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To all computer wizards, are these statements true?


Machine-Elf

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Can you tell me if ANY of these statements this dude made are true?

 

"The cinematics in SWTOR re-renders your character. It's a different character model in the cutscenes that's moving around, making gestures, etc. The character model you're using during gameplay is just standing there during cutscenes while the cinematic plays out."

 

"...the cutscenes use different art assets. For example your character's skin texture never looks as good in game as it does in the cutscenes."

 

Funny, I thought it looked exactly the same.

Edited by Machine-Elf
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Yes it could work like that. Instead of moving your avatar they could just make a dupe (or instance) and use that for the cinematics, without worrying about moving the model you control and then having to worry about return it to how it was before the cinematics. Think of it as making an instance for cinematics.

 

It really depends.

 

As for better graphics during cinematic it's definitely possible. I'm just not sure whether they do it or not.

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It probably is true to a point. As a dev mentioned why it was hard to make certain races playable , not so long ago and he mentioned that the NPC's in cutscenes had been designed that way , but to actually make them into a playable race takes a lot of effort. So in theory those cutscenes have indeed been made without the playable character / NPC versions. Would take ages to find the quote , but it was in response about why it was so hard to make more alien playable races. Those cutscenes and cinematics have a set format , so is easier to not have clipping tentacles etc.

 

Cheers,

 

BadOrb.

Edited by BadOrb
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They might be, but it does not change the fact that you can't use emotes in cutscenes

 

The game can render your playable character with a high-res textures, if you so choose (it does not by default, as it can be quite resource-hogging). Characters in pre-scripted cutscenes are always renders with the high-res textures (that is why you can sometimes see you character to "spawn" into the dialog after a short while.

 

While the cutscenes are rendered in game's engine (just like they are in any game that has to take in account equipment changes to your character or that can have any range of different looking characters), they are pre-scripted cutscenes. The key word is "pre-scripted", as in that all that happens in that scene has been carefully written and animated on skeletons (3D modeling concept). which is used to move your character around during the curscene.

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the first one has to be true. You don't see people in a convo moving, they just have a speech bubble. As far as the second one goes, I don't quite have enough information to tell you, but I imagine that it is indeed true as well.
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Can you tell me if ANY of these statements this dude made are true?

 

"The cinematics in SWTOR re-renders your character. It's a different character model in the cutscenes that's moving around, making gestures, etc. The character model you're using during gameplay is just standing there during cutscenes while the cinematic plays out."

 

"...the cutscenes use different art assets. For example your character's skin texture never looks as good in game as it does in the cutscenes."

 

Funny, I thought it looked exactly the same.

 

No, I agree with you. They look exactly the same. And I'm pretty sure they are, technically, but there is also some truth to what the other person is saying. They are not moving around in real time. You don't see other players not in your group walking around when you're in a cutscene, and they in turn only see your character standing there next to an NPC. However, in cut scenes, the graphical settings are always maxed out, while outside of them, they're subject to your own adjustments, so they will typically look better. I thought I remember reading something about this a long time ago, back when there was the whole outrage over Bioware not allowing players to use the maximum texture quality.

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The cutscenes use higher quality textures than the normal gameplay. I think BioWare used some lame performance excuse for why they did that.

 

They might've changed that, but that is how it worked at launch, I've not really paid much attention to character textures since the first few weeks.

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I'm pretty sure that's correct. They stated a while back that the cutscenes specifically use different assets. This came up when people brought up the lack of high res textures in the game compared to cutscenes. The reason given is that they are able to control everything that gets rendered in a cutscene, where they can't (to a point) in the actual game. That's why the cinematics always had higher texture quality.
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Can you tell me if ANY of these statements this dude made are true?

 

"The cinematics in SWTOR re-renders your character. It's a different character model in the cutscenes that's moving around, making gestures, etc. The character model you're using during gameplay is just standing there during cutscenes while the cinematic plays out."

 

"...the cutscenes use different art assets. For example your character's skin texture never looks as good in game as it does in the cutscenes."

 

Funny, I thought it looked exactly the same.

 

They certainly could be true, graphics engines are capable of that level of presentation. And yes I do see slight differences between cut scenes and general play. It was certainly more noticeable on my old PC where I could not run everything on max detail.

 

Its also true that when you are in a cutscene every one else sees your character standing there doing nothing (and not targettable for abilities as well, you can't buff someone while they are viewing a cutscene for example).

Edited by Arlbo_Nabbins
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If you click on the holoterminal in your ship when there is nothing for it to do, you can see your character replaced by the one in cut-scenes for a split second. The textures are a bit sharper and the lighting is much better on them :/
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It's the same art assets, only they are being rendered at a higher quality. Just like if you were to adjust the texture quality option in the graphics settings, only cutscenes use a hidden super high quality setting not available during gameplay.

 

The reason they do this in cutscenes is that in them, they can be certain there won't be other players around to drag down your computer's performance. They can also be certain your camera angle won't be pointed at a complex structure or a grove of trees or anything like that.

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Can you tell me if ANY of these statements this dude made are true?

 

"The cinematics in SWTOR re-renders your character. It's a different character model in the cutscenes that's moving around, making gestures, etc. The character model you're using during gameplay is just standing there during cutscenes while the cinematic plays out."

 

"...the cutscenes use different art assets. For example your character's skin texture never looks as good in game as it does in the cutscenes."

 

Funny, I thought it looked exactly the same.

 

This could be entirely possible based on how they structured the game.

 

I'd try to think about it this way:

 

The character that we control throughout the game is like a marionette, with all strings attached and linked into OUR user interface so that we can tell it where to go, what to do, how to move, when to ready its weapon, fire, activate abilities, and so forth.

 

When we switch over to a cinematic scene, several things happen. First, in some cases, whether or not your character is wearing headgear is altered, so that you can see what you're saying. In terms of relationship scenes, this is vital when the two characters move forward to kiss to insure that they aren't bumping helmets against each other, or your Commando helmet goggles aren't squeezing through your mate's face. Additionally, the entire control structure shifts, and instead of using your marionette that you normally use, this character is now a ventriloquist dummy, with BioWare's hand up the rear, so that you can be manipulated to talk, make gestures, shake your head, make various facial expressions seen nowhere else, and lip synch the audio to your face.

 

While you might think this could be accomplished with the same rendered asset, in practical application, this can present issues, especially in the way that the character is rigged. A character properlly rigged for running and moving and jumping and falling and rolling along the ground and so forth might be entirely (or at least significantly) different from the way that your cinematic, speaking and personable character is rigged. If that's the case, switching the rigging inside one model may not be anywhere as easy as swapping out one rigged model for a separate rigged model.

 

The game also can't switch render complexity on-the-fly like this in the main graphic environment. When you go into preferences and crank up the detail, you usually get a pause while the entire environment refreshes and rebuilds itself to the new quality spec. In a cinematic, this needs to be much, much faster and smoother in transition. So I can see them reserving a complex model in the midst of whatever environment just for you and your companion so that the shift from combat to cinematic is as seamless as possible.

 

As to the second part, I can understand this as well. During normal gameplay, rarely is the camera directly on your face and facing against you. For performance sake, I'd imagine this would mean that the "combat" asset can be reduced somewhat in complexity on the polys or surfaces so that overall game performance can be maintained.

 

By contrast, during a zoomed-in cinematic, you're much more focused on the character's face, and their up-close persona, and this could easily lead to the need for a more complex asset with more available surfaces or polys to improve overall appearance, since the rest of the dynamic camera movement, following, running and so forth is not necessary with that more highly complex model.

 

Additionally, I'm pretty sure that when you switch over from "combat" mode to "cinematic" mode, some features of the characters do change, like the skin. In particular, I'm thinking of some of the female characters, like Elara. I'm pretty sure her facial makeup (depending on which customization token is used) is more colorful and detailed on the cinematic version than on the combat version.

 

Hope that helps! Overall, I wouldn't doubt what they're saying, nor could I envision a reason as to why they'd try to misrepresent it.

 

Its also true that when you are in a cutscene every one else sees your character standing there doing nothing (and not targettable for abilities as well, you can't buff someone while they are viewing a cutscene for example).

 

This is also spot-on. While YOU see your character speaking, moving their lips and gesturing in a cinematic, other people running by you on a planet next to that mission NPC see you just standing there motionless with a conversation icon over you. This also serves to make sure that a single NPC isn't standing there with 5 other toons around them all gesturing and talking at once, which might not look too different from what we see now, but would still look pretty goofy. Instead, we see 5 toons standing around motionless, as is the NPC.

 

Other players running past you in the cutscene are NOT switched, which is why when you're standing there talking to an NPC, you can see other players run past you in the background, doing whatever they want to do. Running, jumping, and so forth.

Edited by Kubernetic
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It's the same art assets, only they are being rendered at a higher quality. Just like if you were to adjust the texture quality option in the graphics settings, only cutscenes use a hidden super high quality setting not available during gameplay.

 

The reason they do this in cutscenes is that in them, they can be certain there won't be other players around to drag down your computer's performance. They can also be certain your camera angle won't be pointed at a complex structure or a grove of trees or anything like that.

 

I play with everything maxxed out and I still see differences in cutscenes.

 

The make better use of reflective surfaces (ie. shiny metal bits on armor and such), lighting, and other less obvious stuff in the cutscenes too. Actually even different planets use them differently, some armors with metallic components look better on some worlds than they do others for example.

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Can you tell me if ANY of these statements this dude made are true?

 

"The cinematics in SWTOR re-renders your character. It's a different character model in the cutscenes that's moving around, making gestures, etc. The character model you're using during gameplay is just standing there during cutscenes while the cinematic plays out."

 

"...the cutscenes use different art assets. For example your character's skin texture never looks as good in game as it does in the cutscenes."

 

Funny, I thought it looked exactly the same.

 

Without being part of the company it's impossible to tell, nothing in them is automatically false, they do seem to make a certain degree of sense, but unless you actually know all the programming impossible to say.

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