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Subtitles - Possibilities Beyond 2.11


Geep

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For testing purposes, here is the list of fm's with (story) subtitles (in case you didn't know):

Braeden Church is probably best, because it has a conversation right after loading and the loading is fast (small mission). There is a bright area left of the conversation scene.

Edited by datiswous
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7 minutes ago, datiswous said:

I tried it. I don't get this behavior what @snatcher has (maybe performance related?), but the background is misaligned somehow:

black_mage(2024-01-0718-41-40)(633.35-651.24244.25).thumb.jpg.c12d8e98cb76adf80f2bdb5eb88638a0.jpg

Yes, it uses the heathaze shader with _flat as the input normalmap. There is still some faked refraction somehow. Gonna gut that part of the shader soonish. Thank you for testing :)

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On 1/5/2024 at 6:30 PM, Geep said:

BTW, it is possible to markup particular words in the subtitle with a primary color, for emphasis. @datiswous, you asked about this a while ago. Did you actually apply it to any game FM?

The 2 obvious colors for emphasis are red and yellow. A yellow emphasis would be lost if all the text was yellow.

Colored text shows normally like this:

braeden_church(2024-01-0719-44-21)(1176.12549.53101.31).thumb.jpg.2ef48f9f20e73d7d805eb75e08f70aa4.jpg

 

But with Snatcher's subtitle look the colored subtitles look now extremely bolted:

braeden_church(2024-01-0719-49-10)(1184_5558.55100.25).thumb.jpg.906123c16f62de6cff867568c906c978.jpg

I guess this does make it more useful for emphasis, but a little less bolting would be better.

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2 hours ago, datiswous said:

But with Snatcher's subtitle look the colored subtitles look now extremely bolted:

braeden_church(2024-01-0719-49-10)(1184_5558.55100.25).thumb.jpg.906123c16f62de6cff867568c906c978.jpg

Can you share a subtitle file with mixed regular, bold, italic, colors... such as the above example so that I can see what you can see in my PC? The ugliest the subs the merrier 🙂

TDM Modpack 4.0

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So I encountered this weird thing. In fm The black Mage in the ingame-cutscene right after the intro-video the financial adviser (guy in red) doesn't have a position icon above all their subtitles:

Spoiler

black_mage(2024-01-0718-52-30)(114.62646607.25).thumb.jpg.eda9a7a4e65e05b8aa713a2c3cdf6714.jpg

The black mage does:

Spoiler

black_mage(2024-01-0718-51-59)(-41.38562627.25).thumb.jpg.c236a46a4be1ae318d87e0ca5de4794e.jpg

Edited by datiswous
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What I found is that changing the color of the text by using the escape character [^] is a feature of the Doom 3 engine and not something created for the subs in TDM.

What is happening in your "extremely bolted" example is that when using a color other than the default we are also rendering all eight "shadows" in that other color, hence the bold appearance.

3 hours ago, datiswous said:

Changed the textalignx and textaligny from 0.5 and -0.5 to 0.3 and -0.3

The above solution doesn't solve a thing and I cannot think of anything other than having the source code deliver a copy of the subtitles stripped from color escape characters.

In any case, imagine for a second you are watching a TV series and each episode comes with subs in different colors...

TDM Modpack 4.0

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2 hours ago, snatcher said:

The above solution doesn't solve a thing and I cannot think of anything other than having the source code deliver a copy of the subtitles stripped from color escape characters.

It does make it less fat. You can see this in the screenshot I posted. So saying it does nothing is simply not true.

2 hours ago, snatcher said:

In any case, imagine for a second you are watching a TV series and each episode comes with subs in different colors...

It has it's uses, but I'm not sure how important it is. Also, the color options seem a bit too basic.

Edited by datiswous
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14 hours ago, stgatilov said:

Replaced in svn rev 16896.

The 20 pixel padding was introduce conservatively before the font was changed.
Merely applying the 16:9 vs 4:3 correction allows to reduce it to 15.
But also the font is significantly smaller now.

I tried to edit text in order to see maximum overflow.
It seems that capital W is the widest letter in this font, and I can't get a significant overflow (see image below).


So I have reduced padding from 20 to 10.

Also I shifted everything to the right, so that now subtitle ring and text field are centered horizontally (instead of the background box being centered). This looks much better with frobhelper activated, because previously frobhelper and location ring center we not at the same X position.

Finally, I have increased step between subtitles from 50 to 55 to avoid next subtitle box overlapping with previous subtitle location ring.

These tweaks can still be changed, since they don't change anything regarding the text layout.
Here is how it looks now (blue background shows the text box):

newjob(2024-01-0712-52-11)(-375.6-320_8263.98).thumb.jpg.d249d0b71f3737baab45dae898239157.jpg

 

My stance on this is still the same: if large empty boxes look ugly, then we can make several possible background boxes and make engine select the best one that text fits into. This way the decision of which box is OK can be made with the very same code that actually renders this text, instead of some external independent computation.

There is no reason why smaller background box should be applied depending on verbosity, except that "it looks all non-story subtitles are small enough now". One exception is enough to break this idea.

Alternatively, it is quite possible that we switch from background boxes to black outline around text. Both approaches works rather well, and without background we can forget about tweaking the background box.

 

tdm_subtitles_message.gui 2.64 kB · 2 downloads

Now that we have a solution to give text a black outline, I don't think there is any pressing need to make the background cap it's brightness below the text brightness. That said, I think the background still helps reduce the visual noise ( for example, if the text were rendering over stripes or dots of dark and light, brightly lit vegetation, etc ). I think we should have both the black outline and darkened background...  and the background alpha should be bumped to 0.6 so it's a smidge darker to handle the worse case areas.

Example:

tdm_subtitles_message.gui.txt

tdm_subtitles_common.gui.txt

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20 hours ago, Geep said:

Your latest design is OK, but doesn't touch on several aspects that I addressed in my design:

  1. ring lower edge no longer crushing the top of 1st line text
  2. excess backing field below text 2nd line trimmed, to allow space for (1)
  3. backing field behind ring, as I believe requested by snatcher & datiswous
  • reduced height of the box & text from 45 to 37, while moving everything up by 9 points
  • location ring moved up by 2 points
  • added background field to location ring
  • distance between subtitles reduced from 55 to 52 (50 makes location ring merge with next subtitle box)

braeden_church(2024-01-0810-13-27)(1008_8420.15107.58).thumb.jpg.1cfdfadb8aa9f5f8b662ad93152280d7.jpg

tdm_subtitles_message.gui

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2 hours ago, stgatilov said:

added background field to location ring

I think this doesn't looks very nice. I think it's best to make the background the same width as the subtitle block. What do others think?

 

Are we going for the background look, or are we going for the black outline? It's not clear to me what the current direction is, but the outline looks nicer and it seems a waste to try to implement something that doesn't get chosen anyway.

Edited by datiswous
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35 minutes ago, stgatilov said:

Added near screenshot.

Thank you.

Here is an updated version of "Outlined Yellow" based in your latest code.

The image of the ring is no longer fully transparent and it comes with an outline now for improved clarity. Base colors of the image are now shades of grey and the color of the widget is now changed by making use of the matcolor property so that colors of both the widget and the text could change simultaneously via user input.

subs-yellow.jpg

z_Subs_212_Outlined_Yellow_20240108.pk4

TDM Modpack 4.0

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19 hours ago, datiswous said:

So I encountered this weird thing. In fm The black Mage in the ingame-cutscene right after the intro-video the financial adviser (guy in red) doesn't have a position icon above all their subtitles

I didn't research The Black Mage, but presumably the speech of the guy in red is being delivered by a method where the source location could not be located. This might be because it was tagged as by narrator or by player. Or maybe triggered by a script somehow, directly or via a speaker. Not sure about that last thing, because a speaker does have a location (whether it's the "right" one from the story point of view is another matter.) Might warrant further investigation within the source code.

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5 hours ago, datiswous said:

[Referring to having a tab around the location ring, rather than including the ring fully within a taller background] I think this doesn't looks very nice. I think it's best to make the background the same width as the subtitle block. What do others think?

I would prefer the tab, just because it shows more of the world unimpeded, and that unimpeded zone provides a wider vertical gap between stacked subtitles. But I could live with the alternatives: a tall background; or a ring that partially pokes above the background. But...

5 hours ago, datiswous said:

Are we going for the background look, or are we going for the black outline? It's not clear to me what the current direction is, but the outline looks nicer and it seems a waste to try to implement something that doesn't get chosen anyway.

Good question. I'm ready to fully abandon backgrounds, just because they are such a source of conflicting visions.

As to how thick the outline should be, I don't think the potential for very rare color markup should be a deciding factor.

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7 hours ago, datiswous said:

Would it be possible instead of using darkening to apply blur to the background of subtitles? Just a hunch.

Blur can be done but will have the same problem during videos, and purely GUI modes.

Needs _currentRender and that isn't generated in GUI modes

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7 hours ago, snatcher said:

Here is an updated version of "Outlined Yellow" based in your latest code.

So i.m.o. yellow reads better than white, but I think it's too strong. I think a color between yellow and white would be better, so I guess a lighter yellow.

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It may seem I am pushing for my solution and (despite having a preference and) considering this can be easily modded I won't be betting on one or the other (or another).

Subs with a background have been put to the test for some time now and are reliable. The outline is new an untested.

Regarding colors, from a small research of subs on TV I learned that, in the color era, yellow text apparently was once the standard since legibility was (and is) considered superior over any background color. Time went by and white became the standard since legibility is good but it isn't as jarring as yellow. I am not sure how well any of this translates to games.

TDM Modpack 4.0

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My two cents here is to mimic video streaming services, such as Netflix. They've likely spent a lot of time and money researching subtitles.

The Netflix default is a white font color with a black drop shadow. In the subtitle settings, users can change the font color and enable/disable a background color. We could do the same and provide settings in the menu.

The improvements to both the subtitles and location ring are looking good!

Netflix settings:

netflix-subtitles.thumb.jpg.e7cbc4d54902c33956ac24b2960fb005.jpg

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