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The C modest god

Console VS PC hardware.

16 posts in this topic

It seem to me that console or some PC architectures different then the common PC architcutre (I don''t know how it is called the one with intel, amd processors and PCI slots and stuff like that), have a much better I/O reaction and a much more steady FPS. I don''t know about todays consoles, but in older consoles the game''s FPS was always steady and extremly high. Everything seems to respond a lot more faster and smoother. I think that the common PC archtecture sucks, it''s components don''t interact very well with each other. I would like to hear opinions about it.
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In a console you have one maker, one CPU, etc, etc. Everything is made to work with games, and games only. They ussually have a unified memory system (since RAM sizes won''t vary in system memory, or video memory, everything is static). All these things make it easy for developers to target. They make it run good for that console, and that console only.. if it runs good, it will run good on ALL of them. On a PC, everything varies... different types of hard-drives, cd-rom drives, keyboards, mice, video cards, sound cards, CPU''s, etc, etc. All this contributes to making programming for ALL PC''s hard. If I picked a single computer setup and programmed a game to run great on it... it would most likely run like crap on other machines (slower ones) and possibly to fast on faster machines. Other machines with different graphics cards, less memory wouldn''t even be able to run it, etc. The fact that a PC can and is made up of an LOT of different parts makes programming very hard for it. A console is a much more controlled environment, so while you''re playing a game on a PC at 15FPS, the developer may have been playing it at 60FPS, which would mean, he did a good job for his target platform, but not necessarily for your platform. In the console market, it either works or it doesn''t (and if it doesn''t, you won''t be able to sell it).

Billy - BillyB@mrsnj.com
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I don''t think it''s becuase it''s harder for game developers to develope a certain FPS game on all the PCs. Let''s say you developed a fast simple 2D game for the PCs. I think it would still won''t be as steady and the reactions between all the I/O won''t be as fast as in a console system.
In PC the FPS doesn''t seam to be steady even when it''s fast, and the I/O doesn''t seam to have the split second reaction like in consoles.
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The basic architecture is the same, you''ve got a CPU, RAM, storage device (usually a CD-ROM/DVD on consoles these days, and a hard disk on PCs), GPU, etc all connected via a bus.

One reason for unsteady frame rates on a PC is that the game isn''t the only thing running on the hardware. You''ve at least got the OS underneath, and usually you''ve also got MSN, ICQ, outlook, explorer, etc all running as well, taking cylces away from your game.

I''m the first to admit that the intel architecture is in serious need of an overhaul, but it''s not that bad.


codeka.com - Just click it.
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I think another reason is because it is intened by the industry that you will never get your perfect performance from you OS and hardware. The computers are getting more and more faster, but the OS are becoming more resource consuming.
It is stuiped that you never get best performance for a single program you run in winOS, just because there are all kind of other programs running which you don''t use during the game.
They could have done it in a way that single software will run effitiently ad that you could also have multitasking. But they just don''t want to do it, because then they will have to make a lot more effort in their next OS so you will have a good reason to buy it.

BILL GATES MUST DIE!
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That''s just senseless microsoft bashing. They give us a great operating system, an easy-to-use, industry-supported API, and you say it''s not enough!


codeka.com - Just click it.
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Agreed,

Some people *WANT* to multitask whilst playing a game - say I was downloading a 100Mb file and I was bored waiting for the download to finish, it''s quite feasible that I might want to play a game while I wait (provided the game is properly written so it multitasks properly...).

Furthermore if the *user* is concerned about a virus killer running in the background interfering with their gameplay they can turn it off. Apart from user chosen things (virus scanners, Word/Windows indexing etc), the other things in the system usually don''t interfere too much since their threads are either sleeping or on a low priority.

I''ve developed commercially sold PC games (i.e. I''m "industry"), and I can assure you 100% there isn''t some conspiracy between us and Microsoft to create slow/glitchy games on the PC.

The biggest problems with the PC are it''s backwards compatibility (e.g. the x86 CPU arch. from a programming perspective is nasty compared to recent advancements), badly written programs (DLL conflicts when installing, machine crashes due to missing DLLs after uninstalling, people using obsolete functions and assuming return values etc) and the fact that it''s really 10000 different platforms rather than 1 due to differing hardware and software configs.

With console hardware there''s at most 3 configurations of hardware - we can develop on all of those 3 and during development keep an eye on the framerate at every stage - thus the end result is rock solid VSYNC''d framerate on the console (some games excepted ). On the PC it probably runs smoothly and at a solid frame rate *on the developers PC*, but won''t on many others.

FWIW MS have stated to developers (at conferences like Meltdown) that increasingly they want the games playing experience on the PC to be like that of a console.

--
Simon O''Connor
Creative Asylum Ltd
www.creative-asylum.com
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quote:
Original post by Anonymous Poster
They ussually have a unified memory system (since RAM sizes won''t vary in system memory, or video memory, everything is static).


Minor quibble:

A unified memory system , with regards to game systems and consoles, usually refers to the architectures present in the XBox. There is one memory area (disregarding caches/registers) that is shared between CPU/bus/video/audio/everything.

When RAM sizes are static, i.e. they don''t change, that''s usually called static or fixed ; probably some other names as well, but definitely not unified.

Only reason I bring something like this up is because with an XBox you have fixed, unified memory system. But with a PS2, while the memory size is fixed, it is far from unified (32mb here, 4mb there, another 2mb over there...). It''s an important difference, because it indicates that data movement is going to be much more significant in the design of a PS2 engine over an XBox engine. (Not bad either way, just significantly different.)


---- --- -- -
Blue programmer needs food badly. Blue programmer is about to die!
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The article said that the PS2 is currently better for 3D games then the PC. It said that it''s architecture is newer then PC architecture which was used for quite a while.

I knew that games just run smoother on consoles.
It''s not only the speed, or the FPS, but it''s also the steadiness of the FPS.
On PC the FPS always "dances" which makes the game feel less "alive" or it''s movements less pleasent to the watcher.
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"That''s just senseless microsoft bashing. They give us a great operating system, an easy-to-use, industry-supported API, and you say it''s not enough! "
We would have all these things earlier and better if they hadn''t bullied anyone who is trying to enter the market.
There many things in the computer industry that are the most popular, not because they are better but just because they are cheaper. It doesn''t matter how good your product is if you can''t compete with the prices.
Large companies can make profits from lower prices because they have better marketing which sells more of the product.

Bill gates is holding the computer industry progress.
When he presented win98 (I think) it crashed and showed the blue screen, and still evreyone bought it.
Face it, windows is a crappy OS.
As a porgrammer to a programmer, you really think it is immposible to create an OS that won''t crash?
I think in diablo3 they should put bill gates as the last deamon you need to kill.


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thus all you ms bashers only use non ms products since it only makes sense. bill gates while a good business man, may be holding some of the desktop consumer os tech back due to the poor reason of making money. heck every business i DESIGNED to make money, thus ms is doing what it is supposed to. at least ms brought some standards to the desktop pc, while some may be ms slanted (like dx) for the most part its a good thing. i really hate the multi standardness of linux. things like no standard install uninstall system (i know of rpms, debs, tgz packages but face it thats already 3 methods of doing things in 3 different distros which place main config files in different places and even use different naming conventions and directory locations for apps). i am not bashin linux or saying the ms is a godsent. instead i am trying to get some of you ignorent ms bashing morons. who many actually use ms products instead of switching to something linux, maybe you should start using linux and stop complaining. heck, even the complaint about not being able to play the games you want because there are not ports to linux should make you want to use linux (or other non ms os)exclusivly even more so developers see a demand for linux (or other os) ports.

ps2 is a crap archtecture. too complex and poor use of bandwidth. 4mb of vram is pathetic considering that there is no hardware texture ocmpression. this greatly reduces texture quality, video resoultion, and model complexity. heck the hardware can transform and fill so many polys its actually quite ironic that you can only push 3-6 million once effects (like texturing and lighting in real game situtaions) are turned on compared to the single triangle benchmark numbers (66 million) that were used in ads. dreamcast has more power power (though definatly a lower fillrate). 8mb of vram, on the fly hardware texture decompression is more reasonable and allows better video resoultion (640x480 instead of many of ps2 games which run 640x240). texture quality/varity is much better as well, because of increased vram and compression. plus it can also push between 3-6 million polys in real world games. just look at shenmue2 or lemans racer.

ps2 is not better then current pcs for 3d games. while i do perfer the controller, playing on a larger screen and the games. my pc is able to handle smooth framerates and sharp 3d graphics. plus i have seen a few ps2 games that have jumpy framerates or framerates locked at 30 instead of 60.

[edited by - a person on April 13, 2002 2:19:55 AM]
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The C modest god: "On PC the FPS always "dances" which makes the game feel less "alive" or it''s movements less pleasent to the watcher."

If the frame rate in your games is ''dancing'' try turning down the detail/tex size/resolution and turn on vsync (usually accomplished in Display Properties). There is nothing special in consoles that makes them have smoother frame rates than a PC. It''s just that developers can specifically target the hardware (as stated in other posts). Also, consoles don''t run at very high resolutions (compare to PC games), so they have the benefit of not having to draw as many pixels to the screen.

--Buzzy
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A person apparently does not understand what are the consicuances of a monople company on a market. A person does not know the idea of free competition.
Microsoft didn''t published all their OS code even to this day, so A person does not know what shit he is being fed.
Microsoft is doing ilegal things to take down their competetors, if microsoft will be also a monople in the internet then there will be no chane for free competition anymore.
More then that, they will litarily own the internet. They will decide what will be on the internet and what won''t. They would also decide for you what you will be using on your own computer.
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I remember playing virtua figther2 on my satrun.
I havn''t seen any 3D PC game or even 2D PC game run as smooth and as fast as it run, on even my current computer which is a 1 ghrz pentium with GFORCE3.
If I could only check the FPS on Saturn.
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If you could check the FPS on the Saturn, it would probably read 60fps. That is/was a very smooth game. Being that the human eye can only see between 60 and 75 frames in a second, I''m sure that there are games that run that fast on your computer. In fact, most games should run that fast. Perhaps what your thinking is smooth gameplay is in fact just a very nice set of animations in VF2.

--Buzzy
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