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 Post subject: Planet BIN's, space battle image
PostPosted: Mon Oct 10, 2011 12:19 pm 
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Hey, I need all you guys help. I am trying to change these images. I know it is possible to change the space battle versions of planet images. Rebellion Reloaded did-it for their Wayland planet and the process is similar with the death star/eclipse pic. So can anybody please send-me a walkthrough of how I can make-it?

I already have the Bmp converter program, but the readme is not clear enough on the topic of the planets.

It is particularly not clear what I have to do about the palette. If I understood correctly, Each planets have 2 files. One for the actual bin, one for its palette.

Let's picture this situation:
-I have a new picture for the Coruscant type planet. How do I import-it in game?
-Keep in mind that I'll be using PS 6.0 to work on this.
-What files has to be modified? Only the converted planet bin, or also its palette?
-Why do all the converted bins look like a big chunk of pink?


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 Post subject: Re: Planet BIN's, space battle image
PostPosted: Tue Oct 11, 2011 10:17 am 
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Okay, I found a way to work this out with vakundok's program. Still pisses me off on some account though. Rundown of what I can do:
-Extract the planet bins and their palettes.
-Use the program to add color information on the pink planet pics.
-Put the thing back in game.

Now doing a space battle, I ran accross a darned problem: some colors are interpreted as black.
Of course, I knew about this issue, but I tought that taking the original bin (now converted into bmp and using the same palette) and pasting my new pic on-it would convert the pic with the new palette (which it partially did, I mean, I'm using indexed colors and the planet loss some color informations...).

And of course, I did the required operation to get the thing in-game correctly: using the program to put the palette and the bmp together to form the correct bin.

Maybe I have to save a new palette, when my bmp is done?


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 Post subject: Re: Planet BIN's, space battle image
PostPosted: Wed Oct 12, 2011 6:05 pm 
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There is a limit on how much information can be displayed in battle. The z-buffer. I'm not sure if this directly affects the planet graphics or only ships. I do know that in Rebellion, its hardcoded and cannot be changed, and unfortunately very limited.

I'd say more if I knew more. Sorry :?

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 Post subject: Re: Planet BIN's, space battle image
PostPosted: Wed Oct 12, 2011 8:52 pm 
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I tought so. Still, my problem is a little bit more technical.

It seems that to picture the tactical planet pictures, Rebellion only use 80 colors, instead of their regular 256. On the palette, these colors are represented in a big block, that you may see while looking at the color table of a .bin planet converted to bmp.

I tried very hard to reduce the number of color used by my pictures. To do so, I used the pictures that had lost color information and used only the color on these. To no avail. There were still loss of color information.

I think the problem come at least partly from the palette shit. But I am convinced your Z-buffer has something to do with-it too.

So I've been working on the Brentaal planet for a few hours now, to get-it in-game. What got me the best result in that there were less loss of color was to use a pic from my planet icons. But still, there was a loss that I did not like, so I decided to take the same pic and paste-it inside a 512px template. Strangely enough, rotating the planet 180 degrees gave better results. There's less holes. See for yourself:

Image

I'll keep on working on this aspect of the game, but I'm afraid this is going to be even more shit than planet pic in strategy.


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 Post subject: Re: Planet BIN's, space battle image
PostPosted: Thu Oct 13, 2011 9:51 am 
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If you shrank the image size, would that reduce color loss? Smaller image, smaller draw on game resources. Then again, I'm not even sure that's possible (to shrink the image size Rebellion displays in tactical battle). And obviously that only works if the image is using the 80 colors the game allows (or however many).

I read up on the z-buffer, and no longer believe it has any effect on your current issue. I remembered part of what it did, but not the details. Here are the details: Check it out. And here as well.

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 Post subject: Re: Planet BIN's, space battle image
PostPosted: Thu Oct 13, 2011 2:24 pm 
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I think it has to do with either the palette issue, or vakundok's program itself.

It seems to me that increasing the size gives better results than reducing-it. That might be just me, though. I'll make another planet just for kick and we'll see if size helps the issue.

I'll describe the procedure here:
-Get a good ref pic.
-Extract the .bin I am about to replace and the associated palette.
-Use RH to save these respectively to their .bin and .pal extentions (though I don't use the palette, because I can't get Photoshop to open the .pal extracted from tacticall.dll)
-Use vakundok's program to convert the .bin file to a .bmp file (opt 1)
-Use his program to add the palette to the bmp (option 4)
-Use PS to resize the ref pic, select the planet and paste-it right on top of the .bmp, effectively converting-it to the Rebellion somewhat restricted palette.
-Resize this bmp to a power of 2, if applicable.
-Rotate the planet if applicable.
-Save this bmp.
-Then, I use vakundok's option 5, effectively converting the new.bmp to a .bin and a .pal.
-To verify my work, I convert back the .bin to a bmp with a diferent name, not to override the new.bmp.
-This other bmp, like the first, is like a big pink blob and using opt4 with the new .pal shows me the picture with its color. However, this is where we see that there has been a loss of color information. Wether the same pic is bigger of smaller does not seem to change the issue.

I'll test the size theory again, just to be sure, but I don believe that this is-it.


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 Post subject: Re: Planet BIN's, space battle image
PostPosted: Thu Oct 13, 2011 4:18 pm 
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Unfortunately, I could not upload the one that yields the best result: the 1024. Still, all are crappy at best and it shows that size matter not...

Image
Image
Image
Image


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 Post subject: Re: Planet BIN's, space battle image
PostPosted: Thu Oct 13, 2011 4:42 pm 
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Experimenting further.

These pics are supposed to be in 1024px, but as I can't upload as large a file, I've saved some to 256px instead.

So at first, I tried to rotate the bugger.
Image

That is in comparisson with the original 1024:
Image

Then, I lowered both Contrast and Lightning:
Image

I also tried to just rotate the bugger, though I think it was with a darkened pic:
Image

In the end, what gave the best results was taking the darkened picture, duplicate-it, take the duplicated pic and convert-it from reb palette to RGB color, use the Density + tool on the areas that were to bright , even with the double adjustment of light and contrast, then copy that one back on the darkened pic (which I filled with black before, just to be sure...). The results are somehow satisfactory.
Image
Doing the last method a second time made me reduce most of the dots, though there are still some. This is going to be incredible in-game, compared to low-qality pics!


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 Post subject: Re: Planet BIN's, space battle image
PostPosted: Sat Oct 15, 2011 10:14 pm 
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Agreed, that does give by far the best results.

Quote:
-Use PS to resize the ref pic, select the planet and paste-it right on top of the .bmp, effectively converting-it to the Rebellion somewhat restricted palette.

Are you sure that works? How does it convert it to the other palette? At first glance, I'd bet this is where the problem is, and when you take vakundok's program it actually does the conversion, leading to the lost information when you re-extract it.

I know of a website that lets you control the amount of information in a picture. You upload it and manipulate settings to get things right. Supposed to be for controlling image size (bit size, not appearance) for webpage publishing, but it lets you change both appearance size and quality. The quality controls directly effect the number of colors displayed. I would suggest trying something like this to take the reference pic and convert it pre-pasting. See if that gives better results.

There is probably a better program/site that does what I just described. I can't even find the URL for the one I used. Here is a list of candidates, and another list. That first list has more options that users posted in the comments section, in addition to the twelve and the eight of the two respective lists. PS may have the option to do this as well, but I don't own PS, so couldn't say for sure.

Of course, an easy way to do this would be to save the reference pic as a .gif, which is limited to 256 colors. Unless Rebellion really does limit lower than that, as you mentioned earlier, in which case you'll have to use a setting in some program or website to limit it further.

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 Post subject: Re: Planet BIN's, space battle image
PostPosted: Sun Oct 16, 2011 3:28 am 
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This method has worked for me in every card modification I ever did and yields very impressive results in the matter of converting to another palette.

But anyway, how would you proceed to convert a picture to another palette? I've always been curious to know how the other ones proceeds.


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 Post subject: Re: Planet BIN's, space battle image
PostPosted: Mon Oct 17, 2011 10:10 pm 
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MrPhildevil wrote:
This method has worked for me in every card modification I ever did and yields very impressive results in the matter of converting to another palette.

But anyway, how would you proceed to convert a picture to another palette? I've always been curious to know how the other ones proceeds.

I never have. Haven't done much graphic design, and never created any cards. I wouldn't even be trying to help you figure this out, except there isn't really anybody else on these forums anymore. Sorry, I'm all you've got. :?

This article may or may not be what you are talking about. I'm not entirely sure.

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 Post subject: Re: Planet BIN's, space battle image
PostPosted: Mon Oct 17, 2011 11:26 pm 
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Nah, it is actually nice that someone would answer. Actually, when I use RessourceHacker to extract the palettes, PS don't understand them and won't charge'em, stating that the format is incorrect. However, when I use vakundok's program, I can take the extracted .bin (converted to bmp beforehand) and "merge"-it with the extracted palette to get colors attributed. So clearly, PS don't understand shit in the extracted palette, but vakundok's program does. And when this has been done, I can open the merged bmp and actually get to see what the palette is with PS. However, when encoding the thing back to bmp, and I think there is the problem, vakundok makes a new palette. I've tried to merge the palette I can see in PS to the bin converted to bmp and it went all fuzzy. So I think there is an issue between PS palette gestion and vakundok's palette conversion. Weird stuff I tell ya. Alas, I can get some results that are acceptable, tweaking images. I just don't like how I did not find any other forum post on this issue and the fact that the reloaded team could get-it to work (even though it was not the greatest stuff I've ever seen, far from-it.


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 Post subject: Re: Planet BIN's, space battle image
PostPosted: Mon Oct 17, 2011 11:42 pm 
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I will not say that I do the most beautiful planet modifications, but alas, they work. So far, I've got 5 planets done. Have you downloaded my Rebellion 1.5 mod, Master Xan? I may be able to let you test them ingame, if you wish.


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 Post subject: Re: Planet BIN's, space battle image
PostPosted: Tue Oct 18, 2011 9:42 am 
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MrPhildevil wrote:
I will not say that I do the most beautiful planet modifications, but alas, they work. So far, I've got 5 planets done. Have you downloaded my Rebellion 1.5 mod, Master Xan? I may be able to let you test them ingame, if you wish.

You can try emailing or PMing peeps from the old team. Some of them may still answer.

I haven't downloaded it; haven't done much with Rebellion in awhile. I was thinking about it last night; I may reinstall again. Is your mod hosted here somewhere?

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 Post subject: Re: Planet BIN's, space battle image
PostPosted: Tue Oct 18, 2011 10:58 pm 
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The mask has responded, but I think this stuff is too far and he was not able to do much about the issue. The others that I've PMed did not answer as of yet.

You can get my mod from here: viewtopic.php?p=547267#p547267 And I don't think you would have to re-install to try the mod, but check for yourself...


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