Author Topic: FF7 PSX pre-rendered backgrounds to replacing the ones of FF7 PC version?  (Read 54871 times)

yarLson

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I didn't use any sharpening. After a lot of experimenting in perfect resize I ended up getting the best results by turning everything as low as it can go and by turning sharpening completely off. This is probably because the newness of the plugin and the age of these images. If you are able to come up some good values I'll be happy to try them out but for now I feel better not using it at all. By the way worked like a charm thanks a ton. I am starting on A right now.

frivol

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Yea I have come to the same conclusion that you yarLson, sharpenning is not a good idea when you are working with ff7 backgrounds. I have to try what sl1982 said before, but maybe this other "method" will be useful for you in any other chance. Another way to skip the black lines is (I guess it is less accurate than the sl1982´s method) by duplicating the layers and then merging them again to the one you duplicated, this overlapping will cause the black lines are filled, but this is only another trick, however, again, I´m pretty sure the sl1982´s method will be much useful and pro for this cause, in fact, I´m gonna try it out right now, I ´have not released more edited backgrouds since the first attemp was a fail, but after my latest attemps I got almost the same results that you got (although yours look even better), and I wanted not release any other background till I get something much better, but yours is perfect for me so I guess I will wait for your releases and sl1982´s instead :D.



« Last Edit: 2011-03-07 20:31:47 by frivol »

yarLson

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well feel free to help us. the more people we get on it the faster it will be completed. and yeah I can attest if you combine both of our methods you should do just fine with just about any texture. Of course some images have different resolutions. The stage for the gold saucer for example Palmer wouldnt let me do a 4X resample because the width was already quite huge, however I was able to do a 3X resample. Just do the highest resize that Palmer will allow for your image without breaking the original aspect ratio and you should do fine. Combined with both our techniques you should have all the knowledge you need to help us. I would really appreciate it. Ideally I want to get as many people as possible on this project. As soon as we have maybe 8%-15% done we should post a project thread and request help from the entire forum but for now its only a few of us so the extra hand would make a big difference.

sl1982

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I have used sharpening on all backgrounds I have done. I think it helps. If we cannot come to some sort of consensus I think I will release mine seperately as I do not want there to be large differences between backgrounds.

Aali

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What do you mean, Palmer wouldn't let you do a 4x resize? That really shouldn't be a problem. What happens when you try to do it?

sl1982

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Used to be a problem with 0.3b. Make sure you use 0.4b.

yarLson

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well a 4x image resize for this particular image (the astage from gold saucer) would be a resolution 2560x960. Palmer said when i tried to load a png of this size something along the lines of "expected size 1920x960" follow by "import failed" so I changed it to 3x res of 1920x720and it loaded fine. I am using 0.4b. Another problem I have been having with Palmer is that sometimes after it loads a field file it freezes up. Forcing a shut down or cutting the process doesn't help. If it does this once it'll continue to freeze up every time i open a field file until I restart windows. has gotten really annoying especially when I am in the middle of working on an image with all kinds of windows and tabs open.

also I am having a problem getting this same map to load in game through the mod path. I am not getting any sort of error it seems I just don't know the correct path for this one. It came from a file labeled astage_a so I made a folder mods/(modpath)/field/astage_a when that didn't work I tried a_stage. Is there some kind of directory or wiki I can look up that has all the correct mods paths for the field files for your driver Aali?

Also I completely agree about the sharpening, a consensus should be made. Just tell me what settings your generally using for your images and I'll give it a go. If I like the results I will use it. Only reason I stopped using it was because I started to notice some severe distortion in certain areas, and also because it seemed to reduce the need for a heavier blur effect (i only use 1 pixel radius without it), smoothing also seemed to be doing the same thing, however the distortion was only really noticeable on higher settings and not in all photos.. I don't want the images to be inconsistent any more than you do but I also would love the help. Two heads are always better than one and I'm sure we can come to some kind of agreement that the image quality will benefit from.
« Last Edit: 2011-03-07 21:25:41 by yarLson »

Aali

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I have some code lying around waiting for a palmer 0.5b that fixes some crashes, makes it aware of modpath & more blend modes and makes it more stable/useful in general.

The first image it finds when you do the import decides how big of a resize you're getting. It appears that the first image in your import is not 4x4 but rather (less than 4)x4.

If I know 0.4b right, its cutting off the _a from those output files, astage_00_00.png should really be astage_a_00_00.png, for example.

sl1982

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Resize in fractals 4x.

Texture Control:
Amount - 1
Threshold - 10
Smoothness - 0

Sharpening:
Unsharp Mask
Amount - 25
Radius - 2
Highlights - 20
Shadows - 20

Post processing with photoshop:
Preserve Pure blacks with color select and copy to seperate layer (Fuzzyness - 40)
Grain Texture:
Intensity - 15
Contrast - 50
Grain Type - Soft

No gaussian blur effect used. I always avoid using blur whenever possible as the loss in detail is not usually worth it. I added a film grain effect to add a bit of noise to the background to give it the impression that there is more detail then there actually is. Plus it adds a nice artistic style to the whole thing.

yarLson

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thanks a bunch I will give that  try for the mod path. A new Palmer would be so great for this project, I can't wait for that. Now I know the first image I imported was a 4x4. all of them are. the original is 640x240 so unless I am doing my math wrong 2560x960 should be exactly 4 times.

Really great work sl1982, you've convinced me, I will try to mess around with those setting and see if I can get something good.
« Last Edit: 2011-03-07 21:33:31 by yarLson »

yarLson

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does anyone know where I can find a breakdown of the battle scene textures. By breakdown I mean just a list explaining which textures are what inaccurate example maybe ogaa is for the first battle in midgar or something like that. It would be a big help to the project so I don't have to go through the huge archive every time to find battle scenes individually. right now I am look for the very first battle scene in the game. The one where you fight the two guys right off the train.

Timu Sumisu

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SL can you make the grain/noise grayscale? the color variation really jumps out.

sl1982

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Not now, ive done 5 scenes and im not starting over.

and what do the battle scenes have to do with this project?

Timu Sumisu

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the whole point is to figure out how to do the batch before batching :P

yarLson

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ugh well anyway I'm still having major problems with conversion. I wanted to include battle resizes as well although that'll probably have to come later. Just wondering if I could get a list for reference. Anyway I'm doing exactly what your suggested as far as the layering goes and I'm still getting a weird border in certain places. This time its really really thin and white. I don't understand what is causing this I am using nearest neighbor just like you said. And doing everything else exactly as you said. This is really bugging me I could have done 5 or 7 of these by now but I'm on on 2 and a half because I can't get them to convert correctly help would be greatly appreciated. Not too mention my version of Palmer is suffering from massive memory leaks. Used almost a gig of memory just packing png's and the damn thing crashes consistently and I have to restart to retain functionality. Gotta figure out a way to stop this. Also as far as effects and sharpness I think it also depends on the context of the scene. For example I think a lot of the metal surfaces in midgar do really well with just a slight blur that I've been using. Without it looks like they have a weird soap film or something similar. Although the scene I am working on from gold saucer doesn't benefit nearly as much from this technique. And sharpening in my gold saucer image has cause some weird kind of light distortion in game. Overall the editing side is nothing I can't handle, and I am enjoying myself. Its been a lot of trial and error. At least for me nothing that has worked once has worked again (especially when it comes to this layer business) Haha I am determined to do this but today has just not been my day. Overall I am just disappointed at my overall progress so far compared to hours spent. If I don't figure this conversion thing out by tomorrow I am just going to skip it and edit as many images as I can to keep up with the pace I should be making. Not the way I wanted to do it but I can't let it keep me from getting work done at this point. I'm gonna cool off for a little while and then work until sleep. I'll post the images I have before I go to bed.
« Last Edit: 2011-03-08 02:58:19 by yarLson »

sl1982

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I have not had any problems thus far, I have done 6, working on 7th right now.

yarLson

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well keep it up i'll try and catch up by tomorrow night, although school might be a problem. haha.

sl1982

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Protip: If you are having a hard time blending, add a layer behind the image that is pure black. The driver will usually treat this as transparent.

yarLson

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oh man what a way to end the day. What you told about black backrounds may be outdated or something. I just spent a strawberries ton of time hand editing, for absolutely nothing because when I put that strawberries in game its all fucked up because of the black. Lol I am not blaming you just though it was ferning hilarious. I'm ferning exhausted, goodnight

sl1982

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Its not outdated, I have been using it the whole time. Its only really useful for layer effects like lighting.

DLPB

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I feel your pain, I got this table for font sorted an hour ago and then i accidentally shut down ff7 without saving my edits.

 :o

frivol

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2048*2048 px


Even when I loved the background yarLson edited, I was missing a bit more sharpen on it since there was a notable contrast between the HD character and the little bit blurry background image, and yea I know I said before I do not like how the Perfect Resize sharpener effect looks, but that does not means I do not like the sharpen effect itself, so I combined and used some other methods to make the sharpen effect look much better and natural and I think I got what I was really looking for. I also wanted this time to keep the colors and the general look as close as possible to the original.

This was my last attemp with this background and I personally love how it looks in game, but maybe some ppl prefer a softer background, in that case the one yarLson did will be perfect for you (I can´t see any pic so unfortunelly I can not evaluate sl1982 work :(, except when he upload the files, but by what ppl say, they look pretty good too).

P.D.: I followed most of the tips and steps yarLson and sl1982 said before, and I combined them with new methods to get the sharpest possible background, without losing the quality and the original concept, it still won´t look perfect but I love it and I hope you like it too.

Files: http://www.megaupload.com/?d=MQO87YN2
« Last Edit: 2011-03-08 22:33:12 by frivol »

DLPB

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Seriously, here is my 2 cents.  You have to make sure that these backgrounds look like the old ones.  Sharpen is fine as it enhances the detail, blurring is not a good idea, and I think adding noise is also a bad idea because that will make the backgrounds look phony, even if they look nice as pictures.

It has to be a fractal resize + sharpening method and nothing else, or it will come out looking bastardised.   :)  The above looks fine to me, but be aware that Station map is not true of every picture, have a look at the corel prison and try to use the method there, get it right across a few maps before you begin.

Something like sl1982 had before:

http://img101.imageshack.us/img101/5598/nmkin1.jpg

Works fine.  Although that looks like it has added a bit of distortion, perhaps just a tad over sharpened.  I don't see what was wrong with my effort either:

http://img853.imageshack.us/img853/2155/98884374.png

The bottom line is, it cannot be too sharp and it cannot be too soft and it cannot look phony.  It has to pass off as a game background that the eye can keep to the background in gameplay.  No good if it stares out at you as fake.
« Last Edit: 2011-03-08 18:10:26 by DLPB »

xLostWingx

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Is there gonna be a project thread for this?  Either several for each person working on this, or one for the two...or three?  of you.  I don't have the proper software to help, but I have been watching this closely and think some might benefit from some organization (sl seems to know what hes doing and is making good progress, but idk about the other two.  and if someone else wanted to help it may be difficult for them to get started).  Good luck guys.

DLPB

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I am just offering suggestions on how best to proceed and some examples.  I have my hands full at the moment with several other projects that I want finishing by 2050  :P