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I downloaded and examined a few Spore creatures from Sporepedia. From those I learned that: The images contain no information in addition to the standard image data. The stenographic data have been stored with no consideration for the image, one could imagine that the transparent parts were used exclusively, but they are not. The storage use depend on the ...


4

Loading up DirectX (via SharpDX or XNA) to do the conversion is probably overkill. Why not simply decode the format on the CPU? It's simple enough. There is a DXT decoder in MonoGame you might be able to borrow. (In case the file changes, the latest revision at time of writing is here.) BC3_UNORM is equivalent to DXT5, which that will happily decode. ...


40

The developer of Monaco actually made an excellent article on how both they and Spore accomplished this. The basic summary of what they do is fairly simple: Convert your data into binary Convert your target image into a raw bitmap Walk along the pixels of the image in some predictable pattern (they simply do left-to-right from the top-left corner). Write ...


121

The PNG format has support for more-or-less arbitrary metadata. The PNG standard defines a PNG file, essentially a series of chunks, some of which are required (and contain the image data). Others, however, are optional. For example, there's a chunk for storing gamma information or histogram data. In particular, there is a tEXt chunk that can be used to ...


31

If all you truly needed was the PNG file, chances are they just simply added the information into the file. This is actually a practice of Steganography. A lot of the times, this is used to hide payloads or secret messages in things that are seemingly public facing. However, it is likely in this case that this method is what was used. Typical Stegongraphy ...



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