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Re: Improving Original JA2 graphics – Sprite[message #180753] Thu, 10 April 2008 21:45 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Lt.Havoc

 
Messages:34
Registered:April 2006
Location: Germany

Well, I
Re: Improving Original JA2 graphics [message #180761] Thu, 10 April 2008 22:25 Go to previous messageGo to next message
lisac

 
Messages:92
Registered:July 2006
Location: Austria
I have tried to contact CNC_gun, but he's not responding... Probably too busy in RL.

I guess BirdFlu scratched the surface of the problem with the graphic formats in JA2, congratulations for a good work (although it's just begin)!

I'm not a programmer (yeah, just a modder like the scorpion), but according to the complexity of the JSD files just presented, I'd say the parts of the graphic engine controlling them is just as complex as the files themselves (just a guess, of course). I mean, all those flags must be properly used and controlled, right? The good news is that we know more about the way JA2 draws and controls graphics than before.

I'll see if I can fork out a SVN branch for you BirdFlu, so you can keep working on your experiments and keep in touch with the public at the same time Wink
Re: Improving Original JA2 graphics [message #180764] Thu, 10 April 2008 22:43 Go to previous messageGo to next message
BirdFlu

 
Messages:451
Registered:September 2007
Location: Lampukistan
OK, here are the files
http://www.plunder.com/xml-structure-files-download-125609.htm

Quote:
I'll see if I can fork out a SVN branch for you BirdFlu, so you can keep working on your experiments and keep in touch with the public at the same time

Well, i'm not working on THE code. I am pulling files or classes or functions that i need from the 1.13 project and put them in an own project(, that is far away from being a game).
So i try keep the size of the project small and manageable, but with the latest additions it seems that i partially failed my intentions.


Re: Improving Original JA2 graphics [message #180766] Thu, 10 April 2008 22:52 Go to previous messageGo to next message
the scorpion

 
Messages:1844
Registered:September 2004
Location: CH
BirdFlu

Build01.jsd and Fence.jsd have both StructureData and AuxImageData. I will not post the contents of these files,
as they would look like the examples above just with different values, but i can upload all files somewhere so that
everyone can take a look at them.



okay. things start to fall together in place due to those enlightening comments. current editors probably work only for jsd that exclusivly contains structure data.

auximagedata is in that case everything that has to do with graphic frame dependencies within the same jsd. Every complex or animated jsd probably has them

i guess they will be the key for deciphering the more advanced jsd files and i'm very glad birdFlu is tackling those issues.

Lisac

i think that the impact that jsd's have on actual graphics is limited. Basicly the structuredata only jsd's have almost no impact on the graphics except for the destruction partner graphic (which can be edited using existing editors)

AuxImageData files however feature interdependencies and "rules" between graphics of the same file

Usually, these dependencies are quite clear, but also very complicated, especially when it comes to building compounds (animated graphics, switches and doors (trees? tees as well i think) are usually quite evident, first is the close door, then the slightly open door, then the wide open door etc.)

however, many a graphic designer might want to be able to tweak how many frames his animated tile has, what relations between the different frames there are etc.

there are still many ugly limitations in the tile engine itself, so there's another key issue there. I think chrisL was already scratching these issues when trying to add an Mdp4items file.

also, if you have alook at the tilesets/0 folder, you'll see plenty of files that would help modmakers/ designers to add things, and you can easily figure that more control over those, and addition of more such files could dramatically add to what's there right now.

for example, the destruction partner graphics for destroyed tiles currently are simply a multipage of graphics. If we'd just add a .JSD file to them, we could far better simulate the destruction of generic objects.

See, the auximagedata files often contain rules as to what happesn to them if destroyed.

the structuredata only files on the other hand, only feature such a "debris" graphic of choice with no structuredata reamining once the object is destroyed.
now imagine what happens if we could add structuredata to the objects that get generated when another object is destroyed. We could for example have a generic object like a pillar turn not to dust but into a smaller pillar. and then that pillar could fall into a bunch of rubble is destroyed and only once this bits are pulverized, there will be no more structure data.

if auximagedata entries can do such, maybe their functionality can be used for a HUGELY more interactive map design.

but this example is from the tile engine itself. Another example would be added bullet holes and blood decals on walls.

but i stray off the topic. I guess when it comes to a more versatile engine, the auximagedata section and the functions in there could hold blueprints for very interesting things to be achieved.






Re: Improving Original JA2 graphics [message #180776] Fri, 11 April 2008 00:04 Go to previous messageGo to next message
BirdFlu

 
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Registered:September 2007
Location: Lampukistan
I was looking into the AUXIMAGEDATA files. The "AuxObjectData" sections are referencing "RelTileLoc" sections via "usTileLocIndex",
but if you want to find any specific section, you have to count them. So i thought i could add an explicit index number to the "RelTileLoc" sections.
These indices are not explicitely stored in the actual jsd files, but they could really help to find the correct referenced sections.
What do you guys think?

Edit : I am 100% sure that "usTileLocIndex"-values are actually references, as not all numbers between 0 and valueof(usTileLocIndex) appear in the file.
But the are some modifications in the code that change the value of mentioned variable, so maybe then all 'RelTileLoc's can/will be referenced.
Anyway, could someone confirm that my assumptions are valid?

[Updated on: Fri, 11 April 2008 00:36] by Moderator


Re: Improving Original JA2 graphics [message #183588] Wed, 30 April 2008 23:21 Go to previous messageGo to next message
lisac

 
Messages:92
Registered:July 2006
Location: Austria
Time to bring this topic back to life.

I received a PM from PFM a few minutes ago. He recommends using different animation sets for different weapons, in other words using existing sprites, just adding them extra animation set(s) depending on the weapon they're using. I've been thinking about this possibility for two weeks, but didn't want to post anything about it before I do some calculations...

Speaking of those, I think the new animation sets would bring more "weight" to the current graphical content, extending it to hundreds of MBs of data. Although this shouldn't be much of a problem today, I guess it's worth mentioning as a drawback.

The greatest advantage would be coding this feature, since the current graphic engine should be forced to "switch" between animations (sets, respectively) according to the weapon equipped, which is far away easier than adapting it to represent layered sprites...

Oh, one more question: any restrictions in the filenames? Can we use more than 8 chars for the filenames (highly recommended feature for adding extra animation sets)?
Re: Improving Original JA2 graphics [message #183591] Wed, 30 April 2008 23:33 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Khor1255

 
Messages:1834
Registered:August 2003
Location: Pleasantville, NJ
Thanx for bringing this one back up man.


My first question is would it be possible to implement one layer at a time?


For instance, if we could start with different weapon classes being illustrated differently I think this would go a long way towards

a) improving the look and feel of the game (it blows when you can't see a difference between an smg and a long rifle)
b) add enough interest to get momentum rolling on the rest of this excellent idea.


I have a feeling the first task might be to remove all weapon illustration from some existing sprites so you can use the same sprite to hold an smg, a rifle and a long rifle.


Whatever the weight, I think this idea has so much potential it is worth it.


And you are right, todays computers will hardly bat an ion at the increased weight. Still, every effort should be made to streamline animations if for no other reason than to speed up the end product.
Re: Improving Original JA2 graphics [message #183592] Wed, 30 April 2008 23:35 Go to previous messageGo to next message
the scorpion

 
Messages:1844
Registered:September 2004
Location: CH
the scorpion


http://img54.imageshack.us/img54/6656/longguntypesja9.png


it deals with different long (two-handed) weapon animations

from left to right:

1. AK, 2. Submachinegun (e.g. MP5), 3. bullpup assault rifle (e.g. FAMAS, 4. Shotgun (note larger muzzle flash), 5. sniper rifle with scope (maybe like the M24), 6. GPMG (could be a PKM or such)



just think the coat wasn't there ;-D

Lisac

i think you shouldn't think about "all" animations necessary for new weapon classes. If you think of a typical battle, there is only a few animations that are used often and that focus on the gun, these are limited to basicly shooting, standing idle and running/ walking.

The weapons in most other animations are not very prominent and wouldn't be shown much in battles so for a long time, placholder could be used there.
Re: Improving Original JA2 graphics [message #183599] Thu, 01 May 2008 00:02 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Khor1255

 
Messages:1834
Registered:August 2003
Location: Pleasantville, NJ
With the layered idea we don't even need whole new sets of full animations. Most of the frame would be background colour so I think the files would be smaller than each animation they effect anyway.

But in any event, with layers you can make this happen a lot faster.


@scorp

I had not seen those before.

They look very cool.
Re: Improving Original JA2 graphics [message #183600] Thu, 01 May 2008 00:04 Go to previous messageGo to next message
PFM

 
Messages:22
Registered:July 2006
Location: Czech Republic
I would start with weapons first because there isn't too many animations compared to "normal behaviour"(walk, run, breath etc.) And on the other hand we could see result, if it worth trying to - "can you see difference at current resolution?"

but first thing first - is here a coder or coderess Very Happy for answering a few questions?
Re: Improving Original JA2 graphics [message #183602] Thu, 01 May 2008 00:10 Go to previous messageGo to next message
PFM

 
Messages:22
Registered:July 2006
Location: Czech Republic
Khor1255
With the layered idea we don't even need whole new sets of full animations. Most of the frame would be background colour so I think the files would be smaller than each animation they effect anyway.

But in any event, with layers you can make this happen a lot faster.


we all know that but layers would involve a lot of coding. I can't do it. Can someone else?
Re: Improving Original JA2 graphics [message #183606] Thu, 01 May 2008 00:19 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Khor1255

 
Messages:1834
Registered:August 2003
Location: Pleasantville, NJ
Adding new animations also requires coding.

Besides, the game already/ sort of/ adds layers in the way it adds colours to sprites.

Maybe some borrowed code here?

In any event, something that can cut down on the workload is worth exploring.


Coders?
Re: Improving Original JA2 graphics [message #183608] Thu, 01 May 2008 00:23 Go to previous messageGo to next message
PFM

 
Messages:22
Registered:July 2006
Location: Czech Republic
Khor1255
Adding new animations also requires coding.


true! but I think it requires less coding than layers. But I never saw the source code so I may be wrong
Re: Improving Original JA2 graphics [message #183609] Thu, 01 May 2008 00:24 Go to previous messageGo to next message
the scorpion

 
Messages:1844
Registered:September 2004
Location: CH
pfm

think of it: there are many weapon classes and there are 3 bodytypes

we can do at least 3 different sets of animations before anything is redundant (truly needs to be added by code)

e.g. big male --> shotgun , female ---> submachinegun , Normal male --> sniper

(just examples)

then there are shooting stances, brth stances and running stances, 3 times, standing, crouched, prone... there could be a lot of work done before any coding is involved to "add" things.

(assuming we're ready to overwrite the default anims for the time being)

yes, one question was raised, seeing much of a difference at higher resolutions:

to be honest, only the frames where the weapon is shown straight (see my above examples) allow for a lot of detail to clearly show what weapon class we use.
but difference between submachinegun and sniper rifles for example will be nicely visible in 800x600



let's assume that work is done without layers first because no coder has expressed interest in adding it yet. If layers would be added later, maybe the "non-weapon" part of the pictures that were made without layer system could still be erased?

i mean the new weapons must be drawn anyway, whether there's a merc around it or not... doesn't seem to be that important at first sight...
Re: Improving Original JA2 graphics [message #183611] Thu, 01 May 2008 00:31 Go to previous messageGo to next message
lisac

 
Messages:92
Registered:July 2006
Location: Austria
the scorpion
i think you shouldn't think about "all" animations necessary for new weapon classes. If you think of a typical battle, there is only a few animations that are used often and that focus on the gun, these are limited to basicly shooting, standing idle and running/ walking.

The weapons in most other animations are not very prominent and wouldn't be shown much in battles so for a long time, placholder could be used there.


Right, exactly my thoughts... However, adding a few armor variations to each merc (F,S,M) could cause the ANIMS directory to get really heavy.

Luckily for us, we don't need to add those right away. A few variations with weapons (like those you've shown in your previous post) would be a step forward and a definite improvement over the current system.

Now, we need a coder to answer a few simple questions...

1) 8-char filenames?
2) Switching the animation sets according to the currently equipped weapon?

P.S.
I'm about to make a female character next week and try to rig it (prepare it for animations). The next goal would be remaking the original female sprites using the current "sprite colored by palette" system... Let's see what can be done with it Wink
Re: Improving Original JA2 graphics [message #183613] Thu, 01 May 2008 00:35 Go to previous messageGo to next message
PFM

 
Messages:22
Registered:July 2006
Location: Czech Republic
the scorpion
pfm

think of it: there are many weapon classes and there are 3 bodytypes

we can do at least 3 different sets of animations before anything is redundant (truly needs to be added by code)

e.g. big male --> shotgun , female ---> submachinegun , Normal male --> sniper


I am aware of that. there are pistols, SMG, shotguns, rifles(assualt and normal), sniper rifles and LMG. That's 6 times (stand, crounch, lie) times (idle, walk, run(only stand), hit, shoot, jump, climb, water etc) So we come with 6 x 3 x 6 for the begining and in 8 directions = 6 x 3 x 6 x 8 equals 864 animations. Am I right? :gaga: Or am I crazy? :crazy:

probably both :placard:
Re: Improving Original JA2 graphics [message #183616] Thu, 01 May 2008 01:00 Go to previous messageGo to next message
the scorpion

 
Messages:1844
Registered:September 2004
Location: CH
that's discouraging PFM ;-/

now mulltiply this 864 with 13 average animation frame number and you get an approximation of what the workload would look like ;-D



but then, it has to be taken with a grain of salt: "getting hit" doesn't show a weapon, jumping doesn't show a weapon, swimming doesn't show a weapon, climbing and dying (these anims are sometimes over 200 very detailed frames long) don't use a weapon etc.

this is why doing a complete set of weapons is easier than a complete set of armour

yet armour, as well as weapons, doesn't matter in each and every situation.

e.g. when your character sleeps, when your character dies, climbs or falls from a roof, there's little need to show armour.
maybe we could up some examples. Like in my screenshot, it's a black hat and a coat ;-D

Lisac:

i see good potential in using palettes. Do you remember my suggestion to have palettes from armour only apply to the bodypart where they are worn?

e.g. pants to the "pants" part, vests to the "vest/ shirt" part and headgear on the haircolor (lacking anything better)

this would allow to combine 4 camo patterns with 3 bodypart in many different ways.

armour class could also be shown by camouflage pattern/ colour ;-D

i mean every char has colors defined for bodyparts, so i should not be sooo tricky to have camo defined by the bodypart as well. it would in fact even make a lot of sense.
Re: Improving Original JA2 graphics [message #183636] Thu, 01 May 2008 09:35 Go to previous messageGo to next message
PFM

 
Messages:22
Registered:July 2006
Location: Czech Republic
Khor1255
Adding new animations also requires coding.

Besides, the game already/ sort of/ adds layers in the way it adds colours to sprites.

Maybe some borrowed code here?

In any event, something that can cut down on the workload is worth exploring.

Coders?


yes, it does! but somewhere in the source code there have to be part of the code that should look like this:(translated from C langueage Smile )

1. merc doesn't have weapon in his hands - use animations without weapon
2. ooh look, merc has weapon in his hands - use animations with weapon

now from my point of view we could modify these lines(easily? :whoknows: ) this way:

1. don't change anything
2a. ooh look, merc has weapon type8 in his hands(shotgun) - use type8 animations(animations with shotgun)
2b. ooh look, merc has weapon type3 in his hands(SMG) - use type3 animations(animations with SMG)

problem - I don't know how the code handles animations. Does anybody? :help: Maybe it involves a lot of coding(pointing engine to every animation). How about externalizing it?

weapon types are already defined in the code(or externalized). So in my opinion it's easier to do it that to code layers. Although layers are more comfortable and I don't have any problem with layers.

[Updated on: Thu, 01 May 2008 09:43] by Moderator

Re: Improving Original JA2 graphics [message #183643] Thu, 01 May 2008 13:27 Go to previous messageGo to next message
the scorpion

 
Messages:1844
Registered:September 2004
Location: CH
other examples i drew some time ago

http://img212.imageshack.us/img212/3269/bodyandguntypessh5.png

(s merc sniper, f merc SWAT, M merc firing supressed Mac-10/ Uzi)

one problem is the lack of detail in S_merc and F_merc. The anims of those bodytpyes often appear a bit "washed" compared to the M_merc that i'm used to.

Re: Improving Original JA2 graphics [message #183658] Thu, 01 May 2008 15:20 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Khor1255

 
Messages:1834
Registered:August 2003
Location: Pleasantville, NJ
@pfm

You could always do your full animations then later wash the bodytype out with the background colour to make the layer.



A coder should really chime in here and let us know if these is any interest.
Re: Improving Original JA2 graphics [message #183669] Thu, 01 May 2008 17:03 Go to previous messageGo to next message
the scorpion

 
Messages:1844
Registered:September 2004
Location: CH
for how long has the thread been active before?

how much coder feedback did it get?



i think whoever has the lead on the idea (Lisac i think) would have to individually contact the coders.

i only know that bugmonster managed to implement custom animations in ja2005 and 1.13. if he's not around, there's probably nobody who has taken a lot of research into the animation engine.
Re: Improving Original JA2 graphics [message #183697] Thu, 01 May 2008 21:18 Go to previous messageGo to next message
BallerDave

 
Messages:74
Registered:April 2008
Location: Ze land of ze sheep, Dubl...

heyy, here comes the modder noob (who actually doesnt mod at all)

i really REALLY aprreciate what u guys are trying to do here and i admire the amount of work ur putting into it. i would help if i had any idea of how this works. anyway if i may make a liitle suggestion?

i find it wierd the way the mercs are supposed to wear armors or helmets, but only have these shirts on?! maybe (doesnt really have to be a new set of textures for every type of armor) u guys cud try to develop generic textures to show that they are wearing armor (and what would really be WHACK is if they wore ghuille suit). anyway, its just a small observation, i personally think it would be a great addition.
Re: Improving Original JA2 graphics [message #183712] Thu, 01 May 2008 23:52 Go to previous messageGo to next message
PFM

 
Messages:22
Registered:July 2006
Location: Czech Republic
lisac

1) 8-char filenames?
2) Switching the animation sets according to the currently equipped weapon?


I AM NOT A CODER but looking into source code, I can tell for 100% sure that:
1) yes, there is a limit for 8-char filenames right now
2) yes. the code is checking if merc has a gun, if the gun is twohanded and if he has two pistols in his hands

I looked into the code for 5 minutes to figure this out. I don't see ANY DIFFICULTIES in adding addtional types of animations, although I AM NOT A CODER
(I have little to know experience with scripts and macros and functions in excell Very Happy )

EDIT: grammar, grammar, grammar

[Updated on: Thu, 01 May 2008 23:52] by Moderator

Re: Improving Original JA2 graphics [message #183716] Fri, 02 May 2008 00:03 Go to previous messageGo to next message
PFM

 
Messages:22
Registered:July 2006
Location: Czech Republic
PFM
1) yes, there is a limit for 8-char filenames right now
2) yes. the code is checking if merc has a gun, if the gun is twohanded and if he has two pistols in his hands


mmm, looking into animation folder - there are animations with longer names M_SHOEDUST.sti for example. So I am wrong on the first one. But take a look at this:
define MAX_ANIMATIONS 320
This should mean we can onyl have 320 animations? Am I right this time?
Re: Improving Original JA2 graphics [message #183751] Fri, 02 May 2008 04:56 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Berserk00644
Messages:8
Registered:March 2008
maybe we should work on other anims for starters, like maybe one new death animation for a knife attack to neck... if we did it from all 8 directions at lets say 13 frames or so thats 8x3x13 = 312 thats alot less then the 800 or so above... then if its easy to add into the game, then we could work on adding all the guns...

imho it seems like to much work to make all these gun animations if nobody wants to even see if they can add them.

dont get me wrong i think it would be great to add them and armor, but maybe baby steps is the way to go with this project.
Re: Improving Original JA2 graphics – Sprite[message #183756] Fri, 02 May 2008 06:37 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Mauser

 
Messages:799
Registered:August 2006
Location: Bavaria - Germany
another good and useful animation that shouldn

☆★GL★☆
Re: Improving Original JA2 graphics – Sprite[message #183757] Fri, 02 May 2008 06:48 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Mauser

 
Messages:799
Registered:August 2006
Location: Bavaria - Germany
another comparatively easy thing to do would be a binocular animation and pose.

a derivation of the weapon rising animation, one handed. lifting the binocs to the face, then scanning the horizon left to right just like with the gun.

right now, when using the binocs nothing happens animation wise. which is odd, because you often don

☆★GL★☆
Re: Improving Original JA2 graphics [message #183768] Fri, 02 May 2008 11:00 Go to previous messageGo to next message
PFM

 
Messages:22
Registered:July 2006
Location: Czech Republic
Berserk00644
maybe we should work on other anims for starters, like maybe one new death animation for a knife attack to neck... if we did it from all 8 directions at lets say 13 frames or so thats 8x3x13 = 312 thats alot less then the 800 or so above... then if its easy to add into the game, then we could work on adding all the guns...

imho it seems like to much work to make all these gun animations if nobody wants to even see if they can add them.

dont get me wrong i think it would be great to add them and armor, but maybe baby steps is the way to go with this project.


do you know how to make those animations? OR can you make them? Making them IS ENDLESS AMOUNT OF WORK!!! doing them pixel-by-pixel is worthless because you will spend weeks maybe months by making one animation in one direction.

other problem is implementation. adding NEW types of animation is a trisky one! (what the hell is trisky???? :gaga: maybe RISKY and TRICKY in the same time Very Happy ) you need to define new animation and conditions which must be meet to use NEW animation. For example new "death-to-wall" animation. conditions:
1. must be played instead of "back death" animation
2. must be played only when WALL is behind the merc
3. I DON'T KNOW how is wall defined in the source code - is it the same as any "obstacle"?
3a. is WALL equal to ROCK? you don't want to play "bouncing of the wall" animation when merc hit rocks behind him with his legs, do you?
4. are death animations played random? (well they are played in right direction, but any other conditions?) I DON'T KNOW
and so on - more questions than answers

adding guns animations is easier!
1. we have all the animations we need - the only thing we need to do is "swap" M4/M16 style weapon with different one (AK style like Scorpion)
2. engine is already testing what kind of weapon merc holds in his hands. ADDing another types of "weapons"(I should say items, binoculars aren't a weapon, right? Wink ) should be easy - I can try it by "watch and learn plus trials&errors" approach but I won't have much time next 1 or 2 months - university studies...

so I vote for additional weapon animations(ONE or TWO for the beginning - we can use scorpions BIG_MALE_AK and test it) unless we FIND A CODER who will take a look at animation part. I haven't found him yet!

binoculars...I was thinking about it. BUT(!!!!): how you will make those animations? lisac is trying to make animation by 2D->3D->2D approach(we need to have the same animation, not different one for weapons, differrent one for binoculars, different one for death etc) but I don't know how far he is. We can even change whole animations for new one, BUT WHO WILL MAKE THEM?

EDIT: grammar...

[Updated on: Fri, 02 May 2008 11:06] by Moderator

Re: Improving Original JA2 graphics [message #183772] Fri, 02 May 2008 11:32 Go to previous messageGo to next message
the scorpion

 
Messages:1844
Registered:September 2004
Location: CH
interestingly, there is a dilemma between

a) adding single new movements/ actions to the game that need new anims

like suggested in several threads e.g. here

http://www.ja-galaxy-forum.com/board/ubbthreads.php?ubb=showflat&Number=127403&page=1#Post182314

which would require a lot of unique new code

and
b) what is suggested in this thread where in similar ways as the existing code works just new anims, not new functionality should be added (where tons of new anims and still a lot of new, but not-so-specially-unique code is required)


personally i think either option provides quite some cool stuff. Either option seems hard to do.

--> dilemma



disadvantages

bloating filesize itself doesn't seem big an issue these days... but imagine we actually did the new weapon stuff. If then, a new movement is added, if it is with a gun, it would require 8 times as much work as it would now to completely add it.

so this is actually a very tricky issue overall, game-development wise.
maybe we should comfort ourselves to offering alternative animations first before we want to have them added to the game and see what we can come up with.

i'm especially curious as to the detail level that good artists like Lisac can achieve, especially for the smaller bodytpye animations. (you've seen my examples, a mediocre artist like myself can't achieve a lot of detail very easily there... and it is only one of usually 112 frames there)
Re: Improving Original JA2 graphics – Sprite[message #183781] Fri, 02 May 2008 14:07 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Lt.Havoc

 
Messages:34
Registered:April 2006
Location: Germany

Well, what happend to the idea of using the FIFE graphic engine at all? Was that dropped all of a sudden or evlated that it wont fit the game? I mean, using the FIFE graphic engine might slove some of the problems you guys are currently facing.
Re: Improving Original JA2 graphics [message #183784] Fri, 02 May 2008 15:11 Go to previous messageGo to next message
lisac

 
Messages:92
Registered:July 2006
Location: Austria
Lt.Havoc
Well, what happend to the idea of using the FIFE graphic engine at all?

No human resources available.
Re: Improving Original JA2 graphics – Sprite[message #183791] Fri, 02 May 2008 16:10 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Lt.Havoc

 
Messages:34
Registered:April 2006
Location: Germany

Pardon? Can you elobrate that for me, please? We have a forum full of mebers and in this thread are a lot of people discussing the idea of improving the orginal graphics, so you cant really say that there arnt any human resources avalible. And if thats the case, you have to ask around and get some people intrested in it and the problem of resources gets sloved.
Re: Improving Original JA2 graphics – Sprite[message #183793] Fri, 02 May 2008 16:29 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Mauser

 
Messages:799
Registered:August 2006
Location: Bavaria - Germany
@ Lt.Havoc : how many of the posters here are really able coders and graphics artists? most of the people here, including myself, cannot contribute much to the developement at all. and those that can, often are also involved in other projects and sometimes have a real life and jobs too.

good and devoted coders and developers with plenty of free time are VERY rare indeed!

One thing the stable milestone release was meant for, is to attract more able devs and helpful human resources to this project.

that

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Re: Improving Original JA2 graphics – Sprite[message #183800] Fri, 02 May 2008 16:47 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Lt.Havoc

 
Messages:34
Registered:April 2006
Location: Germany

Well, what I trying to say was, that it is talked about how to improve the orginal, current graphics of JA2, wihch I think will take the same amount, if not more time then totally replacing the engine. I mean, every 2 or 3 posts I read how difficult it is to add new animations and whatnot and how the filesizes gets increased etc. and then wehn I say "People, why not use XYZ instead?" there is either no answer, or short answers like "No human resources avalibe". The whole thing wanst even discussed, no one of the devs even looked into the FIFE forums at all nor did anyone of the contacted the FIFE guys.

If you really dont like that idea, then just say it, say that my idea sucks ass and that I should go to hell, its that simple. There are more graphic artists and coders out there then you think, there are lots of forums where somone can ask around and get intrest in this project and whatnot, C and C+ are the standarts of game coding for years now, so you cant tell me there isnt a coder out there that dosent know about it.

I know they also have jobs and real life occupations, but thats typical for all modders out there and all mods. I dont know any single mod where the people are jobless bums that work 24h on it, so that isnt really the problem. With proper organisation and planning, the time issue can be sloved and no one says the coders and graphic artist have to work like slaves on it everyday in thier free time.

Yes, promotion of this project is a nessecary thing toi attract more people to it that can help imrpove the mod.
Re: Improving Original JA2 graphics [message #183802] Fri, 02 May 2008 16:52 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Kaerar

 
Messages:2090
Registered:January 2003
Location: Australia :D
Well regarding FIFE, I like the engine but earlier in the discussion the subject of an engine switch was ruled out basically cos of the issues of which engine and 2D/3D and how it wouldn't be JA2 any more. So even though it may help in the long run it isn't really a valid solution cos at the end of the day its 10 years old and if we were gonna use a new engine (with money and coders) you could use any number of far more advanced pieces of kit.


Re: Improving Original JA2 graphics – Sprite[message #183803] Fri, 02 May 2008 16:59 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Lt.Havoc

 
Messages:34
Registered:April 2006
Location: Germany

No one will ever pump any money into this, because that wouild mean you need a real development rteam and whatnot. This is a free mod, not a full scale game, so I soubt that this will ever get real professional. Also, who is able to license a good graphic engine that will cost you at least 10.000 Dollars and more? You can pretty much forget that, expect you are the son of Donald Trump and have cash to spend or something. And you wont be able to sutain such a project from donations alone.

A fre engine ala FIFE is the only avalible solution, expect improving the orginal graphics, wihch was pointed out, is a pain in the ass.
Re: Improving Original JA2 graphics [message #183809] Fri, 02 May 2008 17:13 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Khor1255

 
Messages:1834
Registered:August 2003
Location: Pleasantville, NJ
The only real pain in the ass is the ammount of frame by frame work you have to do to make an animation.

If you are saying fife somehow automates this process than perhaps it is worth looking into (provided we can still use the same physics engine). But even if we were to use a new graphics engine, t5ons of work would have to be redone.

Using the existing engine just means making the new animations (which we have people willing to do) and coding them in (which we get very little input and even less cooperation on).

But changing the whole imaging format would require massive ammounts of coding. Coding is the manpower we are in very short supply of.
Re: Improving Original JA2 graphics [message #183810] Fri, 02 May 2008 17:20 Go to previous messageGo to next message
the scorpion

 
Messages:1844
Registered:September 2004
Location: CH
discussing is fun, but moving a finger isn't huh?


meh, i can't code for shit, but i can tell you guys, modding gta4-to ja2 would solve all our problems forevah


i would be one thing if people that seriously can port ja2 to the FIFE engine would be suggesting and starting to do it, but looking as it is just the wet dream of a single forum person...

...what real chances are there?
Re: Improving Original JA2 graphics – Sprite[message #183811] Fri, 02 May 2008 17:25 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Mauser

 
Messages:799
Registered:August 2006
Location: Bavaria - Germany
guys, just think how much work and time have gone into 1.13 project until now just that we got to the point we are now.

what do you think will it take in terms of worktime to port over the comnplete 1.13 projet to another engine and then redoing most of the graphics and animations, so we get a real visible enhancement out of it?

can you imagine, how long that might take and how many people would have to work on this, which all need to be coordinated?

i just sincerely doubt, that this can be done with the ressources we have now at our disposal.

but if someone could find and assemble another dedicated coding and graphics team from somewhere...

i really think we should restrain ourselves to things that can be realistically done with our current resources.

and concerning FIFe engine, please also remember that FIFe itself is a project in developement status and far from being a complete and stable base to build a game on. could you imagine the chaos of 2 projects in constant change to be merged together?

also we

[Updated on: Fri, 02 May 2008 17:42] by Moderator


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Re: Improving Original JA2 graphics [message #183813] Fri, 02 May 2008 17:29 Go to previous messageGo to previous message
Khor1255

 
Messages:1834
Registered:August 2003
Location: Pleasantville, NJ
Moving a finger isn't? Are you talking about me?

I will not move anymore fingers animating things that will likely just end up on my hard drive like they've been for years now.

What's the point?

So I can post screenies of things that can't even function in game?

No thanx.

And when I do go to try to collaborate with some people - wink wink - there is often a pig headed reluctanct to do it any other way than EXACTLY the way the other guy wants to do it (on my own mod I have been guilty of this as well).

So if - for instance - I'm willing to collaborate on a set of long sleeved animations but the guy I work with does not want them to use the universal hot blue colour so they can take a variety of in game pallettes I lose interest.

If someone wants to do a few months worth of animating with no coder even saying they MIGHT finally make this work in game I am similarly not interested.

So until we hear from a willing coder this is all just talk. Interesting idea, but just talk.

But if you guys want to do all those animations, by all means do so. You may even catch the attention of a coder.
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