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PostPosted: Sat Mar 14, 2015 4:03 pm 
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It seems DF are probably going to leave Grim Fandango Remastered in the state it's currently in -- bugs and all, and with that in mind, it would be good to discuss the future of this project, should there be one.

Personally, I see Grim Fandango Remastered as the de facto standard version of Grim Fandango now. Yes, it has some problems, but largely the improvements made to the game (lighting engine, better music, better controls) vastly outweigh any issues it has. Unfortunately ResidualVM is not going to, and probably never will, offer support for Grim Fandango Remastered, which means that any changes made to that version will be done without ResidualVM.

The original aim of Grim Fandango Deluxe was to increase the quality of the textures, improve the 3D models, and up the game's resolution... most of these things have been done by DF in GFR.

1. Textures -- Nearly all of these have been redone by DF. There's a few that could do with some more TLC, though. (I've listen some here: http://www.doublefine.com/forums/viewthread/16296/)
2. Models -- DF didn't touch these, but the lighting system helped a LOT. It's possible that smoothing off Glottis and maybe a few others would still add a lot, though.
3. Resolution -- This was done by DF.

So aside from fixing a few textures, any maybe upping the resolution of a few models (not sure we need to do them all?), that's most of the work done by DF.

That leaves us with a few other options:

- Fix the remaining bugs.
- Add widescreen support. (ultraneonoirantihero (and others) are making great strides in creating widescreen graphics for the original version of the game -- using ResidualVM, though.)
- Something else...?

What else? And should we focus on Grim Fandango Remastered now? What do you think?


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PostPosted: Sat Mar 14, 2015 5:31 pm 
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Well, the ideal should be aiming for 16:9 high resolution backgrounds, don't you think?

The guys at DF probably saw recreating the backgrounds as an infeasible task in their short development time frame and probably pouring resources into that did not make sense from an economic standpoint either. The problem there is that leaving the backgrounds as they were but increasing the resolution of the game had some terrible side effects from an aesthetic point of view, especially in scenes where pre-rendered characters, or worst, parts of them, show up with their original resolution among high resolution real-time characters.

With that in mind, probably the points to tackle would be:
- Hack GF Remastered to allow custom resolution backgrounds and aspect ratios.
- Regenerate the geometry with the information from the zbuffers as reference, like kavehth is doing.
- Find texture artists.
- Retexture the scenarios using the high resolution geometry together with the low resolution projected scenarios as reference.


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PostPosted: Sun Mar 15, 2015 7:36 pm 
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I think we have to be realistic here. Yes, new higher resolution backgrounds would be great, but it would take years of constant work to produce them all -- especially to a standard most people were happy with. I really don't see any point in attempting something that has very little chance of being completed :-/


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PostPosted: Mon Mar 16, 2015 11:09 pm 
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RodriTaku wrote:
Well, the ideal should be aiming for 16:9 high resolution backgrounds, don't you think?
We are working on that. Check "Widescreen" topic or: http://www.grimwidescreen.com/

RodriTaku wrote:
Hack GF Remastered to allow custom resolution backgrounds and aspect ratios.
It took 15 years for people here to develop apps for editing GF resources. It took 9 years to make Residual run GF in playable mode. Kavehth actually managed to do this what you're talking about... but see my next paragraph:

RodriTaku wrote:
Regenerate the geometry with the information from the zbuffers as reference, like kavehth is doing. Find texture artists. Retexture the scenarios using the high resolution geometry
It took 3 years for GF team at Lucasarts with Lucasfilm & ILM resources to do this. For 3 years, every day, sometimes 10hrs a day, a team of designers. They were paid. We are currently small group of fans who does this as a hobby. It will never get done and it would never look like original in HD.

JohnnyWalker2001 wrote:
It seems DF are probably going to leave Grim Fandango Remastered in the state it's currently in
Yes, but they did a good job: re-released a 15 year old game on multiple platforms with new music and commentary, high-poly 3D models, with official P&C support and never before seen concept art gallery.

JohnnyWalker2001 wrote:
Unfortunately ResidualVM is not going to, and probably never will, offer support for Grim Fandango Remastered, which means that any changes made to that version will be done without ResidualVM.
True.

JohnnyWalker2001 wrote:
The original aim of Grim Fandango Deluxe was to increase the quality of the textures, improve the 3D models, and up the game's resolution... most of these things have been done by DF in GFR.
Yes... but Deluxe project did it too! We already have Year1 Manny & Glottis in high-poly models with hd textures. Tobias even made p&c mod. Botje made widescreen mod. Only thing left is upping the rez.

JohnnyWalker2001 wrote:
What else? And should we focus on Grim Fandango Remastered now? What do you think?
Well, Kavehth tried to replace Remastered backgrounds with HD ones... he had no luck, ran into some bugs. But maybe he should tell us his opinion personally. But even with cracked Remastered we will never recreate 400+ backgrounds in Wide HD.

The max-max scenario is:
someone cracks the Remastered version to show wide addons on the sides. Backgrounds remain the same in low res, but at least you get everything + widescreen.

The min-max scenario is:
Residual gets "official" (main branch) support for:
- widescreen mod (done by Botje) & addons (in progress by me)
- P&C mod (done by Tobias)
- better quality models and textures (in progress by Nitrus, Blacksad and Johnny)

Also, not sure if legally & technically achievable but:
- replacing original audio by ripping Remastered and repacking the LAB files

So yeah: 2 options, and wide addons cover both, I'm gonna keep working on those. Maybe DF releases a patch, or GOG adds support for user mods like they did with EVERYTHING ELSE :)

P.S. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Minimax

P.P.S. When will all these mods be merged in the Residual main branch? Also, some support for controlling these mods would be nice, some menu option to turn P&C mod on/off, turn wide addons on/off, turn new models on/off...


Last edited by ultraneonoirantihero on Sun Mar 29, 2015 8:27 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Tue Mar 17, 2015 2:22 pm 
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We have a number of options regading the backgrounds, one would be to redo them from scratch, this would take a lot of work but not as much as you're thinking, remember that we can get a lot of information from the zbuffers, if we can get more people on this it might be possible.

Another would be to try to combine and polish the models that we get from the z-buffers and then extract and improve the Textures, if we find a fast way of doing this, it could be a viable option.

One interesting thing about combining the meshes is that when there are multiple angles of a room you automatically get a higher resolution in some parts, you can see this with the shack in the garage that I posted in the widescreen mod thread.

ultraneonoirantihero wrote:
JohnnyWalker2001 wrote:
What else? And should we focus on Grim Fandango Remastered now? What do you think?
Well, Kavehth tried to replace Remastered backgrounds with HD ones... he had no luck, ran into some bugs. But maybe he should tell us his opinion personally. But even with cracked Remastered we will never recreate 400+ backgrounds in Wide HD.


Well I don't know how easy it would be to hack the Remastered to display hi res backgrounds and widescreen, but if we did it in Residual it should be doable in the Remastered, maybe DF can release a patch to enable us to mod it.

ultraneonoirantihero wrote:
Also, not sure if legally & technically achievable but:
- replacing original audio by ripping Remastered and repacking the LAB files


If you want the new music, just replace the lab files with the ones from the Remastered, it works great, but I don't know how we can replace the movies.


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PostPosted: Tue Mar 17, 2015 6:15 pm 
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First of all:

JohnnyWalker2001 wrote:
I think we have to be realistic here. Yes, new higher resolution backgrounds would be great, but it would take years of constant work to produce them all -- especially to a standard most people were happy with. I really don't see any point in attempting something that has very little chance of being completed :-/

True, being utterly realistic it could take a long while and it might never get finished. BUT as kavehth says it might not be as long as you think, especially with the new tools. In the end it could be a matter of man-power and organisation.

The most time-consuming tasks from the artistic side of the project will end up being retexturing and lightning. Some of the first places where motivated people could be found to help would be the official DF forums, the Steam forums, the mixnmojo forums, deviantart, cgsociety...

ultraneonoirantihero wrote:
It took 3 years for GF team at Lucasarts with Lucasfilm & ILM resources to do this. For 3 years, every day, sometimes 10hrs a day, a team of designers. They were paid. We are currently small group of fans who does this as a hobby.

True, but they created things from scratch, from pure ideas by iteration with tools of their time while the story and the engine of the game were being created. This effort would be completely different. It would be taking already created worlds and reworking them. I know that recreating all the backgrounds is a massive undertaking, but I don't believe it would be necessary to spend such an incredible amount of man-hours as their original creators did given the current advances this community has made in terms of tools. Also, this project is not constrained by release windows and budgets. As you perfectly know, this is only fueled by pure love for the game, and I'm sure there are others out there who don't know about this project yet and would be glad to participate.

With that out of the way, I'm with kavehth. The purpose of recreating backgrounds in 3D is manifold:
- Generating 16:9 pre-renders at any resolution becomes a matter of a couple of clicks.
- Generating 16:9 pre-baked zbuffers at any resolution should be easy too.
- The FMV videos could potentially be reshot in 16:9 HD with these recreated backgrounds, if everyone decided it was something the project should include.
- The models can (and should ideally) be archived for the free usage and admiration of others. This could lead to other future fans to create their own 3D engine and make a fully 3D remake of GF.

kavehth wrote:
Well I don't know how easy it would be to hack the Remastered to display hi res backgrounds and widescreen, but if we did it in Residual it should be doable in the Remastered, maybe DF can release a patch to enable us to mod it.

That's exactly what I was thinking about when I reached Johnny some days ago. The window of opportunity is closing, if it is not closed already, to ask the guys at Double Fine and Shiny Shoe for tools or support before they disband and forget all about GF. Right now they probably have a good understanding of the engine and people who worked on the remake might still be able and/or willing to help. I'm talking about Brandon Dillon, Trevor Diem, Oliver Franzke, Matt Enright and Duncan Boehle, among others.


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PostPosted: Fri Mar 20, 2015 9:45 am 
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I admire your optimism, RodriTaku :)

By all means reach out to the dev team yourself: @noughtceratops @p1xelcoder

What did Shiny Shoe do for GFR? Does anyone know?


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PostPosted: Sat Mar 21, 2015 11:45 pm 
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I'm on it.


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PostPosted: Fri Apr 17, 2015 6:40 pm 
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kavehth wrote:
Well I don't know how easy it would be to hack the Remastered to display hi res backgrounds and widescreen, but if we did it in Residual it should be doable in the Remastered, maybe DF can release a patch to enable us to mod it.

The actual rendering of the backdrops would be pretty hard to hack away from 640x480. However, it's rather easy to draw stuff on top of it; most of the UI is wired in Lua, which is hackable in the same way it is done in Residual.

In fact, things like replacing the border murals with pieces of a widescreen image, you could do right now without any change to the Grim Remasted code. Make a custom .lab, with a bunch of pngs and a lua file. In the lua file, override AddBorders() to display custom pngs instead.


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