[Done] Improved fonts

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Postby Graf Zahl » Mon Mar 28, 2005 3:10 am

Chris wrote:You don't seem to have mentioned how it's used, though.



Do you mean me?

Check out the demo WAD and it should be clear. As for usability, it is very useful in 2 cases:

1. You already have a Doom style font you want to use. (like the Quake font which is included, for example - or you want to use Strife's or Raven's font in Doom.) Having to manually convert these into a font file is extremely tedious work.
2. To recolor numerical displays. The last font in my screenshot is just the lumps STTNUMx, STTMINUS and STTPRCNT. It only uses the font logic to get its colors remapped which can't be done easily any other way.
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Postby Csonicgo » Sun Apr 03, 2005 11:41 am

just shut up about that.
hotwax was right.
anyway, hell to pay was a good conversion, haven't played that in a while, though.

but this is a great idea. like, italics, or maybe underlined...

( animated fonts? :P )
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Postby wildweasel » Sun Apr 03, 2005 1:35 pm

Csonicgo wrote:just shut up about that.
hotwax was right.

If this is about my nazi tendencies, let's just both shut up, okay? I don't care if you're siding with Hotwax, that you think that I complain too much when a thread isn't going "right." The fact remains that I don't want to see five (seemingly) different threads ending up as the exact same flame war on auto-updates. If anybody wants to flame about that, they can flame in the already-existing thread about it. There is no reason to bring it up elsewhere.

Now I'm going to take the initiative and bail out of this thread. Keep our forums clean, people.
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Postby randomlag » Sun Apr 03, 2005 9:37 pm

I think the intent is great. However, all those fonts look almost exactly the same - so for all that effort you've gained very little.

Why not just use true type fonts? You can recolor and put an "edge" around them fairly easily. Plus you can also rotate, make them go sideways and all sorts of cool stuff.

And last but not least, there are gazillions of fonts available with markedly different styles.

Look at the examples in the MSDN - admittedly a tiny bit complicated but the payback would be enormous.
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Postby Graf Zahl » Mon Apr 04, 2005 3:08 am

randomlag wrote:I think the intent is great. However, all those fonts look almost exactly the same - so for all that effort you've gained very little.

Why not just use true type fonts? You can recolor and put an "edge" around them fairly easily. Plus you can also rotate, make them go sideways and all sorts of cool stuff.

And last but not least, there are gazillions of fonts available with markedly different styles.

Look at the examples in the MSDN - admittedly a tiny bit complicated but the payback would be enormous.



Well, if you can provide some code that can render TrueType fonts without Windows in an acceptable manner it would be worth thinking about. But I really don't think that this is something that is practicable in something like Doom. It would feel completely out of place.
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Postby Risen » Mon Apr 04, 2005 10:18 am

As much as it would be nice to have TrueType (forget TrueType, use OpenType... but whatever) support in theory, print fonts are not suitable for small-pixel display. I can imagine that much of how this would be used would just be horribly ugly. In many cases, it could become illegible.
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Postby Chilvence » Mon Apr 04, 2005 10:59 am

Game fonts need a special sort of care to be worthwhile. If someone did implement a truetype font renderer, it would be pointless without some sort of shader-like language to give them texture. Even then it couldn't compare to the level of control you have in an image app. Case in point: http://www.stateoftheworld.eclipse.co.u ... ntprev.jpg
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Postby randomlag » Mon Apr 04, 2005 11:39 am

Sure, custom fonts are great. The point is that MOST people will not put in the effort required for custom fonts. A good example is Graf's example - not enough difference to notice for all that effort.

True type fonts give EVERYONE the ability to use cool fonts. Like anything else, it's an extensible sort of thing. Doesn't have to have all the bells and whistles up front - just a gateway to get there.

The list of fonts available is enormous - just as good looking as your example and arguably even better. Coloring can be gradient controlled and "soft" texture mapped/filled. If you go the GL way (eventually) the results can be staggering - shiny metallic and all that stuff. And you can do things with True Type fonts that are just not easy to do with custom bitmapped fonts.

True Type fonts have a very wide range of appeal, not just printing - that should be obvious to anyone who has done any sort of graphics work and had to add some lettering. If you look at the results of some font programs that are available (and the plugins for PSP and PhotoShop) the comments made are merely the result of not realizing what can be done.

Scaling is a non-issue as is rotation. They don't look out of place at all. That's one of those subjective arguments anyway, not factual. I've played with fonts in both DRD and GL and they tend to be easier on the eyes then the examples shown. And EXTREMELY easy to tinker with.

As for being only windows, I don't care. IMO designing for < 5% of the audience is just not the way to approach some problems. That goes back to the argument made about some other stuff - for the effort put into "non windows stuff" what do you get that actually benefits the majority of users? Yeah yeah I hear all the zealots now - emotional, not objective :)

However, True Type font support code should be readily available in Open Office right?
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Postby Chilvence » Mon Apr 04, 2005 11:53 am

randomlag wrote:Sure, custom fonts are great. The point is that MOST people will not put in the effort required for custom fonts.


That effort is not quite as much as you might think. The wolf and quake fonts in the image above took a combined total time of 20 minutes work. The Doom font, although I spent more time on it, is only a little more complex. The actual difficulty only lies in cutting up the working image into individual named files, and thats only because it's tedious.
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Postby Graf Zahl » Mon Apr 04, 2005 12:22 pm

randomlag wrote:Sure, custom fonts are great. The point is that MOST people will not put in the effort required for custom fonts. A good example is Graf's example - not enough difference to notice for all that effort.


What effort? I just pulled 4 fonts out of some WADs to demonstrate it. I'm sure there are better fonts out there.
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Postby Graf Zahl » Mon Apr 04, 2005 12:25 pm

randomlag wrote:However, True Type font support code should be readily available in Open Office right?



Does it use Windows TrueType on Linux etc.? If for Windows it probably just uses the system functions and for software that is supposed to be cross platform that obviously won't work.
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Postby randomlag » Mon Apr 04, 2005 2:29 pm

Graf Zahl wrote:What effort? I just pulled 4 fonts out of some WADs to demonstrate it. I'm sure there are better fonts out there.

Well, then you created a poor example :)

More to the point (and goes back to the issue that you've avoided discussing), you did what you did because it's a huge amount of work to create something more interesting. And that is why making it much more extensible and way more powerful should be of more interest than just simple static images.

As to Open Office, the least you should do is READ about Open Office. Clearly it has to have support for True type otherwise Open Office would be a somewhat useless program on Linux. Isn't that the whole point of Open Office - to be able to read documents created by word. That is one of it's "features". Not that all this cross-platform stuff means anything at all. It's an academic argument (again avoided) with very little benefit [the exact same argument somebody is fond of using:)
]
Chilvence wrote:That effort is not quite as much as you might think

A single person who is skilled at doing this does not make for a valid counter argument. If you ask 100 "average" people to make nice fonts we both know what the answer is. Besides that 20 minutes and it sounds like another 20+ minutes [for just a few characters] is way longer than just selecting a universal True Type font that handles anything. IOW, one is easily accomplished by anyone with a big payback and the other only by those skilled in graphics work with payback directly related to time spent - which appears to be a more than a few hours if you want a full set.
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Postby Graf Zahl » Mon Apr 04, 2005 2:39 pm

randomlag wrote:
Graf Zahl wrote:What effort? I just pulled 4 fonts out of some WADs to demonstrate it. I'm sure there are better fonts out there.

Well, then you created a poor example :)

More to the point (and goes back to the issue that you've avoided discussing), you did what you did because it's a huge amount of work to create something more interesting. And that is why making it much more extensible and way more powerful should be of more interest than just simple static images.


I did it because I needed the functionality to recolor Doom's status numbers (which it is doing well as you can see.) The rest of it is just a waste product. But unlike some people I don't mind offering it here so that it can be included in ZDoom so that others may profit from it.

As to Open Office, the least you should do is READ about Open Office. Clearly it has to have support for True type otherwise Open Office would be a somewhat useless program on Linux. Isn't that the whole point of Open Office - to be able to read documents created by word. That is one of it's "features".


Ok, but that's not what I was asking. AFAIK some parts of TrueType are patented so it wouldn't be that unproblematic to include it in free software, would it?
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Postby Risen » Mon Apr 04, 2005 3:53 pm

My question is how many fonts will be worthwhile to use within a 5-7 pixel tall space? The answer is: not many that come from TTF files.
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Postby randi » Mon Apr 04, 2005 3:59 pm

Graf Zahl wrote:some code that can render TrueType fonts without Windows

The library is called FreeType, and you are right; part of the hinting algorithm is patented. But FreeType can be compiled to use the patented algorithm if you (a) don't live in a country where it's patented, (b) pay the fees to the patent holders, or (c) don't tell anybody.
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