Technical director Hussain Sheikh speaks about developing on the PS4.
For FuturLab technical director Hussain Sheikh, working on the upcoming PS4/Vita exclusive Velocity 2X isn’t a difficult task. That’s because the game, which is a follow-up to the successful top down shooter series, was specifically designed for the Vita. That being said, GamingBolt thought of getting his take on the advantages that the PS4’s unified memory provides during development.
“For Velocity 2X, we have used Vita as our lead platform. Which means that porting the game to PS4 was a trivial task in terms of game performance. We have increased visual fidelity all across the board (textures, lighting, post-processing) but we didn’t have to do anything special on PS4 to take advantage of the unified memory architecture.
“In general terms memory is the slowest component of modern hardware. Most people talk about CPU/GPU speed, but what they forget is that transfer rate of data is generally the biggest culprit for causing frame drops. If the computation units are starved of data or have to wait for output to be written back into memory, that becomes a major bottleneck,” he said to GamingBolt.
But that’s not the case with the PS4. “Having a unified high speed memory architecture alleviates this bottleneck where the data doesn’t need to be constantly transferred between CPU and GPU, but can be accessed by both. It also means that developers no longer need to worry about running out of the memory pool between CPU and GPU or waste effort on memory load balance. It just makes things so much simpler.”
FuturLab is only one of many developers who have praised the PS4’s new unified architecture. What could it mean for future games, given that the hardware is that much easier to take advantage? We’ll find out in the coming months but in the mean time, stay tuned for more updates on Velocity 2X.