NES vs. SNES screen resolution

Discuss technical or other issues relating to programming the Nintendo Entertainment System, Famicom, or compatible systems.

Moderator: Moderators

psycopathicteen
Posts: 2904
Joined: Wed May 19, 2010 6:12 pm

Re: NES vs. SNES screen resolution

Post by psycopathicteen » Sun Jun 16, 2013 6:19 pm

Is there any way of getting sprites to display at 512x448? I can only find information on hi-res background layers.

User avatar
MottZilla
Posts: 2832
Joined: Wed Dec 06, 2006 8:18 pm

Re: NES vs. SNES screen resolution

Post by MottZilla » Sun Jun 16, 2013 7:48 pm

Pretty sure that I remember reading somewhere that it doesn't work on sprites but I could be wrong. Did you check the official documentation?

User avatar
koitsu
Posts: 4216
Joined: Sun Sep 19, 2004 9:28 pm
Location: A world gone mad

Re: NES vs. SNES screen resolution

Post by koitsu » Sun Jun 16, 2013 8:18 pm

H-Mode (in modes 5 and 6) will do 512 pixels of resolution horizontally, but does not affect sprites/OBJ. Sprites are still limited to their existing sizes (from 8x8 up to 64x64, depending on what OBJ mode (small/large) you choose).

TL;DR -- Stop complaining, work with what you've got. Spoiled. :P

psycopathicteen
Posts: 2904
Joined: Wed May 19, 2010 6:12 pm

Re: NES vs. SNES screen resolution

Post by psycopathicteen » Mon Jun 17, 2013 8:13 am

That's probably one of the reasons hi-res mode wasn't used much. lo-res sprites on a hi-res background would stick out like a sore thumb.

User avatar
Dwedit
Posts: 4236
Joined: Fri Nov 19, 2004 7:35 pm
Contact:

Re: NES vs. SNES screen resolution

Post by Dwedit » Mon Jun 17, 2013 8:43 am

RPM racing was probably the only game to exclusively use hi-res mode, and it looked pretty awful in terms of frame rate and graphics quality.
Here come the fortune cookies! Here come the fortune cookies! They're wearing paper hats!

User avatar
koitsu
Posts: 4216
Joined: Sun Sep 19, 2004 9:28 pm
Location: A world gone mad

Re: NES vs. SNES screen resolution

Post by koitsu » Mon Jun 17, 2013 9:44 am

psycopathicteen wrote:That's probably one of the reasons hi-res mode wasn't used much. lo-res sprites on a hi-res background would stick out like a sore thumb.
It may be one of the reasons, with the others (and IMO, more prominent) being that modes 5 and 6 only support 2 and 1 backgrounds, respectively. Most games used mode 1, and made heavy use of its 3 simultaneous backgrounds. I can't tell you how much of a blessing that is.

So in summary, the high-resolution modes are kind of a gimmick of sorts, but they work well for things like showing a single screen/picture or possibly some very basic form of high-resolution animation. Nintendo could have released the console with just modes 0-4 and 7 and it would have had the same quality titles. I'd even stretch that to say modes 0-3 and 7, although possibly mode 4 was used in games for vertical split-screen effects (I never did play around with the Offset Change/Address stuff).

This is all after-the-fact anyway.

User avatar
Bregalad
Posts: 7767
Joined: Fri Nov 12, 2004 2:49 pm
Location: Chexbres, VD, Switzerland

Re: NES vs. SNES screen resolution

Post by Bregalad » Mon Jun 17, 2013 9:53 am

Mode 1 and 7 are the only really widely used ones really. Mode 2 and 0 are used sparsely when vertical split is needed and 4 backgrounds are needed respectively, but that's very rare.

I think the big reason modes 5 and 6 are so much underused is the fact tiles takes two times the normal size, so you get half the tiles for a constant VRAM usage. Also drawing with non square pixels is diffifcult if you don't have specific tools for this (I mean significantly non square, nobody minds an aspect ratio of 1.1, but 0.55 is a problem).

tepples
Posts: 21752
Joined: Sun Sep 19, 2004 11:12 pm
Location: NE Indiana, USA (NTSC)
Contact:

Re: NES vs. SNES screen resolution

Post by tepples » Mon Jun 17, 2013 11:27 am

koitsu wrote:So in summary, the high-resolution modes are kind of a gimmick of sorts, but they work well for things like showing a single screen/picture or possibly some very basic form of high-resolution animation.
That or text. The ideographic characters used to write Japanese have a lot more detail than the alphabetic characters used to write the languages of regions where the console was called "Super NES". Even for Latin text, I seem to remember some RPGs using hi-res for more clarity. And for text, especially thin or italic text, you want a tall-and-skinny pixel aspect ratio like the 4:7 of Super NES hires mode. Look at 80-column text on a CGA or Apple II, which output a signal with 3:7 PAR.
Nintendo could have released the console with just modes 0-4 and 7 and it would have had the same quality titles. I'd even stretch that to say modes 0-3 and 7, although possibly mode 4 was used in games for vertical split-screen effects (I never did play around with the Offset Change/Address stuff).
What mode does Panel de Pon use?

User avatar
koitsu
Posts: 4216
Joined: Sun Sep 19, 2004 9:28 pm
Location: A world gone mad

Re: NES vs. SNES screen resolution

Post by koitsu » Mon Jun 17, 2013 9:35 pm

tepples wrote:What mode does Panel de Pon use?
Let's find out using SNES9x's debug version. You can get the info using the "What's Used" button (look for "Screen mode:").

"Nintendo Presents" title screen + text = mode 1
Main title screen ("Push any key!") = mode 1
Game selection screen = mode 1
Actual game itself = mode 2

User avatar
Dwedit
Posts: 4236
Joined: Fri Nov 19, 2004 7:35 pm
Contact:

Re: NES vs. SNES screen resolution

Post by Dwedit » Mon Jun 17, 2013 9:57 pm

Meanwhile, the GBA version of Panel De Pon simply used sprites.
Here come the fortune cookies! Here come the fortune cookies! They're wearing paper hats!

psycopathicteen
Posts: 2904
Joined: Wed May 19, 2010 6:12 pm

Re: NES vs. SNES screen resolution

Post by psycopathicteen » Fri Jun 21, 2013 12:35 pm

koitsu wrote: So in summary, the high-resolution modes are kind of a gimmick of sorts.
Kind of like how 64x64 sprites on the SNES were a gimmick.

User avatar
Bregalad
Posts: 7767
Joined: Fri Nov 12, 2004 2:49 pm
Location: Chexbres, VD, Switzerland

Re: NES vs. SNES screen resolution

Post by Bregalad » Fri Jun 21, 2013 2:07 pm

Kind of like how 64x64 sprites on the SNES were a gimmick.
For actual sprites, yes but to simulate a BG layer when using mode 7 it can be practical.

tomaitheous
Posts: 592
Joined: Thu Aug 28, 2008 1:17 am
Contact:

Re: NES vs. SNES screen resolution

Post by tomaitheous » Fri Jun 21, 2013 3:34 pm

Bregalad wrote:
Kind of like how 64x64 sprites on the SNES were a gimmick.
For actual sprites, yes but to simulate a BG layer when using mode 7 it can be practical.
Still wasteful/gimmick. You definitely have enough entries in the sprite table for doing fake scroll layers with smaller sizes. Plus, smaller segments means better optimization in vram for metasprite combinations. PC-Engine has 32x64 sprite size and some game use it, but the games that do have very lazy/unoptimized sprite setups - resulting in unnecessary flicker.

64x64 size would be nice *if* the sprite pixel scanline limit was much larger *and* you weren't limited to just two sprite sizes per frame (SNES). Otherwise, metasprite some 32x32's in place of.

psycopathicteen
Posts: 2904
Joined: Wed May 19, 2010 6:12 pm

Re: NES vs. SNES screen resolution

Post by psycopathicteen » Fri Jun 21, 2013 7:18 pm

I wonder if any game actually used 64x64 sprites. Final Fight?

User avatar
MottZilla
Posts: 2832
Joined: Wed Dec 06, 2006 8:18 pm

Re: NES vs. SNES screen resolution

Post by MottZilla » Sat Jun 22, 2013 10:08 am

I highly doubt Final Fight would use it. Infact Final Fight probably uses 8x8 and 16x16. I would doubt that it would use 32x32.

Post Reply