Author Topic: Bitmap to SCI background pic creator - command line version  (Read 2854 times)

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Offline gumby

I've searched here, and on the sierrahelp pages and I just can't seem to find the functionality that exists within SCI Companion to convert bitmaps to sci for the command line.

I've found everything else under the sun - agi to sci, bmp to agi, pcx/raw to sci, but I can't seem to put my hands on a utility that (in my mind) must surely exist.  Have I simply just overlooked it?


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Offline MusicallyInspired

Re: Bitmap to SCI background pic creator - command line version
« Reply #1 on: July 18, 2010, 10:00:56 AM »
Why do you specifically want one for the command line? The converter in Companion has many more features not possible in a command line program.
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Offline Collector

Re: Bitmap to SCI background pic creator - command line version
« Reply #2 on: July 18, 2010, 02:55:26 PM »
Perhaps for batch processing?
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Offline gumby

Re: Bitmap to SCI background pic creator - command line version
« Reply #3 on: July 18, 2010, 04:04:15 PM »
Yeah, I need one for batch processing.  Let me take a step back and explain why I need it - maybe there is an alternative way to accomplish my task.

I want to create 100+ room background pictures in a batch process, starting with a generic image.  This initial image could be in the form of standard image format (bmp, gif, jpg - doesn't matter) or an already processed image (as an exported SCI resource file).  Then I want to annotate each one with text (the text changes for every room background).  I wrote a script that annotates a bmp with text only to be brick-walled by no apparent way to convert each to an SCI resource (a classic case of cart-before-horse). 

The only tool that had hope was one of Brian's old tools called XtoPIC - but it wasn't useable once I imported the result into SCI Companion (maybe intended different version of SCI?).

One feasible solution is to write a script that deals with the GUI of SCI Companion interactively.  I've done this in the past, and it'll work... but it's definitely sub-optimal.

The only other option would be if the source code to SCI Comp is available - and pull out the necessary parts and build my own tool - which would be a bit of a side-track....
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Offline Collector

Re: Bitmap to SCI background pic creator - command line version
« Reply #4 on: July 18, 2010, 04:28:39 PM »
The source of SCI Studio is available.
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Offline Collector

Re: Bitmap to SCI background pic creator - command line version
« Reply #5 on: July 18, 2010, 04:37:58 PM »
On an aside, I wish that all of the source for these tools were available. Too many pop up and then are abandoned when the original author loses interest or time. The SCI Resource Viewer is a case in point, but there are others. At least Brian released the code for SCI studio VGA before he disappeared.
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Offline gumby

Re: Bitmap to SCI background pic creator - command line version
« Reply #6 on: July 18, 2010, 10:12:40 PM »
Yeah, I noticed that the source for SCI Studio was available.  I must admit that I'm not familiar with the tool - does it have a picture importer similar to Companion?  If so, I may poke around in the code briefly to see if I can find the goodies I need.
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Offline Cloudee1

Re: Bitmap to SCI background pic creator - command line version
« Reply #7 on: July 19, 2010, 12:01:36 AM »
What ever are you working on? I'm trying to picture your project, but between adding a room name and now this, I am very intrigued.
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Offline gumby

Re: Bitmap to SCI background pic creator - command line version
« Reply #8 on: July 19, 2010, 08:33:00 AM »
It's a project all right - an out of control one.  So, since I'm porting text adventures to SCI, I figured why not start out with template rooms that describe that room with everything I have at my disposal.  So, I put the brief room name in the title bar, cool.  Then I figured, why stop there - put the whole room description in text into the background of the room (oh, and use a picture of the original box art as the 'template background').  Of course, this would be removed when the real artwork is put in, but I'm trying to make the final development as painless as possible.

You don't want to know what I was thinking immediately prior to this - I was looking into text to speech and have the room description spoken upon initial entry of the room - but after looking into it I think I was going to go over the max WAV file size for digitized sounds (maybe a 5-10 second WAV maximum length - someone please correct me if I'm wrong), too short for an entire room description.

Hopefully I can upload a couple of example rooms soon...
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Offline MusicallyInspired

Re: Bitmap to SCI background pic creator - command line version
« Reply #9 on: July 19, 2010, 10:59:42 AM »
There is no length limit per se to the digital sound resources just that they must be 8-bit mono and the resulting file size no bigger than 65536 bytes (limitation to the engine). So the length of the audio clip could be anything assuming it follows those rules. Though you're right, they wouldn't be very long.
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Offline Cloudee1

Re: Bitmap to SCI background pic creator - command line version
« Reply #10 on: July 19, 2010, 11:25:45 AM »
Ok, how about if you just put the rooms description in a text resource  and used display instead of a print command.
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Offline gumby

Re: Bitmap to SCI background pic creator - command line version
« Reply #11 on: July 19, 2010, 12:11:08 PM »
Ah, I just had an idea, I could split up the room descriptions into separate wav files (maybe by sentences).  Then just playback multiple files - or can I even do that?  After one is done playing, crank up the next??  I should probably start another thread on this topic...

I have investigated text resources, but I'm not familiar with the display command.  Would that 'inject' it on to the room background?  I'll have to check that out in the help files.
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Offline Cloudee1

Re: Bitmap to SCI background pic creator - command line version
« Reply #12 on: July 19, 2010, 05:42:19 PM »
More or less, yes  display adds the text to the picture. I use it in my logo sequences. I use display (twice actually to generate the letters shadow) for the empty sac production bit under my logo. both aquarius and circus q. have it. As for the digital sounds, if you try the text description, me thinks your game would be humongous. But  mastering  loop, cue points, and whatever other sound options we have available would be great. No one seems to know much about that, at least I don't.
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Offline MusicallyInspired

Re: Bitmap to SCI background pic creator - command line version
« Reply #13 on: July 19, 2010, 10:44:30 PM »
I think the SCI Studio/Companion has a function or kernel call or something that'll help discover when a sound resource is finished playing. And I don't think requiring loop/cue points in the sound resources is necessary for the task you're presenting. Would probably just take some delving into the SCI Studio help file. The capability is certainly there, I believe.
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Offline gumby

Re: Bitmap to SCI background pic creator - command line version
« Reply #14 on: July 19, 2010, 11:19:56 PM »
The Display() function was precisely the right way to do it.  It worked perfectly (and I was pleased that it supported a transparent background for the text being displayed).  I was really going about it the wrong way by embedding it into the room background itself.

I'm going to take another crack at the text-to-speech stuff too - will report back.

Thanks for all the pointers!
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