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Thread: What's Going On? A technical thread.

  1. #151
    Hedgehog-in-Training Hedgehog-in-TrainingRoad Rasher
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kamahl View Post
    Yeah Quod Init Exit is... hmm... interesting. The original game was a gorgeous looking single screen platformer where you had to eat as much as possible and then rush to the toilet... so... yeah. Gas propelled pig.

    Honestly, it's amazing how great and clean that looks. I would have never guessed that was a C64 game! C64 games have always had this "muddy" look to them haha (part of the charm).

  2. #152
    Road Rasher Folco's Avatar
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    A few other rather nice effects:

    Gambare Goemon 3


    R-Type 3:


    Mega Man X:

  3. #153
    Raging in the Streets Sik's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Folco View Post
    Super Mario RPG had similar but better looking pixels fading effect:


    I don't know if it is an animation or done real.time.
    My guess is real time. Super Mario RPG has a SA-1 coprocessor, which is essentially an overclocked 65816 (it runs at 3x the speed of the console's own 65816). It also has a bitmap-to-tiles converter apparently, which definitely would make software rendering much easier to achieve.

    A better question may be what does Chrono Trigger do in the racing segments (which has scaled sprites), since as far as I know that game doesn't have any coprocessors and the SNES can't scale sprites, only one background :​P (though it only needs to scale two sprites that aren't very large, so maybe it isn't a big deal)

    Which reminds me!



    Miniplanets generates scaled up versions of all the letters when it's loading the title screen (turns out there's enough VRAM for this). It throws away the scaled variants once the animation is over (the menu graphics stomp on the VRAM space they took up).

  4. #154
    Road Rasher Folco's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sik View Post
    My guess is real time. Super Mario RPG has a SA-1 coprocessor, which is essentially an overclocked 65816 (it runs at 3x the speed of the console's own 65816). It also has a bitmap-to-tiles converter apparently, which definitely would make software rendering much easier to achieve.

    A better question may be what does Chrono Trigger do in the racing segments (which has scaled sprites), since as far as I know that game doesn't have any coprocessors and the SNES can't scale sprites, only one background :​P (though it only needs to scale two sprites that aren't very large, so maybe it isn't a big deal)

    Which reminds me!



    Miniplanets generates scaled up versions of all the letters when it's loading the title screen (turns out there's enough VRAM for this). It throws away the scaled variants once the animation is over (the menu graphics stomp on the VRAM space they took up).
    It's software based shrinking and it works well because the sprites to shrink are small.
    Tales of Phantasia (ghost out of a treasure chest) and Star Ocean (on items dropped in the battlefield) utilize the same technique.

    BattleToads on NES did the same in the intro (look at the spaceship):
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Nz86ZslDALA

  5. #155
    Road Rasher Folco's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sik View Post
    I'm more interested on the field being mode 7. We joke about games with mode 7 gimmicks but there didn't seem to be many games built around it outside racing games (Pilotwings is the first big exception that comes to mind).
    A rather unique (in term of genre) Mode 7 usage was in Ballz:
    https://i.imgur.com/3ydUcft.gif

    (post only the link since it's a big gif)

  6. #156
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    Quote Originally Posted by Folco View Post
    Super Mario RPG had similar but better looking pixels fading effect:


    I don't know if it is an animation or done real.time.
    This effect is doing more than just particles. There's a point (vertical strip across the logo) where the logo starts to swell up before it bursts into particles - as it's going across the logo. It's technically more impressive and it looks better than SM RPG (which is just particles).

    I looked at Ken Griffy Jr in a debugger.. each pixel is a sprite. There you go haha. An excuse to use 128 entries at 8x8 sprites (actually ~120 sprites). The bar/swelling line is using some sort of exploitation color blend mode, with a window reg being adjust to clip the bg logo as it runs over it.
    Last edited by turboxray; 05-29-2020 at 12:02 AM.

  7. #157
    Outrunner EPSYLON EAGLE's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Folco View Post
    Super Mario RPG had similar but better looking pixels fading effect:


    I don't know if it is an animation or done real.time.
    It seems similar to this effect achieved in Puggsy


    In fact, i think this one is more impressive, it is ingame.

  8. #158
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    Quote Originally Posted by Folco View Post
    A few other rather nice effects:

    Gambare Goemon 3


    R-Type 3:


    Mega Man X:
    I'm not sure what Goemon does, it looks like mode 7 but there are multiple background layers below it. Can you switch background modes mid-raster without affecting anything? That's my guess, but it could also just do the bridge in sprites.
    Mega Man X could have the bubble in a background layer, with different positioning mid raster to get that effect.
    R-Type just changes the background position mid raster as well.

    Darius Gaiden (arcade/Saturn) also does this to render an entire pipe. The arcade original also has extra palette effects on the pipe to make it look twice as good, but this effect is missing in emulators and on every other port:

    The mametesters page has a video of each effect:
    https://mametesters.org/view.php?id=1923
    https://mametesters.org/view.php?id=1921

  9. #159
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    Quote Originally Posted by zyrobs View Post
    I'm not sure what Goemon does, it looks like mode 7 but there are multiple background layers below it. Can you switch background modes mid-raster without affecting anything?
    Mid-screen, per scanline basis, you can change to whatever video mode. It doesn't get pixelated though, and the clouds change colors as it gets closer to the camera. I figured a looping animation with an hscroll effect.
    Last edited by turboxray; 05-29-2020 at 01:30 AM.

  10. #160
    WCPO Agent segarule's Avatar
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    I would like know more about SMS colors. Master System can display 32 colors at once but "It is possible to display all 64 colors at once using raster effects" (Wikipedia)
    We know that it is used in Sonic (See Labyrinth zone). Which others games in SMS display more than 32 colors via raster effects?
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    Raging in the Streets Sik's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by zyrobs View Post
    I'm not sure what Goemon does, it looks like mode 7 but there are multiple background layers below it. Can you switch background modes mid-raster without affecting anything? That's my guess, but it could also just do the bridge in sprites.
    Yeah, you can switch modes mid-screen (HDMA makes it really easy). This is how most mode 7 games handle the sky actually (the sky being a different mode, usually mode 1).

  12. #162
    Hero of Algol Kamahl's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by segarule View Post
    I would like know more about SMS colors. Master System can display 32 colors at once but "It is possible to display all 64 colors at once using raster effects" (Wikipedia)
    We know that it is used in Sonic (See Labyrinth zone). Which others games in SMS display more than 32 colors via raster effects?
    No clue, but now you made me wonder if it works like the Mega Drive and causes dots to appear on the screen. Hopefully one of the more knowledgeable members will know. On the Mega Drive you can get away with 1-2 colors per line while leaving the glitched colors outside the visible area. The SMS I don't know.

    On the NES doing palette swaps is apparently super hard. The lack of interrupts is a big problem for one but changing the palettes requires disabling the graphics and very careful timing or the picture gets all out of whack or the sprites don't display. Disabling the graphics for a line or two would have been nice for water effects or HUDs with extra colors not shared with the rest of the game.

    Can you disable and re-enable the graphics display for a single line on the MD/SMS? Examples of what it would look like:

    https://youtu.be/Yn6YR3uGFWg?t=1065
    https://youtu.be/BKH3LpLWAzo?t=450
    Last edited by Kamahl; 05-29-2020 at 08:34 AM.

  13. #163
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    Quote Originally Posted by turboxray View Post
    Mid-screen, per scanline basis, you can change to whatever video mode. It doesn't get pixelated though, and the clouds change colors as it gets closer to the camera. I figured a looping animation with an hscroll effect.
    It may be mode 7 with size reduction, from 1x to 0.5x, then every pixel will be the size of the screen at most and it's less likely to get pixelated.
    But it could also be just pre-baked animation.

  14. #164
    Raging in the Streets Sik's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kamahl View Post
    On the NES doing palette swaps is apparently super hard. The lack of interrupts is a big problem for one but changing the palettes requires disabling the graphics and very careful timing or the picture gets all out of whack or the sprites don't display. Disabling the graphics for a line or two would have been nice for water effects or HUDs with extra colors not shared with the rest of the game.
    The problem is that the NES internally uses the PPU address to keep track of what's being rendered (the same PPU address that the CPU uses to write to VRAM/CRAM), so you can't really write anything during active scan without changing what ends up on screen. For added mess, the PPU address also doubles as the coarse scroll value, so during vblank when you're doing all your video writes you must make sure that the scroll position comes last (changing scroll mid-screen is obviously doable as lots of games do it, but it's more tricky than just writing new values to the scroll register).

    That didn't stop some people from trying mid-screen palette changes on the NES tho:
    http://wiki.nesdev.com/w/index.php/P...ange_mid_frame

    As for Master System (and Game Gear for that matter): it's the same situation as on Mega Drive really. Not just the way video accesses work, there's also a proper hblank interrupt (though it's the same as vblank so you waste some more time to acknowledge) and you can adjust every how many lines it fires (so you don't need to hog the Z80 with lots of useless interrupts you won't need). If you don't see it being done more often it's because not many developers felt like doing it :​P

    Sonic Blast on Game Gear actually uses it for the sky gradient and water background in the first zone (and then Tectoy broke the effect in the Master System port, good job). That same zone also has a full blown palette swap when you go underwater. See 0:53 here for the sky:


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