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Topic: E3 2021 Discussion Thread

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Balta666

@link3710 you said that we already have games from PS4/xbo on switch but the reality is we mostly have ports from previous gen or lesser demanding games (with a few exceptions like Witcher, Doom or mortal kombat). I am arguing such an upgrade in computing power would make that a lot of games would run only on the new system and I don't see that being a reality and in that case why would they have all that power just not to use it properly

Edited on by Balta666

Balta666

skywake

ThanosReXXX wrote:

Of course, they HAVE done more than two iterations of a system before, but that was only with their 3DS handheld line, never with a main line console

But when you think about it this isn't too surprising. Before the Gamecube the architecture of Nintendo's consoles changed dramatically between generations. I mean everything was, consoles were not general purpose machines. They went from 8bit to 16bit to 64bit, changing from Ricoh to NEC + Silicon Graphics to PPC + ATI/Radeon. And while they hit some architectural stability on the Gamecube they shot themselves in the foot by going with Mini-DVDs. And obviously, by the end of the Wii U era PPC was kinda dead so they needed to shift away.

I think the only real place where they could have technically made a console revision was with the Wii. They could have made a Wii HD around 2010. They openly talk about how they probably should have although you can kinda see why Nintendo's execs held out for the Wii U. If you're going HD 25GB discs are nicer than 5-9GB discs and I can see how the idea of the Gamepad went down well with Nintendo's execs. I mean their whole strategy has been about blurring the lines between portables and home consoles since the late 90s. The Gamepad is something they would obviously jump on.

But with the Switch? They're on a stable architecture and game cartridge size is only limited by the constantly dropping price of flash. They're upto 64GB cartridges now, PS5 can have 100GB discs and in any case we live in the age of digital distribution. Also they've realised the Nintendo dream of a console that successfully merges home and portable consoles with a console that has fully modular controllers. You're right that Nintendo hasn't really revised their home consoles before and they are unpredictable but.... they've never really been in this position before.

I mean maybe you're right, maybe they do ditch the Switch form/architecture for something else. Maybe they go VR or something, maybe they go from Arm to x86. It's possible. But all I can think of is that if I was a game dev at Nintendo whispering in the ears of the hardware dev team? The only thing I'd be screaming for would be more power and maybe some new controllers. Because the Switch is a pretty versatile little machine.

Edited on by skywake

Some Aussie musics: Pond, TFS, Genesis Owusu
"Don't stir the pot" is a nice way of saying "they're too dumb to reason with"

ThanosReXXX

@skywake Oh, God no, I REALLY hope they don't go the VR way. Not that it will be as bad as the Virtual Boy, or as basic as LABO, and I also think that in some ways, VR is more than a temporary hype, but it should probably never be the main dish, but an added extra, much like how Sony has done it so far, and how various manufacturers have done it and are doing it with smart devices and on PC.

I'm familiar with the whole Wii HD story, or at least: the what if story, and then we all know what happened. They held out, the Wii U came, they didn't just drop one ball but an entire container full of them, where marketing is concerned, no one understood them, people thought the GamePad was a Wii add-on, the Wii U bombed, and the rest is history.

Basically, the Switch is one HELL of a magical comeback, if you ask me. I'm seriously wondering if any of the other two might also have been able to pull that off or if we would subsequently would have had to be content with only two video game giants instead of three, in that case.

Edited on by ThanosReXXX

'The console wars are like boobs: Sony and Microsoft fight over which ones look the nicest and Nintendo's are the most fun to play with.'

Nintendo Network ID: ThanosReXX

skywake

@ThanosReXXX
Yeah, VR would be a dumb move but I struggle to think of what else upcoming would require dropping the Switch form. I guess that's why I'm a software dev in a small Australian enterprise focused company not some high up in a gaming mega corporation.

But yeah, the only time they've really been in this position before was with the Wii and possible Wii HD. They went the successor path then. It was the wrong move. I hope they've learnt their lesson.

Some Aussie musics: Pond, TFS, Genesis Owusu
"Don't stir the pot" is a nice way of saying "they're too dumb to reason with"

link3710

@Balta666 2-3x power is not that much in practice. Honestly, for most of Nintendo's 1st party efforts, that would be just enough to get just about everything running at a stable 1080p60 instead of the usual 900p30 or 720p60 that we see with most offerings right now.

Heck, Xenoblade Chronicles 2 already came out running at sub 480p on this system, I don't think even 2-3x power would get that game running at 1080p60. They're already pushing well past what the system can do with their games, I don't see that changing.

link3710

skywake

link3710 wrote:

@Balta666 2-3x power is not that much in practice. Honestly, for most of Nintendo's 1st party efforts, that would be just enough to get just about everything running at a stable 1080p60 instead of the usual 900p30 or 720p60 that we see with most offerings right now.

Pretty much. I mean people tend to forget the New 3DS, which was largely a uneventful revision, doubled the RAM, doubled(ish) the core count, increased the CPU clock by 3X and increased the GPU clock by 50%. The 3DS was far enough behind and limited by a fairly low res screen to the point where it wasn't a game changer but still. Was enough to dramatically improve loading times and give us significantly more stable framerates in certain titles. Doubling the spec or more is far from out of the ordinary for a hardware refresh

Edited on by skywake

Some Aussie musics: Pond, TFS, Genesis Owusu
"Don't stir the pot" is a nice way of saying "they're too dumb to reason with"

Balta666

@link3710 @skywake well we are talking different things. Yes, the 3ds revision had double RAM and 3x CPU clock speed but in reality in overall raw power performance it was increased 50% from 3.2Gflops to 4.8Gflops (and that is the sort of improvement I am expecting)

Edited on by Balta666

Balta666

skywake

@Balta666
You're talking raw GPU performance there methinks. I mean of course there wasn't much of a GPU bump with the New 3DS, it had a sub standard definition screen

Edited on by skywake

Some Aussie musics: Pond, TFS, Genesis Owusu
"Don't stir the pot" is a nice way of saying "they're too dumb to reason with"

Dogorilla

skywake wrote:

Yeah, VR would be a dumb move but I struggle to think of what else upcoming would require dropping the Switch form

I don't know anything about VR technology so I could be completely off the mark here but I would have thought the Switch form factor is ideal for VR, and the Labo headset seems like they were testing that idea on a smaller budget. There'd need to be a new Switch model/successor with a higher screen resolution, but then they could make a headset that you just insert the Switch into instead of it having its own screen, and you could use Joy-Cons as controllers. That would be a perfect affordable VR headset, surely?

Currently Playing:
Pikmin 3 Deluxe (Switch), The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword (Wii), Professor Layton vs Phoenix Wright (3DS)

skywake

@Dogorilla
Not quite what I was going for but lets entertain this thought. How is the current Switch not great as a VR solution and where does it fall short? I'd argue there are four places it falls short: Resolution, refresh rate/framerate, screen type and external tracking. For decent VR you want a stable 90fps or above, you want at least 2x 1080p but more resolution is better, you ideally want OLED screens and you want fast and stable head tracking.

You could get the Switch closer to this by giving it a higher resolution OLED panel that can run at 90Hz. You'd then want more graphical horsepower to drive that screen, enough to get a stable 90fps. At this point, kinda sounding like the rumoured "Switch Pro". But in addition to that? You want some kind of stable head tracking, ideally camera boxes. Which, really, would just be additional accessories to the current Switch form factor.

..... where it deviates from the current Switch is mostly in the housing to contain the hardware. I mean you can do VR with a "device sliding into a headset" but it's not ideal. What you REALLY want is an integrated screen/lens unit. I mean, it's possible a future "Switch" could be that, it's also possible they could to that and have it still be a "Switch". I just don't think the tech or demand is quite there yet for the price it'd end up being.

Some Aussie musics: Pond, TFS, Genesis Owusu
"Don't stir the pot" is a nice way of saying "they're too dumb to reason with"

Dogorilla

@skywake I see, thanks for explaining. I could still see Nintendo doing something like that in the future even if it's not a perfect solution. Using the Switch itself as the screen would make it much more affordable than the other VR headsets on the market, and it definitely wouldn't be unlike Nintendo to focus on affordability instead of being the most advanced technology, and maybe include some additional gimmick to further set it apart from PSVR and the like. But yes, I agree it's not likely to be something that Nintendo is currently all that interested in.

Currently Playing:
Pikmin 3 Deluxe (Switch), The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword (Wii), Professor Layton vs Phoenix Wright (3DS)

Dezzy

skywake wrote:

Pretty much. I mean people tend to forget the New 3DS, which was largely a uneventful revision, doubled the RAM, doubled(ish) the core count, increased the CPU clock by 3X and increased the GPU clock by 50%.

Did it? I didn't think the improvement was anywhere near that big.
What exactly did they plan on using that RAM for? Literally just Xenoblade Chronicles and nothing else?

It's dangerous to go alone! Stay at home.

link3710

@Balta666 While that's true, the PS4 Pro was approximately 2-3x of an improvement, the Xbox one x was about 4x,, so there is precedent in the industry. Additionally (and this is key) there was no point to upgrading the GPU in the 3DS much. The screen resolution meant that with the New 3DS GPU, there was basically nothing that it would get GPU limited on (Either due to hitting the resolution frame rate target, or getting CPU / bandwidth / RAM limited first).

The Switch on the other hand? You could throw in a 2-3x GPU upgrade with nothing else and it's still be able to use all that power on many games. Though, quite frankly, a CPU upgrade and faster RAM and hard memory combined with even a 1.5x upgrade would probably be more generally useful than just upgrading the GPU...

Anyways, the main thing to keep in mind is this I think. The New 3DS chip upgrade didn't have a need to be more powerful than it was, so I wouldn't quote it as precedent against a 2x more powerful chip. Especially since... There's a solution already available to Nintendo to do so without custom chip work on their end.

@Dezzy If I remember correctly, the New 3DS would use the extra RAM to speed up the OS significantly. Some games (like Super Smash Bros) actually shut down much of the OS to get more RAM, and required a restart to the console to exit the game on the original system. In general, the OG 3DS OS was way slower than on the New 3DS.

Edited on by link3710

link3710

skywake

@Dezzy
To be fair it was from 128MB to 256MB. For perspective the iPhone 4S which launched around the time of the original 3DS had 512MB. It may have partly just been a case of it became harder to source lower capacity chips. Or the premium on additional RAM became trivial relative to the total cost of the unit.

As for what it was used for, I think mostly the improvements on the New 3DS were put to better load times. Games like Smash Bros used up enough resources that they'd turn off the main OS on the original 3DS. So every time you booted the game you'd effectively shut down your 3DS and boot up the game. That's also why I said they "doubled(ish)" the core count. There was always a core exclusively for the OS so while there were physically additional cores on the 3DS the games that needed them didn't really use them.

edit: beaten to it a bit also. Graph showing all Nintendo consoles and the amount of memory they had. Yes, I even included the Virtual Boy. I've added a theoretical Switch Pro launching early 2022 with 8GB so you can see how conservative that would actually be. Also kinda stands out how unusual this gap between new hardware is when you look at it like this.
Untitled

Edited on by skywake

Some Aussie musics: Pond, TFS, Genesis Owusu
"Don't stir the pot" is a nice way of saying "they're too dumb to reason with"

Henmii

That Nintendo isn't live on stage anymore (though I know there wasn't a stage this year) is always a bit strange. But today I learned that Sony didn't participate for the second year in a row! I find that even stranger.

Henmii

rallydefault

@Henmii
Yea, that was weird for Sony. Though there's not really much for them to show when it comes to 1st-party until 2022 is what I'm hearing. I'm on the hunt for a PS5, so I'm starting to dabble back into Sony news lately.

rallydefault

Haruki_NLI

@Dezzy The New 3DS extra RAM was so several games didnt need to outright turn off the operating system just to have space to load, Gen 7 Pokemon and Smash are notable.

Plus in Pokemon's case, it reduced load times and the extra grunt also improved performance from slideshow in double battles to only a slideshow in some double battles with weather.

Now Playing: Ratchet and Clank: Rift Apart, Crash Bandicoot 4

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ThanosReXXX

skywake wrote:

@ThanosReXXX
Yeah, VR would be a dumb move but I struggle to think of what else upcoming would require dropping the Switch form. I guess that's why I'm a software dev in a small Australian enterprise focused company not some high up in a gaming mega corporation.

Haha, don't sell yourself short, man. From what I've seen and read from you over the years, you definitely know your stuff. We may not always agree, but I've found that at least, discussions with you are always polite and fair.

As for Nintendo: to be honest, I think that it's fair to say that most, if not all of us, would struggle to think of what Nintendo might come up with next. Ever since they moved on from the SNES to the N64, their way of thinking and their subsequent products have gone from weird to weirder, and in my humble opinion, not a single Western company could have predicted, much less could have come up with any of their ideas. And that is basically also why I'm not entirely discounting them coming up with something completely different for the next generation, regardless of the success of their current console.

Edited on by ThanosReXXX

'The console wars are like boobs: Sony and Microsoft fight over which ones look the nicest and Nintendo's are the most fun to play with.'

Nintendo Network ID: ThanosReXX

StuTwo

My take on the Wii U has always been that it would have been a huge success if it had launched 18-24 months earlier (with key titles shifted forwards accordingly) for a few reasons.

The iPad tablet boom was pretty much over and the market saturated with dirt cheap third party models by the time the Wii U launched. If it had come before or on the crest of that wave though it could have been huge.

There were, of course, other major failures of marketing aside from timing.

Going forwards I’d make one observation though - Nintendo never gives up on ideas, they almost always go back. Whether it’s the tablet controller for asymmetric play (Nintendo were experimenting with this as far back as the N64-GBC in various ways) or glasses free 3D (the virtual boy and then the never released GameCube peripheral) or very simplified controls and motion controls. Even the hybrid concept was something they’d clearly toyed with in the past.

If Nintendo does have a new idea post Switch I’ll make one prediction (which is always stupid with Nintendo but I’ll do it anyway…) - they’ll do something they’ve played around with before on a bigger and more fully realised scale.

Maybe those patents for distributed computing will find a use (possibly with something like VR) or maybe they’ll do a lot more with IR scanning to enhance the toys to life experience. Maybe they’ll produce a ROB 2.0 (they absolutely should!). Maybe the vitality sensor will be a big part of it.

Whatever they do I think it’ll have its roots in ideas that a team in Nintendo has already worked on extensively in the past (that might have been completely parked for a decade or more).

StuTwo

Switch Friend Code: SW-6338-4534-2507

Henmii

@rallydefault

I guess they will do their own event again, but still its strange. From what I have heard and seen this years E3 was pretty bad (Nintendo was actually pretty good, definitely better then I expected). Most games are delayed because of Covid. That being said: Do you have a Ps4? If so there isn't much need for a Ps5 just yet, since most titles also have a Ps4 version (unless you are going for the sharpest graphics, of course). As far as I know the only exclusives so far are Demon souls remake, that sci-fi rogue game I forgot the name from and Ratchet and Clank Rift apart (that one looks amazing). Just saying, its up to you.

Henmii

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