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Planescape: Torment: Enhanced Edition has been released! Visit www.planescape.com to purchase and check for details.
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[PST:EE] Please give us resolution options

Please let us specify what resolution we render the game at, independent of window and desktop resolution.

What do I mean? I like to to appreciate the art in the IE games - the maps, character sprites, that kind of thing. My main desktop monitor is 1920x1200, and I always disable zoom because I don't care for it. If I play any of your EE games in fullscreen, that means I'm watching ants crawl around the screen in 1920x1200. Enable zoom you might say! But, there's another way where I can have even better control of the game resolution without enabling zoom: I can change my desktop resolution. If I do that, I can play IWD:EE in 1280x800, a resolution that actually lets me see the detail in the art.

But why, in 2017, do I need to change my desktop resolution to play a game in that resolution? Why can't I select the resolution for the game to render in, and have it stretch to full-screen?

Or, even better, make it completely independent of fullscreen mode. That way, those of us with multiple monitors don't have our desktop composition screwed up on the secondary monitor by a fullscreen game changing our desktop resolution.

You might think this is a crazy request, but it actually isn't. The reason it isn't implemented in the EEs is because it wasn't considered, that's it.¹ If I can play Fallout 2 in a borderless fullscreen window, with the window rendered at 1920x1200 but the game rendered at 1280x800 and occupying the ENTIRE 1920x1200 window (yes, no letterboxing or black bars), I believe Beamdog can implement the same.

Give us the option please, even if it's officially unsupported and via an ini tweak.

@TrentOster @Avenger_teambg

¹ Some technical details. In windows, there are generic APIs / 'hooks' that deal with the resolution of a window. It's one of the many tools the borderless widescreen gaming community has used to develop programs that make, well, borderless fullscreen windows. OpenGL, which I believe the EEs render with for Windows, supports exactly what I've asked above. The EE internal renderer (or 'game') outputs to the game window (the 'window' I specify above) to be drawn and managed by the OpenGL API. Think of the game as a picture, and the window the picture frame. This API allows the management of the game window such that content fed to it can be stretched (aspect ratio correct or incorrect, but ofc we want correct) to occupy the full window. That's how you get what I've asked for. It is not programming black magic, it is not arcane or obtuse - but I don't think there's been a clear demand for this feature before so it hasn't been considered.
CrevsDaakBlackorbBaptorTeflonsolthane

Comments

  • agrisagris Member Posts: 520
    with the announcement today, i think this needs a *BUMP*
  • dos350dos350 Member Posts: 13
    can i suggest u play in window'd mode !
  • inethineth Member Posts: 424
    Does lowering the screen resolution really give better results than using the zoom feature?
    In my experience, resolution scaling on LCD monitors is not that great.
    And when using the zoom feature, at least the UI stays at full resolution.

    Of course, the EE zoom feature's Nearest-Neighbor and Linear scaling algorithms aren't exactly state-of-the-art either.

    Beamdog could implement more high-quality but somewhat slower upscaling algorithms (like Photoshop etc. use) for the zoom feature, and probably still have it work in real-time on most machines. Possibly speed it up by caching individual upscaled sprites so it doesn't have to upscale the whole scene again each frame.

    They could also add support for Pixel art scaling algorithms, which is what emulators like DOSBox use to upscale old pixel-art games. These algorithms can produce results that are neither as pixelated as Nearest-Neighbor nor as blurry as Linear, and still be very fast – at the expense of looking kinda stylized (bad for photos but no problem for pixel art)...

    ...and only supporting round zoom levels (1.0x, 1.5x, 2x, 3x, 4x), so the zoom feature would have to be locked to those levels.


    lolienKamigoroshiCrevsDaak
  • agrisagris Member Posts: 520
    ineth said:

    Does lowering the screen resolution really give better results than using the zoom feature?

    Yes.

  • JuliusBorisovJuliusBorisov Member, Administrator, Moderator, Developer Posts: 11,526
    If we figured out correctly from the OP, you want to be able to set the resolution of the game, then enable full screen mode without the game being rendered at the resolution of the monitor it's being displayed on.



    We added zoom so you can make the world bigger while the UI stays the same size.

    In our opinion, games look best running at the native resolution of the monitor.
  • agrisagris Member Posts: 520

    If we figured out correctly from the OP, you want to be able to set the resolution of the game, then enable full screen mode without the game being rendered at the resolution of the monitor it's being displayed on.



    We added zoom so you can make the world bigger while the UI stays the same size.

    In our opinion, games look best running at the native resolution of the monitor.

    Hey Julius, thanks for the reply. Yes, I want to render the game at a lower resolution, and have that stretched to occupy my fullscreen desktop resolution. I disagree with your final comment though, which is the point of my original post. Any chance of letting us specify resolution? There's about two decades of games in which developers let the user pick the resolution.

  • KaliestoKaliesto Member Posts: 227
    I would also like to see this for BGEE games to be running in 640x480 as a mod, I think it will be good for players who want that nostalgia back, and also I think the games tend to look better that way.
  • BelegCuthalionBelegCuthalion Member Posts: 330
    edited March 29
    This was discussed a lot in the past, and i still don't really get why the graphics card driver (which is basically doing the same on another level) or even the LCD screen itself that can be abysmal or rather okay) should be able to provide better results than the software could with zooming.

    I get it if it's for performance, rendering low-res, then scaling it up is cheaper than rendering full res, but this is not really a concern in IE games in 2017.

    So what is really the benefit in this?
    Wouldn't it be sufficient if we could define what zoom level "zoom locked" actually means, so we can preset one as scaling factor ingame even if we don't want to use the zoom feature dynamically (and still get sharp UI elements sideway)?

    That said, of course I'm not opposed to have such a feature available, i just don't get it from my perspective what exactly would be different (better) with it.
  • agrisagris Member Posts: 520
    edited March 29

    This was discussed a lot in the past, and i still don't really get why the graphics card driver (which is basically doing the same on another level) or even the LCD screen itself that can be abysmal or rather okay) should be able to provide better results than the software could with zooming.

    I get it if it's for performance, rendering low-res, then scaling it up is cheaper than rendering full res, but this is not really a concern in IE games in 2017.

    So what is really the benefit in this?
    Wouldn't it be sufficient if we could define what zoom level "zoom locked" actually means, so we can preset one as scaling factor ingame even if we don't want to use the zoom feature dynamically (and still get sharp UI elements sideway)?

    That said, of course I'm not opposed to have such a feature available, i just don't get it from my perspective what exactly would be different (better) with it.

    Let me help you get it then. To your question, would a locked zoom level satisfy me? Yes, as long as all filtering of the sprites and maps associated with zooming is disabled. But now, doesn't that sound more complicated than letting us set the game resolution? I don't care to have zoom as a feature, actually I find it annoying, and the effects applied to the character sprites upon zooming are ugly IMO. Also, having to manually 'set' my zoom level every time its reset (either on purpose or because I flubbed the mouse wheel) is fiddly and imprecise.

    Let me just select a resolution and play the game without the 2010-era scaling filters / cel shading etc.

    These old games aren't meant to be played from a birds eye view, beamdog knew this so offered zoom. The feature itself is an acknowledgement of that fact. Zoom works for some people, I want to select the resolution and disable zoom.. an arguably simpler, easier solution. But here we are.


    edit:
    Kaliesto said:

    I would also like to see this for BGEE games to be running in 640x480 as a mod, I think it will be good for players who want that nostalgia back, and also I think the games tend to look better that way.

    Well that's nice, but not what I'm talking about. I not running the EE's on a Win98 VM emulating Pentium 1 performance hooked up to a CRT monitor. I don't want nostalgia. I'm talking about selecting a moderate resolution that is lower than our desktop, but still widescreen and allows for the appreciation of the game's art without filters applied and having to think about / set the zoom level. Fullscreen 1280 x 720 on a 24" 1080p monitor does that nicely, or 1440x900 on a 16:10 equivalent.
    Post edited by agris on
    solthane
  • agrisagris Member Posts: 520
    edited March 30
    Hey @JuliusBorisov it seems that the RPS review didn't like the lack of resolution options, and preferred to play fullscreen in a lower resolution.

    Is Beamdog considering giving players the option to play the game in resolutions that are lower than their desktop's?
  • marxzoemarxzoe Member Posts: 3
    I have the Eizo EV2730Q monitor, which is a monitor with the resolution 1920x1920.

    The ratio 1:1 is, of course, the perfect ratio for games like PST.

    Unfortunately, this resolution is not supported by PST:EE (letterboxing).

    I, too, would like to change the games display resolution, if at all possible.
  • agrisagris Member Posts: 520
    edited April 13
    marxzoe said:

    I have the Eizo EV2730Q monitor, which is a monitor with the resolution 1920x1920.

    The ratio 1:1 is, of course, the perfect ratio for games like PST.

    Unfortunately, this resolution is not supported by PST:EE (letterboxing).

    I, too, would like to change the games display resolution, if at all possible.

    Interesting monitor, I never knew such a creature existed. Looks good for CAD as well.

    Unfortunately, it appears that letting the user select the resolution to play in violates a deeply held philosophical belief at Beamdog. I do not understand why, but their lack of interaction and condescension regarding this issue has made it clear enough. For decades users have been able to select resolutions, but sadly that is not the case here.

    However, ghostdog's widescreen mod for the original PST will definitely support your 1:1 aspect ratio. You can read about it and download here: http://www.shsforums.net/forum/571-ghostdogs-pst-ui/

    As there is no zoom in the original IE games, I suggest you play at either 1/2 or 2/3 of your native X and Y resolution, i.e. 960x960 or 1280x1280. The 960^2 resolution will give you the most crisp text and art as nothing needs to be rendered via anisotropic subpixels (1 game pixel perfectly maps to 4 of your LCD pixels), but I've found that 1280 horizontal is the most pleasing on the eye for the IE games on ~24" monitors.

    If you get Ghostdog's UI mod running, please post a picture! I don't think anyone has ever seen PST in a 1:1 aspect ratio.
    Post edited by agris on
  • SpaceOrcSpaceOrc Member Posts: 3
    edited April 20

    In our opinion, games look best running at the native resolution of the monitor.

    Created this forum account just to reply to that, this kind of responses make my blood boil. What is the problem with giving people some OPTIONS? If you think it's best, leave it as default and other settings will be found by people that look for them.

    Currently PST:EE at 1440p is zoomed out too far for me. If I zoom in the interface is crisp, but the game viewport is lower fidelity and it just looks odd (and whenever I nudge the mouse wheel it changes the zoom level as well - I'd be cool to be able to just lock it/disable the wheel). And some artwork within the interface is still lower res.

    I can get used to play games in 640x480 after literally 5 minutes, I'd like to try this one in maybe 720p to keep the look more consistent.

    edit: Found an option to lock the zoom. Would have been A LITTLE better if i could zoom half-way out and then lock it where I want it but it just snaps back to either full in or full out depending on scaling option. Again, missed opportunity.
    Post edited by SpaceOrc on
  • AndreaColomboAndreaColombo Member Posts: 4,965
    @ineth - If they brought back the Catmull-Rom Bicubic scaling algo they had when BG:EE shipped in 2012, we'd all be set. It trumps Nearest Neighbor, Bilinear, and most other algos in existence. Hope we'll see it again in one of the upcoming patches.
    typo_tillyargent77solthaneRavenslight
  • BluddyBluddy Member Posts: 2
    I was happy to buy PST:EE, but I just don't get Beamdog here. When QA tested the game and zoomed in, didn't they notice the picture gets really ugly with nearest neighbor? I never experienced anything as ugly as this when I originally played PS:T. What gives? In BG:EE, I can zoom in and I get nice filtering. Why can't I get to appreciate the art of PST zoomed in?

    I simply cannot fathom Beamdog being unaware of this issue. The slightest mouse wheel movement causes the art to become ugly and distorted. It just makes no sense. I want to zoom in. I want to see the little details, but not when it ruins the picture quality so much.

    Seriously, what's going on here? How is Beamdog presenting this as an 'upgrade'? I honestly thought it was a bug, and I'm shocked to hear that Beamdog believes this is how the game should behave.
  • marxzoemarxzoe Member Posts: 3
    agris said:


    If you get Ghostdog's UI mod running, please post a picture! I don't think anyone has ever seen PST in a 1:1 aspect ratio.

    Right now I can show you the next best thing: I'm currently playing "Torments: Tides of Numenara". This is a picture of the EV2730Q playing this game:



    This is Civilization V:



    This monitor is perfect for map based games (and for work, actually). Not so much for shooters, but these I am playing on my TV.
    AndreaColombo
  • AndreaColomboAndreaColombo Member Posts: 4,965
    @Bluddy - Try the compatibility renderer. It should still be applying Catmull-Rom Bicubic to backdrops.
  • BluddyBluddy Member Posts: 2

    @Bluddy - Try the compatibility renderer. It should still be applying Catmull-Rom Bicubic to backdrops.

    I got this suggestion on the gog forum as well. A few points:

    a. It works on my Windows machine, but not on my Mac/Android etc which doesn't have DirectX, which is what the compatibility renderer is based on, as opposed to OpenGL, which is the new renderer.
    b. It does indeed look beautiful with filtering -- PST has the nicest art of all Infinity games IMO.
    c. I've checked, and all the other EE titles - BG:EE, BG2:EE and IWD:EE have an OpenGL renderer that also does filtering with zoom. This makes it seem like someone forgot to copy the renderer code when creating PST:EE ie. it's a bug. The code is there in the other games and just needs to be copied over to Torment.
    d. I'm again amazed that nobody picked up on this issue. Where was QA?
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