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 Advanced hex-editing techniques

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Orzie
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PostSubject: Re: Advanced hex-editing techniques   2016-03-08, 19:45

GodRage wrote:
Thank you very much ComputerPhreak, I will try myself to see if it can works for my project.  

Do you authorize me to use (on my website) the images you made by this way? (when I would use them, I'll thank you in the community page)
You can very well upscale the pictures by yourself, the algorithms are no secret. Wink

But from my point, upscaling pixel art with a method different than n-fold Nearest Neighbour is a bad taste, because it ruins the very definition of pixel art.


ComputerPhreak wrote:
You don't have to thank me or ask for my authorization, I don't own the images as they are I guess copyrighted to Ubisoft or whomever controls New World Computing's assets.

Just to clarify, I don't mind if you use them, but I can't promise anything about the legality of using them, since (from my understanding, at least) they are derived from copyrighted assets.

I wouldn't think Ubisoft is any threat if I were you. Simply put, nobody cares.

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PostSubject: Re: Advanced hex-editing techniques   2016-03-08, 21:19

ComputerPhreak wrote:
Map objects turn out much better:

Lol, with such technic we can prepare Heroes 2 HD at last Very Happy But don't tell it Ubi... There's still chance that they will sell rights to Heroes to some competent people
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PostSubject: Re: Advanced hex-editing techniques   2016-03-08, 21:36

This algorithm upscale was in fact used for Heroes 3 HD Edition as well, with some hand treatment.

This is one of the reasons I will never pay for it.

Quote :
These algorithms are all designed for pixel-art, and work because said art isn't really photo-realistic.  So for the intro screen, it won't produce a very good result:
But the main menu is not pixel art absolutely. Smile
And this is why upscaling works acceptably good there.

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Orzie
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PostSubject: Re: Advanced hex-editing techniques   2016-03-09, 04:07

Quote :
I just want to update you and everyone and note that I searched through the strings of my EDITOR2W.exe and did not find "NWC", but I did find "/PUR", and after trying it as an argument it has the effect that you described. I have no idea what it stands for, though.

With this command you are able to edit tiles in the map editor ("?" button).
Thanks to AlexSpl for info.


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PostSubject: Re: Advanced hex-editing techniques   2016-03-09, 08:30

Yeah maybe HeroesII HD can looks good... I'm not sure though.  

Omg I got an idea! What bout the Heroes II Fonts??? Very Happy Because actually we have only a 11px or 12px font.
Maybe it's just impossible? Or we have to extract letter by letters? Does fonts in 2016 can have alpha channel?confused  Honestly I don't know any about fonts making, but having a "good sized" Homm2 font would make all Homm2 websites looking much better!

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ComputerPhreak
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PostSubject: Re: Advanced hex-editing techniques   2016-03-10, 09:10

There are still some rendering errors, but this is what a "Heroes 2 HD" adventure map might look like:



(edited to change image host)
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PostSubject: Re: Advanced hex-editing techniques   2016-03-10, 10:05

Waaaa that's pretty good. Smile It change a little the style to be a little "comic/manga"'s taste.

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Sir Albe
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PostSubject: Re: Advanced hex-editing techniques   2016-03-10, 10:07

Impressive! Treasure chest look especially great to me!
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ComputerPhreak
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PostSubject: Re: Advanced hex-editing techniques   2016-03-10, 10:24

A couple of side-by-side comparisons:


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PostSubject: Re: Advanced hex-editing techniques   2016-03-10, 10:27

It really looks like what I imagine a possible H2 HD remaster would look like. Very impressive. I wonder what town screens and battles look like with this filter?
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PostSubject: Re: Advanced hex-editing techniques   2016-03-10, 10:59

Sir Albe wrote:
It really looks like what I imagine a possible H2 HD remaster would look like. Very impressive. I wonder what town screens and battles look like with this filter?

I have not tested it, but based on the poor results from the menu screen, I do not think town screens would see very good results with XBRz.

This is just a mock-up and has some visual errors, too, but the battle scenes would fare much better.  The backgrounds are kind of hit-or-miss (I picked this grass one because it turned out better than the desert one, for example), but the actual units and heroes look quite good, imo:
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ComputerPhreak
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PostSubject: Re: Advanced hex-editing techniques   2016-03-10, 19:12

I am experimenting with image interpolation to make the frame rate of creature animations smoother, but so far I am not having very good results. I got the idea from this post:
https://sourceforge.net/p/fheroes2/discussion/335991/thread/7681e297/
He seems to have pretty decent results with the druid death animation.

A good (imo) example of a scale-up:
XBR

XBRz
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PostSubject: Re: Advanced hex-editing techniques   2016-03-10, 20:02

It's not going to have a happy ending anyway. Using well-known algorithms is not a big deal, the problem is of another kind: all coordinates in HoMM2 are set as absolute numbers, so any possibility of H2 HD is less than unlikely.

Heroes 3 HD Mod by baratorch already uses algorithms - they work fine with 3D prerenders. But for pixel art it's looking ugly and soapy, in my opinion. So that I wouldn't even dream about H2 HD.

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PostSubject: Re: Advanced hex-editing techniques   2016-03-10, 21:37

I don't think I would want H2 HD to happen either, but it is quite interesting to see these sprites with this filter on.


Last edited by Sir Albe on 2016-08-11, 23:27; edited 1 time in total
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PostSubject: Re: Advanced hex-editing techniques   2016-03-11, 04:39

Orzie wrote:
all coordinates in HoMM2 are set as absolute numbers, so any possibility of H2 HD is less than unlikely.
Is that the real prblem? Very Happy
If my website was in absolute numbers and suddenly I make all graphics x4, I will most probably make a script to transform all numbers in it's x4 value... (starts by highter one or it will be mess) and then fixing some maybe...
it's not possible with C++?

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Darmani
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PostSubject: Re: Advanced hex-editing techniques   2016-03-14, 09:41

It would be easy if we knew which numbers corresponded to pixel values. There are a lot of numbers in the code, and most of them don't. Such is the way of working with decompiled code.
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PostSubject: Re: Advanced hex-editing techniques   2016-03-14, 09:58

Aww then yeah it will be difficult. I understand, thanks for your explanation Darmani! Smile

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PostSubject: Re: Advanced hex-editing techniques   2016-03-16, 16:35

I'm trying to learn a bit more about color cycling.  I read some info Orzie posted earlier
Quote :

The color cycling is an in-game feature. Simply put, if you place color 214, it will be put in a cycle automatically: 214-215-216-217-214-... etc. If you start from color 215, it will go in the game like 215-216-217-214-215-... etc. This is how Heroes 2 are programmed to cycle specific color indexes.

The same cycling order goes for other color ranges I mentioned (by 4 colors), but there is one additional range which don't follow that rule. It is the ocean/river/lake colors (231-237). I won't talk about it in this message because I'm in a hurry and this range is more tricky, but you can surely save this question for future if you will need to work with oceans/rivers/lakes.

Can you post the information about ocean/lake color cycling?

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PostSubject: Re: Advanced hex-editing techniques   2016-03-18, 17:15

I am still investigating. There are 8 colors for water, some of them are duplicated, and some of them are possibly excluded from the palette cycle. I will try to bring the final info soon.

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PostSubject: Re: Advanced hex-editing techniques   2016-03-18, 20:37

Hmmm, from what I have observed, there're two water cycles:
234-233-235-232-231

237-236

Plus one more cycle in a blue colour:

241-240-239-238

Also, 218-221 are cycling in yellow, and 242-245 are semi-tranclucent colours (but not cycling Razz).
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PostSubject: Re: Advanced hex-editing techniques   2016-03-19, 17:06

Maybe it's not so unlikely... Smile

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PostSubject: Re: Advanced hex-editing techniques   2016-03-19, 21:07

Oh, yeah! It's very promising Very Happy
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PostSubject: Re: Advanced hex-editing techniques   2016-03-19, 21:52

Orzie wrote:
I am still investigating.

Mein Gott!
I have described all that cycling in details a... year? ago. I also have used the cycles myself to reproduce animated pics for handbook.
What was wrong with that explanation?

Spoiler:
 

--
Vladimir

P.S. Excellent-looking upscales. Glad to see. Wink

P.P.S. Uhm has written the almost correct (I will check 5-cycle later) sequences of blue cycling two posts above.
Hm... 241-240-239-238 and 236-237 are surely right.
My sequence was 231-232-233-234-235. Uhm, are you sure about 232-234 switch reversed order with 235 inserted? For me it looks intricate.
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Orzie
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PostSubject: Re: Advanced hex-editing techniques   2016-03-20, 04:12

Quote :
Mein Gott!
I have described all that cycling in details a... year? ago. I also have used the cycles myself to reproduce animated pics for handbook.
What was wrong with that explanation?

I just needed to re-check myself to be absolutely sure. Bad habit Smile
P.S. Hello, Vladimir Very Happy

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PostSubject: Re: Advanced hex-editing techniques   2016-03-20, 09:31

Yup, now I also checked, it's 231-232-233-234-235. I was looking at the four-step cycling; the inverted order and simple colour clarifying was there, sorry for misleading Embarassed
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