Author Topic: Possible new version of SCI Companion  (Read 68447 times)

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Offline MusicallyInspired

Re: Possible new version of SCI Companion
« Reply #45 on: March 26, 2015, 09:50:18 AM »
That's great! Exciting news all around! This really seems like the goldmine of features we've been dreaming about since Brian promised SCI Studio VGA! Even if it doesn't all work out exactly as we all hope, thank you for trying. Your work is very much appreciated!
« Last Edit: March 26, 2015, 09:52:41 AM by MusicallyInspired »
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Offline gumby

Re: Possible new version of SCI Companion
« Reply #46 on: March 26, 2015, 01:07:22 PM »
Troflip, if I haven't said it yet I'll say it now:  thank you for your efforts on this, it's impressive what you've put together so far on this. 
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Offline Collector

Re: Possible new version of SCI Companion
« Reply #47 on: March 26, 2015, 06:48:33 PM »
Agreed. Thanks, we have been needing this for sometime now.
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Offline lance.ewing

Re: Possible new version of SCI Companion
« Reply #48 on: March 27, 2015, 05:49:44 PM »
Hi all. I'm back...

Yeah, that is Lance Ewing's SCI site. He is the author of the original AGI PicEdit. His other site is agifans. Unfortunately he has not posted here is some time.

Yes, it is my site. I had big plans to fill in all those empty pages and work out how to decompile the code. It sounds like troflip is doing a great job with that though.

I seem to have so many ideas for projects and not enough time to devote fully to any one of them. I entered the js13kgames contest last year, which was a laugh. A great learning experience in JS and CSS. I ran out of time on that and only finished about half of what I'd envisioned. I still had about 4K of space left to use. That's massive!

I've also picked up the Java Picedit code a few times but have yet to release another 1.3 milestone. I migrated it to github earlier this week after Google told me they'd be removing the Google code project at some point.

Offline MusicallyInspired

Re: Possible new version of SCI Companion
« Reply #49 on: March 29, 2015, 07:58:36 PM »
Another question, do you plan on implementing a built-in palette editor? Does GDIplus provide functionality to edit colour values with the Windows standard colour wheel? That might be handy, especially for creating custom global colours (the first 64).
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Offline troflip

Re: Possible new version of SCI Companion
« Reply #50 on: March 29, 2015, 08:13:33 PM »
Yes, I plan to. Shouldn't be too difficult.

I'm only using Gdiplus to load/save images from files. One they're in memory I can do whatever I want with them.

The challenging part for me is understanding all the ways palettes are used in SCI. Like, what typical patterns are, and how the pic or view palettes are combined with the global palette. And when all the other palettes are used. Like, most SCI 1.1 games have tons of palette resources. But pics have their own built in palettes for the most part - so when do these other palettes get used? (Like SQ5, for instance, has 50 palette resources. Judging by the numbers they mostly seem to correspond to pic numbers).

And I don't fully understand the extra number that's included with each palette color. I believe they are used for letting one palette's color override another's, but I'm not sure of the exact algorithm. Each palette color either has a 0, 1 or 3 associated with it. Since I don't know exactly what that is used for, it's hard to know how to expose it to the user.
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Offline MusicallyInspired

Re: Possible new version of SCI Companion
« Reply #51 on: March 29, 2015, 08:19:24 PM »
Hmmm interesting.

Oh that reminds me! What about palette cycling? I know that SCI Viewer has a method of selecting which colours in the palette of an image to cycle through and at what speed for previewing. This might be easier to preview in Companion itself, but what about actual in-game functionality? Would you know if this is somehow related to the way QFG1VGA changes in-game screen palettes to correspond to day/dusk/night/dawn colours? Is that some kind of gradual palette cycling? Well, I guess it wouldn't be exactly the same thing because colour cycling cycles through a specific few colours in the palette, while the day/night transitions seem to be a function of changing the value of each colour in the entire palette gradually. For screen fadeouts/fadeins it just darkens each colour until every colour is black. I think I've seen examples in-game where each colour is brightened to white also...I think. The day/night transitions are probably a matter of darkening and lightening each colour slightly while adding more blue or red values depending on whether it's night or day.

I'm completely guessing here.
« Last Edit: March 29, 2015, 08:23:16 PM by MusicallyInspired »
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Offline Collector

Re: Possible new version of SCI Companion
« Reply #52 on: March 29, 2015, 08:32:47 PM »
Is there anything that you can glean from Enrico Rolfi's FotoSCIhop source?
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Offline troflip

Re: Possible new version of SCI Companion
« Reply #53 on: March 29, 2015, 08:59:40 PM »
Oh that reminds me! What about palette cycling? I know that SCI Viewer has a method of selecting which colours in the palette of an image to cycle through and at what speed for previewing.

Hmm, I don't see any way to animate palettes in SCI Viewer. You can choose which palette to preview an image with, but that's about it.

I think it'll become a little clearer how palettes are used once we have some decompiled scripts from various games.

Is there anything that you can glean from Enrico Rolfi's FotoSCIhop source?

Maybe I'm just bad at finding things, but I've never seen a download for FotoSCIhop or its source code. The only downloads on his website are for TraduSCI. Even though FotoSCIhop is mentioned, it's like he deleted all traces of the actual program?

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Offline MusicallyInspired

Re: Possible new version of SCI Companion
« Reply #54 on: March 29, 2015, 09:08:04 PM »
You sure you have the latest released version? Not visible is the animation speed settings which I believe is global for sprite animations as well in SCI Viewer's settings menu.

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Offline troflip

Re: Possible new version of SCI Companion
« Reply #55 on: March 29, 2015, 09:25:25 PM »
Ah, no, I must have an older version! I have the version I got from here: http://sciwiki.sierrahelp.com/index.php?title=SCI_Resource_Utilities#Sierra_Resource_Viewer

Do you know where there's a newer version for download?

There's still a bunch of data I'm not sure of in the palette resources.. maybe that's information regarding color cycling? I'll have to look through the Scumm source code again...

edit: ok, I found the version you have. It might be an older version? Not sure, it doesn't have a version number. I though the color cycling values were taken from the resource itself, but it looks like you have to enter them manually?
« Last Edit: March 29, 2015, 11:39:31 PM by troflip »
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Offline Collector

Re: Possible new version of SCI Companion
« Reply #56 on: March 30, 2015, 12:23:21 AM »
Hmm, I don't see any way to animate palettes in SCI Viewer. You can choose which palette to preview an image with, but that's about it.
I have noticed that SV does not always seem to show any differences between the visual and and cels, but it does wit some games like GK1 and PQ4. From the looks of it it was just to animate part of the background without having to use a view resource. The embedded palette does not seem to change the embedded palette. Of course these are SCI32 games. No idea if SV simply does not handle the ones from SCI1 - 1.1 or if it was not yet properly implemented in the earlier interpreters. I would guess the former rather than the latter. The latest version of SV should be the one on the Wiki. It does not have a version number. Version 1 seems to be an earlier version that does not also support AGI games.

Is there anything that you can glean from Enrico Rolfi's FotoSCIhop source?

Maybe I'm just bad at finding things, but I've never seen a download for FotoSCIhop or its source code. The only downloads on his website are for TraduSCI. Even though FotoSCIhop is mentioned, it's like he deleted all traces of the actual program?
TraduSCI is an SCI translation package that also includes a resource dumper. While SCIaMano is used to translate TEX resources. It includes FotoSCIhop to edit view and pic resources for translation of graphics, like signs, etc. Unfortunately it only supports SCI1.1 to SCI32. While SCIaMano was developed in an old version of Dev C++,  FotoSCIhop was originally developed in VC and ported to Dev C++.  I was able to easily port it back to VC. You can either grab what is on his site or I can give you a link to what I already ported back to VC.
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Offline MusicallyInspired

Re: Possible new version of SCI Companion
« Reply #57 on: March 30, 2015, 12:35:16 PM »
edit: ok, I found the version you have. It might be an older version? Not sure, it doesn't have a version number. I though the color cycling values were taken from the resource itself, but it looks like you have to enter them manually?

Yeah, you enter them manually. I had to guess until I found the correct values. Though, if you know the exact value of the beginning of each row of colours it would be easier, plus you can see easily which sequence of colour gradients are meant to be cycled. That would suggest to me that that information is not embedded in the palette file but manually set in the scripts somehow?

EDIT: Just searching through SQ5's resources, I noticed that there are a couple of all white palettes (except for the 0 and 255 entries which are black). Perhaps the fade to black/white transitions are done by gradually fading the colour values of one palette to their counterpart values in another palette. Then there are scenes like Bea in the cryochamber (Pic #47) where only she transitions to a shade of blue or red inside the chamber depending on what setting you set for that puzzle. The equivalent palettes (471 and 472) have all the exact colours except for the section inside the chamber which changes (colours 64-151). There were some really clever artists at Sierra who utilized colour cycling and palette transitioning very effectively. You can do some neat tricks with it.

Incidentally, the naming conventions of these palettes are clearly not an accident. Palette 47 corresponds to Pic 47 perfectly (the crychamber pic), but the red and blue variants are palettes 471 and 472 (as in 47 A and 47 B, distinct from the regular 47, to make it easier to use when scripting), which don't correspond to a Pic 471 or 472, which don't exist (probably intentionally, which suggests that maybe other Sierra games numbered their resources in a similar manner). This might shed some light on why there are so many different palettes. They're used for transitioning.

Though, most picture editors nowadays don't come with functions for working with 8-bit palettes. The only one I can think of is Deluxe Paint for DOS which catered to it rather well, and which Sierra artists used themselves (according to Mark Crowe in the SQ Commentary 2GFA Podcasts). I still am not sure how they concentrated certain colour values to specific portions of the palette (for instance the colour values inside the cryochamber). Maybe Deluxe Paint has further functions I haven't discovered to that end...
« Last Edit: March 30, 2015, 01:19:23 PM by MusicallyInspired »
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Offline Collector

Re: Possible new version of SCI Companion
« Reply #58 on: March 30, 2015, 05:52:06 PM »
Though, most picture editors nowadays don't come with functions for working with 8-bit palettes.

Corel PHOTO-PAINT does quite nicely.
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Offline MusicallyInspired

Re: Possible new version of SCI Companion
« Reply #59 on: March 31, 2015, 12:29:46 AM »
Can it isolate the colorus used at certain portions of the image to a certain portion of the palette?
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