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Normal Topic Request Feature/Inquiry (Texture Filtering, Smoothing) (Read 1280 times)
Xada
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Request Feature/Inquiry (Texture Filtering, Smoothing)
Aug 20th, 2018 at 3:41am
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Hey all.
For a while I have been struggling to achieve the best (in my opinion/preference) visual aesthetic for Unreal seeing as how it is still my favorite game to this day, though I've hit a bit of a...pseudo-roadblock in making the game resemble the old classic I adore so much, especially when compatibility comes to mind (many mods outright require OpenGL from what I am aware too, so I do not want to utilize Software rendering as that also defeats the purpose of what I am after compat-wise.)

The major issue I have come across is the strange lack of texture filtering options in any given shader, in general. Although I am no Unreal Engine expert (I know my way around variables and commands, but I am not overly familiar with coding) it strikes me as odd that there is currently no option in any of the rendering devices I've used, to enable a more pixel-perfect approach.
I am aware the driver-driven bNoFiltering exists, though the problem with this method is it also effects various shading techniques and, more importantly, makes lighting look like blocky garbage. I speculated perhaps textures were 'baked' in with lightmaps as well...until I discovered something interesting under various D3D renderers:

I was able to achieve a basic look I was after by using Set variables as follows

Set Actor BNoSmooth True
Set Texture BNoSmooth True

This more or less gives what I am after, AND sustains the smooth lightmaps so the game looks crisp as opposed to the worst end of what I could call 'software emulation' which isn't what I am after in the least. The odd thing is under no variant of OpenGL was I able to use this same method reliably. Almost every instance of Set parameters were met with lightmaps also being mucked up-- which brings me to my main point: I'd very much like to see some sort of implementation if possible in the more modernized OpenGL shaders still in the works to allow for non-blurry texture filtering, as it does indeed seem to be possible in some form or another without losing lightmaps, in fact I'd consider it essential for an older era game such as Unreal to have this possibility as I know several friends who also vastly prefer crisp textures as opposed to blurred method. In wake of other classics that come to mind supporting this method overall (even on the fly, ie Quake, Q2, Half-Life.)
Perhaps I am in the minority here with my specific preference, though blurry textures in retro games always leaves a bad taste in my mouth, especially with how lovely the raw filtering method looks with modern shading elements, it is quite beautiful to look at especially when utilizing S3TC textures. Things really stick out in a sense, appear to have more depth.

Perhaps at the very least maybe a mutator would be possibly that'd set these variables on the fly so they stick? (I have noticed, more often in U1 some surfaces/meshes will stick to this setting wheras other weapons and mobs may use blurred until the Set command is used once more. I did not have this occur as often in UT'99 however and am not entirely sure what causes it)

At any rate, thanks for the read! I do hope there is a way to accomplish this sort of thing as I feel it's long overdue by this point.
  
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Re: Request Feature/Inquiry (Texture Filtering, Smoothing)
Reply #1 - Aug 20th, 2018 at 9:47am
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I'm not an expert at all, but I'd very much like a screenshot comparing the lightmaps with and without this trick.
  

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Re: Request Feature/Inquiry (Texture Filtering, Smoothing)
Reply #2 - Aug 20th, 2018 at 11:39am
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Sure thing. I have taken several pictures to demonstrate what I had mentioned above on both D3D and OpenGL (UTGLR for my test)


D3D Default (Smoothing Texture Filter):
https://i.imgur.com/fbc2lpC.png

D3D with Set BNoSmooth variables:
https://i.imgur.com/0KdluOr.png


OpenGL Default (Smoothing Texture Filter):
https://i.imgur.com/FaiWrnA.png

OpenGL with global NoFilter:
https://i.imgur.com/WpFMZ4r.png

OpenGL with Set BNoSmooth variables:
https://i.imgur.com/yGoSWEd.png


As you can see the global setting mucks up lightmaps bigtime so it is not viable in the least, however it does seem to be possible for textures alone to use no filtering without screwing up the lightmaps as well.
  
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yrex
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Re: Request Feature/Inquiry (Texture Filtering, Smoothing)
Reply #3 - Aug 20th, 2018 at 2:19pm
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If something doesn't seem to update, try doing
flush

You can also do
set texture detailtexture none
for more software-like look, and lots of other weird things while we're here...

BTW, I'd like to see a dither simulated with shaders... Shouldn't be too hard to do.
  

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Xada
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Re: Request Feature/Inquiry (Texture Filtering, Smoothing)
Reply #4 - Aug 21st, 2018 at 1:27am
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Aye.
I have also discovered after enough testing and tweaking that the Set BNoSmooth trick simply do not work under XOpenGL renderer. No matter what I try I always get blocky lightmaps. I am not sure why, as it works just fine under UTGLR though I suppose considering it's a totally different beast some differences could be understandable.

I'd consider this much worth looking into however should any devs or people understanding OpenGL to a indepth measure take note as it is now clear a no-filtering approach under OpenGL is indeed very possible without also losing lightmap quality. It is a bit of a shame since as a result I am forced to use UTGLR instead of the newer XOpenGL render device, though it suits it's purpose well enough-- I just hope mod compatibility will also be attainable with UTGLR (I've never had trouble with UTGLR in the past, though I have seen more recent mods popping up hinting use of XOpenGL features.)
  
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Re: Request Feature/Inquiry (Texture Filtering, Smoothing)
Reply #5 - Aug 21st, 2018 at 7:05am
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So in other words you want GL_NEAREST_MIPMAP_NEAREST / GL_NEAREST as min/magnifcatication filters for textures, but lightmaps?
  

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Re: Request Feature/Inquiry (Texture Filtering, Smoothing)
Reply #6 - Aug 21st, 2018 at 8:34am
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Correct, that's exactly what I am after. As it stands there's only BNoFilter which causes unfiltered ugly blocky lighting as well (which just looks awful on any map frankly.)
I think many a person would enjoy the option to switch between the two styles (blurred rendering as well as pixel-perfect / no filtering, much like you can on the fly in Quake or HL for instance with gl_texturemode command.) Biggest issue for me overall is I can't even use my usual trick under XOpenGL, and I am not really sure why it is different from UTGLR, but perhaps it is worth looking into? I'd greatly appreciate any more info or interest on this subject as I vastly prefer no filtering in games around this era in general and it'd be a shame if I couldn't even find so much as a workaround under the newer rendering device. UTGLR is nice and all but as far as I am aware it's mostly finished and won't see many (if any?) changes.
  
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Re: Request Feature/Inquiry (Texture Filtering, Smoothing)
Reply #7 - Aug 26th, 2018 at 5:43am
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shouldn't be much of a problem.
  

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Re: Request Feature/Inquiry (Texture Filtering, Smoothing)
Reply #8 - Aug 28th, 2018 at 5:47am
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Smirftsch wrote on Aug 26th, 2018 at 5:43am:
shouldn't be much of a problem.


Niice. That's a relief to hear, thank you! I'll definitely be looking forward to such a feature, definitely got me excited-- I'll eagerly await the next revisions.   Smiley
  
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Re: Request Feature/Inquiry (Texture Filtering, Smoothing)
Reply #9 - Nov 29th, 2018 at 7:07am
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Reminder for myself: DON'T FORGET.
  

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