GeDoSaTo DS2E Alpha 5 Release

This one focuses on adding and improving graphical features.

  • Added new HDR bloom & eye adaption effect. Some example screenshots: 1 2 3 4 5. It’s highly configurable in the effect file. Also, it’s not particularly performance intensive, since it does large-scale gaussian blooming on a rendertarget pyramid.
  • Improved the SSAO smoothing. It now takes relative depth into account, resulting in more detailed SSAO particularly on small features.
  • Added Asmodean’s postprocessing suite as an option. It’s softer and features cinematic tone-mapping, and gives quite a different result from the profile included previously (which is still the default). Performance is comparable over both options. Default Postprocessing / Asmodean Postprocessing. Of course, both options can be customized in detail.
  • I’m now distributing the release mode .dll of GeDoSaTo, which could result in a minor performance increase.

For the next version, I’ll focus on polish, adding some small requested features, and getting ready for a source release. In particular, I want to

  • Create a plug-in system for game-specific code.
  • Move all DS2 stuff to a DS2 plugin.
  • Add a “generic” plugin which allows postprocessing and SMAA/FXAA on all games supported by GeDoSaTo.

Download GeDoSaTo 0.5 here, and as always you can donate here if you like it.

Oh, and once again, please do read the README file before reporting issues.

GeDoSaTo Article (German)

PC Games Hardware published an article (in German) about GeDoSaTo.

What surprised me most about it (in addition to the article’s existence) is the difference they measured between performance with GeDoSaTo downsampling and “native” downsampling. I always expected that to be negligible, at least if you use bilinear downsampling, but I never really benchmarked it. I’ll try to see if I can reproduce their results, and what can be done about it.

In other news, I’m getting closer to the next release, which will primarily be about adding a new HDR bloom & eye adaption effect for Dark Souls 2. This image shows it in-game.

GeDoSaTo DS2 edition Alpha 4 Release

This is a rather big one, even if you are not using GeDoSaTo with Dark Souls 2.

General Improvements:

  • Add option to completely hide the mouse cursor
  • Add option to force borderless fullscreen windowed mode

That’s right, you can now downsample in Borderless Windowed Fullscreen mode! This was a tricky one to implement, I need to make the game think that it runs both in a different mode (fullscreen) and a different resolution than it actually does, both when it uses Windows APIs and when it uses DX to query any information. This feature might therefore still be a bit buggy. Incidentally, this is also a workaround for the crash-on-alt-tab issue when downsampling. However, it breaks the Steam overlay — but you can just alt-tab to Steam instead.

DS2 Improvements:

  • Fix AO issue on systems with non-4:3 resolution, also improve other effect quality for such resolutions
  • Improve AO shader depth calculation
  • Upgrade SMAA to the latest version (quality improvement)
  • Implement stencil masking for SMAA (performance improvement)
  • Include FXAA option (a few people were asking for this since they prefer it in combination with downsampling)

The SMAA performance improvement is rather significant. In one test scene, previously Ultra SMAA would move GPU usage from 70% to 86% on my system, now it’s only from 70% to 80%. In comparison, the same scene with Ultra FXAA takes 77%.

Finally, I updated the readme file to hopefully make the instructions more clear. I’ll repeat them here:

  1. Extract the contents of the zip to some permanent directory
  2. Adjust the settings in GeDoSaTo.ini and GeDoSaToKeys.ini as desired
  3. [optional] Add your game executable names to “whitelist.txt” in the “assets” folder (dark souls 2 is already included!)
  4. Run GeDoSaToTool.exe *as Administrator*
  5. Click “Activate” (You can also make a shortcut for “GeDoSaToTool.exe -a”)
  6. Select the downsampling resolution in-game if you want to use downsampling
  7. ENABLE IN-GAME ANTI-ALIASING in Dark Souls 2 if you want to use any effects (also, disable in-game AO if you use GeDoSaTo AO, and in-game DoF if you use GeDoSaTo DoF)

Here is the download. And as always, you can donate here to support GeDoSaTo development, both for DS2 and in general.

To reply to the VAC questions: Yes, GeDoSaTo could potentially get you banned in any online game which uses an anti-cheat system. Just like anything else which modifies the game output, such as SweetFX or SMAA injection. Or, if you take user agreements literally, even FRAPS or a Mumble overlay. If you are concerned about this, then do not use anything which at all modifies what a game is doing in multiplayer/online games.
Personally, I hope modern anti-cheat tools are smart enough to figure out whether something just improves rendering or actually modifies the game’s data (that is, real cheating), but I can make no guarantees of any kind.