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#1 User is offline Vangar 

Posted 08 March 2008 - 04:43 PM

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That image in the hoaxes forum got me thinking. I'm no programmer, but I rekon I could draw out most of the levels in sonic 2 in a nice higher resolution. But, how do I then make it a playable game? Maybe taxman could help me out here with a modified engine for larger source files? Can anyone direct me to a sonic-y game engine I can use, at least to test how it will work?
This post has been edited by Athelstone: 20 June 2008 - 07:46 AM

#2 User is offline PsychoSk8r 

Posted 08 March 2008 - 06:22 PM

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I'd <I><b>love</b></I> to see it done, in all seriousness. You'd have to base the new graphics almost 100% off the original graphics, just adding your own little bits in to make it look nice =P
Also, if you need a musician for some recorded S2 music, I'm there =P (I was already working on music to use if there ever was a HD version, and for my own use in S2MP3)
This post has been edited by PsychoSk8r: 08 March 2008 - 06:24 PM

#3 User is offline Sik 

Posted 08 March 2008 - 07:59 PM

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I don't think this is going to be a hack... I'm a programmer, but I'm already busy with a Mega Drive ROM and a game from Chris Senn :/

#4 User is offline Tadashi 

Posted 08 March 2008 - 08:15 PM

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I was thinking about this one as well. I think, it's possible to mod an emulator, so it replaces the tiles with 2x sized ones on fly. Like highres textures plugin for N64 emulators which is so popular now. It could work the same way. First, you run the game, the emulator dumps all tiles from memory to a specific folder (named after the rom image), then you replace them with 2x sized ones and that's about it. The resolution would be changed to 640x480 as well. This way there's no need to change game code or something, the emulator would fool the system itself. The only one limitation is that you will have to keep colors within original palettes though.
This post has been edited by Tadashi: 08 March 2008 - 08:16 PM

#5 User is offline Sik 

Posted 08 March 2008 - 08:18 PM

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The whole point of this is to remake the very same game but taking full advtantage of new hardware (not just high resolution). Wouldn't it be better to make a new program from scratch?

#6 User is offline Rolken 

Posted 09 March 2008 - 10:55 AM

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View PostSik the hedgehog, on Mar 8 2008, 07:18 PM, said:

The whole point of this is to remake the very same game but taking full advtantage of new hardware (not just high resolution). Wouldn't it be better to make a new program from scratch?

He called it "Sonic 2 HD" and didn't cite any improvements other than HD art. Are you thinking of some other game? <_<

At any rate, making a custom version of Gens to swap out graphics seems like a lot less work than completely reimplementing the Sonic engine, though still far from trivial.

#7 User is offline ICEknight 

Posted 09 March 2008 - 11:07 AM

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Well... Tadashi's idea "just" replaces the VRAM, while making the game from scratch would mean... doing that and everything else, with new bugs appearing and such. So I think Tadashi's seem more feasable.

Besides, there was once a ZX Spectrum emulator (Spec256, I think it was called) that did something similar. It replaced the original graphics (2 colors for each 8x8) with new 256 color graphics you could store externally, so this might be even easier if the palettes are kept the same.

If this is ever coded into a Megadrive emulator, however, I guess it should be constantly checking for any changes on VRAM, and then loading the tile that corresponds with the low-res one, so it might run quite slowly. Also, since the colors would be the same, it would be needed to pay attention when the original tiles were supposed to use the fake-colors or transparency effects and use the vertical lines as needed.



I think it would be an interesting thing to implement, even though it will be hard to make it look right... But perhaps using filtered graphics as a base would help.

#8 User is offline Sik 

Posted 09 March 2008 - 11:27 AM

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View PostRolken, on Mar 9 2008, 01:55 PM, said:

View PostSik the hedgehog, on Mar 8 2008, 07:18 PM, said:

The whole point of this is to remake the very same game but taking full advtantage of new hardware (not just high resolution). Wouldn't it be better to make a new program from scratch?

He called it "Sonic 2 HD" and didn't cite any improvements other than HD art. Are you thinking of some other game? <_<

He said the idea is based from the Sonic 2 DEz HD hoax. That hoax not only has a higher resolution but some other effects such as lighting.

#9 User is offline Vangar 

Posted 09 March 2008 - 03:40 PM

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As interesting as modding an emulator sounds, I would think recoding a program from scratch would be the better idea. As Sik said, lighting, better colors and a higher resolution. I'd probably use the same music, unless there are newer, more awesome mixes someone has made/ can make.

But, this is just an idea. As I said before I'm no coder, I'd need to team up with someone who could program such an engine, and I'd do all the graphics.

#10 User is offline Tadashi 

Posted 09 March 2008 - 04:02 PM

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You do understand that it would take mad skills and insane amount of time to accomplish?

#11 User is offline Sik 

Posted 09 March 2008 - 04:05 PM

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Well not really if you reuse an engine like Damizean's 360 one (yes, there's a version for C, it doesn't have to be Game Maker or Multimedia Fusion).

#12 User is offline Rolken 

Posted 09 March 2008 - 07:05 PM

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View PostSik the hedgehog, on Mar 9 2008, 10:27 AM, said:

He said the idea is based from the Sonic 2 DEz HD hoax. That hoax not only has a higher resolution but some other effects such as lighting.

Oh, I see. Interesting.

View PostVangar, on Mar 9 2008, 02:40 PM, said:

As interesting as modding an emulator sounds, I would think recoding a program from scratch would be the better idea. As Sik said, lighting, better colors and a higher resolution. I'd probably use the same music, unless there are newer, more awesome mixes someone has made/ can make.

But, this is just an idea. As I said before I'm no coder, I'd need to team up with someone who could program such an engine, and I'd do all the graphics.

I don't think the amount of time and energy a coder would have to invest to get a working product out would be worth doing in the context of graphically upgrading Sonic 2, especially in light of that any inaccuracy in the game mechanics would be magnified due to trying to replicate the same game - in particular, I don't think a "good enough" engine like the 360 one would suffice, though it's been awhile since I looked at it so maybe I'm exaggerating its inadequacies. If anything it would be useful to make a general-purpose Sonic engine with this project as its inaugural implementation. But if you don't have any coding expertise yourself, I'm not really sure where you can go with that. Retro Sonic and E02 are both promising but retain the harsh 8x8 tile limitations and E02 hasn't been updated in years.

#13 User is offline Sik 

Posted 09 March 2008 - 07:38 PM

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As far as I know, Damizean's 2D 360 engine hasn't been touched in years. And I already know how to adapt it to use collision maps rather than checking against objects (which makes things a lot faster). The only bug I know from it is that on corners, if you go slowly, you may rotate when you shouldn't, but I think I know a quick bug for it (if the player only collides in one of its sides, don't change the angle :P).

#14 User is offline Vangar 

Posted 09 March 2008 - 11:51 PM

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It wouldn't need mad skills. It would just need a similar engine to sonic 2, a feat I've seen most of the coders reprogram in C or something. The only difference it would need, would be:

- Collision detection between sprites and the ground, rather then collision selected per pixel.
- A level editor that allows placement of images (perferably 24 bit pngs with alpha channel) into the background, with selectable scroll speeds depending on sonics placement in the level (foreground placement as well)


Then alpha'd white light beams or similar could be placed, giving the effect of the lights in the background of that s2HD image.

I might make a concept in flash, to fully explain how this can be done easily.

#15 User is offline LocalH 

Posted 10 March 2008 - 04:06 AM

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http://www.sys2064.com/emudx.htm

All we need to do is do this with a MD emulator, and then make the art packs. There's also no real limitation on the pallet - if you're replacing MD tiles with external ones, then those external ones could be anything - even 32bpp RGBA PNG. Sure, it might add CPU consumption over top of the emulator itself, especially if you were to use 32bpp RGBA PNGs and thus required alphablending, but I don't think that'll be a problem for most modern computers (and you could always have more simplified 8bpp tiles as well for slower computers). The only possible issue I could see would be supporting tiles that, on the MD side, use multiple pallets throughout the game - but then again the emulator could check for that and either load the same upgrade tiles with a different pallet, or load entirely different tiles (imagine having EHZ and HTZ with the same basic feel but with subtle differences in the tile art, which would give each zone a little bit more of an independent identity instead of HTZ being "the EHZ clone with a few slight differences").

On a tangent, the same thing could be done but instead of generating a 2D image, the emulator peeks the game's RAM and generates a suitable 3D scene (what I like to call 2.5D, sort of like the Smash Bros. camera angle). This would be more work of course, and each individual game would have to have separate support (the S1 support could be used as a base for S2 and S3/S&K though).

I'd be happy to see both of these happen, and I'd also be willing to test them to make sure that nothing is broken. I'd expect to see the former way before the latter, but either one would be fucking epic.

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