1. This site uses cookies. By continuing to use this site, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. Learn More.

News Ultra high-end graphics are "a terrible mistake"

Discussion in 'Article Discussion' started by Tim S, 11 Mar 2008.

  1. Bluephoenix

    Bluephoenix Spoon? What spoon?

    Joined:
    3 Dec 2006
    Posts:
    968
    Likes Received:
    1
    haven't we been over this and decided the argument discussion of this particular fact was moot and should be discontinued?
     
  2. Lepermessiah

    Lepermessiah What's a Dremel?

    Joined:
    1 Feb 2008
    Posts:
    566
    Likes Received:
    1
    Wasn't moot, was totally false and wrong.

    Anyway, stupid argument saying PC sales are declining when sales figures show the opposite, and pc exclusives like Crysis have over 20 million dollar budgets, and they make that back and more in one month.
     
  3. legoman666

    legoman666 Beat to fit, paint to match.

    Joined:
    24 Aug 2003
    Posts:
    927
    Likes Received:
    19
    Jesus christ, you all type and spell like over excited 14 year olds on AIM. Chill out.
     
  4. Vash-HT

    Vash-HT What's a Dremel?

    Joined:
    7 Jun 2006
    Posts:
    197
    Likes Received:
    1
    All I have to say is you should have used your common sense and never bought an 8800 ultra. The premium you pay for such minimal improvement is absolutely ridiculous, and not a single game out needs a quad core, so your rig is ridiculously overpowered (and overpriced) for gaming in the first place.

    That being said, I can throw out some anecdotal evidence too, I have a gaming PC with a E6600 and a 8800gts 512mb, a 360 and a DS and ps3, and my PC sees far more use (for games mind you) than all 3 of those combined.
     
  5. kenco_uk

    kenco_uk I unsuccessfully then tried again

    Joined:
    28 Nov 2003
    Posts:
    9,696
    Likes Received:
    308
    Aye, just because graphics cards are released every month, it doesn't mean the newest is the best. You have to use a bit of common sense, which means you don't have to spend spend spend to achieve playable games on a PC, which appears to be what most of the console fanboys on this thread keep blathering on about.

    Why are people twisting Leper's posts so much? The example above shows Leper giving one example res, then frodo argues it's unplayable at a higher res. Well, what do you expect frodo? You get what you pay for mate!

    Although Leper's a bit blunt, he's just trying to get a reasoned argument across.
     
    Last edited: 11 Mar 2008
  6. Fod

    Fod what is the cheesecake?

    Joined:
    26 Aug 2004
    Posts:
    5,802
    Likes Received:
    133
    actually, i got a good deal on it, and it was exactly the same price as a GTX. :)

    as for quad core, i disagree - it's the only thing in my system along with my monitor i'm GLAD i bought - i used it all the time in my scientific apps and image processing. plus, it was IMO thebest VFM at the time. q600 g0 btw.
     
    Last edited: 11 Mar 2008
  7. Cobalt

    Cobalt What's a Dremel?

    Joined:
    24 Feb 2006
    Posts:
    309
    Likes Received:
    2
    *types lengthy argument*
    *reads back through thread*
    *smacks forehead and walks away*

    Not worth it at all.
     
  8. legoman666

    legoman666 Beat to fit, paint to match.

    Joined:
    24 Aug 2003
    Posts:
    927
    Likes Received:
    19
    Piracy & PC Gaming
    By Draginol Posted March 10, 2008 20:48:46

    Recently there has been a lot of talk about how piracy affects PC gaming. And if you listen to game developers, it apparently is a foregone conclusion - if a high quality PC game doesn't sell as many copies as it should, it must be because of piracy.

    Now, I don't like piracy at all. It really bugs me when I see my game up on some torrent site just on the principle of the matter. And piracy certainly does cost sales. But arguing that piracy is the primary factor in lower sales of well made games? I don't think so.
    Is it about business or glory?

    Most people who know of Stardock in the gaming world think of it as a tiny indie shop. And we certainly are tiny in terms of game development. But in the desktop enhancement market, Stardock owns that market and it's a market with many millions of users. According to CNET, 6 of the top 10 most popular desktop enhancements are developed by Stardock. Our most popular desktop enhancement, WindowBlinds, has almost 14 million downloads just on Download.com. We have over a million registered users.

    If you want to talk about piracy, talk about desktop enhancements. The piracy on that is huge. But the question isn't about piracy. It's about sales.

    So here is the deal: When you develop for a market, you don't go by the user base. You go by the potential customer base. That's what most software companies do. They base what they want to create on the size of the market they're developing for. But not PC game developers.

    PC game developers seem to focus more on the "cool" factor. What game can they make that will get them glory with the game magazines and gaming websites and hard core gamers? These days, it seems like game developers want to be like rock stars more than businessmen. I've never considered myself a real game developer. I'm a gamer who happens to know how to code and also happens to be reasonably good at business.

    So when I make a game, I focus on making games that I think will be the most profitable. As a gamer, I like most games. I love Bioshock. I think the Orange Box is one of the best gaming deals ever. I love Company of Heroes and Oblivion was captivating. My two favorite games of all time are Civilization (I, II, III, and IV) and Total Annihilation. And I won't even get into the hours lost in WoW. Heck, I even like The Sims.

    So when it comes time to make a game, I don't have a hard time thinking of a game I'd like to play. The hard part is coming up with a game that we can actually make that will be profitable. And that means looking at the market as a business not about trying to be "cool".
    Making games for customers versus making games for users

    So even though Galactic Civilizations II sold 300,000 copies making 8 digits in revenue on a budget of less than $1 million, it's still largely off the radar. I practically have to agree to mow editors lawns to get coverage. And you should see Jeff Green's (Games for Windows) yard. I still can't find my hedge trimmers.

    Another game that has been off the radar until recently was Sins of a Solar Empire. With a small budget, it has already sold about 200,000 copies in the first month of release. It's the highest rated PC game of 2008 and probably the best selling 2008 PC title. Neither of these titles have CD copy protection.

    And yet we don't get nearly the attention of other PC games. Lack of marketing on our part? We bang on the doors for coverage as next as the next shop. Lack of advertising? Open up your favorite PC game publication for the past few months and take note of all the 2 page spreads for Sins of a Solar Empire. So we certainly try.

    But we still don't get the editorial buzz that some of the big name titles do because our genre isn't considered as "cool" as other genres. Imagine what our sales would be if our games had gotten game magazine covers and just massive editorial coverage like some of the big name games get. I don't want to suggest we get treated poorly by game magazine and web sites (not just because I fear them -- which I do), we got good preview coverage on Sins, just not the same level as one of the "mega" titles would get. Hard core gamers have different tastes in games than the mainstream PC gaming market of game buyers. Remember Roller Coaster Tycoon? Heck, how much buzz does The Sims get in terms of editorial when compared to its popularity. Those things just aren't that cool to the hard core gaming crowd that everything seems geared toward despite the fact that they're not the ones buying most of the games.

    I won't even mention some of the big name PC titles that GalCiv and Sins have outsold. There's plenty of PC games that have gotten dedicated covers that haven't sold as well. So why is that?

    Our games sell well for three reasons. First, they're good games which is a pre-requisite. But there's lots of great games that don't sell well.

    The other two reasons are:

    * Our games work on a very wide variety of hardware configurations.
    * Our games target genres with the largest customer bases per cost to produce for.


    We also don't make games targeting the Chinese market

    When you make a game for a target market, you have to look at how many people will actually buy your game combined with how much it will cost to make a game for that target market. What good is a large number of users if they're not going to buy your game? And what good is a market where the minimal commitment to make a game for it is $10 million if the target audience isn't likely to pay for the game?

    If the target demographic for your game is full of pirates who won't buy your game, then why support them? That's one of the things I have a hard time understanding. It's irrelevant how many people will play your game (if you're in the business of selling games that is). It's only relevant how many people are likely to buy your game.

    Stardock doesn't make games targeting the Chinese market. If we spent $10 million on a PC game explicitly for the Chinese market and we lost our shirts, would you really feel that much sympathy for us? Or would you think "Duh."


    You need a machine how fast?

    Anyone who keeps track of how many PCs the "Gamer PC" vendors sell each year could tell you that it's insane to develop a game explicitly for hard core gamers. Insane. I think people would be shocked to find out how few hard core gamers there really are out there. This data is available. The number of high end graphics cards sold each year isn't a trade secret (in some cases you may have to get an NDA but if you're a partner you can find out). So why are companies making games that require them to sell to 15% of a given market to be profitable? In what other market do companies do that? In other software markets, getting 1% of the target market is considered good. If you need to sell 500,000 of your game to break even and your game requires Pixel Shader 3 to not look like crap or play like crap, do you you really think that there are 50 MILLION PC users with Pixel Shader 3 capable machines who a) play games and b) will actually buy your game if a pirated version is available?

    In our case, we make games that target the widest possible audience as long as as we can still deliver the gaming experience we set out to. Anyone who's looked at the graphics in Sins of a Solar Empire would, I think, agree that the graphics are pretty phenomenal (particularly space battles). But could they be even fancier? Sure. But only if we degraded the gaming experience for the largest chunk of people who buy games.


    The problem with blaming piracy

    I don't want anyone to walk away from this article thinking I am poo-pooing the effect of piracy. I'm not. I definitely feel for game developers who want to make kick ass PC games who see their efforts diminished by a bunch of greedy pirates. I just don't count pirates in the first place. If you're a pirate, you don't get a vote on what gets made -- or you shouldn't if the company in question is trying to make a profit.

    The reason why we don't put copy protection on our games isn't because we're nice guys. We do it because the people who actually buy games don't like to mess with it. Our customers make the rules, not the pirates. Pirates don't count. We know our customers could pirate our games if they want but choose to support our efforts. So we return the favor - we make the games they want and deliver them how they want it. This is also known as operating like every other industry outside the PC game industry.

    One of the jokes I've seen in the desktop enhancement market is how "ugly" WindowBlinds skins are (though there are plenty of awesome ones too). But the thing is, the people who buy WindowBlinds tend to like a different style of skin than the people who would never buy it in the first place. Natural selection, so to speak, over many years has created a number of styles that seem to be unique to people who actually buy WindowBlinds. That's the problem with piracy. What gets made targets people who buy it, not the people who would never buy it in the first place. When someone complains about "fat borders" on some popular WindowBlinds skin my question is always "Would you buy WindowBlinds even if there was a perfect skin for you?" and the answer is inevitably "Probably not". That's how it works in every market -- the people who buy stuff call the shots. Only in the PC game market are the people who pirate stuff still getting the overwhelming percentage of development resources and editorial support.

    When you blame piracy for disappointing sales, you tend to tar the entire market with a broad brush. Piracy isn't evenly distributed in the PC gaming market.

    Blaming piracy is easy. But it hides other underlying causes. When Sins popped up as the #1 best selling game at retail a couple weeks ago, a game that has no copy protect whatsoever, that should tell you that piracy is not the primary issue.

    In the end, the pirates hurt themselves. PC game developers will either slowly migrate to making games that cater to the people who buy PC games or they'll move to platforms where people are more inclined to buy games.

    In the meantime, if you want to make profitable PC games, I'd recommend focusing more effort on satisfying the people willing to spend money on your product and less effort on making what others perceive as hot. But then again, I don't romanticize PC game development. I just want to play cool games and make a profit on games that I work on.



    http://forums.sinsofasolarempire.com/post.aspx?postid=303512

    You all need to read that. I am glad there is at least one sane PC game dev still out there.
     
  9. Lepermessiah

    Lepermessiah What's a Dremel?

    Joined:
    1 Feb 2008
    Posts:
    566
    Likes Received:
    1
    Thanks, finally some common sense. A no FOD, Quad Core is waste for games, as no games other then crysis ebven utilize it, and even the the performance increase is no noticeable. It was the same when Dual core first came out, it took time for games to be released that even used it, quad core is in that stage right now.
     
  10. steveo_mcg

    steveo_mcg What's a Dremel?

    Joined:
    26 May 2005
    Posts:
    5,841
    Likes Received:
    80
    Thats and interesting read, makes a change to hear the other side of the argument.
     
  11. Bluephoenix

    Bluephoenix Spoon? What spoon?

    Joined:
    3 Dec 2006
    Posts:
    968
    Likes Received:
    1
    any multi-threaded game will benefit from more cores, simple fact and logic.

    there are many multi-threaded games, though there is no real compiled list of which ones are and aren't, crysis is simply the most famous one that is. (quake 4 is I think)
     
  12. kenco_uk

    kenco_uk I unsuccessfully then tried again

    Joined:
    28 Nov 2003
    Posts:
    9,696
    Likes Received:
    308
    Specifically for games, at the moment, there's not many. But if you're a heavy multitasker, a quad core is ideal. With multicore cpu's on the horizon, it does make one wonder what direction games are going to take. I thought it was obvious that CPU's would take over the task of physics processing, but with gfx cards promising this function, I do wonder what multicore cpu's are going to offer to future games?
     
  13. Fod

    Fod what is the cheesecake?

    Joined:
    26 Aug 2004
    Posts:
    5,802
    Likes Received:
    133
    also! i didn't buy it for games. once again, leper doesn't read my posts, ever, notwithstanding the COMPLETE falsehood that is 'no games apart from crysis use multicore'
     
  14. Bluephoenix

    Bluephoenix Spoon? What spoon?

    Joined:
    3 Dec 2006
    Posts:
    968
    Likes Received:
    1
    Better AI? you can make the enemies/allies actiuons more fluid by processing multiple AI streams at once, or keep the complexity the same but upscale it massively (global scale wars anyone?)
     
  15. Lepermessiah

    Lepermessiah What's a Dremel?

    Joined:
    1 Feb 2008
    Posts:
    566
    Likes Received:
    1
    I said no games besides crysis utilize QUAD CORE, which is absolutely true. research is something u fail on. Quad Core and Dual core = 2 different things. A game has to be designed to use all 4 cores, and only crysis is right now.
     
  16. Lepermessiah

    Lepermessiah What's a Dremel?

    Joined:
    1 Feb 2008
    Posts:
    566
    Likes Received:
    1
    multi-threaded does not equal quad core. The difference ein performance is not worth the price right now. Eventually quad core will be the deal, right now it isn't.
     
  17. Fod

    Fod what is the cheesecake?

    Joined:
    26 Aug 2004
    Posts:
    5,802
    Likes Received:
    133
    not true. source engine scales to any number of cores for physics. supreme commander supports any number of cores, not limited to four. those are two examples off the top of my head without even researching.

    the fact is, once you go multithreaded (which is what supporting any >1 core CPU is about), the OS handles the assignment of threads to cores. the game engine just spawns threads and tells them to execute.

    you don't want to go down this route with me, trust me that i know more on this subject.
     
  18. Bluephoenix

    Bluephoenix Spoon? What spoon?

    Joined:
    3 Dec 2006
    Posts:
    968
    Likes Received:
    1
    you obviously have no grasp on how a CPU processes calculations do you?

    each stream of calculations makes up a thread, and the Operating system assigns a thread to a core, this is independant of the game, the game just knows it can break its calc stream into an infinite number of threads, and that the OS will tell it how many it needs. if the OS detects 4 cores, it will ask for 4 threads.

    thus any multi-threaded game can utilize multiple cores, and unless I'm horribly mistaken, multithreading was a requirement for any game published under the new 'Games for Windows' logo

    [edit:] damn you Fod and your ninja typing!!!
     
  19. Lepermessiah

    Lepermessiah What's a Dremel?

    Joined:
    1 Feb 2008
    Posts:
    566
    Likes Received:
    1
    total false, Crytek THEMSELVS have said this, a game needs to us each core, as the dev needs to allocate resources to each core, you are full of it. Source at the monet does not utilize 4 cores. Not like it matters, a 2 year old PC can max out source with ease.

    I suggest u do some research, Crytek have stated in severale interviews the EXACT opposite, they know their hadware and had to design crysis to fullt use 4 cores to get a performance benefit out of it.

    Windows recognizes 4 cores is irrelevant, as game assets need to be properly used for any performance gain to be seen.
     
  20. Spaceraver

    Spaceraver Ultralurker

    Joined:
    19 Jan 2006
    Posts:
    1,363
    Likes Received:
    5
    I know ill get flamed for this.. considering a high end PC costs in the range of £700-1000. And you have to change parts somewhere down the line add another few hundred.. But consider that you use it for more than just gaming.. Internet, Email, Photoshop, CAD and so on.. Deduct the price of a machine that can do that from the gaming machine..

    Now the console..
    Buy a console. Get some games. If the game is not available on your particular console get another one. Oh yes.. You also have to consider the cost of a big HD TV. Now i do not know the prices for such things. I do not have a tv anyway. But what can you do on that console and TV: Game and watch TV/movies. So you say you deduct the price of the TV because you would have gotten one anyway. That still leaves high prices for games and peripheral hardware. And you can still only game on it. Nothing else. So you cannot deduct any of the console + games + peripherals.

    Pc gaming will not die. Neither will consoles.. The market is just different depending what kind of gamer you are.
     
Tags: Add Tags

Share This Page