The Key Takeaway

and, i quote:

“Unlike Xbox and PS2, where Xbox had a host of built-in effects that were a generation ahead of PS2, the Xbox 360 and PS3 are same-generation machines. One doesn’t have additional effects over the other – 360 can do the same effects, just not as many of them simultaneously and with less geometry [because of the speed difference], but memory bottlenecks can kill part of the PS3 speed advantage anyway… the overall visual difference it makes will depend a lot on the developer’s skill, and how much time and money the publisher spends on a game.”

the xbox 360 and the ps3 are about equal as far as game development resources go. it’s all about the skill of the developer and money spent on the title.

the best part? this is coming from a ps3 developer and not from microsoft.

like everyone says, “it’s the games, stupid!” and, with games more and more going cross platform in order to make the most out of their development dollars, i wouldn’t be surprised if all the top publishers got together and demanded a ‘java-like’ solution to video game consoles. “write once, run anywhere.” they have the clout to demand just such a thing for the next generation.

afterall, the dvd i purchased works with both sony’s and microsoft’s hardware.



7 comments so far

  1. Voorshwa on

    I think the one big thing you have to identify here is Microsoft’s history as a software company. They understand what programmers have to go through to make software, and it’s in their best interest to develop a SDK that makes it easy to make software for their HW product.

    While I am not saying that Sony doesn’t appreciate this, I think they really lag behind in knowing what works and what doesn’t. Besides, they are trying to make a SDK that works around their HW. While in the MS case I think they built HW to support their SDK.

    Will be very interesting to see if the PS3 has the software lead on the 360 as the PS2 has on the original XBOX.


  2. haveblue on

    I agree with your idea of a java like solution. I can imagine a time in the future with a unified console format. Some sort of truce in the console wars where Microsoft would control the software to download games and Sony would make the boxes. Microsoft could get out of the hardware business, where I think they are not totally comfortable, and Sony would love having no competition for their devices. Both companies could come out ahead and we gamers could save our time and money focusing on the games and not the systems.

    PS-love the blog. Your stuff on blue ray is the smartest analysis I’ve seen. It’s a shame all the “professional” magazines and websites are so mindless and do so little jounalism.

  3. m3mnoch on

    hey. thanks, guys. i appreciate the support.


  4. Joe on

    “the xbox 360 and the ps3 are about equal as far as game development resources go. it’s all about the skill of the developer and money spent on the title.”

    I think your usualy right about most of your post….
    you like me think before you post, and there usually 100% on the money.
    but im sure your aware of the XNA Studio platform MS developed for 360 when you say they are equal in terms of resources, your total wrong.

    Sony has very little if any support for there PS3 there having hard enough time producing finailized SDKs, let allone the tools optmized for there Cell chip.
    Whatever support they could get they bought up namely ProDG Tools but that software doesnt support anything close to full cell processor support, your 100% right about the skill of the developer making the difference, but as you always point out, it comes down to money. If i’m johnny upstart video game company you think i want to buy a SDK and then design CPU architecture to suppor the 7 SPEs, yea EA won’t have a problem, but when was the time EA put out a good (gasp) non-sequel game, and even if they do they license the shit out of it and kill any true indenpedant studio support. Each studio has to develop that themselves, where as XNA out of the box supports DX10 and has hardware profiles pre-set for 360s, MS saw and went for the throat just like they did with apple in the 80s, they figured out that the software that powers the console is what makes the difference not controlling the hardware (IE Mac/NEC)
    so even if sony’s gets out a decent SDK anytime soon, agian time and money come into effect, would you spend $500,000 buying up a SDK when your turnaround will be over 2 years, or drop the same on XNA and have your game out in a few months without a lack in quality of course(dependant on the studio making it)

    what resouces where you refering to? i have only seen a few and most of them are insanely over priced $30,000 for a middleware tree generator!


  5. m3mnoch on

    when i say ‘about equal’ that’s what i’m talking about. the 360 is easier to develop for, but the ps3 arguably has more raw horsepower so it sort of ‘balances out’ in the end.

    you’ll end up a ton of good looking 360 games. a few fantastic (as in better than good) ps3 games and a bunch of mediocre looking ps3 games.

    i think you were taking me to say that the dev kits for both are on equal footing. heh. here’s a big ‘hell no’ to that. microsoft is famous for spreading love to joe developer.

    what’s a platform without applications, right?


  6. joe (developer :-) on

    yea well you right about horsepower per se i’ll give in to that although i could explain why its really not that much of a advantage from a electronic engineering standpoint (SPEs cache is only 256kb and it requires to read/write back to the main cpu PPE controller to do anything, all this is going to get bottlenecked and will require a expert senior engineer to design the scripts to run each SPE. so if the scripts arent writen perfectly there arent going to be tons of thead faults, 7 SPE x whatever number of thread faults = more thread faults then 3 CPU cores on the 360. which there will be becasue agian your going to need new custom xCell software which doesnt exisit to my knowledge to write tools on, i mean they can’t even compile there code on the hardware with out emulation. talk about a development cycle nightmare. I bet all these studio’s have games 80% done and are waiting on sony for the finaly SDKs, so on top of all that your look at another 4-6 months of Q/A on top of the 20% extra development time.

    so yep your 100% right you going to have at lanuch maybe 2 SICK looking games, 7-10 Xbox 360 Lanuch quality games and whatever ports they can get to work on it. Assuming they do lanuch Sept 2006 (which they wont bet farm on it) By then 360 will have already been into its 2nd gen games and will have a 50 game head start, which is something i don’t see sony overtaking.

    I say X360 wins, revolutions leads by inovating it’s way into 2nd and Sony loses its market share in US(but keeps#1 in JP) and drops into 3rd, then i say within 5 years sells off SCEA. The ax is slowing rising over sony’s head.

  7. m3mnoch on

    totally agreed. you can make the mouth of the funnel as big as you want, but, it doesn’t matter when it all still has to pour out the same sized hole on the other end.

    i’m thinking the 360 will win from a revenue standpoint. i think i’m calling the revolution for the unit sales, tho.

    sony is stuck at the back of the bus for this generation. that just makes sense to me.


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