Waifu, Enhance

GIF: YouTube (TheGaarth / Elvss4)

AI's done a pretty decent job of upscaling older intros, textures and environments from classic games. But that's nothing compared to what Waifu2x can do.

In case you're wondering: yes, Waifu2x is a deep learning neural network designed to upscale and denoise anime or anime-style art. It's been floating around the net for a couple of years, and for the most part it's been used by people to upscale single images.

But if you know what you're doing, you can use the machine learning tool for all sorts of things. Like upscaling the very excellent intro sequence for Trials of Cold Steel, which is still one of the best JRPG series going around. The intro is basically mandatory viewing, and here's what it looks like:

Not bad. Old, but certainly not bad, and definitely upbeat. Now have a look at what Elvss4 has done by using waifu2x to upscale the whole intro to 1080p, while also boosting the frame rate.

Pretty bloody good. Now, what other oldschool JRPGs and anime games could use an AI uplift? The older Dragon Ball or Naruto games wouldn't be too bad, but tons of crackers over the last 10 years are due for a rework.


    That's pretty impressive. I wonder if the various anime publishers will get around to remastering their older content with something like this and releasing on blu-ray etc.

    I can think of a tonne of old standard def TV shows that could use a facelift like this as well.

    It certainly boosts the clarity and sharpness to an impressive degree... though it comes with an weird and unexpected trade-off, highlighting more starkly how for many/most characters, the only parts actually being animated are a couple strands of hair.

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