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Former Harmonix developer attacks PS3

26 October 2007

Jason Booth, a former employee at Rock Band developer Harmonix, has launched a series of criticisms against Sony’s PlayStation 3 console, suggesting the pubic share a number of misconceptions on a hardware level when comparing it to the Xbox 360.

Speaking in a recent entry on his blog, Booth addressed the common assertion that the PS3 is graphically superior to Microsoft’s next-generation machine, stating, “Fill rate is one of the primary ways to measure graphics performance - in essence, it's a number describing how many pixel operations you can perform. The fill rate on the PS3 is significantly slower than on the 360, meaning that games either have to run at lower resolution or use simpler shader effects to achieve the same performance.”

“Additionally, the shader processing on the ps3 is significantly slower than on the 360, which means that a normal map takes more fill rate to draw on the ps3 than it does on the 360. And I'm not talking about small differences here, we're talking roughly half the pixel pushing power.”

He then tackled the inclusion of Blu-ray, arguing that the high-definition format is slower for gaming experiences than the Xbox 360’s DVD9 medium: “Great for watching movies, but not so great for games”, said Booth.

“Getting data off the blue ray drive takes about twice as long as it does to get the same data off the 360's DVD drive. That translates into longer load times, or god forbid if your streaming from disk, tighter constraints on the amount of data you can stream.”

Booth also remains sceptical as to whether or not developers would fully get to grips with the consoles architecture over time, adding, “I suspect a small number of PS3 only developers will optimize the hardware to do something cool."

"However, this will be an exception to the rule, and will likely involved game designs that are specifically designed for the hardware and funded by Sony. If those will prove to be fun or not is another question.”

Source: PS3fanboy


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