Technically impressive PSX games and Hello

Discussion in 'Sony Programming and Development' started by vexatious, Nov 9, 2014.

  1. camdman

    camdman Robust Member

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    I just saw this video https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t5VTdhpz-qs and while the Sega Saturn was slower loading, the sprites and text seemed to be clearer and more detailed than the PSX Version. Though that makes sense considering the 2d powerhouse of Saturn.


    Edit - no need for the quote
     
    Last edited: Dec 28, 2014
  2. vexatious

    vexatious Rising Member

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    Wow you are right! I thought video was messed up because Saturn sometimes looks smaller like PSX but then I find pictures with perfect proof.
    Top=Saturn Middle=PC Bottom=PSX or PC?

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    This has odd vertical resolution (320x230) so scaling is 5 pixels different
    [​IMG]



    You can see clearly raiden is bigger using almost half screen and his feet go past aggressor bar and status texts are closer to middle in Saturn. What a shame the developers use mesh transparency when Saturn can do real 2D transparency for free. It's like the Saturn is trying to emulate the PSX. I guess Saturn port is better.

    Wow even after looking at Primal Rage the Saturn has more resolution than original arcade. Amazing! Even after 15 years Saturn still surprises me.

    Edit
    Used better comparison pic. Still not sure if last pic is PSX or PC. PC sprites and resolution seems like the Saturn exactly (Saturn pic slightly stretched so maybe svideo cap?). PSX is still a mystery.
     
    Last edited: Dec 28, 2014
  3. smf

    smf mamedev

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    What proof? The Saturn picture is zoomed, none of the pictures can be compared as they show completely different moves.

    From the description on that video I would be surprised if they used different graphics assets. The way the video is captured may make a difference, it may be due to dithering that affects it. To me it looks like the Saturn resolution is smaller but they have been resized to be roughly the same physical size when shown side by side (at least for the PAL versions, the NTSC versions look closer).
     
    Last edited: Dec 28, 2014
  4. vexatious

    vexatious Rising Member

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    Okay you're right! I made pic with own copy of MKT with Dosbox. It is clear PC and Saturn look exactly the same, but PC obviously way better because true transparency and omg no loading! Must get PSX copy to compare but no money!

    SFA3 still not so impressive. SFA3 only cartoon and is like 256 color. Cartoons way easier to compress and even more necessary with high animation, but not real-life graphics in MKT with high animation. Also in MKT, when fighting two Boss characters you kill first Boss and screen fill with gibs and still shadow-aggressor effects and Boss characters swapping still no slowdown or loading, and color palette much more abused from real-life graphics. Lot more sprites and complexity in MKT with brutalities, motion capture animation, pseudo 3d floors, blood, 2 screen backgrounds, shadows, gibs etc. I don't understand why people don't see? Only SFX maybe more complex in SFA3. I think MKT seems better programming effort don't you?
     
    Last edited: Dec 28, 2014
  5. Gemini

    Gemini Retro developer

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    It's not a fair comparison because MKT isn't anywhere as complex as SFA3. The latter really makes an effort in trying to preserve the assets as much as possible, while also implementing a much smoother gameplay. Trilogy plays like a broken toy and doesn't even look that great to be honest. "Compression", whatever that means, or "realistic graphics" don't change the equation either.
     
  6. smf

    smf mamedev

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    SFA3 isn't a fair comparison because the Saturn needs a ram expansion for the extra frames (which gives it smoother gameplay).
     
  7. MottZilla

    MottZilla Champion of the Forum

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    I thought they meant SFA3 isn't a fair comparison regarding the PS1 version.

    While this is not a great measure of comparison, UMK3's romset is around 26 megabytes. SFA3 is around 46 megabytes. I know that 32 megabytes of SFA3 is graphics ROM data. The VS series games also all have 32 megabytes of graphics ROM data. Looking at MAME source UMK3 is around 20 or 21 megabytes of graphics ROM data.

    Lets not just look at Capcom though, let's get SNK involved. Metal Slug was ported to both PS and Saturn. On the PS, more loading was required (I think at certain points in the level) and animation frames were cut. On the Saturn with the 1 megabyte of additional RAM, all or atleast alot more animation was present and there was no mid-level loading like in the PS version. Metal Slug X was ported to PS and had severely cut down animation to fit into the limited RAM.

    And these were "cartoon" graphics. You're suggesting they could have just compressed them and made it work but this is not so. Compression would have helped if like the DreamCast the hardware supported compression. This really isn't anything new, if the PS had a RAM expansion like the Saturn we would have seen better quality 2D ports of various arcade games. I have not programmed for the PS but I have doubts that there is enough CPU time to do everything a game like Marvel Vs Capcom does, and then on top of that add real time decompression of sprite graphics. You just need more memory. Saturn got it. I've read things that suggest that it may have been possible for PS to have a RAM expansion via the Parallel I/O on the back of original model PS consoles. Does anyone know if that is true? I wonder if anyone has tried to do so.

    Oh and SFA3 is not "256 color". The original hardware uses 4bpp tiles and is capable of showing approx 4000 colors on screen at once.
     
  8. vexatious

    vexatious Rising Member

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    I think it needs for sounds too. PSX port IIRC utilizes compressed and downsampled SFX in SFA3, but quality still not bad.

    I think ram expansion be better in memory card slot. Parallel port was removed in later revisions. Parallel port maybe perform better but why if Sony removed it? Know what I mean?

    Again, why Capcom not compress sprites to save even more precious memory, or did they already compress? MKT no slowdown with compression and palette more abused so why not? Without compression color palette become wasteful and redundant, especially with cartoons. With compression much more RAM available, and can compress even more the animation after if scheme not too demanding.
     
    Last edited: Dec 29, 2014
  9. CD ageS

    CD ageS Robust Member

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    You clearly are having difficult time grasping the difference between both games in terms of both size and scope even after the facts have been laid out for you. -_-

    Cartoons!? What does that even matter? Frames are frames and a game like A3 clearly has more frames of animation on their characters compared to those seen MKT. Even after the the frame cuts in the psx port of A3, the game STILL has more frames of animation than anything found in MKT.

    Capcom resorting to compressing their entire game like AS did with MKT psx would have been more detrimental to the entire product. You clearly neglect the fact that A3 is based off of an arcade translation which by btw runs on hardware that was designed for 2D gaming. A3 is an arcade port. MKT isn't based off of anything. Its simply a cut and paste of every 2D MK product before it.
     
  10. Gemini

    Gemini Retro developer

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    Because it makes no sense to have RAM data compressed, decompressed on the fly, and sent to VRAM every frame, especially if the game has way too many huge sprites to manage. Compression here is useful for reducing load time, not to fit more stuff that needs to be remangled quickly for just a small gain. By the way, the palette in Trilogy isn't even that much dense and most of the assets are quite half assed. Somebody said people with at least 3 rib cages!? Oh yeah, somebody did.
     
  11. camdman

    camdman Robust Member

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    That was one thing I didn't like about MKT - The multiple body parts 2 skulls, 4 legs etc after a brutality or explosion fatality and the floating hand syndrome as seen in www.youtube.com/watch?v=IC57fLWfKa8.

    Unfortunately there is no Mortal Kombat Game in the 32 - 64 bit era that appears on all consoles and Arcade at the Same time to be judged fairly.

    MK3 was only on PS1, PC and arcade,
    UMK3 was only on Saturn and arcade revisions to MK3 board,
    MKT was on PS1, N64, Saturn and PC.
    and
    MK4 was on PS1, N64, PC and Arcade. (Cant really count GOLD as that is a different beast).


    Edit - I'm not counting the 8 bit and 16 bit ports of these games (SNES, MD, GBC, Master System, Game.Com) or the re-releases on PSN, XBOX live etc.
     
    Last edited: Dec 29, 2014
  12. vexatious

    vexatious Rising Member

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    Ok. Cartoons compress much better than real-life visuals. It's like DVD. Anime look very good on DVD, but action movies get blurry and don't look so good (some movies need Superbit like Terminator 2); even Laserdisc looks and sounds better than DVD with action movies, because too much bits needed for mpeg2 on DVD, and analog has no bit limits. MP3 same thing. Can sound still like CD but saves a lot of storage and bandwidth, and you can fit maybe 4 hours MP3 on one CD. You see what I mean?
     
  13. Gemini

    Gemini Retro developer

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    You're comparing lossless with lossy. You really need some more research on how compressions work. No, seriously.
     
  14. smf

    smf mamedev

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    It would be reducing load time. You could also have all the graphics stored on CD and load them constantly during game play. It would be very slow, but you would have all the frames. Compressing the ram means you would only need to access the CD once per level.

    If the only way to have all the graphics in ram was by having them compressed and decompressing them and sending them to vram and you could do that full speed then it would be fine. I believe some PlayStation games do that.

    It's unlikely the 2d fighter market on the PlayStation would have been big enough for anyone to fund the development though.

    Lossy would probably be good enough, the graphics will be moving so fast you won't notice.
     
    Last edited: Dec 30, 2014
  15. Gemini

    Gemini Retro developer

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    Two issues:
    1) rather than just slow, you'd have to make the game constantly stop in order to fetch frames on demand. Even with async load and fetch foretelling it wouldn't be efficient one bit. Remember the PSX port of Shadowman? That kind of inefficient.
    2) you can't use streamed music at all, meaning sequenced should be used instead. With the SPU having only 500 KB of memory, it isn't exactly a whole lot for non-instrument samples.

    Very few do that on a per-frame basis and with several small sprites. Still there are slowdowns even with something as simple as LZ+RLE because RAM speed isn't exactly optimal on a PSX.

    Lossy would look quite badly and not be able to do transparencies in any proper way.
     
    Last edited: Dec 30, 2014
  16. root670

    root670 Robust Member

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    Bloody Roar 2 runs at 640x480 maintaining a steady 60FPS! The trick is using very basic backgrounds
    [​IMG]
     
  17. MottZilla

    MottZilla Champion of the Forum

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    I guess compression could also be a term used for how Capcom ported various CPS games to the SNES and Genesis. The original arcade graphics take up more memory, but the lower resolution of the SNES required the graphics to be scaled down proportionally and that also meant they required less memory. You could have done something like that to try to reduce the memory used, which I think someone said is part of what they did in MK Trilogy? Anyway, that would have been a bad choice too as people expected arcade equal graphics. Alpha 3 on PS does deliver on par with the arcade graphics, it just lacks the memory for all the frames of animation.

    Anyway, for real time lossless decompression for a game like Marvel Vs Capcom on the PS, I just don't see it being possible unless for some reason Capcom didn't want to bother with all the fighters they released to invest some time in doing that. I really think if they didn't do it, it wasn't possible to do it or do it with good enough results. They played with compression before with the SNES Street Fighter Alpha 2 and ofcourse they had software compression in plenty of SNES games. So I think they would have been familiar enough that if it had been an option they would have done it. You really just need more memory.

    By the way, your comment about the Memory Card Slot being better for a RAM expansion shows you do not understand the difference in these ports. The Memory Card port is terribly slow and completely impossible to add any useful RAM through it. The parallel I/O port might have been suitable for it though. And if it had been used, Sony either would not have removed the port or could have built the ram expansion into newer models without the port.
     
  18. vexatious

    vexatious Rising Member

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    I can't believe Sega Saturn. I mean can you imagine possibilities with compression and ram cart. Very powerful system and even have 68000 for DSP (maybe can do custom things with it). Psx is like a disease and only good for money. RAM cart and expansion ports way better on Saturn. Sony remove parallel port on PSX like retards that only want money. Sony only care about economy with entertainment industry. Sony unbelievable and can suck it!

    Okay but so what? Parallel port on psx is only on 8bit bus IIRC, and I'm not even sure if CPU or other hardware has direct access to it while using other resources. Saturn cart port I think is at least 16-bit, plus it has expansion port for additional hardware addons. Folks have mentioned 3dfx cards being possible through expansion port on Saturn. Not only that, Saturn never needed a redesign from the start, but only had bios update and minor simplification in round button model later. Psx on the otherhand had disc skipping when warmed up on first model, and lens was relocated or redesigned a few times on revised models because it was plastic and cheap (cheap. Get it?). And the parallel port was a cheap bitch to remove cover on. Not only that, psx hardware is mostly dead, broken or abandoned hardware. Take the r3000a for instance. It lacks any internal cache and must rely on a external cache controller and I'm not even sure how fast that is, and it was a CPU from 1989. Sony doesn't need or want expensive hardware to be successful in the entertainment industry, let alone video game market. SH2 is much newer, well supported, sophisticated and is designed with internal cache (you can even change how much cache is allocated to each CPU in dual CPU setup); I heard they can act like DSPs and were designed with such operations in mind (I'm not sure which registers would fit with that). Saturn is basically built from ground up like a custom arcade machine, or a redesigned 32x with better everything. Supposedly games like Powerslave only use %10 or none of slave CPU in Saturn and sound is still high quality and game runs fast with custom lighting effects. Even if one sh2 is rated at lower MIPS than r3000a, it has internal cache and seems much better as a 32-bit CPU.
     
    Last edited: Dec 31, 2014
  19. Gemini

    Gemini Retro developer

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    Agreed, it could have been used to store additional data directly from a cart with the necessary data to be async DMA'd. Games like CAPCOM's Vs series could have permanently stored in ram common frames used for when you swap a character and load the rest during in-transitions via cart transfers. Other games like The King of Fighters could have done the same when a team member is defeated and another is requested for loading. So many possibilities and yet nobody ever tried doing that, more than likely because Sony didn't like having extra hardware. It kinda makes sense because it shows how good the hardware scored without expansions if developers were forced to go clever around issues.
     
  20. sp193

    sp193 Site Soldier

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    The PIO port is not really a PIO port in the traditional sense. It's really more like what it's labeled: an expansion port.
    It has a dedicated DMA channel, and the hardware connected to the PIO interface appears to have some control over the PlayStation's peripheral bus too.

    It was removed, as it was never used officially for anything. Why not make the console cheaper for everybody, by removing the parts that ramp up its production cost and were yet never used?

    The MIPS R3000A of the PlayStation is actually a custom part, and isn't just a R3000A. It might not be very powerful, but the PlayStation consoles didn't draw their strength from the CPU itself.
    One doesn't need strong hardware to get great performance anyway. It just has to be very efficient.

    Their optical drives were proprietary too. It's not like they already had a tried and tested formula for making a great drive for the PlayStation, so there were several revisions. Just because they didn't get it right within the first tries, doesn't mean that they were really cheap...
     
    Last edited: Dec 31, 2014

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