Carmack displeased with the segmented PS3 memory

Posted By | On 14th, Aug. 2011 Under Feature, Slider | Follow This Author @KartikMdgl

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Check out some of the previously released screens from RAGE.
John Carmack, co-founder of id software, revealed some interesting things during an interview related to Rage. We know many developers complain about memory issues on the  PS3, but Carmack explained in detail as to why that is a huge problem.
“We had to make the game dominated by the console hardware trade offs. And the PlayStation 3 is, in some ways, the long pole there. They are close, the PS3 and the Xbox 360.”
“You don’t have to do radically different things, but the memory is a little tighter on the PS3 because it is segmented and Sony takes a little bit more off the top for their guide overhead than Microsoft does,” he said. “There is no doubt that decisions had to be based around what would work well on the consoles.”
He also mentioned that, even though the PC is a lot more powerful than the consoles, he felt a bit handicapped because he couldn’t optimize it as well as the consoles, due to the API overhead. However, it could be overcome due to the hardware superiority of the PC and can be brute forced to make the game run much better than the consoles.
“If I want to do all these things in 15 milliseconds, the PC is at a bit of a handicap – and it has to make up for it with raw brute force.” He expresses disappointment at all three platforms, whether it is the memory on the PS3, Disc space issues on the X360 and the API overhead on the PC.
He has already stated about the Xbox 360 and PC problems before, but the PS3 memory segmentation issue is a new one for us. It looks like it won’t be that easy to satisfy him, hopefully the next-gen hardware will manage to accomplish that.

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  • I wonder how many AAA developers were consulted when it was decided to make the consoles? Since these are the people with the coding and game making experience that will make or break your console I would think the input would be invaluable.

    • Kartik Mudgal

      Good point. I think Sony learnt their lesson when you consider how developer friendly the Vita is.

    • Microsoft is a software developer which helped their console design. And, they consulted Epic Games, which bumped their Ram from 256 to 512 MB.

      Sony and Nintendo have old business models which trump developer opinion. They never needed developer opinion because they controlled the market. The next gen will be different, however. Developers will have a bigger role since the market has become competitive.

    • Kartik Mudgal

      Yeah, the extra RAM also cost Microsoft $1 billion. I don’t think Sony could afford to do that at that time but it would have been nice if they had a lot more RAM.

    • m

      You can bet that Sony’s first party developers will have a say in what goes into the PS4. I think Naughty Dog knows the limitations of the PS3 better than any other developer out there.

  • My God, this website and it’s headlines. Always trying to get hits from Xbox fanboys who love stroking their egos.

    What? I thought you 360 fanboys didn’t care about anything but Gears of War, since it will “be the best game EVAR”!? What’s that you say? You also have Kinect Sesame Street? LMAO, idiots!

  • d0x

    Banshee wtf are you talking about? Relax a bit. The memory architecture in the ps3 does impact performance and they should have done what Ms did but you can’t harp on Sony too much cause their memory system is traditional for console design. The 360 (aside from original heat issues) was designed incredibly well. Ms did some different things which allowed them to squeeze slot of extra power out of the hardware. They also did an incredible job keeping the kernal and OS nice and slim so the overhead is minimal

  • Talking about the memory I`m hoping for a PS4 to have at least 4Gb of RAM.
    Anyway cannot wait for Rage, I think I`m gonna buy it for both PC & PS3.

    • Kartik Mudgal

      I think it will be less than 4GB, since console RAM is expensive.

  • Wow. Nobody on this site knows what the EXPLICIT DELETED they’re talking about.

    @d0x The 360 was poorly designed with a few pluses here and there concerning the OS, even Microsoft has acknowledged that the design of the 360 was bad, which is why they have re-released it. The one thing Sony messed up on was memory, concerning hardware anyway. That is it. How did Sony succeed? Innovation. They took a step in the mud to get to go somewhere, while everyone else stood back with a last gen mindstate.

    @Banshee Shut up. The console war died in 08, stop trying to revive it because you’re an insecure nitwit with nothing better to do.

    @Kartik and Cave Consoles won’t have more than 2GB of RAM for quite awhile. Consoles don’t need as much RAM as PCs because they utilize RAM better. Also, OSes like Windows need that much RAM to support and optimally add full utilization of their OS. On a Console you won’t have a web browser open with an IM running in the background, or anything like that. Consoles run on very simple, but stable OSes.

  • Hm

    Perhaps Carmack could help Sony design the PS4…


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