Behold, the true power of the Gamecube

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Adam Nixon, Jul 31, 2001.

  1. Morgan Jolley

    Morgan Jolley Lead Actor

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    GameSpot has a preview of this game that talks about how it plays. A little off topic, but the new Zelda is in development according to Shigeru Miyamoto, and the new PD game is supposed to be called Perfect Dark Zero (its a prequel). The games I can't wait for are the ones we don't know about yet. Nintendo has always had tricks up its sleeve, and I think the big ones are still coming. I wonder how the new Resident Evil game will look...
    Can't wait for Zelda, either.
    As for what I said about the XB, the GC runs faster than the X-Box and also can display more textures per object. Also, what is the price of a GeForce 3 compared to a GC? And what is the point of a GeForce 3 without a good PC? So how much does all this cost, compared to the $250 for a GC and Rogue Leader? Even the X-Box costs more, and without a game!
    [Edited last by Morgan Jolley on August 01, 2001 at 02:20 AM]
     
  2. Gary King

    Gary King Second Unit

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    quote: the GC runs faster than the X-Box and also can display more textures per object. Also, what is the price of a GeForce 3 compared to a GC[/quote]
    The NV2A is *more advanced in every way* than the GeForce 3, so the price is irrelevant - when I provided empirical tests for the NV20 (or listed effects), the Xbox will best those by a very wide margin. There is no aspect of the graphical pipeline where the Xbox would fail to outperform the Gamecube provided that the graphics engine were written specifically for an NV20 or beyond, with the potential exception of trilinear filtering compressed textures. But even in that case, a well-written Xbox application should still outperform the GCN.
    But, since you seem so caught up on "faster," here are some relatively meaningless specs that you might want to consider:
    Processor speed: Xbox - 733MHz, GCN - 485MHz.
    GPU speed: Xbox - 250MHz, GCN - 162MHz.
    Fill rate: Xbox - 1GPixel, GCN - 648MPixel
    Texel rate: Xbox - 2GTexel, GCN - 648MTexel
    Fill rate, 8 textures: Xbox - 250MPixel, GCN - 81MPixel
    Fill rate, 8 compressed textures, trilinear: Xbox - 125MPixel, GCN - 81MPixel
    Fill rate, AA: Xbox - 500MPixel (5 sample, 2 textures), GCN - 162MPixel (4 sample, 1 texture)
    Poly rate: Xbox - 125M, GCN - ~40.5M (if 1 T&L unit included), ~81 (if 2)*
    * Poly rate calculated as Clk*T&L units / 4. This should be a reasonable approximation, as 4 4-vector dot products and a divide are needed to transform every vertex - this number is an estimate, as it could slightly vary based on the exact structure of the Flipper; however, performance should be roughly equivalent to those numbers. 4 clock cycles is about as fast as someone could hope to transform a vertex to screen space.
    Now, I'm sure you'll argue that numbers don't make games, and that's true. Getting the Xbox to perform well requires competent programming; however, if there is one thing the Xbox has going for it, it's hardware quality.
    [Edited last by Gary King on August 01, 2001 at 02:58 AM]
     
  3. Morgan Jolley

    Morgan Jolley Lead Actor

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    Actually, calculating the number of polys is not wise. The number can change, depending on what is being done by the hardware at the same time. You can make a large white ball of millions of polygons rotate at 60 fps or a small ball rotate at 1 fps. It all depends on the programming.
    Also, the GC is so fast that it can run things in and out of memory faster than any home computer. Since it constantly streams data from the disc, it will be able to look better than the X-Box because of how fast it runs the data.
    Also, we have seen some games on the X-Box that don't compare to the shots from Rogue Leader. If they do, its a still shot (not a moving 60 fps one) on a dev kit and not the final version.
     
  4. Gary King

    Gary King Second Unit

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    Of course, I pointed out that competent programming was important. However, that doesn't change the performance of the machines. I can write a DCT procedure that runs slower on my P3-1GHz at work than on an 80387 -- that certainly doesn't prove that the 386 is a faster machine! In terms of how "fast" each machine is (which means: peak performance), the Xbox bests the Gamecube by at least 50% in every catergory, and frequently by more than 100%.
    I really hope you're not arguing that reading data from a CD is going to be faster than reading from a hard drive, because that will not be the case. Even if the GCN's optical drive is the fastest ever created by a factor of 3, that would still make it roughly 3 times slower than a hard drive for random seeks (and, we already know that the peak transfer rate is significantly less than the average ATA-100 HDD). If you're referring to memory bus paths -- the Xbox has none. Once something is in memory, it doesn't need to be swapped. Doesn't get much faster than that (and also allows for a wide arrange of stupid vertex shader tricks to be performed).
    And I've seen things running on the Xbox that look, to me, far better than Rogue Leader (although Rogue Leader is starting to look pretty nice). DoA3 is absolutely stunning (and, if you're dying to see a full, 60fps demonstration, TechTV is airing it pretty frequently).
    Of course, your comment about the DevKit is completely irrelevant, since the Xbox DevKits were noticeably slower than the final hardware (NV15->NV20->underclocked NV2A->final NV2A, software sound->software sound->MCP, 2x copied graphics data->2x copied graphics data->UMA, etc.).
     
  5. Sean Oneil

    Sean Oneil Supporting Actor

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    I completely agree with Gary.
    If anything, that Star Wars game looking so good is a credit to the artists and the design/programming team, and not the GC hardware. Those screen shots look absolutely awesome, and this only goes to show that even with simple bump-map implementation -when done correctly and with some artistic vision- a game can look like it is using much more powerful hardware. (Remember the dungeons in the original Phantasy Star for the Sega Master System?) [​IMG]
    That Star Wars game looks beautiful, but were the same team to produce it on X-box, I am sure they would have no trouble at all replicating it down to the last pixel (or vertex in this case)
     
  6. Andre F

    Andre F Screenwriter

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    I'm going to grab a Gamecube on launch day for this reason alone, the games. I don't care if there are third party or not. I'm just hoping Nintendo can get back to that magical place where they just produce awesome games.
    -Andre F
    ------------------
    -= Take your stinking paws off me you damn dirty ape! =-
     
  7. Adam Nixon

    Adam Nixon Second Unit

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    I certainly don't dispute the abilities of the Xbox. On specs alone it thumps everything else out there, at least until spring when PCs will probably catch up (at a MUCH more expensive price).
    But, once again, as nice as the hardware is it doesn't mean squat when it comes to the actual games. Those tech demos
    (Check out the robot and the girl) http://www.planetxbox.com/games/demos/
    that were originally released were astounding, and left me with extremely high hopes for the machine. But, as I've said before, NOTHING announced to date has given me any reason to lay down $299 in cash. SSX Tricky and Star Wars: Starfighter (which IS graphically inferior to Rogue Leader) look almost identical to the PS2 versions and most of the other announced titles don't look that much better than most current PS2 games. Certainly, there ARE exceptions such as DOA3, but graphically even that title doesn't look THAT superior to Rogue Leader.
    In addition to its superior hardware capabilities, Microsoft touted how easy it was to develop for Xbox and its developer-friendly DX8. So why don't any of these games knock every other consoles titles out of the market with their visuals, especially when considering how supposedly difficult it is to program for the PS2? Even the PS2's third generation is comparable to current Xbox titles with GT3, MGS2, and Final Fantasy X.
    It's pointless for everyone to club each other over the head with the specs for each console. Technologically speaking, the PS2 lags behind the others but there are several great games on its horizon. I'm sure there will be great titles on the Xbox as well. For Microsoft to compete, they had to bring something new to the table -- unfortunately, there is nothing "out of the gate" which establishes the Xbox as a major contendor (other than a $500 million dollar advertising budget) and highlights its claimed hardware superiority.
    [Edited last by Adam Nixon on August 01, 2001 at 04:04 PM]
     
  8. BrianB

    BrianB Producer

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  9. Adam Nixon

    Adam Nixon Second Unit

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    Wow, that says it all. [​IMG]
     
  10. BrianB

    BrianB Producer

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  11. Adam Nixon

    Adam Nixon Second Unit

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    Something like that, I believe. What's surprising to me is that most people on the street haven't heard anything about X-Box or just don't care. With that kind of cash, you'd think it would be a household word with 4 months left to go.
     
  12. Dean Cooper

    Dean Cooper Supporting Actor

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    -----------------------------------------------------------
    Something like that, I believe. What's surprising to me is that most people on the street haven't heard anything about X-Box or just don't care. With that kind of cash, you'd think it would be a household word with 4 months left to go.
    -----------------------------------------------------------
    Actually, I'm suprized that so many people DO know about it. Microsoft has not done anything to push the Xbox yet with only 2 exceptions that I can think of. Its in a Rap video and there is a magazine add in a jap game rag. Other than that they only have the website going. Watch the finantical analysits movie thats on the net, they even brag about this fact.
    Dean
     
  13. Gary King

    Gary King Second Unit

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    There's a reason that Starfighter and SSX Tricky look like their PS2 equivalents -- they're ports. Games for the PS2 will have lower quality models, no bump mapping, and lower-resolution textures than games natively made for the Xbox. The fact that a port doesn't look much better is hardly a valid argument -- Madden 2002 on the GCN looks just like Madden 2002 on PS2. If Starfighter were released on the GCN, it would probably look exactly like Starfighter on PS2. If the developers don't redesign their content (a major time and resource drain), the games won't look better. In the case of SSX Tricky and Starfighter, the quality of the content is the bottleneck - not the hardware.
     
  14. Adam Nixon

    Adam Nixon Second Unit

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    I couldn't disagree more. I've seen several Xbox titles that have great graphics, but they are NOT a quantum leap ahead of the other consoles and most are almost identical (Lucasart's lame Xbox offerings come to mind -- Obiwan was scrapped as a PC title). With that kind of hardware power, there shouldn't even be merit to any argument. The entire port situation is proof of why developers aren't taking this console seriously. If they're simply churning out PS2 copies of the same games for Xbox WITHOUT even minor enhancements (which are indeed possible without a redesign), then the Xbox's claim of hardware dominance is a moot point. If EA won't take advantage of the graphic capabilities and churn out "native" applications then why buy an Xbox, unless you want to play DOA3 (I never said DOA3 was "prettier" [​IMG])? The same titles are already available on PS2.
    The Japanese development community has largely ignored the Xbox -- just take a look at Konami, Namco, or Sega's PS2 development versus the Xbox's. Sure, they'll throw Microsoft the occasional bone, but the majority of effort is going towards Sony or Nintendo. The N64 clearly was last gen's hardware powerhouse, but it didn't have terrific developer support and that caused the original Playstation to emerge as the victor.
    The cold hard fact is that no American built console has EVER succeeded in Japan. The Sega Dreamcast WAS a success in the U.S., but despite that success it died a painful death in Japan and is no longer manufactured. Microsoft has come closer than anyone else, but its price -- no matter how much of technological bargain -- is going to annihilate its chances in the U.S. Parents and typical console buyers don't give a crap about HD capabilites or 5.1 sound. They want to play the next Mario, GT3, or Madden. Seeing as how Madden will likely be on all 3 (with almost no difference in quality) what is the average consumer going to buy? The new Nintendo for only $199 with the promise of exclusive Nintendo software and family friendly titles? The PS2 for probably $249 (There WILL be a price drop before the next system launches) that's also DVD player with a huge software library? OR -- the $299 Xbox that has some of the same games as PS2 but costs more and has a smaller library? Some consumers will most certainly believe the X-Box to be a poor value.
    Do the math: The elitist gamers like us appreciate technological breakthroughs, but the general public couldn't care less.
    [Edited last by Adam Nixon on August 01, 2001 at 05:39 PM]
    [Edited last by Adam Nixon on August 01, 2001 at 05:43 PM]
     
  15. Dean Cooper

    Dean Cooper Supporting Actor

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    Adam your right in the respect that the GCN will dominate the pre 12-13 market, but now days this just isn't the majority anymore. Its the 16 - 35 market that is and you just can't win that crowd pushing kiddies games 80% of the time. Its one of the major factors that went into the success of the Playstation. Sure Star Wars:Rogue Leader looks great but how far can one game take the system? Nintendo is already starting to show that it hasn't changed from its N64 days. One major game has already been canned and the GCN isn't even out yet.
    I guess I should add that the PS2 does not come with a brodband connection nor a HD. The cost of these accessories is going to be well over a $100 so even after the price drop the Xbox is still the better value for what you get.
    Dean
    [Edited last by Dean Cooper on August 01, 2001 at 07:03 PM]
     
  16. Adam Nixon

    Adam Nixon Second Unit

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    Yeah, the "kid" aspect isn't exactly a turn on for me either, but I'll still look forward to the next Zelda and Mario. Shigeru Miyamoto (sp??) has said he wants Mario to "grow up" for his next incarnation. That doesn't mean another Conker's Bad Fur Day, but it does indicate that the Big "N" wants a bigger audience. The kids do account for a ton of sales, though. I had both a Playstation and an N64 for the last round, and I'll probably have a Gamecube and either a PS2 or Xbox for this round.
    As for PS1's dominance in the last console wars, Nintendo ticked everyone off by sticking with a cartridge format and topped it off with a console that was really tough to write for. This time around, the GC is quite developer friendly and uses a modified DVD disc, which is bringing some developers back into the fold.
    For me, I'm ready to plunk down the cash on a GameCube today -- Nintendo's titles can be found nowhere else. Space World is August 23-25, and the company has a history of dropping bombs on the public at that show. I'm sure there'll be some surprises in store, and titles that no one has heard of yet.
    It's deciding between a PS2 and an X-box that has me in fits. Great games are great games, no matter if they're on PC, GC, PS2 or X-box. The X-box IS a better value if you consider its hardware. It's the lack of marquee software that bothers me, and MS's broadband plans are not solid at the moment. I know that if I buy an X-Box, I'm kissing off MGS2 (Metal Gear Solid X is NOT MGS2), Final Fantasy X, Gran Turismo 3, Onimusha 2, etc. We can argue specs until Christmas, but it doesn't change the fact that X-box, to date, has the weakest software line-up of the 3 consoles (not talking developer support here) AND the highest retail price on top. We also can assume that there WILL be great games for the GC with a myriad of familiar franchises, and Sony's 3rd generation will be in full swing by the console's launch.
    I'd love to see the X-box succeed, simply because of what I thought was its massive hardware potential, but I can't tell you how disappointed I've been with the majority of titles I've seen announced. Even SSX-Tricky doesn't look any different than the PS2 version -- I know its a port, but surely EA could have done SOMETHING to distinguish it from the other consoles. We've all seen Geforce 3 tech demos, we KNOW what this machine can do, so where are the Games that take full advantage of it??
     
  17. Gary King

    Gary King Second Unit

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    MGSX is MGS2, plus extras (MGS2: Director's Cut, essentially).
    If you're looking for Xbox games that look great and should provide excellent gameplay, I'd recommend:
    Amped*
    Ego
    DoA3*
    Mad Dash
    Malice*
    Munch's Oddyssee*
    Bloodwake
    Gotham Racing*
    Halo*
    Unreal Championship
    Nightcaster*
    And the games that could turn out to be good:
    Fuzion Frenzy* (I enjoyed playing it at Gamestock)
    NFL Fever*
    Cel Damage
    Azurik*
    All original Xbox games (not a PC or PS2 port in the bunch). *'d games are ones that should be available by the end of the year.
     
  18. Jacob Rohrer

    Jacob Rohrer Agent

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    Mad Dash is a launch title, so you can add an asterik to that one.
    Also I expect Gotham Racing to slip.. But who knows.
     
  19. Adam Nixon

    Adam Nixon Second Unit

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    Konami has not stated what Metal Gear Solid X actually will be (it won't be called "X"). Hideo Kojima allegedly said at a press conference that it would be a blend of both MGS and MGS 2 -- either way, it probably won't be the game that shows up on PS2.
    Also, Project Ego won't be hitting shelves until about fall 2002. It's pretty ambitious in its design, and a few killer screens have been released:
    [​IMG]
    I just hope it isn't too late. I still feel that Microsoft has quite an uphill battle ahead with consumers.
     
  20. Dean Cooper

    Dean Cooper Supporting Actor

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    Adam, check out the link list I put in the Xbox impressions thread. The first one, Jetsprint MX (JMX)
    still mesmerizes me every time I check out the screen shots for it. This is going to be a Suuweet game and notice that the shots were taken in wide screen. To date the "games in development" list has gotten to 190 games and 80 of them are exclusives. The line up is not as weak as you think. Every time new shots are posted the images get better and better as we get closer to November. As developers start completing the games and putting the final polish on them they will a lot closer to what we should expect them to be.
    Dean
     

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