Geomerics: Devs looking forward to not dealing with PS3/360 512MB RAM constraints

Making games for PS3/360 is challenging.

Geomerics are a third-party lighting technology provider to major gaming studios, and their tech has been featured in many high profile games like Battlefield 3.

We asked specific questions to Dr. Chris Doran, Founder & COO of the company, on the difference between PC and console tech in a yet to be published interview, and he had a lot of interesting things to say.

“Making games for the PS3/360 generation does bring challenges compared to modern PCs, though we have learnt a huge amount in terms of squeezing optimum performance out of those machines,” Dr. Doran revealed.

“You always get this on a console cycle. If you look at the games coming out at the end of the cycle, like Medal of Honor: Warfighter, I think people would say they far exceed what anyone thought possible at the start of the cycle. “Certainly, we had people telling us that real-time global illumination was not possible in this console cycle, until we showed that it could be done.”

He also said that the memory limitation on consoles are something of a bottleneck and even developers are looking forward to a time where they don’t have to deal with the 512MB RAM limitations on PS3 and Xbox 360.

“The one issue that we are stuck with, however, is memory. Every part of the game is fighting for memory resource and this inevitably leads to trade-offs,” he revealed.

“I think a lot of developers are looking forward to a time when they can develop big blockbuster games without the constraints of fitting it all into 512MB.”

Tell us what you think in the comments section below.

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  • Hypermog
    • Guest404

      Yeah, I never understood why they didn’t put an EXT slot on the Xbox 360 (or the PS3 for that matter). Especially the PS3 is a bitch with memory resources as you actually only have about 216MB for the CPU (256MB-50MB for OS reservation) that is cut off from the 256MB for the GPU. It’s the real bottleneck for this gen, even for multiplatform titles as it is the bottom spec to work with and is e.g. the reason why Skyrim has no DLC on the PS3.
      The Xbox 360 is still the most efficient of the consoles with only about 30MB memory use for the OS (even now after many additions since launch) and shares all the memory between the CPU and GPU with the addition of superfast 10MB eDRAM (which in turn isn’t enough for full scene rendering at the highest resolution nowadays wihout tiling).

      Even a USB2.0 port could in theory be used for an extra reserved caching drive (Readyboost like) to speed things up a little, yet none of the big three have really tried to use that as an option.. Who knows, maybe down the road…

  • jastor

    I’m sorry but devs wanting more ram is not shocking or news. Hell devs were complaining about 512mb before this generation of consoles even launched.

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