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Xeodrifter diary #13

GN Podcast #480

EoD - Smash Wii U!
 

Shin'en praises Wii U dev environment, tech

“The Wii U development environment allowed us to go from zero to a great, polished game in only half a year. I think we never ever got so far so fast on a new hardware, and we’ve worked on a lot of platforms in the past decades.

We decided to add a local two-player mode where one player uses the TV and the other one the Wii U GamePad. That meant the complete game world would need to be rendered twice for the Wii U GamePad display. That nearly doubled the burden on the GPU and CPU, but even then we were still able to maintain solid 60FPS without much effort on both displays. Then on top we even added camera streaming, so that the TV player can see the face of the Wii U GamePad player, which adds a lot of fun. We expected the additional camera encoding and streaming would add noticeable strain on the Wii U, but it was almost free. All this proved the system is very well balanced and allows developers without much effort, to use all the unique features. Another benefit of the Wii U is that the system memory is so large that we never have to load an asset again. Everything can be cached and load times are almost gone.” - Shin’en’s Manfred Linzner
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35 total comments (View all)
No Avatar
09 Jan 2013 01:30

Exactly. These people aren't complaining, they are just producing quality work.Capcom, Konami,etc. take note.
User avatar
09 Jan 2013 01:33

Now tell this to those naysayers!!!!

I am going to DL this game ASAP. Trine2 was a bit more magnetic the first time around, but you're next, Nano! ;)

Wonder what Retro is doing with the hardware....
User avatar
09 Jan 2013 02:25

These guys must be mistaken, because other devs, who haven't even worked on the system yet but like that's important right, say it's so underpowered and not next gen.

Who to believe. The devs who actually get down in the trenches and work with the system and develop games or the devs who sit on the sidelines and lob the same old insults and excuses Nintendo's way. Hmmm I just don't know. :? :mrgreen:
User avatar
09 Jan 2013 02:49

Nano Assault Neo is an absolutely gorgeous game too. If they can pull all of that out of the system, I can't wait to see what the future holds.
User avatar
09 Jan 2013 04:11

This is exactly what most people forget when they claim that Wii U is not even on par with ps360 etc.
The Wii U has tons of complex things to do at the same time compared to ps360.

Alone the fact that the Wii U is able to render the entire game-engine of Call of Duty BO2 TWICE(multiplayer on TV and gamepad) at the same time without any sort of compromises, should prove other devs/people that the Wii U is indeed a very potent console.

the key words are (as always): laziness or just incompetence
User avatar
09 Jan 2013 04:45

I don't yet have the Wii U, but whats even more impressive of them is, that the Nano Assault is freakishly awesome in 3DS too!

I am waiting for it to arrive in the eShop.
User avatar
09 Jan 2013 04:48

@joshb1983 Yep.

... But not when it comes to PS4/X-Box 8 games [as we'll soon see].
No Avatar
09 Jan 2013 05:14

austrian wrote:the key words are (as always): laziness or just incompetence

Actually, the real keyword is greed, though laziness and incompetence do factor into it.

Sony and MS pay for support, even when its not exclusive.

Nintendo will not and cannot.

Guess who's going to get the least support and/or praise?
User avatar
09 Jan 2013 05:23

Not proving anything, but just to measure console penises. Heres an example what is possible with similar circumstances(small, talented team and inexpensive downloadable game) between PS3 and Wii U:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Zn2y3wt7-RY

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WD168liSmh0

In my eyes, generational leap.
(not only far more impressive looking, but also much more complicated geometry and interactive surroundings)
No Avatar
09 Jan 2013 13:56

I agree that most of the other big name devs are doing some lazy porting, but in their defense, this game has relatively low poly counts and not that many 3D models on-screen.

On the other hand, from what I've seen in the games I've bought (Batman AC, Tekken TT2, NGIII) the game is being rendered twice most of the time and STILL manages to deliver smooth gameplay.

There's no excuse for NGIII really, but for Batman AC, you'd be crazy to give the game crap. With as much detail as that game displays, I'm VERY surprised it remains playable even with framerate dips. Not to mention, again, it's being rendered TWICE... with a pretty beefy engine too. And we're talking about a PORT! So games designed with the Wii U's architecture in mind will blow people's minds away naturally, but I just wonder if Nintendo will be the one to do that... cause honestly, ZombiU could've been that game, but Ubisoft just has too much on their plate methinks.
User avatar
09 Jan 2013 15:29

FrenchFryGuy wrote:These guys must be mistaken, because other devs, who haven't even worked on the system yet but like that's important right, say it's so underpowered and not next gen.

Who to believe. The devs who actually get down in the trenches and work with the system and develop games or the devs who sit on the sidelines and lob the same old insults and excuses Nintendo's way. Hmmm I just don't know. :? :mrgreen:



You have to take into account what type of games these devs are developing when speaking praise or bashing the Wii U hardware. In all fairness, Shin'en was developing a very basic (by today's technical standards) downloadable title that can't be THAT taxing on hardware.

On the other hand, BLOPS2 supports multiplayer gaming on TV and Gamepad in the same fashion that Shin'en is describing and, when invoked, the gaming world instantly takes a 30fps cut.
User avatar
09 Jan 2013 15:31

metalpants wrote:I agree that most of the other big name devs are doing some lazy porting, but in their defense, this game has relatively low poly counts and not that many 3D models on-screen.

On the other hand, from what I've seen in the games I've bought (Batman AC, Tekken TT2, NGIII) the game is being rendered twice most of the time and STILL manages to deliver smooth gameplay.

There's no excuse for NGIII really, but for Batman AC, you'd be crazy to give the game crap. With as much detail as that game displays, I'm VERY surprised it remains playable even with framerate dips. Not to mention, again, it's being rendered TWICE... with a pretty beefy engine too. And we're talking about a PORT! So games designed with the Wii U's architecture in mind will blow people's minds away naturally, but I just wonder if Nintendo will be the one to do that... cause honestly, ZombiU could've been that game, but Ubisoft just has too much on their plate methinks.



Are those games being rendered twice in the way that Shin'en is describing? Or is the gameplay on the Gamepad just an exact mirror of the gameplay on the TV? Big difference there.
User avatar
09 Jan 2013 20:26

FrenchFryGuy wrote:These guys must be mistaken, because other devs, who haven't even worked on the system yet but like that's important right, say it's so underpowered and not next gen.

Who to believe. The devs who actually get down in the trenches and work with the system and develop games or the devs who sit on the sidelines and lob the same old insults and excuses Nintendo's way. Hmmm I just don't know. :? :mrgreen:

Tecmo's studios devs must have had dev kits to be able to port NG:RE and WO3, and they didnt praise the hardware.
Besides, Nano Assault is an eshop game, that could fit into a CD, of course they wont find performance problems with that.
No Avatar
09 Jan 2013 21:53

gatorboi352 wrote:
metalpants wrote:I agree that most of the other big name devs are doing some lazy porting, but in their defense, this game has relatively low poly counts and not that many 3D models on-screen.

On the other hand, from what I've seen in the games I've bought (Batman AC, Tekken TT2, NGIII) the game is being rendered twice most of the time and STILL manages to deliver smooth gameplay.

There's no excuse for NGIII really, but for Batman AC, you'd be crazy to give the game crap. With as much detail as that game displays, I'm VERY surprised it remains playable even with framerate dips. Not to mention, again, it's being rendered TWICE... with a pretty beefy engine too. And we're talking about a PORT! So games designed with the Wii U's architecture in mind will blow people's minds away naturally, but I just wonder if Nintendo will be the one to do that... cause honestly, ZombiU could've been that game, but Ubisoft just has too much on their plate methinks.



Are those games being rendered twice in the way that Shin'en is describing? Or is the gameplay on the Gamepad just an exact mirror of the gameplay on the TV? Big difference there.


Well it's an exact mirror yes, but I do recall reading that it still taxes the CPU and whatnot due to the realtime compression sent to the GamePad. So I don't really know what to tell you. I'm not a developer myself *shrug*

That said, the same applies with BLOPS II which does indeed render two different perspectives at the same time so... there's that.
User avatar
09 Jan 2013 22:45

If the gamepad mirrors the tv then there is nothing special going on there, the console is just copy/pasting the image. There is no extra work there at all.
No Avatar
10 Jan 2013 04:54

ddddd wrote:If the gamepad mirrors the tv then there is nothing special going on there, the console is just copy/pasting the image. There is no extra work there at all.


Hmm, you kinda overlooked my second point... but hey, you're the expert and I hate arguing so *shrug*.
User avatar
10 Jan 2013 05:19

metalpants wrote:
ddddd wrote:If the gamepad mirrors the tv then there is nothing special going on there, the console is just copy/pasting the image. There is no extra work there at all.


Hmm, you kinda overlooked my second point... but hey, you're the expert and I hate arguing so *shrug*.

Thats what a developer said. The compression and streaming process could be being done elsewhere since wiiu has secondary processors.
No Avatar
10 Jan 2013 10:38

ddddd wrote:
Tecmo's studios devs must have had dev kits to be able to port NG:RE and WO3, and they didnt praise the hardware.
Besides, Nano Assault is an eshop game, that could fit into a CD, of course they wont find performance problems with that.

Size has nothing to do with whether a game is taxing or not. You could make a game in a few megabytes that would cause the most high end PC to slow to a crawl.

Why would you even mention that?
User avatar
10 Jan 2013 19:28

void3953 wrote:
ddddd wrote:
Tecmo's studios devs must have had dev kits to be able to port NG:RE and WO3, and they didnt praise the hardware.
Besides, Nano Assault is an eshop game, that could fit into a CD, of course they wont find performance problems with that.

Size has nothing to do with whether a game is taxing or not. You could make a game in a few megabytes that would cause the most high end PC to slow to a crawl.

Why would you even mention that?

If the game has low poly models and environments, which you can expect from a small sized game, then it wouldnt be surprising if it wasnt too much taxing. Also considering the game itself, Nano Assault is about a single ship floating around an asteroid/cell, comparing it to full retail games and call those lazy work is unfair.
User avatar
11 Jan 2013 01:48

On the other hand, if that smaller eShop title is doing more impressive stuff, and looking better, than some of those full retail ports, then yes, it is more impressive.

Not all of the launch ports have been "lazy". Some were, like Madden. Others, from what I hear, like Darksiders and ACIII, or even Batman minus a few issues, were actually rather good. I've even heard good things about ME3 and NGIII (with that specifically being an upgrade from an already sh*tty game). I don't think it's UNFAIR to call some of the full retail devs lazy though. And developers who haven't even bothered working with, or in some cases probably haven't even PLAYED Wii U, have zero room to talk about the hardware and it's "limitations", if they can't even be bothered to give it a look.
User avatar
11 Jan 2013 06:01

The WiiU has a bottlenecked CPU, named devs that released games on it stated as such.
Ports of current gen use CPUs, developers have to rework their engines and optimize them for WiiU.
These porting teams are not the primary dev team, they are less people working on it. In some ports, a different studio did it.
These people are being rushed by publishers to port the game in time, and make use of the console's gimmick.
Once again, these retail games are much bigger and complex than an eshop game, there is a lot more bug testing to do.

Not a single retail game runs better than current gen, but they work. Thats not laziness. If people get more impressed by a ship flying around a rock, well there's nothing to do then.
User avatar
11 Jan 2013 07:22

Until we get more information, I would say that instead of bottlenecked CPU, Wii U has different CPU and specialized co-processors, as well as having different relationship with GPU. For me its relieving, that the Wii U is able to run the games made to those highly different architectures is relieving.

"If people get more impressed by a ship flying around a rock, well there's nothing to do then"
Than what? An orange? Or a similar game made in similar circumstances? There were people who were impressed by a ship flying around a ball in Super Star Dust HD, and this look better than that.
User avatar
11 Jan 2013 14:45

varoennauraa wrote:Until we get more information, I would say that instead of bottlenecked CPU, Wii U has different CPU and specialized co-processors, as well as having different relationship with GPU. For me its relieving, that the Wii U is able to run the games made to those highly different architectures is relieving.

"If people get more impressed by a ship flying around a rock, well there's nothing to do then"
Than what? An orange? Or a similar game made in similar circumstances? There were people who were impressed by a ship flying around a ball in Super Star Dust HD, and this look better than that.


Basically this.
User avatar
11 Jan 2013 16:58

varoennauraa wrote:Until we get more information, I would say that instead of bottlenecked CPU, Wii U has different CPU and specialized co-processors, as well as having different relationship with GPU. For me its relieving, that the Wii U is able to run the games made to those highly different architectures is relieving.

"If people get more impressed by a ship flying around a rock, well there's nothing to do then"
Than what? An orange? Or a similar game made in similar circumstances? There were people who were impressed by a ship flying around a ball in Super Star Dust HD, and this look better than that.

We already got the information, go to VGLeaks, check the teardowns, read TECMO's and DICE statements. We wont get a lot more than that.
User avatar
11 Jan 2013 18:07

I have seen all the tear downs as well as negative and positive comments from either the presumed or actual developers(unless something new has happened last week). We don't know much more than CPU clockspeed and core amount, and preliminary processor type guestimation, but what modifications it has, is unknown. How the dude got the information from the tear down is unknown. The DSP is still unknown, isn't it? And I guess so is the ARM processor? GPU should be playing very important part doing some of the stuff, that were previously done with the CPU, and that's still almost completely unknown? The eDRAM is unknown and it too should be playing important key role in this architecture. We don't know much about the system, but the comments from developers are mostly positive, and negative comments have mostly taken back, no? Is that bias from Nintendo paid developers? We don't know. Or are the negative comments regular Fud, we don't know yet either.

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