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Disabing in-game GUIs?
#1
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Hi folks!

I have a question for anyone who might know the answer.. I am trying to take good high quality screen caps of in-game characters of Xenosaga III..

Now the emulator is working fantastic, I am very impressed, however, I was curious if there were any known methods of disabling the in-game GUI menus that pop up during battle scenes, ect..

This may sound silly, but they are blocking off the characters and make it hard for good shots to be made..

I've seen other Emulators with 'layer' options that you can disable. I have used these options in the past to disable annoyances such as GUIs.. However, I don't see any such option within PCSX2.

So, does anyone know if its possible to disable in-game menus and such? I'd appreciate any feedback Wink.


I have been searching around for a good while and found nothing, however my search-fu is fairly weak Blush


Cheers!
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#2
I remeber that I kinda managed something similar in Naruto Ultimate Ninja 3 and 4. In the Speed Hacks menu(if I recall right) there's a VU slider you can tweak. Put it to max and select VU Frame Skip in the CPU panel. The result is flickering which removes the GUI layer as well as some other graphic effects but for less than a second. If it works in other games you'll have to press F8 like crazy. Something like that. But it would be awesome if there was such hack that removes that pesky GUI! Tongue
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#3
Alrighty, I'll give it a twirl, thanks for the suggestion!


-edit-

Hmm no dice, ooh well, was worth a shot Smile
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#4
Probably it will be possible with cheating
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#5
Sometimes Fraps did things like that for me.
In the attachments you can see screenshots from Gothic 2 which features this.
GUI, models, effects and some other things were there, it's just I hit "take screenshot" button either too many times per second or in the very "right" moment, so that Fraps (or something) didn't capture them.
Even though I don't know how to apply anything from this to emulation to gain benefit from it, I thought I'd share the observation of the somewhat similar "disabing in-game GUIs" effect.


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#6
Emulators that allow you disable layers work because that's how the hardware itself works. Each layer is handled in hardware by a specific bit of hardware, thus you simply disabled that bit of hardware rendering and you lost that layer... I don't think the PS2 worked in hardware accelerated layers, but does each in software. In which case, each game would have to be coded for that you'd want this feature.


A way to do this in cheats (though it may be complicated) would be to use the equal or not equal to option. I haven't played xenosaga's before, but is the GUI present from the very start to finish of the battle? Or does it sort of scroll into screen? If so... With enough attempts at equal/not equal you may be able to find the value for the vertical position of the GUI, then it's just a matter of finding a value that puts it off screen and hope it doesn't cause a PS2 system hang Wink
[Image: 2748844.png]
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#7
(11-02-2009, 07:26 PM)Koji Wrote: Emulators that allow you disable layers work because that's how the hardware itself works. Each layer is handled in hardware by a specific bit of hardware, thus you simply disabled that bit of hardware rendering and you lost that layer... I don't think the PS2 worked in hardware accelerated layers, but does each in software. In which case, each game would have to be coded for that you'd want this feature.


A way to do this in cheats (though it may be complicated) would be to use the equal or not equal to option. I haven't played xenosaga's before, but is the GUI present from the very start to finish of the battle? Or does it sort of scroll into screen? If so... With enough attempts at equal/not equal you may be able to find the value for the vertical position of the GUI, then it's just a matter of finding a value that puts it off screen and hope it doesn't cause a PS2 system hang Wink

You mean 'cheat' as in 'patch'? Mellow
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#8
Yes, patch. I'm used to working on several other emulators that call the exact same type of menu an options as a cheat menu. Either way it's all about modifying values stored in memory to achieve some end.
[Image: 2748844.png]
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#9
(11-02-2009, 07:26 PM)Koji Wrote: Emulators that allow you disable layers work because that's how the hardware itself works. Each layer is handled in hardware by a specific bit of hardware, thus you simply disabled that bit of hardware rendering and you lost that layer... I don't think the PS2 worked in hardware accelerated layers, but does each in software. In which case, each game would have to be coded for that you'd want this feature.


A way to do this in cheats (though it may be complicated) would be to use the equal or not equal to option. I haven't played xenosaga's before, but is the GUI present from the very start to finish of the battle? Or does it sort of scroll into screen? If so... With enough attempts at equal/not equal you may be able to find the value for the vertical position of the GUI, then it's just a matter of finding a value that puts it off screen and hope it doesn't cause a PS2 system hang Wink

Ooh I see, thanks for clearing that up, good to know =D

Xenosagas III battle menus are there from the start. Some of it goes away in when characters attack, but that would result in a flux of 'not equal' to searches if I'm not mistaking.

Hmm worth looking into though next time I'm in a patient mood.. Thank you, and thank everyone for their responses Smile


I imagine it would be a simple on/off switch? (1 to 0, then 0 to 1)?


-EDit

Whoohoo!! I succeeded in getting rid of some of it hehe =D


-Edit, making even more progress.. Got the HP bars to flicker, so if I set the FPS limit to something low I can snap a shot in between the flicks; here's a before and after of what I'm doing for anyone interested;


Before

After


As you can see, it clears up a lot of space Wink


-Edit

Anyways, after a lot of testing it seems I found the appropriate addresses for the hp bars. However, when I toggle them off, the game forces them back on, then they get toggled off again..

I'm using Phaste to monitor the value changes, and their address values jump around from 1 (on) to 0 (off). If I turn off the cheat via PCSX2 they stay on 1, but with the cheat on it fluxes between 1 and 0. This is likely what is causing it to flicker instead of being permanently off..

I tried using Phaste to force the address value change, and it had the same effects..

Soo.. any ideas?
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#10
Alright! I did it!

Just thought I'd like to point out that it is possible via cheating, in case anyone ever has anything similar in mind!

Looks like XSIII kept the GUI addresses in bundles, all of which had to be disabled at the same time to get the desire effect..

They all had different beginning values, but they all turned off using '0'.. So it was a matter of finding out which address values changed from xx to 0 when the menus weren't displayed..

I did this in one of two ways,

After winning a battle, the GUI all disappears for a few seconds during the 'victory dance'

I was able to use the address values during 'non battle' gameplay and compare it against 'battle gameplay'.. Not sure if this works with all games, but it did for Xenosaga III..

This narrowed it down to about 100 entries, I then manually plugged em in to see what did what.

Final results;

Battle UI, clogging my screenies!

No more UI! Clean screen shots!


It's worth noting, that in this particular case, I can battle as normal, just I can't see what I'm doing so I have to remember where everything is.. It does cause a lot of crashes though, I may look into optimizing things by taking out codes I may not need.
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