Broken Sword I & II - Enhanced cutscene project - Update

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Phreddy
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Broken Sword I & II - Enhanced cutscene project - Update

Post by Phreddy » Thu Jun 28, 2007 2:15 am

I was very glad to see that the current release included better looking cutscenes for these two games. These DXA cutscenes, however, still don't look that good to me. Therefore, I'd like to take a crack at filtering and encoding them, then post the results here for you guys to evaluate. So, is there a way for me to extract them?
Last edited by Phreddy on Wed Aug 08, 2007 1:06 pm, edited 3 times in total.

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eriktorbjorn
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Re: Can I extract the Broken Sword I & II cutscenes from

Post by eriktorbjorn » Thu Jun 28, 2007 4:31 am

Phreddy wrote:I was very glad to see that the current release included better looking cutscenes for these two games. These DXA cutscenes, however, still don't look that good to me. Therefore, I'd like to take a crack at filtering and encoding them, then post the results here for you guys to evaluate. So, is there a way for me to extract them?
The RAD Video Tools can be used to extract the individual frames and the sound from a Smacker file. Apart from their web site, this is also briefly described in the ScummVM tools README, the part about encode_dxa.

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Post by Phreddy » Fri Jun 29, 2007 3:13 am

Here's a preliminary attempt with the first Smacker file I extracted:

http://www.bestsharing.com/files/1Q8UkQ ... e.mp4.html

It's encoded with x264 and Vorbis, so you'll need ffdshow or CCCP in order to play it back. Check it out and tell me what you think.

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Post by spookypeanut » Fri Jun 29, 2007 10:21 am

Phreddy wrote:Here's a preliminary attempt with the first Smacker file I extracted:

http://www.bestsharing.com/files/1Q8UkQ ... e.mp4.html

It's encoded with x264 and Vorbis, so you'll need ffdshow or CCCP in order to play it back. Check it out and tell me what you think.
Don't want to rain on your parade or anything, but dxa is a lossless compression format, so you won't be able to improve on the quality...
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lossless_data_compression
(I'm sure any devs can correct me if I'm wrong...)
And anyway, for a true comparison you should make your video at the same resolution. And use the intro video, much easier to get to it in scummvm ;-)

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Post by eriktorbjorn » Fri Jun 29, 2007 10:45 am

spookypeanut wrote: Don't want to rain on your parade or anything, but dxa is a lossless compression format, so you won't be able to improve on the quality...
I thought he was trying to touch up some of the compression artifacts of the original movies. Though to be re-encoded as DXA movies for ScummVM to use (if that is the purpose) each frame still cannot use more than 256 colours, and it can't be larger than 640x480 pixels.

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Post by clem » Fri Jun 29, 2007 10:44 pm

congrats on this one mp4 movie, it looks great
however, this one had a "static" camera - for pans, etc you'll have to deal with loads of artifacts :(

clem

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Post by Phreddy » Fri Jun 29, 2007 11:31 pm

spookypeanut: like eriktorbjorn said, my intention is to remove the artifacting inherent in the source files like macroblocking and banding.


eriktorbjorn: since the previous versions of the cutscenes were MPEG2s, I assumed that ScummVM could read any format so long as had the appropriate DirectShow filters installed (my end goal was to create 1280x800 Lagarith (lossless) video with FLAC audio), is that not the case?


clem: thanks for the encouragement :). I know this was an easy scene, my next sample will be the intro to the first game, which has tons of blocking. Hopefully it will end up nice :).

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Post by clem » Fri Jun 29, 2007 11:59 pm

Phreddy wrote:eriktorbjorn: since the previous versions of the cutscenes were MPEG2s, I assumed that ScummVM could read any format so long as had the appropriate DirectShow filters installed (my end goal was to create 1280x800 Lagarith (lossless) video with FLAC audio), is that not the case?
nope, ScummVM has (had?) libmpeg2 built-in - directshow isn't platform-independent - so no .avi or other stuff there

plus, with dxa support in there are plans to phase out mpeg2 support

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Post by eriktorbjorn » Sat Jun 30, 2007 2:45 am

Phreddy wrote:eriktorbjorn: since the previous versions of the cutscenes were MPEG2s, I assumed that ScummVM could read any format so long as had the appropriate DirectShow filters installed (my end goal was to create 1280x800 Lagarith (lossless) video with FLAC audio), is that not the case?
As clem said, ScummVM uses libmpeg2 to decode them. ScummVM contains code to convert the frames from YUV-something to RGB. The re-encoding turned the original 256-colour frames into 16-bit colour, so ScummVM has to draw them to the "overlay" (same as the ScummVM GUI), with a fallback mechanism to draw them as 8-bit graphics the "normal" way.

Graphics drawn the normal way (game graphics, DXA movies, ...) are go through the scaling mechanism (e.g. 2x, 3x, HQ2x, etc.), while graphics drawn to the overlay do not, so the MPEG2 movie player has its own, primitive scaling for the 16-bit case.

All in all, it's a pretty nasty hack. The main obstacle to adding DXA support to the Broken Sword engines was that they still had to be able to play the MPEG2 movies. (I wanted the players to still share as much code as possible.) If/when it's dropped, I shan't miss it one bit.

Even with the hack, there's no support for movies larger than the game's own graphics, I'm afraid. In this case, 640x480 pixels.

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Post by clem » Sat Jun 30, 2007 9:33 am

of course, a filtered, high-color version of the cutscenes can be reduced to 8-bit 640x480 DXA again and will probably still look better than the current files done from the original SMK cutscenes

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Post by Phreddy » Sun Jul 08, 2007 10:46 pm

Sorry for taking so long before an update. Here are a couple of comparative screenshots of how Broken Sword 1's intro looks like:

Image

The yellow smudges on the left of the second after pic are due to filtering issues I'll correct soon. An x264 encode will be uploaded shortly :).


[edit]
Here it is:

[link removed, new one on page 2]
Last edited by Phreddy on Wed Jul 18, 2007 1:02 am, edited 3 times in total.

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PsYcO
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Post by PsYcO » Sun Jul 08, 2007 11:21 pm

witch is witch?

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Phreddy
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Post by Phreddy » Sun Jul 08, 2007 11:26 pm

Top = original, bottom = filtered.

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Post by glokidd » Mon Jul 09, 2007 6:06 am

The filtered cutscenes are gorgeous :D Great work!!! :D

im really looking forward to the finished product :D

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Post by spookypeanut » Mon Jul 09, 2007 9:52 am

Wow, looking really nice, especially the shot of the waitress. The mp4 of the intro didn't work for me, maybe I was too late. What are you using to do the retouching? A still image editing package (e.g. Photoshop), or a compositing package?

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