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-   -   Citadel Island Remake in Unity [WIP] (https://forum.magicball.net/showthread.php?t=17983)

MevX 2016-07-24 06:13

Citadel Island Remake in Unity [WIP]
 
Hello guys!

About 2 weeks ago i gained some interest in Unity, a gaming engine that i'm sure a lot of you people have heard about. It is not only quite easy to learn compared to other engines, but it is also powerful, and allows for some great effects. I thought it would be great to import some of the games assets and models, to add a shiny new coat of paint and sort of lift it up. After all it is such a amazing game, it deserves that.

Through this process i learned to appreciate all the small details the LBA team put in making the island, and really, i never thought about how lively and beautiful the real game was. It had such a nice charm, and i knew just adding some fancy effects didn't put it close to how nice it looked to begin with. But if it put it any closer at all to such beauty, i knew in fact it would be worth it in my book. I decided it would be fine as a showcase, a fun learning project.

https://i.imgur.com/t0xbDHB.png

The real reason the project managed to survive, was because of my other partner in this project, SirViewAlot who made sure to put in a lot if not as much work as i did. Together we've been working on this project for about a week, and while some things are still missing (textures and models) the majority is in place, and indeed looks pretty good! I'll put out a executable version of the project in the coming days, there are just a few things i wanna fix first. But enough of me talking, here are a few more screenshots.

https://i.imgur.com/fIUzf1n.png

https://i.imgur.com/JvB2aW2.png

I also added a night scene for the project, that you can access through entering the lighthouse door. At any time, you can return through the same door to get back in the sunlight. Using left click will deploy your magic ball, that can light up nearby areas (courtesy of Zebrazilla, thank you!).

https://i.imgur.com/RhUA2cI.png


EDIT: First post is outdated, check the last page for current progress!
To get the latest build, click this link:

https://github.com/realmevx/LBA2HD/releases

Bot13 2016-07-24 09:56

Jesus Christ! This is about hundred times cooler than I expected when reading the title. I love how close this is to the original, yet still much richer. Anything you can tell us about the process and assembly?

MevX 2016-07-24 17:12

Quote:

Originally Posted by Bot13 (Post 454132)
Anything you can tell us about the process and assembly?

It involves what you would expect, converting the inner game files to something more Unity compatible i.e 3DS files, and then importing them into the engine itself. The models didn't have any names, instead they were numbered, so knowing where to put what on the island was a task in the beginning. The bulk of the work went to figuring out every single position for these 100+ objects, putting on the right shader and texture so to stay true to the original game.

Now originally the textures were a scrambled mess when first imported into the engine. Not only were they scrambled, but i found that Unity had problems finding some textures at all. This was before i decided to convert my own LBA files and use them instead of the 3DS files given to me. But even when i used proper game files, i had textures missing, transparency problems, wrong colors, you name it. Some of the objects had to be fixed in Blender, and i'd say SirViewAlot took care most of these issues in the end. Still a few things like the flower pot lack their proper texture.

I should perhaps mention another thing about the textures. Since they were kinda old and dated, i processed them through a online tool that uses neural networks to artificially increase the resolution. This all might sound complicated, so i will just leave a comparison to the original texture and the new 4k one i'm using for my project. It was a lazy way for me to better the looks, without redoing the textures myself.

https://i.imgur.com/3GRIdiV.png

gravel22 2016-07-24 19:08

Awesome looking man! It was a pleasure to walk in this! I hope you'll change your mind and redo the whole game |)|)

Quote:

Originally Posted by MevX (Post 454134)
Since they were kinda old and dated, i processed them through a online tool that uses neural networks to artificially increase the resolution.

You could have vectorize them too in Adobe Illustrator :D

gravel22 2016-07-25 23:06

Quote:

Originally Posted by MrQuetch (Post 454138)
By the way, excellent job on the LBA 1 speedrun! ( World Record ) )

Thanks man!

Quote:

I wouldn't mind taking the original textures, and instead of vectorizing them, I would actually try to produce the textures from scratch according to what is shown in the bitmap images.
That would be the best thing but I think Amnesti can't do this from scratch, so it's great to vectorize what we already have!

Quote:

Originally Posted by MrQuetch (Post 454139)
Please, MevX, you must continue this project. It would be cool to have an LBA 2 HD / Remastered game to play. ;)

+1 at least a game where we can walk in it. Then with time you can update and add some stuff later. Like the car on white leaf. Or some NPC's. But at least Unity is great engine that'll stay for years. Making the map is already a good start and who knows if someone joins one day and add more stuff to it! :)

MevX 2016-07-28 05:00

Quote:

Originally Posted by MrQuetch (Post 454138)
Incredible job, MevX! You and SirViewALot have really pushed the limits of showing the original LBA 2 in HD glory!

Thank you!

Quote:

Originally Posted by MrQuetch (Post 454138)
I understand that this may be a project for you and SirViewALot, but I wouldn't mind taking the original textures, and instead of vectorizing them, I would actually try to produce the textures from scratch according to what is shown in the bitmap images.

Was this meant as a suggestion, or was it something you would actually wanna do yourself?

marcosmapf 2016-08-01 05:05

This is amazing! I believe Angelus's and this project are probably the coolest projects we've had in a long time, seeing the graphics improved so much is great! :)

Did you guys get to start working with the game physics, effects, items and stuff like that yet? If you keep this pace, how long do you think its going to take to implement those things?

MevX 2016-08-04 06:51

Quote:

Originally Posted by marcosmapf (Post 454160)
Did you guys get to start working with the game physics, effects, items and stuff like that yet?

It's not clear to which direction this project is going, i myself wanted to keep it like a showcase, nothing that special. Because personally i don't think there is a need for LBA 2.5, it's a lot of work for something that doesn't feel the same, and as good as the original. However maybe i'm wrong, perhaps there are many who could find good reasons for a fan remake. They should really speak up, or reach out to help if they want to make this a reality.

What i thought would be interesting, is a sort of LBA DM using Citadel Island as a battlefield. Picking up item spawns, like the blowpipe or magic ball, maybe even getting a suit upgrade for a set amount of time (Quad Damage anyone?). We already have one weapon in the project, so that is a start in a way. It's just a thought however, it's not something i have planned to do.

Quote:

Originally Posted by marcosmapf (Post 454160)
If you keep this pace, how long do you think its going to take to implement those things?

And time is just something that can't really be estimated well, it's not like we're working on it full time or something. And like i said we don't really have a set plan for what we should continue with in the future. It may just remain a showcase ;)

MevX 2016-08-04 07:07

I wouldn't say making Citadel Island in Unity, was simply a extraction and conversion process. And i talked a bit about this above, after figuring out which object was which, naming them and placing them, they still had texture problems, some which had to be manually replaced through Blender. For example, since the game uses a palette system, some original colors weren't present when imported for the first time like the color of the ground, or the colors of the stair walls. So these things we're only added later on in the project, around the same time SirViewAlot joined in. I'm not gonna pretend like this was some kind of incredible remake process either, but it took us some plenty time to actually get some good result in the Unity engine itself, especially since it was our first time using it.

gravel22 2016-08-04 21:16

A death match game would be awesome where you can choose your map to fight in and choose your character. Also it needs to be online :)

Styx 2016-08-08 04:08

That lighting makes citadel island look like some long lost eden:tup:

:tup::tup: Double thumbs up for randomly dropping this project on us with already such beautiful screen!

MevX 2016-08-10 04:48

If you wanna try out the project for yourself, i've created some binaries for the purpose! https://github.com/realmevx/LBA2HD/releases
Some things may be invinsible when looked at underneath, this is just because the original assets of LBA 2 didn't expect people to get under there to begin with ;)

It seems like i can't edit the actual main post itself to provide a link, can any admin help me with this?

Mabrie 2016-08-10 05:36

I hope someone has as much fun with this as we had making it ;) I still have some ideas for the island, but I'm not sure if I will ever touch it again. Its been a huge time consumer so far - and we haven't even touched the fancy stuff yet :lol:

ChaosFish 2016-08-10 12:48

Holy schnitzel! I just saw this thread. Beautiful!!

Angelus 2016-08-10 17:45

Great Job :) but I have only one complain: missing gamepad support :P

MatheusMK3 2016-09-04 01:31

That looks so nice!!! I really miss the days of wandering around this city! :D

Do you plan on releasing any demos or something? I'd really like to play around!

Angelus 2016-09-04 02:54

Quote:

Originally Posted by MevX (Post 454212)
If you wanna try out the project for yourself, i've created some binaries for the purpose! https://github.com/realmevx/LBA2HD/releases
Some things may be invinsible when looked at underneath, this is just because the original assets of LBA 2 didn't expect people to get under there to begin with ;)

It seems like i can't edit the actual main post itself to provide a link, can any admin help me with this?

He already did :P

gravel22 2016-09-09 17:16

I think he's actually working on White Leaf :)

MevX 2016-09-09 23:35

i am. If anybody would be interested at all here is a screenshot of the current progress. Screenshot is down scaled, so it might look jagged. In reality it looks more smooth.

https://i.imgur.com/0cS7JPi.png

Bot13 2016-09-10 18:42

This is the best thing ever! Never stop.
Also, by any chance would you be willing to share this unity project (now or especially in the future when you get more stuff in?) Would love to get my hands on this and do a little "upgrading" :)

MevX 2016-09-10 19:43

Quote:

Originally Posted by Bot13 (Post 454349)
This is the best thing ever! Never stop.
Also, by any chance would you be willing to share this unity project (now or especially in the future when you get more stuff in?) Would love to get my hands on this and do a little "upgrading" :)

Thanks for the kind words, it means a lot. The project has been up on github for a while now, so if anybody would be interested they could get it from there. However, a recent commit kinda screwed it up, i wouldn't advise anybody downloading it until i can either fix it or create a new one. I'll provide you shortly with a link once i manage to sort things out.

MevX 2016-09-11 04:07

Should work now: https://github.com/realmevx/LBA2HD
Unity version is 5.5.0b2. I'm too tired to really go through everything, so expect some clutter and bugs.

pitiflake 2016-09-11 15:31

Wow!!!

gravel22 2016-09-12 00:21

It's awesome Amnesti all the words you get from the community, you should really think of continuing it :)

MevX 2016-09-12 00:29

Quote:

Originally Posted by pitiflake (Post 454359)
Wow!!!

Quote:

Originally Posted by gravel22 (Post 454360)
It's awesome Amnesti all the words you get from the community, you should really think of continuing it :)

I appreciate the support :)

gravel22 2016-09-17 01:48

Exclusive multi-player gameplay running on Hamachi.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gH6QGEaJvQg

Thanks Amnesti :)

MevX 2016-09-17 02:07

Quote:

Originally Posted by gravel22 (Post 454390)
Exclusive multi-player gameplay running on Hamachi.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gH6QGEaJvQg

Thanks Amnesti :)

Oh you even made a video of it, thank you very much for that! And also thanks for playing with me.

I hope to remove the need for hamachi, so anyone can join with just a client. Besides that there are alot of things that i could do, there is a lot of possibilities.
There could be some kind of deathmatch, it could be just a social hub for socialising like lbanet, it could be a lot of things. Is there something you guys wanna see, or
any feature you would wanna see implemented if i continue work on multiplayer? I'd love to hear.

Bot13 2016-09-17 10:19

*faints*

MevX 2016-09-17 12:58

Quote:

Originally Posted by Bot13 (Post 454393)
*faints*

Sir? Sir, are you okay?

Bot13 2016-09-17 18:26

I think so.. I had the weirdest dream about reliving actual LBA2 environments by walking through them realtime, with friends...

This is awesome. To make it even closer to the actual LBA2 experience, you could have the camera in a third person view from the player model. :)

gravel22 2016-09-17 19:21

Quote:

Originally Posted by MevX (Post 454391)
any feature you would wanna see implemented if i continue work on multiplayer? I'd love to hear.

I think you could add a wanted features list in the first post.

What I would like :

- 10 characters to choose from (Twinsen, Zoe, Funfrock, Jerome)
- Both Protopack and Super Jet-Pack
- 1 Dinofly per map you can find to fly
- All original weapons from LBA2, ball, sword, dart, pistolaser, etc.
- Power-ups like incendescent stone, flower, etc. (could give you bonuses like, life, magic, speed, jump heigh, etc.)
- Modes: Deathmatch and Capture the flag
- MECA-PINGUINS
- Maps: All area from LBA2, could release 1 new map per 2 months ie
- Ability to drive the car
- Ability to enter in areas

- AND THE MOST IMPORTANT : Never stop this project please. Make it fun like it was when we played Jazz JackRabbit online :) Also make it fun like playing, mario kart, smash bros, crash team racing, or any multiplayer arcade games!!!

:D|)

MevX 2016-09-17 20:04

Quote:

Originally Posted by Bot13 (Post 454398)
I think so.. I had the weirdest dream about reliving actual LBA2 environments by walking through them realtime, with friends...

This is awesome. To make it even closer to the actual LBA2 experience, you could have the camera in a third person view from the player model. :)

Yes, a third person view would indeed be an awesome feature. However that would mean i'd have to change the control scheme from fps, to a tank control scheme like the original games had. Not ruling it out, i'm just not doing it right now.

Quote:

Originally Posted by gravel22 (Post 454399)
I think you could add a wanted features list in the first post.

I can't edit my first post because of some rule, i hope an admin would be able to sort that out. I'll contact them if it comes to that.

Quote:

Originally Posted by gravel22 (Post 454399)
What I would like :

- 10 characters to choose from (Twinsen, Zoe, Funfrock, Jerome)
- Both Protopack and Super Jet-Pack
- 1 Dinofly per map you can find to fly
- All original weapons from LBA2, ball, sword, dart, pistolaser, etc.
- Power-ups like incendescent stone, flower, etc. (could give you bonuses like, life, magic, speed, jump heigh, etc.)
- Modes: Deathmatch and Capture the flag
- MECA-PINGUINS
- Maps: All area from LBA2, could release 1 new map per 2 months ie
- Ability to drive the car
- Ability to enter in areas

That's a lot of good points. I think deathmatch would need its own kind of server, because even though its cool i don't want it to disrupt the social aspect of things. My concern is that it would be neglected, and be empty for the most time. Actually that's my concern for this whole project in general.

Entering buildings is something that would definitely make the exploring rich, but i have no idea how to implement it into Unity, without spending my whole life on it. Having cosmetic things is something i really want however, i myself fancy unlimited customization.


Quote:

Originally Posted by gravel22 (Post 454399)

- AND THE MOST IMPORTANT : Never stop this project please. Make it fun like it was when we played Jazz JackRabbit online :) Also make it fun like playing, mario kart, smash bros, crash team racing, or any multiplayer arcade games!!!

:D|)

I hope the project will go in the right direction and people would actually wanna play it. Far as i'm concerned, if they don't or just spend very little time on it, it's just a waste of time for me to keep building features upon features, if the project is just a bad idea overall. It's easy to urge someone to continue something, when it isn't their own time getting wasted. Not saying i don't appreciate the kind comments, but i think its important to have a realistic point of view.

MevX 2016-09-17 21:53

Updated the release, with some visual changes. Also added a menu, and a partially done White Leaf Island.
Just go on the boat to transfer between the islands. Multiplayer isn't fully done yet.
https://github.com/realmevx/LBA2HD/releases/tag/1.1

gravel22 2016-09-18 01:39

Quote:

Originally Posted by MevX (Post 454401)
Updated the release, with some visual changes. Also added a menu, and a partially done White Leaf Island.
Just go on the boat to transfer between the islands. Multiplayer isn't fully done yet.
https://github.com/realmevx/LBA2HD/releases/tag/1.1

Awesome and yes I understand that fear about making something that wont be used.

But believe me I would at least myself play that game a lot. It would be my kind of game when I want to relax and have fun. :)

I'll stream it, I'll talk about it!

MevX 2016-10-25 03:25

Since it appears i have broken a thousand viewers, i feel the need to mention that the project isnt completely dead. In fact i have a new update coming soon, with a new lightning system, and a complete desert island with an added night scene (did i mention sandstorm effects aswell?). Hopefully i can make it worth while for some people who like to try it out.

MevX 2016-10-25 04:05

Here is a sneak peak on the changed lightning system! :)

http://i.imgur.com/byZOcI7.gif

gravel22 2016-10-25 04:43

Quote:

Originally Posted by MevX (Post 454710)
Here is a sneak peak on the changed lightning system! :)

http://i.imgur.com/byZOcI7.gif

I don't like the yellow one.

MevX 2016-10-25 16:25

How about this one?

http://i.imgur.com/nz56zQd.gif

I may try changing it, so that it looks more natural.

gravel22 2016-10-25 19:46

Still prefer it without yellow lightning.

MevX 2016-10-25 19:52

Quote:

Originally Posted by gravel22 (Post 454720)
Still prefer it without yellow lightning.

Alright i removed any yellow from the light itself, and here is the results.

http://i.imgur.com/m3DDdEi.png

gravel22 2016-10-25 21:01

I don't know it looks blurry I would like if you send me the game and i check by myself.

MevX 2016-10-25 21:17

here is a hi res version:

http://i.imgur.com/WJwpdpp.png

MevX 2016-10-25 21:20

personally i enjoy a subtle yellow/orange tint to the visuals, as some warmth to the coloring. having too much white often looks unnatural.

gravel22 2016-10-25 23:10

Yeah I totally agree with that but even the hi res screenshot looks blurry. I don't know why it's happening though.

MevX 2016-10-26 00:03

Quote:

Originally Posted by gravel22 (Post 454729)
Yeah I totally agree with that but even the hi res screenshot looks blurry. I don't know why it's happening though.

either because you have a 5k display, or because of the bloom

Lupin 2016-10-26 02:13

Kudos to you on the hard work. And nice new lighting.
I think you may want to work on a couple of things to make it less blurry.
1. Maybe the HDR setting is not well calibrated, like the tone mapping choice, exposure and things like that (I don't know unity, so I'm not sure how much control you have on this sort of thing).
2. Using waifu2x is a great idea, but I think the manga training model they use is not the best fit for LBA, maybe the photo profile would do a better job, not sure. Of course the best option is to assemble a custom training model, but that's a lot of work.

MevX 2016-10-26 02:28

Quote:

Originally Posted by Lupin (Post 454731)
Kudos to you on the hard work. And nice new lighting.
I think you may want to work on a couple of things to make it less blurry.
1. Maybe the HDR setting is not well calibrated, like the tone mapping choice, exposure and things like that (I don't know unity, so I'm not sure how much control you have on this sort of thing).
2. Using waifu2x is a great idea, but I think the manga training model they use is not the best fit for LBA, maybe the photo profile would do a better job, not sure. Of course the best option is to assemble a custom training model, but that's a lot of work.

Thanks a lot, i'll definately consider the points you laid out.

MevX 2016-10-26 03:29

Using the photo setting for the pictures generally produces a more blocky result, while the art option is cleaner it seems. I will report more tomorrow on other things.

To be clear about this blurry business, are you guys talking about the over exposure on certain areas? I could totally fix that, and tweak the tone mapping as well.
Otherwise i have no clue.

MevX 2016-10-26 20:30

disabled the fxaa antialiasing. is this what you wanted Freeman?

http://i.imgur.com/CxQr6is.png

Bot13 2016-10-26 20:33

Looks so great man :)


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