User Date
Stifen_DYJanuary 15, 2022
Zalcus20November 26, 2021

Need for Speed High Stakes Downloads

Empire City HD

Empire City HD
AuthorDriven
Added On November 26, 2021
Views 1,220
Downloads 67
Version High Stakes
File Size 12.48 MB
Favorited 2 times
Average Rating
9.3/10 - 3 votes
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File updated on: January 19, 2022

Additional Screenshots

Description

Description

I couldn't find a high-res texture pack for vanilla Empire City that I really liked, so I decided to make my own textures using AI upscaling tools and/or GIMP. Nearly everything has been upscaled or remade to a higher res, including skyboxes and night/weather textures, and some minor texture edits/fixes have been made to the track itself.

The two online tools I use generate their own different look, one giving a cleaner look and the other a kind of gritty look, so I've included both as choices--Clean and Gritty.

You can get an idea of how they look in-game via this video I put together:

https://youtu.be/JVEj0Mfydic


(Recommended) System Requirements

NFS4 is an old game but combined with recent modifications to it, it can actually get pretty demanding. Here's some things you will probably need for a smooth experience.

1) Run on VEG's Modern Patch.

- a) Modern Patch is CPU intensive, so it's probably best to have a CPU from within the last ten years.

- b) I'm not sure Modern Patch was meant to run on systems older than Windows 10, which is what I run. YMMV with older OSs.

2) A decent GPU with (probably) at least 256 MB or more of VRAM. 


Instructions

1) Make a backup of your Empire folder found in [your NFS4 installation directory] -> Data -> Tracks.

2) Unzip my mod somewhere and cut/paste the files of your preferred style from their Empire folder into your installation's Empire folder. Overwrite all when prompted.


Permissions

I do not claim ownership or copyrights over anything in this mod; as such, it's free to modify and distribute except where copyrights prohibit.


Credits

See included Readme for a full list of credit.


Changelog

  • Version 1.2 uploaded January 19, 2022

    Driven uploaded a new version. The new file is 12.48 MB.

    - Updated Readme, simplified instructions, simplified zip's content structure, and updated description.
  • Version 1.1 uploaded December 3, 2021

    Driven uploaded a new version. The new file is 19.43 MB.

    - Upscaled transparent textures
    - Some texture seams have been removed
    - Additional textures were upscaled/improved
    - Optional upscaled sky.qfs
    - Optional Tr.frd with various track texture fixes (like blurry statue back texture, incorrect sign side textures, incorrectly flipped textures)
  • Initial version uploaded November 26, 2021

    Driven uploaded initial version. The original file is 19.43 MB.

Visitor Comments

  • AJ_Lethal - 2 months ago
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    Nice to finally see a hi-res version of Empire City; gotta try it out when I have the chance.


    Regarding transparency, it's actually not too hard with the alpha8.dat file: each entry has has 256 bytes that correspond to the alpha value of each palette color, ranging from 00 (transparent) to FF (solid). Normally 8-bit transparent textures don't have a really complex transparency (basically one color is set to be the transparent one), so if you need something with more complex transparency you'll have to convert said texture to a 24 bit bmp, give it a separate alpha channel in another bmp and tweak the index.fsh file to set up properly (you can either refer to FSHTool documentation or unpack a qfs file with 32 bit textures -like a sky.qfs- and check its index.fsh for reference)
    Reply
    edited by AJ_Lethal 2 months ago
    • Driven - 2 months ago
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      Thanks for the comment AJ, I appreciate any help I can get. I had thought it worked something like that, but I didn't know that the alpha.dat 0's and F's were for each color on the palette. Thanks for clearing that up. Now I understand why there's 512 characters in the string (2 for each color).

      Is there a way/technique to know which color would correspond to which position in the string, with GIMP or a tool of some sort? So for example, if I wanted to set bright red as the transparency color, how would I determine where to set 00?

      As for the retex, it's certainly not perfect (in some textures there's seams, warping, garbling) and not to the caliber of your or MADMAN's work, but I'm hoping it's better than vanilla, and maybe a starting point for someone to improve upon.

      Reply
      edited by Driven 2 months ago
    • AJ_Lethal - 2 months ago
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      Driven2 months ago
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      "Is there a way/technique to know which color would correspond to which position in the string, with GIMP or a tool of some sort? So for example, if I wanted to set bright red as the transparency color, how would I determine where to set 00?"


      You can check the palette in GIMP with the Color Map tab and check the color index of the color you want to make transparent, as shown here: https://i.imgur.com/esPYf6V.png

      I'm gonna give you a tip, though: first make sure you have all the 256 colors in your palette (you can add colors with the + button in the Color Map tab), then go to Color > Map > Reorder Color Map, click and drag the color you want to make transparent to the last position and click OK; then export the file to a BMP. Then in the alpha8.dat just make sure all the bits for the bmp are set to FF, save for the last one which should be 00

      Also, I recommend setting the transparent color to something close to the rest of the the texture (you can do that by double clicking on the color in the color map tab) so you won't get noticeable colored borders in the transparent areas.

      Reply
      edited by AJ_Lethal 2 months ago
    • Driven - 2 months ago
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      WiLL2 months ago
      Liked
      Awesome, awesome, I'll try this out. Thanks a lot!!
      Reply
  • Zalcus20 - 2 months ago
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    WiLL2 months ago
    Driven2 months ago
    Liked

    Beautiful enhancement for Empire City.  It's amazing what higher resolution textures alone can do for a track.

    This is the way I saw Empire City when I first unlocked it in NFS3 on my old Windows 98 desktop, lol.

    Excellent work! 
    Reply
  • noise - 2 months ago
    User Date
    Liked
    My browser (Chrome) says download is not safe and blocked the .zip, please check
    Reply
    • LRF Modding - 2 months ago
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      WiLL2 months ago
      Liked
      It happens to a lot of files. But it's safe to download. Google likes being a pain in the rear.
      Reply
    • Driven - 2 months ago
      User Date
      WiLL2 months ago
      Liked
      The zip just contains a .txt file and .qfs files (which are .bmp archives). Maybe Chrome doesn't like the .qfs files.
      Reply
    • AJ_Lethal - 2 months ago
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      WiLL2 months ago
      Liked
      prolly Google has the site flagged (again)
      Reply
  • JimDiabolo - 2 months ago
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    Driven2 months ago
    Liked

    I like the "Clean" textures, nice work!

    Reply
  • noise - 2 months ago
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    Liked
    Download  worked, is it fixed or is chrome in a better mood?
    Reply
    • Driven - 2 months ago
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      Liked
      No idea, it's basically the same files, so definitely the latter.
      Reply
  • noise - 2 months ago
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    Liked
    Not good, I installed like readme says, but the building are all white, only sky is oké. Is there something I overlooked?
    Reply
    • Driven - 2 months ago
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      Liked

      Can you confirm that, after downloading and unzipping, you have sky.qfs, Tr.frd, and the tr0.qfs files in the unzipped folder? If so, try putting them all (but only one of the tr0.qfs files) in the Empire folder and testing again. Also make sure you have backups of all your original files, just in case.


      I redownloaded it myself and tested it and it's working as it should, so besides this, all I can think of is you should be running Modern Patch by Veg, on one of the more capable drivers. 

      Reply
      edited by Driven 2 months ago
    • JimDiabolo - 2 months ago
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      Liked

      I got no problems with version 1.1, when I import it with the Mixer. Looks beautiful.

      Reply
  • noise - 2 months ago
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    Liked
    I downloaded initial version and zip only contained tr0.qfs (also readme mentioned only tr0.qfs). I redownload and see what happens.....
    Reply
    • Driven - 2 months ago
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      Liked

      I think you got only one because it's the original version before the site uploaded the update. In any case that one should've worked too, but redownload to get the new update anyway. If all the files are there but everything is still white in-game, all I can think of is some kind of driver problem with Modern Patch, or maybe (this is pure speculation) there's a memory overflow, i.e. maybe the game doesn't have enough memory reserved and can't handle larger textures. 

      To rule this out, don't try this mod without running on Veg's Modern Patch, and then check your graphics driver's memory allocation. I won't help you through this as your system is different from mine, and I know better than to suggest how other people fiddle with their machines. But try running dgvoodooconf.exe, or poking around in the .ini files of whatever other driver you're using and check memory size. Search the web if you don't how to configure things. And of course make backups if you do change something you're not sure about. 

      I wish I could do more to help. I hope you can sort it out. :/

      Reply
      edited by Driven 2 months ago
  • noise - 2 months ago
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    Liked

    Only works with VEG patch, but I had to reduce screensize to 1024x768. Still it's not flawless. But I see the improvements with your high res.textures.


    I run nfs4 with nglide 1680x1050, which gives me the best graphics.

    But the memory overflow you mentioned had me thinking..., I have trouble with saving settings. Tried Mercury-patch but no result, odd because it helped before.

    Reply
    • Driven - 2 months ago
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      Liked

      If you mean the in-game settings or saved data isn't saving--like you change stuff in the game, quit, and the next time you run it,  your settings are like they were before you changed them--try setting nfs4.exe to run as administrator under compatibility settings  (assuming you're on Windows). I've had that particular problem happen on several old games/programs before, this usually fixes it.

      Reply
    • noise - 2 months ago
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      Liked

      That's what I mean (I have Wndows XP). In setting of nfs4.exe I can choose in compatibiliy modus:

      -run with: W95 / 98 /NT or 2000, I allready run as administrator.


      With the VEG patch, I don't have the saving problem. Also surprised I have widescreen without streched view, it was one of the reasons I don't use VEG patch.


      b.t.w I really appreciate your help

      Reply
    • Driven - 2 months ago
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      Liked

      Hmm, I don't know how XP will affect Modern Patch since I think it was meant for newer OS's, so not much I can suggest there as I'm on Win 10.

      As for your disk-based install, if running as admin doesn't help, sometimes Windows's User Account protection stuff gets in the way of programs installed in Program Files. If you have NFS4 installed in there, you might want to try installing it in (C:)/Games or something like that instead. Again, being XP, your system is quite different from mine and my area of experience. I'll PM you an additional thing you may want to try.

      Reply
  • AJ_Lethal - 1 month ago
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    Liked

    Finally got around trying out this track and I must say this a pretty good uprezzing of the track. IMO the "clean" road/sidewalk textures coupled with the rest of the "gritty" textures would make a really good single version.


    Also, you can get away with leaving textures to 128x128 size max since IIRC the game crunches bigger textures back to that size; that would also save on file size and video memory ;)
    Reply
    • Driven - 6 days ago
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      "Also, you can get away with leaving textures to 128x128 size max since IIRC the game crunches bigger textures back to that size; that would also save on file size and video memory ;)"

      Big oof if true. I know yours and MADMAN's track textures are 128x128, but I could've sworn I read a post or document somewhere that the max was 256x256, and so I went with that. But I'm gonna try confirming it now. If anyone reading this finds/knows a source on this info, please drop a link.

      Edit: So I found some topics where people were saying 256 is the max, but it was always in the context of cars. I'll do some tests eventually to figure out if there's a quality difference.

      2nd Edit: So I think you were right, I didn't see any quality difference between 128 and 256, but 128 would save twice as much memory. I'm gonna have to resize everything now. lol

      Reply
      edited by Driven 2 days ago

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