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Would it be possible to add a 2x scaling mode to this mod?


Lorfean

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The Hi-Res patches for Fallout 1 and 2 offer an option for this, and I've found it very useful on larger panels with higher native resolutions.

I'm sure most of you will understand what I mean but, for clarity's sake -- when enabled, this option scales the entire game to exactly 200% of its size (so the minimum allowed resolution becomes 1280x960) and then allows the user to choose their desired resolution, seemlessy adjusting the game and interface elements to fit the chosen resolution without stretching or blurring anything. This "pure" 200% scaling of the games' graphics makes them look exactly like they would (and did) on our old CRT monitors back in the day... Pixelated, but *crisp*. Without any antialising or other blurring effects that always result from (for example) using scaling through your NVIDIA control panel.

There are several reasons why I liked this. Firstly, it solved the issue of the games' font size for me -- the font used throughout the games' UI becomes eye-wateringly small on higher resolutions, but with everything scaled to twice the size it became perfectly functional and readable again. Secondly, it felt much more like I was playing the game the way it was meant to be played. Moving through the world, and seeing only the parts of it the devs had originally intended for me to see in each screen, felt right. Having UI elements like the character sheet or the talking heads' dialog UI cover (almost) the entire screen increased my immersion. And so on...

Having just finished Icewind Dale 2 and currently playing Planescape: Torment, the G3 Widescreen mod has of course been invaluable in making those games look sharp and crisp on my flat panel, but with the increased screen size I have started to notice issues when playing these games on such high resolutions. Fonts can be replaced with larger fonts, yes, but icons and other UI elements can't and especially things like the inventory and shopping screens become very, very small these days. Also, having 50-75% of the in-game world covered in fog of war, with a (seemingly) small visible circle around your party kinda hurts immersion and just doesn't look all that great. On top of that, characters and monsters also become very small and some of the details get lost (admittedly, thanks to the lower camera position, this is not as much of a problem with PS:T yet).

I have no idea how easy or hard it would be to add this to the Widescreen mod, but point to the aforementioned Fallout mod for a great showcase of what it can add to these older games we are all still so enamoured with. In fact, DOSBox -- and, as a result, many GOG.com releases -- comes with a similar (but less flexible) funcionality as well, and I always use it when available. The DOSBox setting will usually result in black bars around my game, but they are a small trade off for having those crisp, old-fashioned graphics, instead of suffering through stretched and blurred versions of the games I used to know.

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Erhm scaling mod... can't you just divide the number you have at the base resolution by 2... so the 1920x1080 becomes 860x540. ???

Yeah, the problem comes from the monitor side.... as it won't probably be able to display in 860x540 mode.

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Um. I don't really understand. Did you just ask a question and then answered it too, without really addressing what I wrote about? No offense... I'm just confused.
Well, yes... but you do understand that you won't have to select the highest possible display resolution your monitor is able to display to view the game with, but you can choose any one of them you wish. As my native 1920x1200 monitor can display the game with either 800x600 res or 1024x768... there shouldn't be need for scaling up mod.

And to find out what resolutions you can set the monitor to is easiest from the Windows "Screen Resolution" interface.

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Yes, I know that, but when I pick any resolution that is lower than my flat panel's native 1920x1080 resolution -- let's say I pick 640x480 -- scaling will be handled by the scaling settings in my NVIDIA control panel in one of three ways:

  • [Aspect Ratio] The game will be stretched as much as possible to fit my display while mainting the aspect ratio of the chosen resolution (4:3 in this case), which will always result in ugly, blurry graphics and black bars.

  • [Full Screen] The game will be stretched to fit the entire display, ignoring aspect ratio, which will always result in ugly, blurry and horizontally stretched graphics.

  • [No Scaling] No scaling will be applied, the game will end up a tiny post stamp in a black sea, and everything appears the same tiny size as it would if I had chosen a 1920x1080 resolution in the Widescreen Mod.

I never use the first two options because I hate how blurry the graphics become. So I default to No Scaling, and what I am asking for is a mode that handles the scaling for me, like in the Fallout Hi-Res mods or DOSBox.

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[Aspect Ratio] The game will be stretched as much as possible to fit my display while mainting the aspect ratio of the chosen resolution (4:3 in this case), which will always result in ugly, blurry graphics and black bars.

[Full Screen] The game will be stretched to fit the entire display, ignoring aspect ratio, which will always result in ugly, blurry and horizontally stretched graphics.

You do understand that when you set the resolution via the desktop to say 1024x768 in a native 16:10 aspect ration monitor, the aspect ratio will be 16:10, and the two will become the same thing... and there should not be stretch marks as your monitor will also turn to that display mode... and that can be done in game by setting Widescreen mod to 1024x768.

The 1920x1080 is a 16:9 ration, now setting the Widescreen mod to say 1280x720 mode will have the aspect ration your monitor can show(16:9). And that's 1.5x scaling automatically. And without black borders. there will be a GUI borders, in your inventory and map screens ... but those shouldn't matter.

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Thanks for your replies. I am aware of everything you mentioned and I think you understand what I am asking for, but maybe not completely why I am asking for it.

 

The methods you have mentioned are alternatives to what I am asking for, but they do not achieve the same result. With 1.5x scaling, or any other method that involves stretching the game to fit a monitor's aspect ratio, blurring will occur. The graphics will probably look completely acceptable to most people and I agree that, in a way, it solves the issues I have mentioned (font size, UI size, character size, etc.) but I want sharp, crisp, non-blurry graphics. I like pixelated graphics in my old games -- it adds to the nostalgia and authenticity of the experience -- and I will pick crisp and pixelated over stretched and blurred every time.

 

So, the reason I am asking about a 2x scaling mode is because I have seen it in the Fallout 1 and 2 Hi-res patches and I'd love to have that option for the IE games. It would be an excellent third option in addition to 1) playing the games in super high resolutions, and 2) stretching the games to fit your aspect ratio (resulting in blurry graphics).

 

I hope I have explained myself sufficiently now. The Fallout patches are an excellent example of the value in providing all three options.

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I'm not sure how dxwnd stretches but you may want to check it out.
The game has it's own "run in window" -ed mode... that's not the problem really, just the scaling... but I will say that having a 2x scaling would be somewhat nice option.
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with dxwnd you can specify the width,height of the window and it will scale to fit.

also dxwnd has a couple different faux fullscreen modes

Ahh, yeah... well there's a bit of lack of description that... well, I bet a better one might be in order.
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the trick is scaling the cursor position... which would probably require alot of effort to do with in-place patching

 

Ok, thanks, that's informative and something that I wouldn't know the first thing about ;) I am not sure if the bigg is even still working on the Widescreen Mod -- seeing how the latest release was in august 2012 and the mod is pretty stable -- but it would be nice to get his opinion on this question.

 

I'm not sure how dxwnd stretches but you may want to check it out.

 

also GemRB http://forums.gibber...showtopic=26119 apparently

 

I will check out dxwnd. Looks interesting. Not sure if I'd consider GemRB a valid alternative for myself... I prefer sticking to the original versions of the games. And the screenshots in that thread show exactly what I am trying to avoid.

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the trick is scaling the cursor position... which would probably require alot of effort to do with in-place patching
And there's also the character avatar positioning problem, as they are .bam files, the files offset position is scaled, a bit wrongly and the character floats above it's correct centralized position, and the larger the creature, the more it will be above it.

 

The EE games apparently should have a scheme that allows scaling for the "zoom feature", that's supposed to be there.

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I have updated my original post with a clearer explanation of how the 2x scaling option works in the Fallout 1 and 2 Hi-res patches.

 

I'm sorry for my extensive posting on this subject, and possibly being unclear about what I meant and why I think it would be benefitial to the IE games in this day and age, but I think that if you look at the in-game screenshot -- or maybe even try it out yourself with one of the Fallout games -- you will see that this would be an awesome addition to the mod for us IE fans :) It would allow us to play the game in a format that is much closer to the original experience, while at the same time solving some of the "problems" the Widescreen Mod can cause for those who want to play in their native resolution (fonts, interface, and characters / creatures becoming too small).

 

Edit: Updated the first post as suggested by Jarno.

 

Edit: Screenshots added to first post.

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I'm sorry for my extensive posting on this subject, and possibly being unclear about what I meant and why I think it would be benefitial to the IE games in this day and age, but I think that if you look at the forthcoming screenshot -- or maybe even try it out yourself with one of the Fallout games -- you will see that this would be an awesome addition to the mod for us IE fans :)
Erhm, there's really no need to be sorry, it's your thread... and unless the bigg comes and says: No... or that you should be... then you shouldn't.

Erhm instead of making it clear in the #14's post, you could edit the first post etc. :insert a deceptively hungry Imp smiley:

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