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Witcher 3 dev: No major power diff. Hidden XBO power?

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#1 vcfan

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Posted 29 November 2013 - 02:12

Eurogamer's latest Witcher 3 write-up veils an intriguing little snippet about the future of Xbox One, care of CD Projekt's lead engine programmer Balázs Török. According to Török, Microsoft gradually "opened up" ways of getting "more" out of the Xbox 360 across 2007 and 2008, and this may be the case with Xbox One, too.

"On the PS4 it's very good to have the fast memory," said Balázs Török, "everyone is really happy about that - but the problem is the game has to function on everything.

"No we are not holding it back," he added, "it's just we are not at the stage right now to go in and optimise on each platform specifically. We want to make the game and the whole engine run on everything, with all the features and bells and whistles, and then just optimise, optimise, optimise.

"I don't see a major power difference. The memory is very different but I already said that before. Pure computation power, if you just measure that, there's no major difference."

"The Xbox One is pretty easy to understand because not just the hardware is similar to the PC, but everything like the SDK, the API is really similar to what you would find on a PC. On PS4 this is a little bit more complicated, but I personally worked on PS3 before.

Balázs Török did flag up one unusual thing about the Xbox 360 from around 2007/2008, though.

"I saw how Microsoft opened up certain parts that they hid before from developers," he said. "They opened them up, like, 'OK now you can have this back door, and it's risky but you can do this and that...' This is how developers learned a little bit more and more every step. From Microsoft it was a good way to do it to always let the developers do a little bit more."

Does he think Microsoft will do the same with Xbox One?

"I don't know because we are not at the stage where they would open up something new," he answered. "We have what we have right now, and maybe we will have some more low-level access in the future.

"It's not like they would open up new hardware or anything - there's nothing new in there. It's new ways to do something. Both companies are already using all the knowledge they have from previous products to make the API tailored to games ... so I expect that they will do something like, 'OK now you can do this; it's extremely risky - only do this if you know what you're doing! But you can do this.'

"It will happen, eventually, but right now we are preparing for it."

 
 
http://www.eurogamer...-a-next-gen-rpg
http://www.oxm.co.uk...-witcher-3-dev/


#2 Yusuf M.

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Posted 29 November 2013 - 02:32

On paper, there's a difference. They're not taking full advantage of the PS4 (in order to accommodate for the lowest common denominator) or the Xbox One has some hardware feature that closes the on-paper performance gap. Knowing CD Projekt, I doubt they'd hold back in terms of image quality.



#3 Andre S.

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Posted 29 November 2013 - 03:50

Optimisation takes time, and when your feature set's not there yet, or you still have major bugs, those take priority. So basically The Witcher 3 on consoles is still too early in development for CD Projekt to focus on optimisation, but if and when it gets there this is where they're going to run into different limitations on each console, and perhaps be able to make more interesting comments about their relative power. I'm surprised they would say something like "they have the same computational power" when the PS4 has 50% more shader cores - that's a lot of computational power.



#4 Blackhearted

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Posted 29 November 2013 - 03:57

If there was no major difference in power, xbox one games wouldn't be running at lower resolutions right out of the gate. The fact that they are, shows that there is.



#5 firey

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Posted 29 November 2013 - 04:00

He clearly says.. yea the ps4 has faster ram.. but we can't use it.. we can't push the game yet.. as we need to have it run on all platforms.  They are hoping MS opens back doors, and gives more power.. However no where did he say anything about hoping the ps4 gets more power.



#6 trooper11

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Posted 29 November 2013 - 04:03

If there was no major difference in power, xbox one games wouldn't be running at lower resolutions right out of the gate. The fact that they are, shows that there is.


I don't know for sure. Why is it that suddenly launch titles tell us everything we need to know about a console's power.

I do know that the ps4 has a stronger gpu. What I don't know is if that means the X1 cannot produce games that run at 1080p/60 like the ps4. Since some launch titles are in fact running at that on the X1, makes me wonder. Then the fact that not all ps4 games are running at 1080p/60 further blurs the line.

I just think people should remember history and how console game development works. Raw specs aren't the only thing that can affect game development on one platform or another.

#7 trooper11

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Posted 29 November 2013 - 04:06

He clearly says.. yea the ps4 has faster ram.. but we can't use it.. we can't push the game yet.. as we need to have it run on all platforms.  They are hoping MS opens back doors, and gives more power.. However no where did he say anything about hoping the ps4 gets more power.



I agree, it does sound like he is saying that.

Basically that he assumes MS will open up the platform as they have their previous consoles.

Honestly, why anyone would take this quote and try to examine it for technical merit is beyond me. These guys aren't anywhere near optimizing for either console. He says that clearly. Its too late for the Witcher 3 to take such advantage, whatever it might be for each console.

#8 firey

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Posted 29 November 2013 - 04:07

I don't know for sure. Why is it that suddenly launch titles tell us everything we need to know about a console's power.

I do know that the ps4 has a stronger gpu. What I don't know is if that means the X1 cannot produce games that run at 1080p/60 like the ps4. Since some launch titles are in fact running at that on the X1, makes me wonder. Then the fact that not all ps4 games are running at 1080p/60 further blurs the line.

I just think people should remember history and how console game development works. Raw specs aren't the only thing that can affect game development on one platform or another.

It's more about the fact they are just that.. launch titles.  And if right out of the gate one has better performance (with the same title/engine) than the other.. it's a good way to base initial thoughts and forecast the future.   Launch titles are usually rushed and are quick show pieces.. the console/coding knowledge and tweaks aren't yet known.. and if one system can run the game better than the other system without all the extra knowledge.. then it says something about the hardware, and not the code itself.  



#9 Blackhearted

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Posted 29 November 2013 - 04:13

I just think people should remember history and how console game development works. Raw specs aren't the only thing that can affect game development on one platform or another.

 

In past consoles, each one was of an often vastly different kind of hardware. Things like the cell, for example, are what made the ps3 and its weaker gpu able to create some of the most technically impressive console games of the previous gen. This time around there is no significant differences like that, it's pretty much the same on both sides(low clocked and likely low ipc amd x86 cpu, amd gcn arch. gpu). It's incredibly unlikely you'll see something like what happened last gen with the ps3 happen this time(system weaker gpu impresses most).



#10 trooper11

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Posted 29 November 2013 - 04:15

It's more about the fact they are just that.. launch titles.  And if right out of the gate one has better performance (with the same title/engine) than the other.. it's a good way to base initial thoughts and forecast the future.   Launch titles are usually rushed and are quick show pieces.. the console/coding knowledge and tweaks aren't yet known.. and if one system can run the game better than the other system without all the extra knowledge.. then it says something about the hardware, and not the code itself.



Your forgetting about ease of development and time of development.

I hate to belabor the point, but its well documented that developers got X1 dev kits much later than ps4 kits.

It has also been pointed out that Sony chose a more straightforward design vs the X1, requiring devs to spend more time to optimize for the platform. The ram configuration is a clear example of that.

Its not as bad as the ps3 vs 360 when the ps3 was so foreign to developers, but there has been plenty of talk to support the idea that the x1 takes the less pc-like approach compared to Sony.

For me, the proof is in the exclusives, where you don't have to worry about whether a dev pushed a bad port or just didn't have time to optimize for a platform. If your exclusives can push a certain level of visuals, then a 3rd party dev can certainly do it given the time and willingness. So if X1 exclusive titles don't hold up, then you have something to point to. Again, the ps3 had a similar situation. It proved its worthiness thanks to exclusive titles, not third party titles.

#11 trooper11

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Posted 29 November 2013 - 04:20

In past consoles, each one was of an often vastly different kind of hardware. Things like the cell, for example, are what made the ps3 and its weaker gpu able to create some of the most technically impressive console games of the previous gen. This time around there is no significant differences like that, it's pretty much the same on both sides(low clocked and likely low ipc amd x86 cpu, amd gcn arch. gpu). It's incredibly unlikely you'll see something like what happened last gen with the ps3 happen this time(system weaker gpu impresses most).



Oh I agree, its clearly not as bad as it has been in the past.

I'm just saying that there were many stories pointing to MS being later to the game vs Sony on things like game development, driver completion, getting dev kits to devs, and finalizing the api overall.

All I'm saying is that it sounds like we haven't seen the best that either console can offer. I'm not saying anything the X1 can do would magically change the hardware spec, just that I'm wondering if the X1 is capable of delivering a 1080p/60 experience in most games if a dev wants to do that. The COD devs seem to think it will with the next version of COD, so who knows.

#12 OP vcfan

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Posted 29 November 2013 - 05:03

Optimisation takes time, and when your feature set's not there yet, or you still have major bugs, those take priority. So basically The Witcher 3 on consoles is still too early in development for CD Projekt to focus on optimisation, but if and when it gets there this is where they're going to run into different limitations on each console, and perhaps be able to make more interesting comments about their relative power. I'm surprised they would say something like "they have the same computational power" when the PS4 has 50% more shader cores - that's a lot of computational power.

what if your cpu is a bottleneck? you could throw a titan in there, it wont give you the performance you expect.
 

If there was no major difference in power, xbox one games wouldn't be running at lower resolutions right out of the gate. The fact that they are, shows that there is.

bf4 is a mess period. that game is so buggy and broken I don't have faith that dice spent a lot of time optimizing. it was a bad rush job. cod doesn't even need an explanation either. on the ps4 there is major frame judder issues, because render time between frames is inconsistent. this game is also running unlocked, vs a locked and smooth 60fps experience on the one. AC was also the same res on ps4 as the one, but because of the partnership on this game with sony, they spent more time after the game went gold optimizing the ps4 version only to 1080p. the rest of the multiplats are basically identical. watch the analysis of need for speed. same res, same AA, similar framedrops between both versions. there are dips in both, if there was this mythical power differences, the blue line would remain completely solid.
    



#13 MindTrickz

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Posted 29 November 2013 - 05:53

There is clearly a difference in power between the two consoles. That is a fact at this point. Xbox One games would not be running at a lower resolution i.e. sub-1080p if that was not the case. Whether CD Projekt will take advantage of that is another thing, but it appears that they have no reached that part of production yet. The optimization part.



#14 HawkMan

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Posted 29 November 2013 - 06:22

If there was no major difference in power, xbox one games wouldn't be running at lower resolutions right out of the gate. The fact that they are, shows that there is.


I'm sure the fact that certain functions related to the ESRAM isn't available yet and the debs having significantly less time with the Xbox dev kits didn't affect this at all.

But you keep going with your agenda...

#15 Blackhearted

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Posted 29 November 2013 - 07:20

I'm sure the fact that certain functions related to the ESRAM isn't available yet and the debs having significantly less time with the Xbox dev kits didn't affect this at all.

But you keep going with your agenda...

 

Ram doesn't make up for the gpu's being on separate tiers from each other in terms of peak performance. Feel free to keep believing it somehow can, though.