This is what an extra 8MB of video memory does to a Dreamcast.

Discussion in 'Console Technology' started by Masuta, Oct 28, 2011.

  1. Masuta

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    Atomiswave Memory
    System : 16 MB
    Graphics : 16 MB

    Dreamcast Memory
    System : 16MB
    Graphics : 8MB

    Atomiswave
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rIVKg_TLev0

    Dreamcast
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Iu1fRSGBkzw

    An astonishing difference, just look at the lighting, geometry, speed, almost like two different platforms. I would have much preferred if Sega utilized a similar memory setup as Atomiswave for it's DC, it would have only cost an extra $24, as memory was $3 per MB back in 1998.
     
  2. LightHeaven

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    But are memory the only difference between them?

    If it is then it's impressive, but even so i don't think Sega could afford it... DC already cost them lots of many, adding 24 dollars for each unit would bleed even harder...
     
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  3. Masuta

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  4. nintenho

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    The atomiswave version looks better than what I remember the xbox version of Sega GT looking like.
     
  5. Gitaroo

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    doesn't Naomi board also has more ram than DC? Same with system 246 compare to PS2. I remember the Tekken guy said the reason for that is to get games out quicker since console version of tekken always comes later they will spend more time on optimizing.
     
  6. archangelmorph

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    Funny how MSR on the said same dreamcast looks miles better than both...

    :wink:
     
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  7. function

    function None functional
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    I loved MSR! The only visual problem with MSR was texture aliasing. Lots of shimmer and sometimes that meant things like railing textures could be hard or impossible to see until it was too late. It's years since I played the game but I remember that some textures behaved in a way that makes me think they weren't even using mipmaps. More video memory would certainly have helped there.

    F355 and Daytona 2001 were also pretty impressive 60fps games. The attract sequence on F355 really showed how nice AM2 could get stuff looking on the Dreamcast by 1999. Test Drive: Le Mans was also pretty impressive looking despite low poly tracks, and it rocked the aniso filtering to make road surface down the straight ways look really nice. Huge draw distance too.

    Too bad we only got one generation of software out of the Dreamcast.
     
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  8. Tap In

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    Yea Dreamcast was a little Beast for its time.
     
  9. RudeCurve

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    MSR arrived on X360 as PGR. Oh btw NAOMI games looked exactly like DC games despite having more memory, this was because the extra memory was used for preloading data from the GD-ROM drive to avoid loading screens on arcade machines.
     
  10. Simon F

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    On Naomi machines the developers were also often far less agressive with their use of texture compression. IIRC, I was told that, on DC, typically 75% of the textures were compressed (@2bpp) compared to ~25% on the arcade machines.
     
  11. I.S.T.

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    The Atomiswave is just a Naomi that had stunted growth... It's an insult of an arcade platform considering the Naomi and Naomi 2 were still around when it was introduced.
     
  12. function

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    Naomi games originally came on a rom board. The GD-Rom add on came later, and operated by loading the game into a big bank of RAM that could then act as the ROM board had done.

    Naomi games didn't use resources as carefully as the best DC games simply because they didn't have to. One of the the team responsible for porting Crazy Taxi to the DC talked about making greater use of compression and also having to implement a new streaming technique in order to get the game appearing to be the same as the arcade version (funny that people sometimes think "streaming" is something new to this generation of consoles!).

    Naomi probably isn't the best place to look for stuff that really pushed what the architecture could do. The DC port that looks the same is always going to be more of an achievement (like F355), and DC specific stuff like Shenmue 1/2 (at least the newer bits of them), MSR, Sonic Adventure 2 and others really show the potential that the platform had IMO.

    I am undoubtedly a DC fanboy, and every time a topic like this pops up I find myself wondering what a developer like AM2 could have done if they'd been able to do a complete rework of their technology after Shenmue and F355, and then get their now-experienced artists to make assets to match.
     
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  13. Nesh

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    I remember that one since the PS1 days!
    Soul Reaver I believe was another title that used streaming.
    Oh and Crash Bandicoot too
     
  14. function

    function None functional
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    Streaming back when a few seconds of optical drive access could almost fill memory!

    The early Saturns had an access light on the top/front that lit red whenever the drive was, well, accessing. Panzer Dragoon Zwei used (awesome) chip generated music, so you could see the drive accessing as bosses approached, or as you went down specific routes in the branching levels. The fun of access light alone almost made up for the Saturn not being able to do transparencies properly!

    I wish modern consoles had access light.
     
  15. Jedi2016

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    I think Crash Bandicoot would still load levels, but I remember how amazing the technology of Soul Reaver was at the time. It was the first game I ever played where there was only a single loading screen when you first started, and then could play the whole damn game in a sitting and never see another one. Very impressive at the time.

    Nowadays, it's much more common (still not as widespread as it should be, IMO).
     
  16. I.S.T.

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    Streaming was even used as a marketing point in the previews for Soul Reaver 1. Kind of amazing, really, given it became semi-standard in the PS2 gen...
     
  17. Nesh

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    I remember reading an interview about Crash Bandicoot and the devs said that they used streaming during individual levels. Not uniformly for the whole world like Jak or Soul Reaver. But during the gameplay of a particular level
    Isnt that what Uncharted does as well? There are loading screens between levels but the game does stream data for the current environment you are playing
     
  18. homerdog

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    ? I know at least in Uncharted 2 there aren't loading screens between levels. And you can actually skip most of the cutscenes so it must be streaming in the next level while you're playing the current one :shock:
     
  19. xaeroxcore

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    Crazy to see that now all the atomiswve catalog is available to play at DC, and that actually boths systems has the same specs...
     
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  20. Nesh

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    nevermind :p
     
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