I will simply start by showing 2 pictures:
Click on the picture to see the actual difference in size and detail, and the difference is huge, i can asure that, and yes, it will show that super high quality ingame if you install the S3TC textures. And the texture shown here is not even a big texture, theres a fair amount of textures that are added with 4 or 16 times the resolution you can see in this example.
Here is a gallery that shows more examples like this one (will be added later on).
Here is also a set of screenshots from three
widely used and known maps, take a look at all of them, and especially
look at the enlargements so you really can see the difference. All the
screenshots have been brightened somewhat so they are more easy to view
on this website.
As you can see in the examples there is a
big difference in the textures while using the S3TC textures. At this
moment, not all textures in Unreal are available in S3TC textures, but
over the past 2 years, hundreds of brandnew S3TC textures have been added,
theres already a few packages that are almost 100% complete.
Specs for your computer to use these textures:
If there are high resolution textures missing
in the packages, than unreal simply uses the normal "old'' textures
which are still in the packages, if you want to try the S3TC textures
for yourself than proceed by clicking on the left menubar where it says
Installation guides. If you have any problems,
questions or remarks you can post them on the S3TC
section on the forums from OldUnreal.
One important note, do not use these packages
for running a server or building maps, if you use the S3TC textures than
you should make a secondary installation containing the normal Unreal/UT
textures for that. Regardless if you hear otherwise somewhere else, do
not use them for servers or mapping!
If you want to know more about S3TC and the
S3TC-Unreal-Retexturing-Project than proceed to the next chapter below.
Simply put, S3TC (S3 Texture Compression) is a technology that the S3 videocard company developed to compress textures in 3d games like Unreal.
Your current Unreal makes use of 256 color textures, in size they vary from 16 x 16 pixels up to 512 x 512 pixels. S3TC textures however are True color (16,777,216 colors) while the texture size Unreal/UT supports can be as high 4096 x 4096 pixels.
Needless to say that S3TC textures are of much higher quality than the normal Unreal textures. But than you will ask, doesn't this lag the game? Not really :), read this again ---> S3TC (S3 Texture Compression)
The fact that the compression can be that
high and fast makes it possible to do this without lagging out your videocard.
There is another interesting fact, the texture made for this project are
the same quality as UT 2004 and on occassion even higher!!!
Below you see a comparising chart of Uncompressed Unreal BMP texture files and Compressed Unreal S3TC texture files.
As you can see above, the size theoretically
can be 6 times the original Unreal texture size before video lag occurs.
Now that the project progresses we already found out that ingame the textures
can be at least 8 times bigger till video lag occurs, and at this moment
we are about to go test if the size can be as high as 16 times the original
size, because it seems that even that amount is very well possible. But
it depends on the size of the viderocard's memory and computer memory
iif it will cause video lag.
As mentioned above, not all textures are
in S3TC quality available. And this is where the Unreal - Retexturing
- Project comes in. The project has as goal to replace all textures in
Unreal (and where possible UT) for higher resolution versions. The project
does not has as goal to change the game itself, we only want to make the
textures in higher resolution in 24 bit true color without changing the
Unreal atmosphere (or mood if you want). Unreal should feel the same as
is was originally intended, just with incredible high detail in the graphics.
Below are a few examples what happens if an S3TC texture is missing.
Note: All the examples shown here doe not excist anymore, over the time they all have been replaced with high resolution version,in addition, all misaligned textures that were present have been replaced should have solved any misalighment. But the examples still serve as a good example, just that and nothing more.
Is it really a problem, yes and no, if you
play, there is nothing wrong just that if the S3TC texture is not available
it uses the normal Unreal textures, so often you will see a mix from old
and new textures. Its just a pitty not all textures are there, so if a
map doesn't contain S3TC textures, it simply looks as you are used too.
Are there server issues?, yes there are :)
First of, never, ever, ever, load any S3TC textures in your server !!!
Simply put, if you run a server you don't have to alter anything regarding to S3TC textures, its all done clientsided, not serversided !
This all, and more is explained in the section
S3TC and server which you find in the
menubar on the left.
Yes there are also some mapping issues.
Here too, a warning is on its place. Don't install S3TC textures in the Unreal you use for making maps !!! Also, never add S3TC textures to your maps, you need to use the normal Unreal textures packages for that. If you want to try the textures you have han use a second Unreal installation for playing and testing with those textures, it is btw, always advisable to keep Unrealed and Unrealplay seperate !
Another problem that did surface, some mappers made use of the possiblity to embed textures into MyLevel, in normal circumstances this a very cool tool to prevent any mismatches or loss of packages belonging to that map. Regretebly this does not aply for S3TC. If textures are added to MyLevel, there can be no support for S3TC. Both normal and S3TC users are able to play your map normally, the textures just never can be converted to S3TC..............
How to solve the problem
mentioned above and how to make a map both a normal and S3TC map is explained
in the section S3TC and mapping which
you also can find in the left menu.
The Unreal - Retexturing - Project has as goal to create all the missing textures and to set usefull (read workable :) easy protocols and guidelines for everybody that is working on the project but also for mapbuilders that would like to see their maps supported with S3TC textures.
The full name of the project is S3TC Unreal-Retexturing-Project, for short you can also use URP or URProject , just take your pick. Maybe it will also be UR-Project :)
A short list of problems we are working on at this moment:
are still unable to replace textures in packages like UnrealShare.u and
UnrealI.u which contains the textures used on weapons, skins, plants,
A short list of problems that are solved:
Unreal packages are now 100% on and offline compatible.
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