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Topics - CMK2901

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Feature requests, suggestions / Moving the Camera?
« on: December 13, 2007, 04:30:32 AM »
This isn't so much a feature suggestion as a feature inquiry...while I think the functionality would be interesting/useful, it's not necessarily something that I'm currently planning on using (if it was there, though, I'd try to work it in somehow).

Question: Is it possible to move 3D scene cameras in real time?  And if not, is this functionality even possible?

I've recently been looking into moving my project into the 2.5D realm, and thought it would be cool to do a sort of view transition between different views of a room, rather than just an instant jump.  This technique has been used in some other 2.5D games - the one I can think of off the top of my head is Final Fantasy 8...the idea is, if you can move the 3D camera and have a video file which visually mimics the 3D camera's movement through a scene, it would appear that that the entire environment is moving, with the 3D model moving in correct relation to the rest of the scene.  These would also be useful to transition to a cutscene directly from the scene view in a more immersive way.

So, it's easy enough to make the transition videos, but I was unsure about the 3D camera stuff.

Bug reports / ProjectManager Crash on 3D Actor Preview
« on: December 13, 2007, 04:18:10 AM »
I found what seems to be a recurring bug in ProjectManager; 3D model previewing works fine, but when previewing the .png file for the model's clothing/UV texturing, and then switching to the 3D model the program crashes.  This doesn't happen when switching from any file but the UV texture map.  From my limited understanding of such things, I'd guess it has something to do with ProjectManager using the .png file for the preview, but also trying to use it with the model preview at the same time, but really I have no clue. ;)

Hope that's helpful,

Community bulletin board / WME Tech Demo...
« on: September 28, 2007, 08:45:53 AM »
Hi everyone,

Both to better help myself understand the many features and abilities of WME, and to hopefully provide a resource for the community, I'm hoping to create sort of an updated WME Tech Demo, one that will try to showcase the abilities of the engine, provide useful code for new users, and advertise the engine as a professional-grade game creation tool.  It wouldn't really be a game; just a sort of test world with different rooms showcasing different features.  I can't really say whether I'll have time to finish this in a timely manner (I am in college right now), but I'm very interested.

My current list of engine features I want to showcase:
  • Video w/ Subtitles
  • Multiple Interface Examples (Sierra, LucasArts, FMV Smartpointer, Fandango, Myst (Panoramic View?), Text Parser)
  • 3D Characters (Dynamic Lighting/Shadows, Bone Animations, Lip Sync(?), Object Interaction)
  • Parallax Scrolling Background/Foreground
  • Object Video Playback -- TVs, Billboards, etc.
  • Multiple Inventory/Player Character Examples
  • Particle Effects
  • Various Dialogue Structures (Simple, Trees, Close-ups...sort of a function of interfaces)
  • Particle Effects (smoke, weather, sparks, etc)
  • Music (Multi-channel and crossfade examples)
  • Localization/Package Usage example (?)
  • Options Dialogs (save, load, volume, gameplay options)(advanced interface effects)
  • Screen Filters(as in, sprite overlays to simulate grain/lighting/blurs)

So, I have a few questions right away (which probably belong in the technical forum, but hey): Is it possible to incorporate both 3D and 2D characters into the same game?  Would a panoramic first person view be possible?  Can localization settings be set through an options menu on the fly? 

And then the community BB part: Am I missing any features that WME is capable of?  Are there certain things you'd like to see demonstrated in the tech demo?  I'd like to hit everything that WME is capable of in this demo at least once, so give me any things that I've left off this list.


Community bulletin board / Forum Link to Wintermute Website
« on: September 28, 2007, 06:59:52 AM »
Well, there doesn't seem to be a particularly good place to put this, so I'll just cautiously stick it here...

Just a quick request regarding the forums...would it be possible to make the black WME banner at the top of the forum pages link back to the main Wintermute site?  This would be useful both for my own personal laziness, and for just the overall flow of the site...the forums would feel less separated from everything else.  Just a thought...

Game announcements / Science Fiction - Announcement
« on: July 11, 2007, 07:57:50 AM »
CMK Studios and Clark Kromenaker present...

Setting: A scifi-noir version of the 1950's.  Or, how people in the 1950's might have expected the future to be.

I've been working on the design document for this bad boy for a year.  I'm working hard to keep the puzzles as original, fair, and interesting as possible.  I'm using Blender to render my backgrounds.  I hope to make this game FMV, but if that doesn't work out, given my current monetary situation, I will use 3d character models.

The game's webpage.


Some backgrounds.

Presented in CinemaScope with (hopefully) FMV cutscenes for your enjoyment.
Coming to a computer screen near you, probably in 2-3 years.  Let the countdown begin!

Wintermute supports the use of Ogg Theora video files, which are very well compressed without losing much quality.  The problem I had was that none of the methods outlined anywhere I could find for converting an AVI/MOV file to Ogg Theora was actually working on a level I'd call "professional" - very frustrating.

The problem seemed to be this (as far as I could tell): though many utilities could convert AVI to Theora, they were often buggy and had strict requirements for successful transfers, and the most stable utility I've found - "ffmpeg2theora" - requires that the AVI use specific codecs for sound and video for the conversion to be successful.  Unfortunately, AVI seems to act only as a container for multiple combinations of Audio/Video codecs, making it difficult to get a video that uses the right stuff for conversion.

So, I've taken it upon myself to make this small guide ::).  This is the method I use to get Theora files into the engine that are small (a 2-min video file is 3MB-8MB, depending on resolution) and that work, as a big plus, with optional subtitles. 

Tools you'll need:

Rad Video Tools
Virtual Dub
SubtitlesK5ky (Subtitle Software)

And at least 10GB of free hard drive space (some temporary space for LARGE uncompressed video files).

What you need to do:

1) Open RadVideo.exe and select the source file in the browser.  Click the button "Convert a File".

2) Make sure to check both "Convert Video" and "Convert Audio".  Set the output file to "AVI File" and click "Convert".

3) When a Video Compression dialog pops up, choose "Full Frames (Uncompressed)" and hit OK.  Note that this new file will be VERY LARGE, probably in the 2-5Gb range or higher.

4) Run VirtualDub.exe and open the Uncompressed AVI file.  Here, you can use the "Video->Filters..." menu to fix up the video if needs be (resizing, contrast, grayscale, etc).  VirtualDub's resizing utility is particularly nice because it doesn't limit resolutions to DVD and movie resolutions like a lot of editing software does.

4b) If you plan on using subtitles, it is vital that you know how many frames per second the video file is, or the subtitles will show up at the wrong time.  Use "Video->Frame Rate..." to find the current frame rate or to change the frame rate (25 is easy to remember, but I IMAGINE changing it could cause the audio and video to unsync in some situations...though I have no proof of this, change at own risk).  If nothing else, write down the current frame rate to use later.

5) Be sure that the "Video->Compression..." has the "Uncompressed RGB" option selected and use "Save as AVI..." from the file menu to save it.  You can't overwrite your other file because virtual dub is still using it :P.  Depending on what you did to the file, the new file may be even larger.

(This is why you need so much hard drive space.  ;D)

6) "ffmpeg2theora.exe" is a drag-and-drop utility, so drag you're Uncompressed, Resized AVI file onto the icon and wait for it to convert.  It will automatically save a .OGG file in the same directory as the original.  The .OGG file will be very small by comparison; for a test run, I used a 100MB is now 300kb with no noticeable visual or audio loss.  Nice!

(NOTE: .OGG files do not save the FPS (frames per second) in the property dialog...this can be important to know, so it might be a good idea to put the FPS in the comments section of the property dialog for future use.)

(At this point, the video file is ready to be used in the engine using the PlayTheora command.  However, the subtitle stuff is pretty cool, and will make your game that much more professional.)

7) Run "SubtitlesK5ky.exe" - this program is pretty bizarre, but it works - and use "Player->Open File..." to select the ogg file.  You'll need to switch to "All Files" to see the ogg file, but as long as you have the ogg codec installed, it will work.  When it asks for the number of frames per second, USE THE RIGHT NUMBER.  If you don't, the subtitles will display at the wrong time when you run it.

8) Basically, the "Compendium" window shows the entire sequence.  When you play the movie, there is a box at the bottom of the main window marked "Actual Frame:" - this shows the frame the video is on at any given point.  You put the "Actual Frame" values into the "From" and "To" text boxes.  For example, if a person in the movie starts saying "Hello" at frame 34 and ends at frame 45, you'd put 34 and 45 in the "From" and "To" boxes respectively, and then "Hello" into the subtitle box.  There are a lot of buttons, but the ones that you'll use a lot are the ones with two rectangles in them in the main window; these insert a new subtitle.  After you've inserted a few of subtitles, you can play back the movie and the subtitle will light up when it will show up during the movie, so you can be sure it works.

(NOTE: You can also do SUB files with a simple text editor.  To do the above in a text editor, you'd insert "{34}{45}Hello")
(NOTE: It's also a good idea to fill the frames you don't have anything displaying with a space, so that you know nothing will show when it's not supposed to)

An example .SUB file is as simple as:
{1}{1} 25                        <--The program author suggests that FPS is first line of the SUB for reference.
{36}{50} Who's there?
{81}{96} Hmm...must have been nothing.

9) When you're done, use "File->Save" and save it as a .SUB file in the same directory as the video.  The program will give you a message that basically says "You can't save until you register, unless you really have to." (WTF?) and then you can save. 

And you are done!  Play the ogg file in game, watch the subtitles show up on cue (unless you have them turned off) and pat yourself on the back.  Since the subtitles are a separate file and not part of the movie, they can be turned off and also translated into different languages for localization.  Sure, you might get away with just using ffmpeg2theora on everything, but chances are you'll get garbage, it won't be the right size, the audio won't work, or everything will be out of sync.  This method ensures that the converted file IS the original taking up less space. 

NOTE: And remember to delete those Uncompressed AVI files after the conversion, or you will be using a good 10GB for every file.  Not good.

I hope this was helpful, and have fun!

Technical forum / Scrollbar - Button Code Question
« on: February 16, 2007, 01:34:37 AM »
So, I'm trying to implement a scroll bar for volume controls.  I used McCoy's example to create what I think is workable, but I'm having trouble understanding where to put the code to have it execute.

This may be completely wrong, but I've created a script in my OptionsDialog folder called MusicSlider.script.  In the definition file for the options GUI, I have:

Code: [Select]
    NAME = "MusicSlider"
IMAGE = "interface\OptionsDialog\scrollTicker_n.png"
IMAGE_HOVER = "interface\OptionsDialog\scrollTicker_h.png"
IMAGE_PRESS = "interface\OptionsDialog\scrollTicker_h.png"
SCRIPT = "interface\OptionsDialog\MusicSlider.script"
X = 252
Y = 93

in MusicSlider.script, I have my code.  The problem I'm having is that the initial code (outside all "on" statements) executes fine, and the code in "on LeftRelease" works fine, but any code I have in on "LeftClick" just doesn't seem to run; when I click on the button, it doesn't move (or perform anything I have in the event), but when I release the button, it does. 

Do I just have the code in the wrong place, or am I missing something?

Technical forum / Forbidding Certain Keys in EDIT Box
« on: January 30, 2007, 01:37:45 AM »
Hi everyone,

I'm tweaking the save dialog and I noticed that if I type the "|" character into the edit box, it ends up causing a line break in the text.  Therefore, I would like to stop this key (among others) from being entered into the edit box for the save name.  I couldn't find a keycode for "|" and I'm not quite sure how I would implement this even if I did.

Any suggestions?

Technical forum / "next" & "prev" possible bug
« on: January 27, 2007, 10:42:28 PM »
Sorry for posting so much, but I've really been slaving away at transferring my project to Wintermute and I may have come upon a small bug.

For the inventory object, I have two button objects to scroll through the inventory and these buttons use the IMAGE_PRESS property.  When the buttons are not named "prev" and "next", they work fine, but when I name the buttons appropriately, the button no longer switches to a pressed state when clicked.  This seems to only happen when the buttons are named "next" and "prev" (possible "close" as well, but I haven't tried). 


Technical forum / AddScore function...
« on: January 27, 2007, 01:25:52 AM »

I'm implementing a simple scoring feature in the game, but I'm still a bit foggy on how to use your own functions.  I've created a pretty simple function for adding to a score text, but I'm not sure WHERE to put it and HOW to use it.  I tried sticking it in the game.script file and calling it from a scene object script, but it didn't work.  I guess I'm not sure if I have to add an "#include" everywhere I want to use it (a bit tedious) or somehow attach it to a game would be ideal if I could somehow stick the function onto the Game object and just call Game.AddScore() when I need it.  Is this possible?

Technical forum / Can't get TTF to Display
« on: January 26, 2007, 08:32:34 AM »
There's probably just a stupid mistake somewhere; maybe someone else can catch it.

I've imported a .ttf font and created a .font file with the following definition:

Code: [Select]
  SIZE = 12
  FILENAME = "fonts\scifi2.ttf"

  COLOR { 0, 0, 0 }
  ALPHA = 255

The required font, "scifi2.ttf", is definitely in the fonts folder.  However, the game is using a default font when I preview it or use it in game.  Am I missing something?

Technical forum / Switching to Wintermute...and perhaps a mild Bug Report
« on: January 25, 2007, 03:45:06 AM »

Just a few hours ago, actually, I discovered Wintermute and have been a bit on the fence about converting my current project to use it...I'm currently using Adventure Game Studio.  The game I am working on is an FMV adventure, and could greatly benefit from Wintermute's Theora video features and higher resolutions, but I have to admit I don't like the idea of learning a new engine.  Before I switch to Wintermute, I was wondering if there are any notable features of AGS that I could possibly sorely miss in Wintermute...I'd hate to put all my files into Wintermute only to find a key feature is missing.

Also, maybe a bug report, but my game is entirely greyscale (50's sci-fi b-movie vibe) and I noticed that the backgrounds display incorrectly in-game.  This was easily fixed by changing the file to 24-bit color from greyscale, but I figured that might just be an overlooked bug.

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