Watch_Dogs Relief Mapping Mod by The Silver

Discussion in 'Game Tweaks and Modifications' started by The Silver, Dec 11, 2015.

  1. KuroTenshi

    KuroTenshi Master Guru

    Messages:
    499
    Likes Received:
    1
    GPU:
    GTX 970 4gb @ 1177/1402
    Yes, and it still works, as you can see in the video ^^
    They use the DirectX SDK. So I guess some methods handle all types of normals.
     
  2. The Silver

    The Silver Master Guru

    Messages:
    602
    Likes Received:
    14
    GPU:
    GTX 770 2GB
    Well then just add the corresponding greyscale alpha/transparency layer from my files to all your conflicting textures replacing their current full white alpha/transparency layer and you're done. ;)

    PS: I still don't understand why yout TGA is purple/blue instead of orange though, what makes it like this? None of your steps that you've explained could do that except the conversion to the special dds format, but at this point it's obviously not tga anymore, so...
     
    Last edited: Dec 19, 2015
  3. KuroTenshi

    KuroTenshi Master Guru

    Messages:
    499
    Likes Received:
    1
    GPU:
    GTX 970 4gb @ 1177/1402
    It's because I used a software to regenerate normal maps (with custom configuration) from the modified textures. I didn't try to modify vanilla normal maps.
     
  4. The Silver

    The Silver Master Guru

    Messages:
    602
    Likes Received:
    14
    GPU:
    GTX 770 2GB
    Ah ok if you're satisfied with the result it's ok, however IMHO it would have been better to actually edit the original normals. Normal maps are just greyscale images that defines how the light should be applied to the surface when lit from different angles, two of them are needed and then the shader interpolates thenm and figures the lighting for every angle. The "purple/blue" normals have the 2 greyscale layers in the Red and Green channels, with the Blue and Alpha usually full white (resulting in purple and blue shading), while the "orange" normals have them in the Green and Alpha channels, with the Red full white and the Blue full black (resulting in a orange shading). This is because DDS format compresses the red and blue channels a lot more than the green and alpha, so the orange normals have bay far the best quality.
    With these info and an image editor that can split channels I was able to convert the orange normals of WD to the purple/blue format required for the Relief Mapping, since in the alpha channel the RM expects to have its required heightmap, then I had to create the heightmaps from scratch and save them in the now-unused alpha channel of the purple/blue normals.
    One more important thing that you can figure out from this explanation is that if the normal map is in the "orange" format then part of it is in the alpha channel thus it's essential, however if the normal map is in the "purple/blue" format there's nothing in the alpha channel thus it's useless (since if missing it's considered full white anyway). This means that if you're satisfied with the purple/blue format and the engine actually recognizes it and uses it properly instead of recognizing only the orange format, you could safely skip the alpha channel entirely and save your DDS without it, effectively halving their size (which is wasted space with the purple/blue normals actually). ;)

    PS: Also we could push this even further, if the above actually works then we could safely say that ideally if we convert all the normal maps of the game in the purple/blue format and save them without the then-useless alpha channel we would effectively halve the memory required for all the normal maps textures. So if we select all the vanilla normal maps and we see that their global weight is 800Mb for example, after this trick their weight will be 400Mb (with a little but unavoidable loss in the shading of the surfaces, since this is what normals manage, lighting basically), and considering that vram management is the biggest engine problem of WD this trick could be better than any other texture-related optimization that has ever been done IMHO.
     
    Last edited: Dec 19, 2015

  5. KuroTenshi

    KuroTenshi Master Guru

    Messages:
    499
    Likes Received:
    1
    GPU:
    GTX 970 4gb @ 1177/1402
    Thank you for this explanation ! Indeed I have issues with lighting management. For example, in E3_Light V2, I don't manage to implement reflective sidewalks, and there are reflections on roads. It never dries so always reflections. But if I put your normals instead the problem disappears.

    The main purpose of my mod was memory management, while improving quality. But if I can do better with the orange normals, then I'll rework the orange normals too.

    What I am wondering is I can create grey/purple normal maps with an alpha channel. I can too create associated heightmaps. Would it be working If I put then the generated heightmap in the alpha channel of the generated purple/blue normal map ?

    I don't know a tool that can separate channels. And it bothers me a lot !

    Maybe I have the wrong idea but purple normals seems to work :

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Dec 19, 2015
  6. The Silver

    The Silver Master Guru

    Messages:
    602
    Likes Received:
    14
    GPU:
    GTX 770 2GB
    I just tested, I've converted a vanilla orange normal map to its proper purple/blue version and as expected it doesn't work, the engine expects half of the lighting info from the green channel (which is still there) and the other from the alpha channel (which is now in the red instead), so if the light come from one angle it still looks good but when it comes from the other it's either fully dark or fully lit.
    So to fix your problems you have to actually scrap all your edited normal maps textures and re-edit the orange vanilla versions keeping them orange, while for the ones that conflicts with my RM mod you can just edit mine keeping them purple/blue.
    Anyway, normal maps aren't something that needs visual edits, actually they shouldn't even be touched because they aren't the usual textures, they store lighting info (for example almost every visual edit with an image editor makes them not-normalized anymore (the sum of the light vectors must be always 1, not more not less) and then they should be re-normalized afterward).
    So my advice is to just resize the normals without any further edit (sharpness, contrast etc), this way the memory optimization will be still there and you will have no lighting bugs, moreover you will still see the improvements of your edited diffuse texture despite the lack of edits to the normals. ;)
     
    Last edited: Dec 19, 2015
  7. KuroTenshi

    KuroTenshi Master Guru

    Messages:
    499
    Likes Received:
    1
    GPU:
    GTX 970 4gb @ 1177/1402
    In 4 words : Thank you very very much !!!!!!! Let's go for 800+ resizing ^^
     
  8. The Silver

    The Silver Master Guru

    Messages:
    602
    Likes Received:
    14
    GPU:
    GTX 770 2GB
    Well I must say that I didn't wrote that advice without feeling sorry, but IMHO it's really the best thing to do. :O
    Anyway there are tools that can batch convert textures and tools that can batch resize images, so using a tool that can automatically convert loads of dds into tga at once and then using a tool that can resize loads of tga at once you could be able to do the work in very short time, just search tools for batch editing images etc. ;)
     
  9. KuroTenshi

    KuroTenshi Master Guru

    Messages:
    499
    Likes Received:
    1
    GPU:
    GTX 970 4gb @ 1177/1402
    I am not totally mad ^^ I do everything with batch scripts, including automatically copy files to the right place ^^
     
  10. The Silver

    The Silver Master Guru

    Messages:
    602
    Likes Received:
    14
    GPU:
    GTX 770 2GB
    "KuroTenshi is not totally mad" Checked. :cool: :D
    Anyway I'm totally mad then, because for my personal texture pack (some selected ultra textures ported to the high textures preset) I've selectively hunted and converted more than 300 textures by hand, one by one, as soon as I spotted a low res texture ingame, and I'm still doing it during my playthrough actually. :O :D
     
    Last edited: Dec 19, 2015

  11. KuroTenshi

    KuroTenshi Master Guru

    Messages:
    499
    Likes Received:
    1
    GPU:
    GTX 970 4gb @ 1177/1402
    For the 800 edited diffuse textures, I did it by hand, and I unpacked the entire windy city, to choose which textures were important to edit, after at least 2 playthrough and seeking all achievements (so I knew the texture from the thumbnails). I did at least 3 playthrough ^^

    So you can say I am mad. But for normals, XBT TO DDS, DDS to TGA,TGA TO DDS(BC7), DDS to XBT, Renaming, copy to the right place, I did it with batchs and wildcards.

    Even in ultra there are some ugly texture, like the grass texture from my 2nd screenshot.
     
    Last edited: Dec 20, 2015
  12. The Silver

    The Silver Master Guru

    Messages:
    602
    Likes Received:
    14
    GPU:
    GTX 770 2GB
    or the gunshop sign of the very first missions of the game, the one in the Loop... Fortunately I managed to increase its quality by recreating the texture from higher resolution footage, just like some other textures (like the pixelated loading logo). :)
     
  13. KuroTenshi

    KuroTenshi Master Guru

    Messages:
    499
    Likes Received:
    1
    GPU:
    GTX 970 4gb @ 1177/1402
    Ok I redid the job. I am just surprised by the low number of normal maps compared to the diffuse.
     
  14. The Silver

    The Silver Master Guru

    Messages:
    602
    Likes Received:
    14
    GPU:
    GTX 770 2GB
    Good for your mental health then! :D Ayway yes this game reuses and combines a lot of textures and masks etc, it's quite clever what they did in that department actually. :)
     
  15. KuroTenshi

    KuroTenshi Master Guru

    Messages:
    499
    Likes Received:
    1
    GPU:
    GTX 970 4gb @ 1177/1402
    After many tests, I think I managed to apply relief mapping everywhere your modified materials were. I used again purple normals with heighmaps, but I also remade speculars for lighting. Seems good to me but I can be mistaken.

    Your normals :

    [​IMG]

    Mine :

    [​IMG]
     

  16. KuroTenshi

    KuroTenshi Master Guru

    Messages:
    499
    Likes Received:
    1
    GPU:
    GTX 970 4gb @ 1177/1402
    In fact it works !!! Just asking for extra materials

    Here are rock and ground textures I especially hate and I don't manage to do anything with them (apart redoing them completely). Is it possible to modify the materials ?

    [​IMG]

    (click twice to view at fullsize)

    Otherwise here are some results, using

    - TXGT V2 Light
    - My Reshade Preset
    - 1100 redone ultra textures for better quality, FPS and less stuttering
    - 1080p at max quality (msaa 4x with MFAA)

    [​IMG][​IMG][​IMG][​IMG][​IMG][​IMG][​IMG][​IMG][​IMG][​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Dec 29, 2015
  17. The Silver

    The Silver Master Guru

    Messages:
    602
    Likes Received:
    14
    GPU:
    GTX 770 2GB
    From what I can see from the screenshots it looks mostly fine, but this screen have quite odd lighting honestly... To be sure please send me and example like last time. ;)
     
  18. KuroTenshi

    KuroTenshi Master Guru

    Messages:
    499
    Likes Received:
    1
    GPU:
    GTX 970 4gb @ 1177/1402
    Yes I find it quite strange on the metals. I posted it on purpose. I don't manage to find which texture it is. But maybe it's because I modified masks textures (mask and _m_) ?
    Otherwise It can be a matter of taste as it was exposed and wet ^^
     
  19. The Silver

    The Silver Master Guru

    Messages:
    602
    Likes Received:
    14
    GPU:
    GTX 770 2GB
    Nope there's something wrong with the normal and/or the mask IMHO. Anyway can you send me an example of a whole texture set of your choice (_d _n _m) so I can get a better idea? :) Also that texture is most probably a metal, so if you want you could pack every texture in the _metal folder and every mask which name is related to metal and send it to me, I will gladly double check them. ;)
     
  20. KuroTenshi

    KuroTenshi Master Guru

    Messages:
    499
    Likes Received:
    1
    GPU:
    GTX 970 4gb @ 1177/1402
    It's uploading. I'll test by removing the mask folder. For instance I just gave you the XBT as the TGA are not sorted by folders
     

Share This Page