PS2 EE question

Discussion in 'Console Technology' started by vipa899, Jan 24, 2018.

  1. Grall

    Grall Invisible Member
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    It's rarely useful to compare software written for such disparate platforms; even if it's the same game, it's not technically the same game since PS2 and OG Box had only fleeting similarities (like, both had a CPU, both had a 3D graphics processor, that sort of thing.) All of it differed vastly though, on a high level philosophical/implementation level and on a low level programming/technical level. You had to reprogram a PS2 game completely from the ground up for the Box, and the other way around, and not just because the Box had almost twice the RAM of PS2 either (which is ordinarily a big limitation for 3D games.)

    If you ported from Xbox to PS2, you had to basically retool your entire game to account for half the RAM, a CPU with no cache, fewer or even no parallel execution units and no speculative execution (which means big hit in execution speed of complex code). Then there's the whole fullblown GPU versus dumb rasterizer hardware where graphics is concerned... :p

    As for the GS/NV2A debate, the only genuine advantage GS had was in brute fillrate. It had no modern features, and even lacked some fundamental ones, like a full set of alpha blending modes or a working MIP mapping implementation, which again frustrated things for programmers. It could only access its own 4MB of on-chip memory, and had to be served data through a connection to the rest of the system which could bottleneck unless you took some care to prevent it (again adding to the quirkiness of the whole platform.)

    NV2A on the other hand had a modern, beyond DX8 feature set including pixel and vertex shaders, robust texture compression, and could access the full 64MB of RAM in the system. It didn't have the brutish fillrate/video memory bandwidth of GS though, which meant that you needed to take care and not draw unnecessary stuff or you'd run out of memory bandwidth (particularly when rendering transparent pixels as that gobbles twice the bandwidth due to read-modify-write requirements), whereas with PS2, drawing unnecessary stuff was typically, and paradoxically, The Way to get things done as quickly as possible*... :p You also had sufficient on-chip bandwidth to do full speed transparencies with basically no speed penalty.

    So it's totally different schools of hardware design. Like asking, oil painting versus stone sculpture - which is best? It doesn't really make sense asking such a question. ;)

    *Without making too long a story out of it - typically drawing pixels is a big consumer of memory bandwidth so you want to draw as few pixels as possible, so you prefer to draw front to back as much as possible and use Z-buffer to avoid drawing invisible pixels. However, GS has on-chip memory divided into separate banks with total of over 1500 bits bus width to said banks meaning massive bandwidth, but only a small amount of free video memory space left after allocating space for your screen and Z buffers, and a narrow pipe between video memory to main RAM, so you can't fit all the textures a typical game uses. And GS can't texture from main RAM either, you must store textures in video memory. So because of the slow pipe to main RAM, you stream in your textures sequentially once per frame and once only, and draw all polygons which use that texture, regardless of where those polygons are on screen or if they will later be covered by something else. GS has plenty fillrate to spare anyway in just about every conceivable situation. The opposite basically of what you'd want to do on any other 3D rendering hardware. :lol:
     
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  2. bunge

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    I tend to think that the PS2 was designed with 480i in mind and it hit that target “perfectly”. I base this on nothing but speculation and hindsight.
     
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  3. vipa899

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    Thanks again some nice and well written explanation. Most people including reviewers put the ps2 as the weakest and xbox as strongest of that gen, rightfull or not. Guess ps2 couldnt do doom 3 and xbox couldnt do zoe2, both playing to their strenghts.
    PS2 sure was an intresting design, atleast i think its a cool design most cause its so different. But its huge library of exclusive games really gave it an edge though.

    @bunge
    Yeah Transformers seems to be 480i, game displays what the ps2 can do.
     
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  4. Shifty Geezer

    Shifty Geezer uber-Troll!
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    PS2's design was the pinnacle of an evolutionary dead end. It had no future in the face of highly versatile, programmable, parallel processing engines (GPUs). It was awesome for the time and gave (and gives) much interesting to talk about, but it should never, ever be mistaken for a lost opportunity where we could have an even better world now if only GS had continued as a concept.

    You've already discussed PS2 versus XBox (and PC)
    https://forum.beyond3d.com/threads/ps2-vs-pc-at-launch-necro-tech.60002/page-5

    If you're interested, this thread goes to some length in the discussion about PS2
    https://forum.beyond3d.com/threads/questions-about-ps2.57768/
     
    #24 Shifty Geezer, Jan 29, 2018
    Last edited: Jan 29, 2018
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  5. Grall

    Grall Invisible Member
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    Oh, there's no doubt that overall, Xbox is far superior to PS2. No contest really, it's a much more recent design, using fat desktop-class processors and had basic shader processors on its GPU, which was the way of the future as we well know now... :) Plain ole rasterization peaked and died with PS2 (nobody told Nintendo that though, when they decided to launch Wii... :lol:)

    PS2 does have some corner cases where it can shine - like lots of (transparent) overdraw like explosions or vegetation, particles and so on, but that does not make the hardware capable overall of competing with the box. PS2 was pushed as far as it was because it sold a bajillion - the market was huge so it was economically feasible to bend over and jump through the ridiculous hoops required to put great graphics on the screen with PS2. If xbox had sold equally well you would have seen some crazy games from that system too - like we saw with xbox 360 which had around eight years on the market to let programmers learn to wring almost all juice out of that hardware.
     
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  6. vipa899

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    Thanks Grall (and others) for your time on this subject, sure discussions on beyond3d are more serious and correct then system wars @gamespot :p Im just intrested in different forms of technology and the 6th gens where much more intresting to compare then todays PS4 and Xbone, alltough the games we get now are very nice too.
    Xbox indeed never got many great games like PS2 did, and the platform probally didnt get pushed like the PS2 but one game i never see anyone talking about is Unreal Championship 2, seemed and still does look on another level compared to the other consoles of the time, sadly one of few that did.



    @Shifty Geezer
    Yeah thx intresting read on that thread (think ive read the later pages on that one a while back, have read many others here aswell, old and new :)
     
  7. swaaye

    swaaye Entirely Suboptimal
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    I couldn't come to grips with third-person Unreal Tournament. Really there are lots of Unreal Engine 2 games on the Xbox though.

    For technical showcases I would pick Far Cry, Half Life 2 and Doom 3. I'm not sure the other consoles were capable of per pixel normal mapped stencil shadowed stuff to the degree of Xbox. And there are the 720p games like Enter the Matrix. That's pretty exceptional.
     
    #27 swaaye, Feb 2, 2018
    Last edited: Feb 2, 2018
  8. Svensk Viking

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    I've always thought the Splinter Cell games were good showcases for the Xbox. Aside from the PS2/GC versions just having inferior graphics, they also had slightly changed level design.
     
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  9. Riddlewire

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    It's a custom engine. Made specifically for UC2 on Xbox. It was the only game that ever used it.
    You can play in first person if you want. You can assign first/third person viewpoints independently to each weapon.
    It has an unlocked framerate in all modes, hitting 60 frequently.
    It supports widescreen 480p mode (although the resolution is a weirdo 776x480).
    On OG Xbox, there is screen tearing. I didn't notice any screen tearing when playing on 360 in any output mode.
     
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  10. dogen

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    Imo Conker Live and Reloaded is the best looking xbox game. Could almost pass off as an early 360 game (at 480p :p).

     
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  11. vipa899

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    While far cry instincts certainly looks impressive, it doesnt do it for me now but thats cause its not 2004 anymore. Didnt play it back then on the xbox but certainly wouldve thought it was impressive. Doom 3 and the expension are pretty nice for being on the xbox, both having DD5.1 too. HL2 feels laggy in some areas. Far cry, doom and HL2, they arent build from the ground up for that console? Aside from that, you know your not playing on the PS2 or GC playing any of those games.

    As said, UT can be played in 1st person, that game is much more impressive to me then any of the games mentioned above, you have to play it to see it. Felt/feels right up there with pc games from 2005.

    Yeah very impressive, in special for that generation of consoles, never played on anything else then xbox/pc (which where similar), but its another game that took advantage of the xbox.

    Thought that it was coded for just the xbox, its a under-rated game for sure, not many that take it up when talking about the games with the best graphics on og xbox.

    Yes Conker is very impressive, another of the few games taking advantage of the xbox's abilitys.


    Tried Ninja Gaiden Black aswell, no idea why people always bring it up as one of the best og xbox games, they say it looks better then GoW2 for PS2, sure doesnt look bad but i dont 'see' whats so special. Wouldnt know what impresses me more GoW or ninja gaiden, GoW is much more vibrant and larger scale bosses.
    On a note, Quantum Redshift, quit unknown game to most but the graphics are amazing, in particular the Wasteland course, where its raining and all, it even impresses me today in 2018.

    Found a youtube video of the game/course



    Edit: youtube doesnt do the game justice like usual, its on another level when played in realtime.
     
  12. swaaye

    swaaye Entirely Suboptimal
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    You're right that Far Cry is hard to look at these days. A lot of old 480p early shader-heavy "realistic" games are like that now.
     
  13. vipa899

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    Yeah its something with those titles, UT championship 2 doesnt have that same effect, nor does MGS2 or quantum redshift, all look still nice. ZOE the second runner retains nice too somehow.
    But what do people see in Ninja Gaiden? Some sites claim its the no1 xbox game in graphics, i just dont see it.
     
  14. dogen

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    I think it's more about the framerate and visual refinement for ninja gaiden than flashy effects.
     
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  15. vipa899

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    Yeah then it makes sense, gotta try component aswell. Any more contenders on the xbox that are fairly unknown? Theres a like a 1001 on the ps2 but im quit new to the og xbox in serious gaming.
     
  16. HMBR

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    Forza should be a good game to show off the Xbox, it's a exclusive from may 2005.
     
  17. vipa899

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    Ok will look into it, is it likt gt4 graphically?
    Also is the psp as good as the ps2 in graphics? Never had one but saw gow on it and the thing did very well almost ps2 level.
     
  18. Nesh

    Nesh Double Agent
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    If I recall it was 30fps with low framerate refletcion maps?
     
  19. vipa899

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    Wouldnt rallysport challange 2 be a better game to push xbox graphics? Seems 60fps and looks great if not better then both gt4 and forza.
     
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  20. Nesh

    Nesh Double Agent
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    I d have to agree on that. That looked much better

    Funny we are discussing XBOX games on a PS2 thread btw :p
     
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