Generations PC Unleashed Porting - Public Hardware Test #1

Discussion in 'Engineering & Reverse Engineering' started by Dario FF, May 13, 2012.

  1. Dario FF

    Dario FF

    Tech Support Hotline Tech Member
    Sonic Generations PC Unleashed Porting Project - Public Hardware Test #1

    EDIT: Download got updated with Instancing support. Grass and Flowers will show up now. The link is the same.

    Description:

    These are the files for playing Windmill Isle Act 1 in place of the Green Hill Zone level slot.

    This demo is merely for testing purposes and checking to see if it runs in as many systems as possible. If enough systems have satisfactory performance, we'll go ahead and start converting all the stages, aiming for the final state of them.

    Credits:
    • Dario FF, Chimera, and TwilightZoney, community members from sonicretro.org, main developers.
    • Additional Help from JoeTE(SonicRetro or SSMB) for song ripping.
    • Special thanks to Korama from sonicretro.org for CPKREDIR, the solution we'll be using and testing for mod distribution.
    • Also thanks to MainMemory for developing Generations Archive Editor, which is pretty much the main tool used for developing, and is currently used by SonicGLvl.




    How to install
    Download the files here(73.9 MB). It already includes CPKREDIR v0.3.1.
    Filebeam Mirror since you guys dun goofed the dropbox account.

    There's 3 ways to install the mod, depending on your current setup. I recommend to go with #1 or #2.

    1) I have no (major) mods installed, I just want to play
    • Copy the whole contents of this folder(mods folder included) to the Sonic Generations folder(the one where the .exe of the game is).
    • If you never installed CPKREDIR, run cpkredirInst.exe. All this exe does is patch the imagehlp.dll string in SonicGenerations.exe to cpkredir.dll(Given the previous dll is a common system dll, you just can't override it by placing it in the folder). If you don't trust the exe, just do the patch manually with a hex editor.
    • You can just run the game now, you should be able to play Windmill Isle on the GHZ level slot(Act 2).
    • If at any time you want to restore the original game, either run the cpkredirInst.exe again to unpatch the game, edit cpkredir.ini to Enabled=0, or just delete the mods folder along with the ini.

    2) I already have CPKREDIR installed

    2.a) If you're using CPKREDIR advanced mode with the ModsDB.ini
    • Copy the "Project Unleashed HW Demo Act 1" in the mods folder to your own "mods" folder.
    • Edit in your on your modsDB.ini the following lines:
      Code (Text):
      1.  
      2.     [Main]
      3.     ...
      4.     ActiveModX="Unleashed"
      5.     ....
      6.  
      Where X is the number you should give it according to how many mods you have. Remember to increase ActiveModCount as well by 1.
      Code (Text):
      1.  
      2.     [Mods]
      3.     Unleashed="Project Unleashed HW Demo Act 1\mod.ini"
      4.  

    2.b) If you're using CPKREDIR in simple mode, without ModsDB.ini
    • Go into the "Project Unleashed HW Demo Act 1" folder, and copy the two folders("disk" and "Sound") to your root Sonic Generations directory(the one where the SonicGenerations.exe is)

    3) I don't want to install any mod installers, let me do it myself with the CPKs
    • In that case I'll assume you're familiar enough with CPK tools, and the contents of everything you need is in their respective folders inside "Project Unleashed HW Demo Act 1", named without the CPK extension of course. Simply copy and overwrite anything that's needed.

    FAQ
    • Question: Does this test mean you're getting closer to releasing the mod? Can we have a release date?
    • Answer: As stated, this test is just to confirm if our Terrain conversion process works for most hardware configurations, as we lack enough systems to test it on. Most of the time has been spent on familiarizing ourselves with this engine, how it works, researching, and advancing the modding scene as well. I can assure you that thanks to all of that, working on this should be far easier and faster than before.

      Release date is still a good ol' "When it's done". But we have an internal deadline on trying to submit something(either privately or for the public) for the Hacking contest, be it just a few levels or not, but we'll see. Quality is the first priority though. We're not getting paid for this and we just do it for fun and because we want to play this at its full potential, so we work at our own pace in whatever is needed.
    • Question: Does this mod work with the demo?
    • Answer: In theory it should, but it uses the Egg Fighter and the Aero Cannon files. If those are missing on the demo, it'll either crash or they just won't appear at all. So you might just be able to delete them off the layout using SonicGLvl in that case.
    • Question: Will you keep releasing single levels like this?
    • Answer: The goal is still releasing all the 8(or could be 9?) day stages, along with most missions and DLC we can port, in a single, big mod later on. Night stages with Classic Sonic are a possibility that's being looked at, but it'd probably be a second priority for a new version. I can assure you it looks sexy enough to be considered.
    • Question: Can you port Metal Harbor/Aquarium Park/My Fancharacter Hill Zone?
    • Answer: That's something not related to this project, nor do I intend to work on that since I'm not a good enough 3D modeller. You can check out SonicGLvl and start working on it yourself though!
    • Question: I want to help
    • Answer: We're not looking for help from anyone right now other than some music composition for the White World HUB themes(which I think others already agreed to, but I'm still willing to look at your work if you send it). We don't need beta testers, nor designers or modellers at the moment. If we do, I'll inform you about it.
    • Question: All this wait just for a 1 minute tutorial level?
    • Answer: A lot of progress has gone behind that little level you see there. If you follow the videos you'll realise a lot of the bullshit we had to go through. Here's a summary of it:
      - Converting Terrain Geometry from the XBox 360 format to PC compatible format. Includes a full reverse engineering of the model format.
      - Reverse engineering and updating the Terrain Configuration files to work with the converted geometry.
      - Mass conversion of animated models.
      - Developed the only software capable of converting Havok 360 HKX Binary files into PC compatible binaries. This allows conversion of Animations, Skeletons, Collisions, etc.
      - SonicGLvl developed as a sister project for it, which allows fixing the layouts and understanding even better how the game works.
      - A lot of research into the XML configuration used by the game, and pushing its limits to see how much can be done without modifying the game's code.
      - Material reverse engineering and inconsistencies fixing. Quite a bunch of materials had to be fixed for this level to look like that.
      - General fixing of any inconsitencies in object layout, archive tree organization, and such.
      - Fixing skyboxes to use Generations' routines.
      - Going through repacking CPKs for anything almost for 4 months, and just until recently using CPKREDIR.(Took about 3 minutes to test a single change for several months)
      - Crashing. CRASHING CRASHING CRASHING. That's what you get for doing the initial research on a game that's never been opened before and is brand new.


    Known Bugs
    1. The camera of the first loop is bugged. It's not radically game-breaking, it's just a different angle.
    2. The bloom/glare of the water is ridiculously high. We're checking if this is a hardware problem or just a configuration problem.
    3. Trying to pinpoint if the excessive lag that might occur after playing various stages over and over again is caused by the windmill isle level or CPKREDIR.

    TL;DR; We want you people to do anything you want with it. Record footage, report any issues, even try modifying the layout if you want! Put your character swaps, or even your fancharacter. I don't care, we just want to see if it works alright.
     
  2. Trunks

    Trunks

    AGAIN TRY Oldbie
    I've been really, really restraining myself from getting any mods until I've gotten all the achievements, but I can't hold back anymore. Only achievements I've got missing are the Time Eater perfect one, full collection, and time attack. Since you say this will be able to be reverted, I'll bite the bullet and try it.

    Will post back with excited results.
     
  3. Ell678

    Ell678

    Am I Annoying You? Member
    2,365
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    Barrow, England
    Sonic Incursion
    Awesome stuff as always! Downloading now, I'l post back later when I get the chance to test it out.
     
  4. BandicootG

    BandicootG

    20
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    Ireland
    Making a Blaze the Cat mod for Sonic Generations.
    Well Dario, it's still downloading. If there's any problems when I start playing aside from the ones already listed, I'll let you know.
    EDIT: Just played through. It's completely fine. I found no bugs aside from some camera issues here and there. Nice work.
     
  5. Trunks

    Trunks

    AGAIN TRY Oldbie
    Here's a few pictures from my run of it. So far everything seems brilliant. I'll try to get a video of it running.

    http://I.imgur.com/MAvdQ.jpg
    http://I.imgur.com/eg96R.jpg
    http://I.imgur.com/ejdkf.jpg
    http://I.imgur.com/ZU3IQ.jpg
    http://I.imgur.com/l3wfG.jpg

    My hardware setup:
    -Radeon HD 6950
    -AMD Phenom II X6 1100T Processor at 3.30GHz
     
  6. DustArma

    DustArma

    Member
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    Santiago, Chile
    Learning Python.
    Outside of a few camera bugs WIndmill Isle 1 runs fairly well, no outstanding performance issues so far.

    One thing I did notice is that it breaks GHZ for Classic, the bridges (normal and breakable) are gone and the game freezes after a while.
     
  7. Dario FF

    Dario FF

    Tech Support Hotline Tech Member
    It overrides GHZ common file so that's likely to happen. It won't be a problem later on since none of the original levels shall be there most likely.
     
  8. Jason

    Jason

    *Results not lab tested. Member
    You just HAD to release it the day before my history exam, didn't you? You just HAD to offer to give me a taste of awesome funtimes while I try to study?

    You crack dealer, you.
     
  9. Ell678

    Ell678

    Am I Annoying You? Member
    2,365
    15
    18
    Barrow, England
    Sonic Incursion
    It works beautifully on my setup. I got some screenshots too here. Didn't see anything peculiar in the edges of the screens which is a plus too! Great work guys.
     
  10. Trunks

    Trunks

    AGAIN TRY Oldbie
    [youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7IQTIbNUXSA[/youtube]

    Runs flawlessly aside from some camera bugs, but it was slowed down thanks to FRAPS.
     
  11. Dario FF

    Dario FF

    Tech Support Hotline Tech Member
    Holy crap at those uber widescreen shots. Goes to show how much a good art direction can still get out of a 4 year old game.

    EDIT: The textures in these tutorial level are a bit lower than the general game. So don't worry, it looks better later on. We could try HD-ifying them though.
     
  12. TimmiT

    TimmiT

    ¯\_(ツ)_/¯ Member
    Runs at 40-60 fps on my laptop, which is what I normally get when playing Generations. Sometimes the camera acts weird for a second but for the rest it works fine.
    My specs:
    Intel Core i7 2630QM (2 Ghz quad core with intel turbo boost up to 2.8 Ghz)
    Geforce GT540M
    6 GB RAM
     
  13. Trunks

    Trunks

    AGAIN TRY Oldbie
    So I reverted my game back to default by changing the ini value to zero, but there's problems with the titlecards' text images being replaced with garbled messes. Otherwise it plays just fine.
     
  14. Korama

    Korama

    Tech Member
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    Wow, what a great surprise!

    I just played it and it's awesome! No problems on my PC except a few minor camera issues.
    Great work, everyone!
     
  15. Dario FF

    Dario FF

    Tech Support Hotline Tech Member
    That's an ATI bug, I even get that with the original game. :v:
     
  16. iGamr

    iGamr

    Member
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    That's happened to me before; generally, it seems to happen if you've either swapped out mods or didn't close the game properly the last time you played. A simple restart of the game should fix the title-card text.

    Also, GREAT WORK, GUYS! The level looks freaking BEAUTIFUL! Obviously, it plays well, too, but the beauty of it was stunning, given that these aren't technically official Generations levels. (Yes, I know, they're ported from another game, but that's still a FAN effort, in my opinion.)
     
  17. Falk

    Falk

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  18. Neowl

    Neowl

    feels good man Member
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    London, England
    SAIL HATAN


    Processor Intel Core i3 2330 M @ 2.2GHz
    Inter HD Graphics Family (intergrated card, I know :( )
    6GB RAM

    there's a camera bug in the video at the part with the pots, other than that, runs fine.
     
  19. Falk

    Falk

    Member
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    There's actually quite a few camera bugs, but they aren't gamebreaking. I'm guessing that at some point you'll want to maintain an actual list of cosmetic stuff to fix but as it is the fact that this is even possible and you guys have gotten this far is nothing short of amazing.

    Minor nitpick - those pots shouldn't have any highlights on them- they definitely don't in the original since that canyon is completely shaded It definitely stuck out for me considering how drop-dead vomiting-rainbows gorgeous the level is.
     
  20. Dario FF

    Dario FF

    Tech Support Hotline Tech Member
    Ugh I knew I forgot something stupid. I didn't add the instancing data that makes all the grass and flowers show up. Zoney fixed it now, reuploading in a bit.