Torin's Passage and King's Quest 7 Videos

Getting old DOS games working on modern hardware. (DOSBox topics belong in DOSBox areas below, not here).

Torin's Passage and King's Quest 7 Videos

Postby kjps86 » 2012-10-22 @ 20:29

Hello,

I've got Torin's Passage and King's Quest 7 on CD and was hoping to relive some old gaming memories. I've installed both in DosBox and the gameplay is fine, but the video cutscenes in both games play in a very small window on my screen. I've looked at the resource.cfg files for both games and will post both at the bottom of this message, but I can't find anything that would seem to make a difference in the size of the videos. I tried some different values for VideoSpeed in Torin's passage (the default is 0, I tried 1, -1, and 500) but it made no difference.

Has anyone else figured out how to resize the videos in either of these games to play fullscreen like the rest of the game?

For reference, I am running these in DosBox 0.74, Windows 7 64-bit.

Here is the resource.cfg for Torin's Passage:

videoDrv = VESA.DRV
soundDrv = MIDNONE.DRV
audioDrv = DACBLAST.DRV
joyDrv = NO
directory = \sierra\torindos
minCPU=486
minDOS=572
mode=real
minEMS=200
CD=yes
CPU=0
VideoSpeed=0
CPUSpeed=500
CDROM=0
mouseDrv = NONE
memoryDrv = NONE
language = 1
audioSize = 22k

cmd = .\torin.bat

resSfx= D:\
resAud= D:\
resMap= D:\
movieDir= D:\movie
patchDir= C:\sierra\torindos;D:\patches
ÿÿ

And now King's Quest 7:

videoDrv = VESA.DRV
soundDrv = GENMIDI.DRV
audioDrv = DACBLAST.DRV
joyDrv = NO
cmd = KQ7
mouseDrv = NONE
memoryDrv = NONE
minMemory = 1600k
brightness = 0
language = 1
minCPU = 386
CD = no

resMap = .\
resAUD = .\
resSFX = .\
patchDir = .\;.\AVI
robot = .\


Thanks for taking a look!
User avatar
kjps86
Newbie
 
Posts: 26
Joined: 2010-9-20 @ 01:56
Location: USA

Re: Torin's Passage and King's Quest 7 Videos

Postby Gamecollector » 2012-10-23 @ 03:04

AFAIR, the videos is playing at half size in the DOS version of Torin's Passage. Only Windows version is having full-size videos. The game is coded by this way, unfortunately.
Asus P4P800 SE/Pentium4 3.2E/2 Gb DDR400B,
Radeon HD3850 Agp (Sapphire), Catalyst 14.4 (XpProSp3).
Voodoo2 12 MB SLI, Win2k drivers 1.02.00 (XpProSp3).
User avatar
Gamecollector
Oldbie
 
Posts: 1319
Joined: 2010-10-06 @ 22:17

Re: Torin's Passage and King's Quest 7 Videos

Postby kjps86 » 2012-11-01 @ 06:50

The videos definitely play at a small size natively. I'm wondering if there might be a way to edit the game so that it plays them in a larger window. I do understand that when the games came out the impetus was to ensure compatibility across a wide array of computers with specs far below those of modern computers, and thus playing videos in a tiny window was probably a great idea.

I guess my goal in creating this thread was to see if there might be any way to improve the experience today, even if it might not be 100% faithful to the original.

To this end I've done some more research. I'll divide my findings between the two games as they are different in how they were constructed (even though the issue at hand is pretty much identical.

Torin's Passage: DOS Version

The movies are in Sierra's own .VMD format (Video and Music Data, apparently) and have a native resolution of 316x158, thus being twice as wide as it is high. According to http://wiki.multimedia.cx/index.php?title=VMD the data determining how to display the video is contained in a header that would seem to be part of the .VMD file itself. Other games utilized the VMD video format, and videos extracted from these games can be played using a vmdplayer which can be downloaded from http://vagsoft.chat.ru/sci.html. Another game I own, Leisure Suit Larry 7, uses this format AND plays the videos in full screen. Though the game utilizes SVGA graphics, the videos are 320x240, thus the player IS stretching them to fit the screen; this gives me hope that the same can be done for Torin's Passage (although the aspect ratio of the Torin's Passage videos will mean there will always be black bars above and below the videos).

Things I have tried so far:
1. Replaced the vesa drivers with various other ones from the CD (located in D:\INSTALL\VESA\VESA). No difference (not that I really expected this to work...)
2. Ran the UVCONFIG.EXE program in the TORINDOS directory and increased the video RAM and set the machine type to think I had a Paradise card in the UVCONFIG file and in the DOSBox config file. No difference (again, not that I really expected it to work...)

Things I think might work:
1. Editing the .VMD files to reconfigure the size and screen location of the videos

King's Quest 7: Dos Version

The movies in this game are encoded in .AVI format, and thus can be viewed using utilities such as VLC media player. The version of the game that I have came from the King's Quest Collection DVD. I copied it to my hard drive and play from there; I don't have any other version of the game and therefore can't test another version.

Things I have tried so far:
1. Using an external program to re-encode the videos from a frame size of 320x168 to 640x332 (double the original size). No difference. I kind of thought this might work, but it would seem that either the game disregards the file data in the .AVI file, or it is forcing the video to remain at 320x168 anyways.

Things I think might work:
1. ??? This one has me flummoxed. Perhaps there is a different DOS AVI viewer that can be loaded before launching the game and which can be edited into the RESOURCE.CFG file as the default video viewer for the game to use?

Additional thoughts
A number of other games used the .VMD format for videos, as noted by the website detailing the format. Could it be possible to adapt the improvements discussed here to games such as Phantasmagoria?

I'd like to state that I'm not a developer, programmer, or coder of any sort. I can move around files and edit text with the best of them, but that's about it. I'd love to assist in any capacity I may with anyone who takes an interest in this project, but unfortunately this probably will never get done if it's just me thinking about it and working on it. If you do read this, then you have my appreciation, and if you contribute anything beyond that you already have my gratitude.
User avatar
kjps86
Newbie
 
Posts: 26
Joined: 2010-9-20 @ 01:56
Location: USA

Re: Torin's Passage and King's Quest 7 Videos

Postby kjps86 » 2012-11-02 @ 01:50

Alright, more research and more experimenting. The DOS version of King's Quest 7 uses videos encoded in the .RBT file format, not .AVI. Additionally, I have no idea how to get any info from the file types at this time.

As for Torin's Passage: I tried simply copying the SIER.EXE file from the Leisure Suit Larry 7 install directory to the TORINDOS directory and running it to start the game (hoping that the SCI1 SIERRA.EXE variants could be interchanged like the old AGI-era SIERRA.COM files), but this didn't work, as it threw out Error 42: this game has not been version stamped. I tried copying over the VERSION file as well, but got the same error.

...the research continues
User avatar
kjps86
Newbie
 
Posts: 26
Joined: 2010-9-20 @ 01:56
Location: USA

Re: Torin's Passage and King's Quest 7 Videos

Postby Laukku » 2014-4-19 @ 05:08

I'll bump this, as I had the same problem with Torin's Passage but found the solution, which I'm posting here for all to see. It involved running the installation setup with core=full, so it wouldn't crash during the video speed test phase. Now the videos are in full screen!

The resulting RESOURCE.CFG:
Code: Select all
videoDrv  = VESA.DRV
soundDrv  = MIDNONE.DRV
audioDrv  = DACBLAST.DRV
joyDrv    = NO
directory = \sierra\torindos
minCPU=486
minDOS=572
mode=real
minEMS=200
CD=yes
CPU=0
VideoSpeed=5481
CPUSpeed=100
CDROM=0
mouseDrv  = NONE
memoryDrv = NONE
language  = 1
audioSize = 22k

cmd       = .\torin.bat
                                 
resSfx= D:\                     
resAud= D:\                     
resMap= D:\                     
movieDir= D:\movie               
patchDir= C:\sierra\torindos;D:\patches       
ÿÿÿ


Simply edit RESOURCE.CFG so that VideoSpeed is 5481.
My YouTube account, with miscellanous DOS game stuff: http://www.youtube.com/user/LaukkuTheGreit
User avatar
Laukku
Newbie
 
Posts: 50
Joined: 2011-8-31 @ 06:27

Re: Torin's Passage and King's Quest 7 Videos

Postby kolano » 2014-4-19 @ 16:14

Hrm, mine still crashes even with core=full, but thanks for the needed config revision.
User avatar
kolano
Oldbie
 
Posts: 527
Joined: 2010-12-26 @ 21:03

Re: Torin's Passage and King's Quest 7 Videos

Postby collector » 2014-4-19 @ 20:05

Is there even still a "full" core? The 0.74 conf shows "auto", "dynamic", "normal" and "simple". I would think that using "full" would result in core=auto. The crash is during the video test, which can be skipped. The actual error is a DOS/4GW "divide by zero" error,which can be avoided by lowering cycles to no more than 20000. Simply editing the RESOURCE.CFG to the above values will not work since the selection seems to be stored in the generated preferences file.

One thing to keep in mind is that while lowering the cycles enough to pass the video test will give you full video, the video will be interlaced. It might be possible to create a script patch to give full non-interlaced videos like Endroz did with GK2, but this gets outside of my abilities.
User avatar
collector
l33t
 
Posts: 4386
Joined: 2003-1-15 @ 10:39

Re: Torin's Passage and King's Quest 7 Videos

Postby kjps86 » 2014-4-19 @ 23:39

I am using DBGL as a DOSBox front end and it does give an option for core=full, and when I used this setting and did a fresh install with the cycles set to auto it simply maxed out during gameplay but DID give me full screen video as promised with the editing of the config file. It would be great if the video was not interlaced similar to the GK patch, but this is also above my capabilities. To be fair, I think even the quarter screen video is interlaced so it still looks better to me. I do intend to play with the cycles in order to get rid of stuttering during the video.
User avatar
kjps86
Newbie
 
Posts: 26
Joined: 2010-9-20 @ 01:56
Location: USA

Re: Torin's Passage and King's Quest 7 Videos

Postby collector » 2014-4-20 @ 00:52

You have to go back to 0.65 to find full listed as an option in the dosbox.conf. If you set it to full in the conf, start it and query what core is being used at the prompt, it will report it as auto, just as you would expect if you specify full, since dosbox will ignore invalid values and use the default value. If DBGL still includes the full option, it is probably because either Ronald intended it for backwards compatibility or it was an oversight to not remove it. Regardless, it does not change the value you have set for cycles.

The interlacing is added when the VMD is stretched to full screen. When it is not, it is not interlaced. This would indicate that the interlacing is introduced from a script the same way as it is in GK2.

Outside of that I don't think that there are any other speed bugs in Torin's, so you should be able to set it to core=dynamic and cycles=max. I have found no stuttering with cycles=max, which is why I use it as default for the conf my installer writes.
User avatar
collector
l33t
 
Posts: 4386
Joined: 2003-1-15 @ 10:39

Re: Torin's Passage and King's Quest 7 Videos

Postby Laukku » 2014-4-20 @ 10:13

I used Ykhwong's build, which has the full core option... I didn't realize it wasn't in the official builds anymore.

But yeah, I think the key factor was right speed. Full core, being slow, aparently slowed the setup enough to prevent the speed crash while still being fast enough to allow fullscreen videos. One of the things I tried was keeping cycles at 3000, but that resulted in tiny videos.

And yes, the VideoSpeed parameter in RESOURCE.CFG is apparently what decides the video size. I had an old installation (with some save files from a playthrough in progress) that had tiny videos, did a new test installation in which I managed to get large videos, compared the RESOURCE.CFG files, noticed VideoSpeed was different and copied the value to the old installation. Voilà! Videos became large in it too.
My YouTube account, with miscellanous DOS game stuff: http://www.youtube.com/user/LaukkuTheGreit
User avatar
Laukku
Newbie
 
Posts: 50
Joined: 2011-8-31 @ 06:27

Re: Torin's Passage and King's Quest 7 Videos

Postby kolano » 2014-4-20 @ 14:54

Yes, the crash does seem to be related to cycle speed. 20000 as suggested above was still too fast for me and still resulted in crashes. 10000 seemed to be OK to pass through the install successfully.
User avatar
kolano
Oldbie
 
Posts: 527
Joined: 2010-12-26 @ 21:03

Re: Torin's Passage and King's Quest 7 Videos

Postby KainXVIII » 2015-10-02 @ 19:03

Tried to get this fix (VideoSpeed=5481) in GoG version - still get small video screen :-/
User avatar
KainXVIII
Member
 
Posts: 331
Joined: 2015-5-20 @ 15:04
Location: Yaroslavl

Re: Torin's Passage and King's Quest 7 Videos

Postby Danicela » 2019-6-27 @ 22:53

Edited only the 'VideoSpeed=5481' thing from my CD version and it worked : get full size videos on DosBox, thanks :)
User avatar
Danicela
Newbie
 
Posts: 41
Joined: 2008-5-25 @ 10:20


Return to DOS

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest