Author Topic: FF8 - Making the game look better with the software renderer?  (Read 8000 times)

Ash

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So, I have a GeForce 8600M GT, and unless I feel like playing Black Boxes Fantasy VIII, I'm stuck with playing FF8 with the software renderer (the 1.2 patch and FF8Launcher didn't resolve the boxes problem for me).

Now, we all know how ugly the game looks when played with the SR. What I'm wondering is if there's a way to make it look better in that mode. I'm not expecting super High-def graphics, of course, but I don't know, something on par with PSX graphics or better?

I can probably tolerate to play the game with ugly graphics, but really, if there's a way to make it look better, even a little, I would really appreciate if some of you showed me how.

Prince Lex

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If you want to get rid of the boxes problem, you either need to turn off AA/AF in your graphics driver settings, or switch to Aali's custom graphics driver, which allows for more customisation than the launcher.

Ash

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Turning off AA/AF did absolutely nothing. As for Aali's custom graphics, I tried that too. I didn't understand the options it gave me since I'm pretty much a noob for this kind of thing, it wasn't clear what files concerned FF7 and what concerned FF8, and anyway, I got an error message when trying to start FF8.exe, so no thanks.

Honestly, I've searched the forums for hours and I've yet to see a GeForce user getting his "black boxes" problem solved. That's why I'm asking for a way to improve the graphics using the software renderer. My patience has limits...

Prince Lex

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It's really not that hard to use Aali's driver, and it's the best bet to solve your problem. All you have to do is put it in your FF8 folder, open the ff8_opengl.cfg by right-clicking and opening in notepad and change the settings to suit you. You have to put all the files (including the ones that say FF7) in your FF8 folder.

I used to spend fruitless hours and frustration trying to get both FF7 and FF8 to work.

Did you use this step-by-step guide when you installed the game? That's what I did the first time I installed it, I usually don't have any problems with FF8. Remember that there are two different .exe's (one GeForce and one non-GeForce) to use also.

Ash

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Well, more or less. I installed the GeForce patch, of course, and Samuel's Soundfont, but that's about it. Before trying to make the game smooth and shiny, I'll try to find a way to make the black blocks disappear. But that's the problem: based on the replies in the "FF8 Enhancing" thread and my own tests, there is no way to get rid of them for Nvidia users. FF8Launcher seems to work for some, strangely, but not for me and many others.

As for Aali's driver, it's not how to use it that I don't understand, but the different settings that I can modify in ff8_opengl.cfg. I don't get how any of them could get rid of the black blocks, and even then, last time I couldn't even test them because of an error message I would get when trying to activate FF8.exe.

Of course, I *could* try that again, but I probably won't because reinstalling is a pain and, as far as I know, no Nvidia user fixed his problem using it. 

Prince Lex

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Well I used to have an nVidia card and I didn't have a problem using the launcher, but I do understand your frustration.

Ash

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Oh, using the Launcher is easy as pie. It's just that while most add-ons (publish.dll, for instance) work perfectly fine, dx_hook.dll does jack strawberries for me.

Jaitsu

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i guess all you can do my friend is use aali's driver, then play around with it, try different settings

Goku7

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As for Aali's driver, it's not how to use it that I don't understand, but the different settings that I can modify in ff8_opengl.cfg. I don't get how any of them could get rid of the black blocks, and even then, last time I couldn't even test them because of an error message I would get when trying to activate FF8.exe.

It's not the options that would get rid of the black blocks, its more like the driver would solve that problem innately.  IMO, modern cards don't quite understand what FF8's DX6 driver is telling them to do, so that results in them doing it wrong -- in this case, the black box stuff.  Aali's driver should be able to tell the cards what to do using more modern commands/language that the Geforces and Radeons of today actually understand, so that there's less lost in translation.

Of course, Aali's still working on the FF8 portion of the driver, so its not perfect yet.  But if his performance with the FF7 portion is any indication, its that he knows what he's doing and will eventually get it to display everything the game needs displayed, and more.
« Last Edit: 2010-04-13 09:16:45 by Goku7 »

Ash

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You people are convincing. Alright, I'll give it a new shot.

Just one question though: do I need to get the FF8 configurator first? It seems to be an important step in the "Enhancing thread, but I don't know what it does and how to install it -- there is no "Read me" in the .zip file.

Ash

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Well guys, sorry for doubting you: I didn't get an error message this time and Aali's driver fixed the problem perfectly!

Thanks a lot for your help. It's a good thing I didn't lose all those hours in vain.


Goku7

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You're welcome.  :-D

As for the new configurator, that really only affects the music end of the game -- it's there so you have more control over what music sets you want used, what DLS files to use (DLS = Microsoft's version of soundfonts), and which MIDI device you want used -- in addition to allowing you to preview your choices using the built-in music player.