Uhm... Is it SUPPOSED to look like this?

Technical support for Trine for the Windows and PSN platforms. Please indicate your system specs and operating system in your post if you can.
Nazo
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Uhm... Is it SUPPOSED to look like this?

Postby Nazo » Wed Apr 13, 2011 12:39 pm

So right from the start I was irritated when I began the game and found that the levels were ridiculously hard to actually see at all thanks to some sort of colored fog effect. I tried playing with pretty much every graphical setting -- including a few in the options.txt that aren't options in the loader at all -- but can't seem to get rid of it. But now this effect has gone off the scale and when I started the forest level after the castle I literally couldn't see anything! I'm walking into pure white blocks that look exactly like the pure white air and ground around them only to fall into pure white spikes that look exactly like the ground and air around them... It's hard even to see the characters themselves... This surely can't be intentional? (Oh, and yes, I've tried disabling anti-aliasing.) I really don't want to disable ALL graphical effects, just whatever is messed up though. I have a good videocard (Geforce 460GTX) so I'd prefer to keep this game as good looking as possible since there's no real reason it should have to be anything less.

Here is a screenshot of what that level looks like:
Image
(My first impression here is that this is some shader effect that's just not coming out right at all.)

Oh, and I'm running Windows XP SP3 in case that has any relevance.

EDIT: Ok, I was using the latest stable drivers, 266.58 (which were WHQL certified, not that that really means anything IRL.) I just updated to the latest beta drivers, 270.51 with the same problem. Also, I saw some screenshots and it DEFINITELY is not supposed to look like what I've been getting even on the earlier levels that weren't nearly as extremely messed up.


PS. Unrelated, but, out of curiosity, I noticed there are a couple of options regarding using hardware acceleration for PhysX. If I set either or both to 1 rather than 0, they just revert right back to 0 the moment I start the game. I know for a fact that this videocard supports PhysX and that it is enabled. It doesn't matter much since the game seems to run fine anyway, but I am curious why it's doing that.

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Mr. ShadowStealer
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Re: Uhm... Is it SUPPOSED to look like this?

Postby Mr. ShadowStealer » Wed Apr 13, 2011 7:55 pm

You either have corrupt render files or your drivers are badly installed. I have the same card GTX 460 (with 1Gb memory and it's overclocked to be as fast as GTX 470) and I haven't experienced that. Or simply your card's warranty has experied and its starting to fall into pieces and it has happened to start breaking down from the memory are where all the rendering is handled.
Not all of you have äää's and ööö's :P

Nazo
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Re: Uhm... Is it SUPPOSED to look like this?

Postby Nazo » Thu Apr 14, 2011 2:57 am

Hardware is 100% tested stable (ATITool, Memtest86+, Prime95, and gaming with a no artifacts allowed policy. I might add I'm not bothering to overclock right now since my system still seems to keep up with the latest games satisfactorily.)

Mr. ShadowStealer wrote:You either have corrupt render files

Looks like this was the culprit. I uninstalled the game and reinstalled it. Now how in the world could this happen? As I said, the system is stable, so it really shouldn't be possible for it to have extracted incorrectly (and somehow managed to pass the basic CRC checks built into both the original ZIP file from the Humble Bundle download AND the installer's cabinet files.) Oh well. Thanks. This gave me the right idea of how to fix it even if not what cause the issue in the first place. And no more playing the game constantly feeling like I'm supposed to be half blind...

Oh well. It leaves me curious, but now I can properly enjoy the game.

Oh, and PS. Hardware does not suddenly go bad just because its warranty expires. I'll admit quality control has gone far downhill in recent years for both major videocard companies (in particular they are skimping on the memory a lot more -- or pushing it too hard to begin with.) I know their marketing would have you believe that hardware rots quickly and is worthless in as little as two years, but I actually have a system that's more than ten years old that's still chugging along strongly (thanks to linux just about any hardware can become a basic server.)

Nazo
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Re: Uhm... Is it SUPPOSED to look like this?

Postby Nazo » Thu Apr 14, 2011 10:38 pm

Here's something interesting. The problem is back again today... I just reinstalled several times with no difference, so I guess that wasn't what fixed it before after all (that's just a lucky coincidence that apparently was only good for last night.) One thing worth noting though. I have XP setup to actually use user levels properly and this user account is not adminstrator, but the game was installed as administrator. In other words, it should not have been able to write to any of the data files... As far as I can determine, the installer explicitly makes an exception by manually giving "everyone" modify rights on files like the options.txt file. In other words, only anything running on an administrator level (such as the installer itself) can write to those shader files... (Thus there's no way they should have been damaged overnight like this.) Last night when I reinstalled I copied over the options.txt file to replace the reinstalled new one, but accidentally copied over an older copy, so I had to edit it some more and might have accidentally turned something on or off that fixed it perhaps. I since messed with it again since I thought the problem was absolutely not the options and perhaps I've undone whatever I did before. Of course, the game itself changes the options.txt file frequently, so it's hard to be sure even in that. Apparently a completely clean reinstall isn't good enough though because I accidentally said yes when it asked if I wanted to delete all user data (yeah, great, now I've lost my savegame) and it fully deleted the entire Trine directory so I could be 100% sure everything was reverted... Thus I can say that a clean options.txt does not fix the problem. The ONLY thing I change is the resolution (I have a 1920x1080 monitor, so the default 1024x768 looks horrible...) Oh, and running the game itself as administrator in case it set some permissions wrong somewhere does not make any difference.

EDIT: Attached is a MD5 sum of all of the shader files I could find (the data/shader/hlsl directory.) If anyone would care to double check that the shader files are all correct I'd appreciate it.

EDIT2: Oh, and here's what the first level looks like for easier comparison (it's just less extremely messed up than the forest was since you at least can see SOMETHING):
Image

EDIT3: Ok, I really can't explain it now. I tried installing in Windows 7 64-bit (I dual boot, but don't really like 7 as much as XP so I prefer to use XP as much as possible for now) and it worked fine. So I copied the files over from the 7 install and it worked ok. This time around, right after I copied the files, I removed the write permissions for "everyone" on the entire config folder. I checked the shaders using the MD5 sum I created earlier and both still check out the same, so I guess those shader files are not corrupted. Hopefully with write permissions removed whatever is going on won't happen again. I had it fully configured before I removed write permissions, so hopefully this will prevent the problem from occurring again. Hopefully... The first thing I did though was to backup the ENTIRE Trine directory though, so hopefully I can just restore anything from that any time it acts up again if it does. Assuming it's any of its files responsible somehow...

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fb_joel
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Re: Uhm... Is it SUPPOSED to look like this?

Postby fb_joel » Fri Apr 15, 2011 10:53 pm

Wow. That's a weird problem. However, I'm glad it got "solved".

If you need any further info just let me know. The installer we use (Inno Setup - www.innosetup.org) does provoke admin rights during installation I believe, or at least something that is not 100% optimal for Windows Vista/7, and that's a "fault" of my script, however I haven't wanted to fix it due to other complications. It shouldn't really cause too much trouble though.

I just saw the same-looking screenshot in this thread. I'll tell him to come here too for more thoughts...

Anyhow, I hope the problem stays away now! :)
// Joel, Frozenbyte team

Nazo
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Re: Uhm... Is it SUPPOSED to look like this?

Postby Nazo » Sat Apr 16, 2011 4:45 am

I think now that it can't be the installer. (And as far as admin rights goes, I didn't even wait for it to ask. I just started it as administrator out of habit since few installers will let you get away without it.) I'm convinced that it's some non-obvious setting. Are any other configurations ever written to (besides the binds of course)? I saw a global configuration for the game, but it was admin only, so it couldn't have been affected. I can't be sure there is nothing else like that anyway. It looks like the shader files at least are 100% intact given that they have the same MD5 sums both when I have the problem and when I do not (not to mention the fact that they are not writable of course.)

I just hope this trick is enough to keep it going now.

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fb_joel
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Re: Uhm... Is it SUPPOSED to look like this?

Postby fb_joel » Sun Apr 17, 2011 12:34 am

Yeah all the user-based settings should be in the config\options.txt file, or in general in the config folder and the binds folder. Savegames go to profiles, but other than that the game shouldn't touch anything else.

I guess we should just be happy everything works, and hope it doesn't break again. :)
// Joel, Frozenbyte team


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