vie (Chameleon the game that never reached us) Reply with quote

I found this game really impressive and fun to play, especially since I love stealthy sneaky - ish games like the ones you've mentioned. But then again, I quite often seem to like games which are considered by other gamers pieces of... well, dark spots in the gaming history.

I'm not sure what I found so attractive about this one, it's been some time since I last played it. I may have been biased a little since it was created by a division of Illusion Softworks. Anyways, I thought the story was alright, but the gameplay was probably the most attractive part for me. A lotta fun. If I'm not mistaken, there were some really cool gadgets to play with on your missions.

Overall, I'd say go give it a shot. I will definitely play it sometime again Smile
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PostPosted: Mon Jan 09, 2017 2:17 am    Post subject: C'est la vie (Chameleon the game that never reached us) Reply with quote

Well, gameplay-wise it is very similar to splinter cell and hitman, but I think it still stands out. It does get a little linear sometimes, but the other times the game gives you freedom to approach the levels in numerous ways, so you can still have fun with it. The story is not too dramatic or complex, but is told in an interesting way, especially in between missions via phone calls, gathering new information. It's not a huge phenomenon, but it's still worth a try IMO. Smile
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PostPosted: Mon Jan 09, 2017 4:27 am    Post subject: C'est la vie (Chameleon the game that never reached us) Reply with quote

According to Moby Games:
Quote:
Description
You will become a chameleon, an agent without a past who is able to stealthily
infiltrate any place in the world. Searches for killers take you to various places
locations - the poor Moldova, Afghanistan in the midst of dangerous wild fighting
between the Soviets and the Mujahideen and to Lebanon, where the Israeli army
carried a crack down on Arab terrorists.

The gameplay is mainly focused on stealth and fighting. To meet the challenges,
you will be using spy equipment (a device for night vision, binoculars, minicam,
jimmy or camera). Some of the necessary gadgets are picked up automatically
before a mission, while some of them can be added according to the player's
taste or game style.

Of course, there are weapons including pistols (i.e. Desert Eagle, Colt 1911),
machine guns (i.e. MP5, AK-47, MiniUzi, Dragunov) and even mini-crossbows.

However, the player can choose an action approach in the mission if the proper
gadgets are available. Enemies can be tough so using stealth is sometimes more
viable than shooting. Paralyse or choke can be used to dispose of an enemy to
surpass critical passages in the game.

The player decides what weapons to use and how depending on the situation.
Sometimes a head shot is the faster solution, but it should be chosen very wisely
or it may mean the big difference between life and death.

In short, Chameleon is more stealth than action game but in case you like a
challenge, grab a gun and shoot them "all".


cover

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PostPosted: Mon Feb 06, 2017 2:25 am    Post subject: C'est la vie (Chameleon the game that never reached us) Reply with quote

So BillyOwens was kind enough to send me (probably) the last existing download link for this game's ISO (it's now impossible to purchase legitimately), which I downloaded and installed along with his English patch.

The game was a really neat little project, and there are a number of undeniable similarities to Mafia, some of which I'll briefly list below.

Upon installing the game I instantly began to notice these. The installer is virtually identical to that of Mafia; a similar installation path with various game screenshots popping up in the background. Interestingly this game is a third of the size of Mafia, possibly owing to its limited scope and budget. The options setup dialogue is also essentially identical.





Structure and file formats

From first glance it is obvious that this game runs on a modified version of the LS3D engine. This game, like both Mafia and H&D, uses IS's .DTA archive format. However, there being three years between the development of Mafia and Chameleon, all of the formats these games share were updated in the development of the latter.
Because of this, a new .DTA extractor had to be made, as MassaSnygga's (which did work with the H&D .DTAs as they were older than Mafia's) could not read it. This job was done by Ekey over at XeNTaX game research forums, and his unpacker was released in 2012.

After opening up the archives my interest deepened, as the evolution of the two games' shared file formats became quite apparent. While the devs retained the classic file formats of .4DS, .BIN and .KLZ, they also modified the scene2.bin and reassigned tasks that it had previously handled to separate .BIN files.



As you can see, while our old favourites are still here there are a number of different files to cater for the (presumably now more complex) functions of actors, scripts, checkpoints, etc. The scene2.bin files could be opened in DC||ED, but I found them only to contain lighting and model placement data. Unsurprisingly, these mission folders could not be read by MWE. Interestingly, at the beginning of the scene2.bin files there is a message (which can be seen in the hex) that reads 'mission file version 4.5.5 copyright Illusion Softworks (c) 2000'. Presumably this message (which also appears in the Mafia scene2.bin files but without the 'version 4.5.5') refers to Chameleon's updated version of the scene2.bin mission file format originally created for Mafia in 2000, when IS left development of Mafia alpha on their H&D engine and built a new engine from scratch (LS3D).
The .4DS and .5DS formats also make an appearance, but in modified formats (and thus cannot be read by 4ds Viewer, Zmodeler or MWE).

Character models and animation

NPC models in this game bear more than a little resemblance to those in Mafia, in both polycount and texture. Their gestures are also similar, some even seeming to be identical (see the drunk man in the alleyway).









Interestingly, walking into an NPC will cause them to make a remark along the lines of 'Sorry, I'm busy right now', 'I've got no time for you', 'Leave me alone', etc (very reminiscent of those unfriendly pedestrians in Mafia Wink)
There are also some moments that reminded me very much of early Alpha videos and screenshots of Mafia, such as the camera no longer being strictly relative to the player's body when performing certain animations, and lower-poly NPC models strolling down the road in white suits.





Environment and textures

As a whole, some parts of the game feel very like parts of Mafia's tutorial mission, perhaps crossed with Hoboken and the back alleys and gas station from 'Better Get Used To It'.







Those of you with eagle eyes will no doubt have spotted a few familiar textures on the sides of buildings. In fact, once I began to look around it was downright hard to ignore. The textures, now in .TGA format, are a mix of old and new - an intentional move by the devs (around a third of whom also worked on Mafia), they even had a little fun while implementing them (see the last screenshot, my person favourite 'Carry Horry' Laughing).

Screenshots of some of these textures in Mafia have also been provided for reference.



































This has been a great find for me, discovering the legacy of Mafia in one of the later (and one of the last) Illusion Softworks titles. Many thanks to BillyOwens for both the link and his great English translation. All the Chameleon screens I've posted are from the first mission, set in Troubles-era Belfast. When I have more time I'll delve into the game some more (unfortunately it is the nature of stealth games to take an age to complete, and this was just a weekend exercise for the sake of procrastination).

Hopefully it's been somewhat enlightening, though.

Salute
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PostPosted: Mon Feb 06, 2017 4:40 pm    Post subject: Re: C'est la vie (Chameleon the game that never reached us) Reply with quote

AsaSK wrote:
on their H&D engine


Insanity.

"J.B. Megahey" is in MAFIA too. It seems this game is clearly not as pretty as MAFIA (though you may have "low detail" and "compressed" textures on Laughing) and that this whole concept became an unremarkable (since there's nothing unprecedented) bill payer for IS. And recycled textures drive me nuts, let alone animations.

How is the English translation? It's funny that they wouldn't release it for the U.K., but maybe the story is too dull for that market. And the U.S., perhaps it was too expensive to release there or it was seen as too old fashioned to get many sales.
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PostPosted: Mon Feb 06, 2017 6:01 pm    Post subject: C'est la vie (Chameleon the game that never reached us) Reply with quote

I too managed to get the iso of Chameleon and installed
the game along with the English patch but the menus are
still in Russian not sure if I should be removing anything
to change this..

Sorted.
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PostPosted: Mon Feb 06, 2017 7:11 pm    Post subject: Re: C'est la vie (Chameleon the game that never reached us) Reply with quote

Hunter wrote:
"J.B. Megahey" is in MAFIA too.


See the screenshots Sarcastic

@Muggy I'm glad you got it working, and hmm the English translation did change the menus for me.. Thinking
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PostPosted: Mon Feb 06, 2017 7:33 pm    Post subject: Re: C'est la vie (Chameleon the game that never reached us) Reply with quote

AsaSK wrote:
@Muggy I'm glad you got it working, and hmm the English translation did change the menus for me.. Thinking


yeah I had forgotten to put in the Tables folder.. Laughing

It's a pity the game wasn't utilized more but then
I suspect it was developed on the back of the
success of Mafia CoLH. The gameplay and
graphics also remind me of the PS2 game
The Getaway which was also a stealth based
game.
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