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Game Industry Folks Siding With the Wii 432

Posted by Zonk
from the taste dept.
Gamasutra's semi-regular feature taking the pulse of folks in the game industry turns its attention this week to the PS3 and Wii launches. From the comments submitted to the site, it seems that many industry vets are generally more excited about the Wii than with Sony's offering. From the article: "'Definitely a Wii (already pwii-ordered). The price point of the PS3 and the lack of enticing launch titles makes me as interested in a PS3 as I am interested in getting a root canal.' — Ryan Conlon, Gearbox Software. 'I am buying a Wii because Sony is too arrogant, from their dev tools to the price point.' — Ed O'Tey, Electronic Arts. 'Wii — pre-ordered. I applaud the attempt to expand and explore game interaction with the Wii. I will not be purchasing a PS3.' — Jim Perkins, EA Canada"
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Game Industry Folks Siding With the Wii

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  • Poor Sony (Score:3, Informative)

    by trmj (579410) <tmacfarlan@gm a i l . c om> on Friday November 17, 2006 @01:48PM (#16886842) Journal
    Literally. Didn't they lose some redonkulous amount of money this year due to PS3 R&D? I mean, overall as a company in previous years the gaming department was the only thing keeping Sony afloat, then they go and spend all that money on a system that the industry doesn't even back. Not to mention that the XBox 360 is poised to take Sony's spot in Japan, due to the insanely low price point of the system. Can I get a netcraft troll to confirm it?
  • Ironically enough... (Score:5, Informative)

    by fatty ding dong (1028344) on Friday November 17, 2006 @01:49PM (#16886880)
    Nintendo is the only company with a next-gen system that ISN'T trying to force a new media standard on gamers. In the past, Nintendo was always the odd one out (sticking with the old cartridges, small optical disc instead of CD or DVD). Now, Nintendo is tapping into the mainstream while the other big two are forcing their standards on gamers. It cost Nintendo when they absolutely had to have their own unique media, now it appears Sony and MS will repeat the mistakes of the past.

    Show the gamers a game that makes good use of HD-DVD or Blu-Ray and they may buy some of the hype. Until then, all glory to Nintendo.

  • by MBraynard (653724) on Friday November 17, 2006 @01:55PM (#16887016) Journal
    Show the gamers a game that makes good use of HD-DVD or Blu-Ray and they may buy some of the hype. Until then, all glory to Nintendo.

    360 isn't forcing a new standard on anyone. You can get an HD-DVD if you so choose, but it won't be required for games - it just saves you some space and money if you areally are interested in HD-DVD.

    Nintendo, on the other hand, doesn't offer you so much as a DVD player along with the Wii - they are stricter than the other guys in terms of forcing a standard with a format exclusive to them and them alone.

  • by saboola (655522) on Friday November 17, 2006 @01:55PM (#16887022)
    The Xbox 360 runs on standard DVD, not HD-DVD. Just to clarify your post a bit. You can buy an HD-DVD addon now for the 360, but it only plays movies not games. Microsoft and Nintendo our both taking the standard DVD route.
  • Re:Poor Sony (Score:5, Informative)

    by Red Flayer (890720) on Friday November 17, 2006 @02:03PM (#16887204) Journal
    I mean, overall as a company in previous years the gaming department was the only thing keeping Sony afloat
    What? Whose ass are you pulling that out of?

    Sony's recent financials [sony.net] show that Sony Pictures, Sony Games, and Sony Financial Services have been sharing the load -- and the games division has been responsible for less than 1/3 the operating income the last two years, and slightly over 1/3 in 2004. For 2006, Sony Financial Services dominates their operating income.
  • Re:Poor Sony (Score:5, Informative)

    by deckstuff (975288) on Friday November 17, 2006 @02:15PM (#16887424)
    xbox 360? japan? more ps3's were sold on the first day in japan than the number of xbox 360's sold in japan all year long

    http://www.the-magicbox.com/topten.htm [the-magicbox.com]

    of course DS sales (and presumably the wii) > ps3 + xbox360
  • Re:Wii Campers? (Score:3, Informative)

    by cmpalmer (234347) * on Friday November 17, 2006 @03:52PM (#16889066) Homepage
    Yeah, but they think they're going to scalp it on eBay for more like $3000 than $800, buy a Wii, buy other stuff, then pick up another PS3 after Christmas. What the reality will be we'll know in a few days if there are a lot of unbought PS3's on eBay (or if they're selling at right around MSRP + minimal markup).
  • Re:Yes (Score:3, Informative)

    by ehrichweiss (706417) on Friday November 17, 2006 @04:15PM (#16889398)
    "You could even have a small boot section that decrypts the rest of the OS."

    I'm guessing you haven't heard of the "bootloader" in terms of removing copy protection? They even use them on some of the best smartcard technology out there so it'd be quite the challenge to get this to remain a viable option.
  • Re:Well maybe it is. (Score:3, Informative)

    by ShaunDon (589695) on Friday November 17, 2006 @05:00PM (#16890048) Homepage
    Sorry dude, it's even worse than you thought. According to http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/High-definition_telev ision [wikipedia.org]Wikipedia, two standards for HD are 720p/i (1280x720 px) and 1080p/i (1920x1080 px). The Blue-ray DVDs are specifically designed for 1080p video, so you're talking about a 300% frame size increase.


    I work in computer graphics and true high definition scares the crap out of me and my current workstation.

    Shaun

  • by theskipper (461997) on Friday November 17, 2006 @05:19PM (#16890292)
    Excellent point. I'd mod you up if I could.
  • Re:Yes (Score:5, Informative)

    by AArmadillo (660847) on Friday November 17, 2006 @10:48PM (#16893256)
    Two problems with this. First, is Amdahl's law. Colloquially, Amdahl's law debunks the fallacy that if one woman can have a baby in nine months, then nine women can have a baby in one month. Let's say the average game has 75% code that is parallelizable. Quite a feat, to accomplish that. Then by Amdahl's law, you would see a maximum speedup of 2.9 for 8 processors over one processor, assuming all processors were equal (hint: on the cell, 7 of the cores are just fancy FPUs). To compare, you would see a speedup of exactly 2 for a three processor system. A 45% increase in performance for 266% more cores is not a particularly good tradeoff, and this again is assuming that all cores are created equal.

    Then, of course, there is memory bandwidth. The Cell has one memory bus to serve eight cores. In addition, local memory bandwidth for read in the Cell is 16MB/s, from Sony's own slides. Thus Sony recommends (on the next slide) to not read from local memory, but to write out to main memory and read from that. So eight cores are going to be constantly contending for the main memory bus. That is a horrible situation in hardware if I've ever seen one.

  • Re:Yes (Score:4, Informative)

    by dockthepod (540781) on Saturday November 18, 2006 @02:47AM (#16894278) Homepage
    You are confused with some of your figures. Each SPU has access to 256K of local cache. This is very very fast memory... no misses. They can't directly access main memory, so there isn't really contention. However, the programming model is more complicated. Nothing console devs can't handle ;) The 16MB/s figure (if that's correct, don't remember exactly...) is related to reading VRAM (sony confusingly calls this local memory) from the Cell, something you don't generally have any reason to do. The GPU has fast access (~20GB/s) to the Cell's memory (called Main Memory) which is much more useful. You can split up your texture usage between the two memory pools and cut down on memory contention. Anyhow, too many winter brews, so I'll stop rambling.

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