Crysis 2 tessellation…

The new DirectX 11 features in Crysis 2 were documented quite nicely by Crytek in this document: http://www.mycrysis.com/sites/default/files/support/download/c2_dx11_ultra_upgrade.pdf

It sounds good: they use tessellation only where required, and tessellation uses an adaptive approach. They use Parallax Occlusion Mapping (POM) for other areas, such as floors, like in the earlier Crysis.

But then I found this interesting article on Tech Report, about Crysis 2’s tessellation: http://techreport.com/articles.x/21404

As you can see here, Crytek was right about using tessellation only on selected objects. The non-tessellated/POM surfaces don’t turn up in their highlighted views. Then again, although they use the Ultra setting, there seem to be a LOT of triangles on those objects.

I am not too surprised, I believe I already said earlier that nVidia would ‘make sure’ that Crysis 2 would run better on their hardware, given that it’s a The Way It’s Meant To Be Played title. nVidia has tessellation and DirectCompute as two effective weapons to bend DX11 performance to their advantage. It turns out that I could be right.

There are a few thoughts that came to mind though:

  • This is only the Ultra setting, so very high/overkill graphics settings are expected (basically the “you asked for it”-setting… the original Crysis was notorious for having way over the top detail settings as well…). What does tessellation look like with lower settings? Because these high polycounts could either mean that their adaptive algorithm just takes a very high upper limit at the ultra setting, in which case lower settings will look considerably less high-poly, even though they still use tessellation. Then again, if the source geometry is already very highpoly, then there really is not much choice. Tessellation cannot remove polygons, it can only add them to the source mesh. So what are we looking at here? Is it the artist’s fault or the fault of whoever picked the upper limits for tessellation?
  • The fact that the water mesh is rendered underneath the entire scene may look a bit sloppy at first, but is understandable, depending on how the effect works. So I wonder, what does the water effect look like in DX9? Does it still run under the entire level? It could be that they use a screen-space approach, so that it doesn’t really matter, it doesn’t try to do water for the ‘entire level’, just for whatever is in view. And in that case, it would be quite difficult to solve the visibility more accurately in screenspace. It may be faster just not to do it. So I’m not sure if the water-thing is something DX11-specific, let alone that it is deliberately trying to increase the tessellation workload that way.
  • Apparently, despite the very high polycounts, nVidia cards don’t get much of a performance hit from it. You wouldn’t be able to tell by looking at the differences between DX9 and DX11 performance. Aside from tessellation, DX11 also has more detailed water, more advanced shading, shadowing and better post-processing, which would also lower the framerates.

It is a problem for AMD though. AMD added an ‘optimized’ setting to their driver. One user has created some screenshots showing the difference in detail with AMD’s default ‘optimized’ setting, compared to ’64x’, effectively disabling AMD’s optimization and rendering the game as-is (just as nVidia cards render it): http://forums.anandtech.com/showpost.php?p=31992121&postcount=89

From these screenshots it is quite obvious that there is an impact in visual detail. The whole point of tessellating the brick walls is lost, as AMD’s chosen ‘default’ tessellation level is too low to make the triangles follow the contours of the bricks accurately. The resulting effect is severe aliasing, that I would consider to look worse than just non-tessellated wall.

This is partly because AMD only applies an upper limit, as I mentioned before… The highly tessellated objects mean that the workload is quite high everywhere in the scene. S0 when AMD’s limit kicks in, it limits the tessellation detail at the most detailed objects first, which cuts into the visible detail directly. A lot of the scene may be ‘just under’ the limit, but still very high workload… So you push the limit further and further down, totally destroying the detail. As I said before, AMD would have done better to scale down the tesesllation factor first. That way you reduce the detail over the entire scene, which means more performance gain with less direct impact to visual quality (lowering detail on far-away objects is less obvious… you can spend that saved performance on more detail at the nearby objects).

I have to say though, as a developer I am quite happy with this tessellation, and the fact that at least nVidia’s cards seem to be able to handle it. I have said it before: the whole point of tessellation is to be able to generate as much detail as possible. Pixar’s REYES rendering technique depends on it, and they subdivide every mesh down to subpixel-level. So what I want to see is hardware that is capable of delivering such incredible polygon counts, and we are clearly on that road now.

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34 Responses to Crysis 2 tessellation…

  1. Bonzai says:

    My only problem with this entire business practice that is going on (If that is what this is and not sloppy programming.), is that it is causing problems for people to experience the game. You should design things that will take advantage of the technology visually. I mean, I’m not going to stare at the bricks that long or the planks of wood with such high detail. I’m just thinking of an artistic sense. The water is good, it really shows! But what is the point of having it rendered under you that is eating up cycles and lowering the frame rate when it is not even being seen!

    Of course, I’m not a programmer so I maybe missing something that could be the fact they can’t get around that. You mentioned a good example on that article by TechReport. What about DX9 water? Does it flow through just the same? Because the article kinda comes off as bias towards AMD, but again this is a limitation to AMD’s tesselation in current hardware.

    Anyhow, I just want tesselation to be used properly where its something that visually causes a huge difference in design. I’m hoping Battlefield 3 is the game that shows us what real tesselation can do among other special effects (And it is as far as I can tell MAN That game looks great!).

    Pixar graphics would definetly be nice. But anyhow, I digress. Even with all the nice special effects for Crysis 2, that game is still horrible! God what a terrible game. Lets cloak and run through everything! Yeah! What? I can’t jump over this wall? WHAT I CANT JUMP OVER THIS FENCE? sigh.

    Maybe they will make a real sandbox game next time. OH there was something that I did actually love in Crysis 2 with the hi-res and ultra settings. It’s when you are downtown at night with the rain glistening on the pavement with the neon lights glowing. That looked great.

    • Scali says:

      Well, as I said, they only tested the Ultra settings, which is pretty much “you asked for it”. I think it would have been far more relevant if they showed ALL detail levels of tessellation. Perhaps one or two steps down from Ultra, the detail level is more ‘realistic’, and it may actually be better than putting it on full whack, and then letting AMD’s driver hack reduce the detail level artificially.

      Aside from that, even though the detail may be a bit over-the-top, nVidia cards apparently still get away with it. So the whole issue keeps coming down to the fact that AMD’s cards aren’t competitive in tessellation workloads. If AMD’s cards were just as fast, we wouldn’t be having this discussion. And you can’t say I didn’t warn you people 😉

      • Bonzai says:

        No argument there. I went 580GTX sli for a reason. Two actually. I got REAL fed up with the ATI drivers at the time (Which have gotten better to my understanding) and I lost complete faith with ATI due to the 5870 Grey Screen bug. The fact that the hardware was nice but having this horrible issue due to clock rates in the memory pissed me off to no end.

        So I went nVidia again and I have no regrets currently. Next year will be interesting in technology again though. Whom will have the upper hand again? On a side note, I was SUPER pissed with nVidia’s failure with Fermi 480 when it first came out. I really wanted to pick it up. Ah well. Technology.

  2. nothappy says:

    Well I’m not happy with this bullshit tessellation. It’s mostly useless, and my rig with a GTX 470 is stutter with object quality set to ultra. Some scene I have less then 20 fps. Even if GTX 470 is a beast with tessellation, I forced to turn off tessellation, for smoother gameplay in Full HD.

    • Scali says:

      You can’t turn tessellation on or off in Crysis 2. Do you mean you disabled DX11 altogether? Then you’ll also miss out on many other goodies.
      What if you just leave DX11 enabled, and set the object detail down a notch or so? Might be a better balance between performance and visual quality.

      • nothappy says:

        I just set the object detail down a bit. But the real problem is POM. It will activated when the object detail is set to ultra. So I miss that to. 😦 I really hope someone will work on a config file, that scale down the tessellation from this bullshit level.

    • Mark Davis says:

      That’s why i kind of like the AMD tessellation control. I can just turn off tesselation in the CCC and still use the ultra object setting. Although i wish Crytek would just let the users turn it off via command or menu.

      • Scali says:

        Did you read my blog?
        And view the forum post I linked to?
        The tessellation control doesn’t work properly for this game!

      • Mark Davis says:

        Just tried it to be sure, and the no tessellation setting works.

      • Scali says:

        Look at the screenshots and read my explanation.
        You get horrible aliasing if you clamp the tessellation the way AMD does.
        Clamping it all the way down to ‘no tessellation’ may sorta work (assuming the source geometry has enough detail… which would be an indication that tessellation is not used properly, see Endless City), but any other setting will give you nasty aliased geometry before it starts significantly improving performance. I already explained why.

  3. Mariano Guntin says:

    This is NOT true, you are a lier. First tessellation usage in the game is horrible, tessellating the bricks and walls is useless , Parallax occlusion mapping can do and in fact DO better the bricks to look like real, in some areas of the game the bricks of one wall and another looks the same, but one uses heavy tessellation and the other don’t,the only difference is in the corner of the wall that have a flat form on the POM wall. Rocks are ultra heavy tessellated, WHY??? is no sense, the tessellation works well for some details in buildings , watter, ropes, etc. But not for rocks or walls :S,
    and the tessellation lvl is too high.
    The second lie. nVidia pay 2 million dollars to Crytek for make the game better on their hardware,and all the world knows what performance the 6000 series have and is not this bullshit.

    • Scali says:

      What are you talking about?
      Why are you calling *me* a liar? I am not actually claiming anything, I just link to some articles. You have issues.

      As for POM vs tessellation, they are different techniques with different advantages and disadvantages, did you read the Crytek paper that I linked to?
      Some advantages of tessellation over POM:
      – Needs less textures, so easier on videomemory and bandwidth
      – Antialiasing works properly on tessellated surfaces.

      And are you actually trying to claim that the 6000 series is just as good at tessellation as nVidia’s hardware? Then you obviously have not been following my blog, and are basically completely clueless.
      Most people know that AMD’s tessellator is throughput-limited (which is not a problem in games that use little or no tessellation, but that doesn’t prove anything, obviously… Trying to generalize performance is pretty useless).

      • Bonzai says:

        People like to agitate on purpose for the sole fullfillment of reaction. You know, Trolls. I just wish they would actually say something meaningful and back it up with fact instead of going NU UH FU DIS IS DAT FACT. DAY LIED. And it’s like really. All I can say is, Proof or GTFO. Alot of slackjawed people on the internet because of anonymity. Damn kids (Or men/women trying to be kids)!

      • Scali says:

        It’s starting to get rather annoying that most comments have been like that, lately.
        Poorly informed people who mainly attack me, rather than having a proper discussion (look at Dryspace’s comment… apparently he didn’t read my blog clearly, and put me on the other side of the debate… and he hasn’t read the Crytek paper either, since he doesn’t understand why Crytek uses POM rather than tessellation on the ground).
        Most of them don’t even bother to follow-up after I’ve replied to their first comment, defending my article and countering their arguments. Why should they? They are anonymous anyway. They just try to stab me, and when that fails, they sneak out like a thief in the night, under the veil of anonymity.

  4. Dryspace says:

    I’m sorry Scali, but you seem to be a person who is intelligent, but does not always think logically. Perhaps you can answer:

    1. A flat, rectangular surface requires two polygons. Why are the FLAT surfaces of the concrete blocks, boards, window sill, etc. in the examples constructed of literally THOUSANDS of polygons?

    2. Modeling the ruts in the dirt that are referenced in Crytek’s article would require, at most, a factor of 100 times more polygons in the rut areas. After all, this is precisely what tessellation is for–to increase actual geometry in areas that consist of actual detail–rather than having to rely on tricks such as parallax occlusion mapping. Why is it, then, that Crytek used no tessellation on the tire ruts, but DID increase polygon count by a factor of 100 or even 1000 on flat surfaces with no detail?

    It is a fact that the *primary* reason for all of these issues is that Crytek developed Crysis 2 for 6-year old console hardware. But knowing this, why did Crytek do what they ended up doing? Anyone who clings to the idea of incompetence or laziness is fooling himself, as Crytek has proven itself an utterly brilliant developer of engines. When something doesn’t make sense, it is often because one’s assumptions are incorrect. One thing is clear: Crytek’s over-tessellation does not benefit Crysis 2’s visuals…it does not benefit gamers…so just who or what DOES it benefit?

    And, to nip potential ad hominem in the bud: I love Crysis, and get angry when people pretend that it isn’t to this day the most advanced PC game ever, I looked forward to Crysis 2 more than anyone can imagine (and even pre-ordered Far Cry 2, to my infinite chagrin). Further, I use and have always used nVidia (currently two GTX 260’s), and have never considered ATI. Unlike some, I do not reject reality just because it hurts.

    • Scali says:

      It’s a bit sad that you have to start with an ad hominem.
      Also, you don’t seem to understand my blogpost properly (so ironically enough, I don’t see the logic in your reply).
      I link to the TechReport site which displays the overtessellation issues. Why would I possibly do that if I think that this overtessellation is a good thing?
      I even say:
      “Then again, although they use the Ultra setting, there seem to be a LOT of triangles on those objects.”
      And:
      “I am not too surprised, I believe I already said earlier that nVidia would ‘make sure’ that Crysis 2 would run better on their hardware.”

      I just add some critical notes to their testing methodology, as they don’t paint a complete picture…

      So I don’t see why I should answer any of your questions, really. You shouldn’t be asking me these questions in the first place.

      Other than that, no, your idea of Crysis 2 is quite far off the mark.
      Yes, the *game* Crysis 2 is designed to also run in consoles. However, the *engine*, CryEngine 3 is not just a console engine. It is a further development of their CryEngine 2, which was PC-only. CryEngine 3 can still do all that CryEngine 2 could, and more.
      And tessellation and POM are features of the *engine* of Crysis 2 which are employed on the PC platform. However, like CryEngine 2, CryEngine 3 is incredibly scalable, and as such, they have been able to also support the PS3 and XBox platforms.

      (Oh, and if you read the Crytek paper more carefully, you would have found the answer for the tyre ruts yourself… It’s in there. Hint: character foot IK).

      • Dryspace says:

        Scali, my initial sentence was not ad hominem, as I was not *substituting* a personal remark for actual substantive remarks. I honestly did not mean it as an attack (which is why I pointed out that I believe you to be intelligent), but I offer a sincere apology at any rate–I certainly could have started off differently.

        I carefully read your entire post, including the observations and concessions that you make in the first half, which are sound. The main point that I was trying to make–I will admit that it is possible that I didn’t do a great job of making it–was that you didn’t address what I believe are the most amazing and egregious facts regarding the issues elucidated in the Tech Report article. I want to get to the bottom of *why* Crytek did what they did, because I don’t appreciate unethical behavior from anyone, even the developer I most respect and have been the most excited about.

        I will say that, in situations like this, a person like myself speculating–no matter how rationally–does nothing to settle the matter. What we need is for someone to get the facts straight from Crytek. All that I require to put the matter in the past is an honest no-spin account of the facts, and if mistakes were made, a sincere apology.

        I am still curious as to your views on the subjects that I pointed out, but again, I feel now that our efforts would be better spent encouraging people with access to Crytek or nVidia (industry journalists, etc.) to keep the pressure up. With an individual or a company, I will hoist you on my shoulder when you do good, but I won’t look the other way when you do bad. I expect others to treat me the same way.

        As far as the tire ruts: POM creates a discrepancy between actual foot position and apparent position due to the fact that POM is simply an effect. So Crytek’s argument that ruts are not modeled because a foot won’t visually conform to the depression is a double standard. Modern IK *can* deal with smaller terrain details such as tire ruts, but if Crytek’s implementation does not, for whatever reason, I will allow that there is little reason to go ahead and model features such as ruts when POM achieves an acceptable appearance in the end.

        Again, I apologize for the way I began my initial post. Also, please believe that the last paragraph was a general statement meant for the kinds of people who use prejudice, and not directed at you–another mistake on my part, as I did address you at the beginning and thus it was entirely legitimate for you to assume that the last paragraph was meant only for you.

      • Scali says:

        Well, my article is partly trying to say that people tend to go a bit overboard with TWIMTBP-titles. Tech Report’s article demonstrates that there is something fishy with Crysis 2’s tessellation, no argument there, however they seem to jump to conclusions, and I think they could or should have investigated some things deeper, and give some examples of that.
        Sure, nVidia/Crytek will have put *some* code in there to make nVidia GPUs look good, but not everything in a TWIMTBP-game is deliberately done just to make AMD look bad. Most sites discussing this issue seem to go way too far with this.
        But only nVidia and Crytek know the true answers for what they did or why, so there is little point in speculating.

        Regarding the tyre ruts, I think you have to read between the lines a bit. Crytek mentions IK problems. So apparently their engine currently doesn’t handle collision detection with tessellated surfaces (well enough?). They have already solved this problem for POM (or assume that it works well enough anyway, since POM only has minor displacements at best, so just testing the unprocessed geometry is never too far off), so they stick to using POM only for ground surfaces.
        Surely you *can* do proper IK with tessellated surfaces… but apparently they aren’t doing that at this point, for whatever reason.
        Another point they make is that they prefer POM for micro-details. Which is true ofcourse… The whole reason why bumpmapping became popular in the first place: simulating small bumps on a surface without requiring highly detailed geometry. So a hybrid approach for tyre ruts is actually a sound idea: say you have reasonably deep tyre ruts… then you can use geometry for the rough ‘dip’ that the tyre has made, and use POM for the micro-detail such as the profile on the tyre.

  5. Dryspace says:

    By the way, I assume you have played Crysis 2? I am going to wait until the price drops, due to the fact that it is a console port. Believe me, this whole things hurts, as I was waiting with bated breath for Crysis 2 from the moment I finished Crysis. The first (and last) game I ever pre-ordered was Far Cry 2, which I naively did without any fact-checking of the developer’s statements. I was delivered a one-two punch: the appearance of the options screens told me something was very wrong, and the instant the game started and I saw the grass, my heart sank. I sold the game on eBay seven days later.

    Back to the point…is Crysis 2 worthwhile from a plot and gameplay standpoint?

    • Scali says:

      Yes, I pre-ordered Crysis 2, so I got it on launch day. Played through it twice: once in the original DX9 form, and once with the DX11 and texture updates.
      I only have a humble GTX460, but still I played it at Ultra levels in DX11 at 1080p. Framerates weren’t super-high, but this game doesn’t need that (just like the first Crysis and Warhead… anything over 20 fps works fine, because of the nice post-processing, motion blur etc).
      So partly I don’t see what the fuss is about with the tessellation. Crysis 2 is actually quite playable with a midrange card such as mine… which is more than I can say for my experiences with the original Crysis on my 8800GTS a few years ago.

      Crysis 2 is not another Crysis, like the original and Warhead. It doesn’t have that free-roaming aspect that the others have (and Far Cry for that matter). But it’s not a bad game in its own right, I’d say. There’s an interesting storyline, and some nicely designed levels. I’ve played a lot more of it than Far Cry 2 at least 😛

      • Bonzai says:

        Crysis 2 is bad. Bad. Bad. Game is bad. When I couldn’t jump over a fence? Yeah, game is bad.

  6. Dryspace says:

    Bonzai, do you think that Battlefield 3 is going to be everything that it appears to be (as I am hoping)? If it is 100% true that BF3 is developed for state-of-the-art PC hardware, and the trailers thus released are a valid representation of gameplay (though they *are* labeled ‘Pre-Alpha’), then BF3 will of course be just as mind-blowing as Crysis was in 2007. Crysis was the last game to be designed for state-of-the-art PC hardware. I am really, really hoping for BF3 to come through…but I won’t make the same mistake of pre-ordering that I made in the past.

    A lot of people don’t understand the paradigm shift that occured with the release of 7th-gen consoles (XBox 360/PS3), and if they did, I am convinced that they would be angry and exasperated. For the first time in the history of PC gaming, the steady pace of innovation came to a crawl. This is a very big deal: Imagine if Half-Life 2, in 2004, was designed to run on the SAME hardware as Half-Life, from 1998. That is a 6-year span, yet most PC games in 2011 are designed to run on SIX YEAR OLD hardware (XBox 360, 2005). Unfortunately, the failure to exploit current hardware leaves no reason to rapidly improve hardware…the innovation symbiosis between software and hardware then slows dramatically.

    I understand why the industry has focused totally on consoles (piracy, or the threat thereof, being the main reason)–I also understand that it doesn’t *have* to abandon PC development in order to stay alive. At the end of the day, when the average consumer sees something that he has never seen before–that truly blows him away–he WILL want it. This is what drives the sales and innovation of hardware. I see a whole lot of emotion- or ignorance-based whining about games that dare to take advantage of new technology. I don’t see, though, a whole lot of people who play only 8-bit games, watch only black & white movies, or refuse to drive cars because they don’t run on steam. Considering how violently disgusted these people are with groundbreaking innovation, you’d think they would just go Amish and get it over with. If this weren’t enough, there are apparently many people who truly think that games needn’t get any more realistic–not graphically, not physically, not in terms of audio or AI. Obviously these are people that know nothing at all about hardware in general or game development in specific, but if no developers are showing these people HOW state-of-the-art hardware can improve gameplay in *meaningful* ways…it’s hard to blame them.

    • Bonzai says:

      I’m sorry, could you repeat the question?

      I think Battlefield 3 will be the first true DX11 engine title that isn’t something that is copypasta patched. Thats one of the reasons I’m looking forward to the technology. Other than that, It’s Battlefield 3. Battlefield 2 was a hell of a game. Bad Company 2 was alot of fun as well. I’ll hope DICE has the magic still (Think they do).

      Oooooo Scali talking about Crysis 2 still pisses me off but you know what was worse that Crysis 2 in gameplay? BRINK. Holy balls. I’m still mad. Terribad.

    • Scali says:

      I think the gaming industry is failing in two ways:
      1) Not pushing forward for more realism in games. Crysis from 2007 is still the benchmark.

      2) Not being creative in developing new concepts. In the old days there was much more variation in gameplay. You’d get very creative new concepts, such as Lemmings.
      These days, there’s only a handful of different types of games… Most of them are FPS, basically just some kind of Quake-clone with a special gimmick.
      I would like to see more games that try to be original, such as Portal. Portal may not be that great graphically, and may only be at ‘console-level’ technically, but because of its originality I found it a lot more fun to play than any FPS in the past few years. But such original games are increasingly rare.
      Other genres seem to have died out completely. I used to be a big fan of adventure games, but I haven’t seen any new ones in ages.

      It’s not necessarily a bad thing to try and ‘remake’ a game… I would love to have a modern day remake of some of my favourite games. But then at least remake it in a better way, with more realism etc.
      I used to love the original Test Drive and Test Drive 2. Just driving an exotic supercar on the open road as fast as you can, while avoiding traffic and the cops.
      I loved the original Need for Speed when it came out, because it was pretty much just a remake of Test Drive, but with 3D graphics and a more realistic simulation of the car physics.
      But over time, Need for Speed has become much more of a simple arcade racing game… It lost its original charm. Heck, the latest Hot Pursuit didn’t even have manual gears anymore!
      I would like a new Test Drive/Need for Speed game, that is almost exactly like the original, just with up-to-date graphics and car handling. The last Need for Speed that I really liked was Porsche 2000.

      • That is, game industry is going down, especially the hardcore. That is why I am back to the NES and the SEGA today, and only three modern games I played were Portal 2 (LOVE that!), Crysis 2 (I like the gameplay), and The Sims 3 (just beause of the gameplay, again)

  7. NewImprovedjdwii says:

    “I used to be a big fan of adventure games, but I haven’t seen any new ones in ages.”.
    “I loved the original Need for Speed when it came out, because it was pretty much just a remake of Test Drive, but with 3D graphics and a more realistic simulation of the car physics.
    But over time, Need for Speed has become much more of a simple arcade racing game… It lost its original charm. Heck, the latest Hot Pursuit didn’t even have manual gears anymore!”

    I couldn’t agree more this is why i sold my 360 i like FPS but i like adventure/strategy/Racing games more and i love NFS i think i have hot pursuit its OK but i miss free roam racing. Last great racing game from EA is NFS carbon. i loved underground 2(that’s when i had the cube)

    By the way i kinda think multiplayer games are killing the single player experience(thinking about buying a Nintendo system again). Games are all about online Look at RE5 big disappointment compared to 4 when it comes to that surval feeling. I blame it on FPS fans and i also blame it on Multiplayers. its not like Crytek did a great job on crysis 2 and they probably holded off the texture patch+directx 11 to clean it up.

    Cross your fingers for The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim! might be a great adventure game.

    What is your feelings about Muliplayer games+Portables+consoles do you think they are hurting the gaming market(pc market for games).(I sure do)

    • Scali says:

      Hard to say really.
      I’ve been around long enough to have seen quite a few types of games die, as well as quite a few gaming platforms. That’s just something that happens.
      In my younger years, we had home computers. A concept that the younger generation is probably completely unfamiliar with. We used to laugh at PC games. Games on C64, Amiga, Atari ST, were much better than their PC variations.
      But eventually these platforms all died out, and PC gaming took over. Consoles have also come and gone over the years. Everybody thought the gaming console was dead in the early 80s, but Nintendo resurrected the market singlehandedly with the NES.
      And in the early 90s, games started to transition from mostly 2d to 3d. These days you rarely see any 2d games anymore.
      Who knows what happens next. It’s not necessarily a bad thing.

      • …and the NES is live still today. I have not idea why, but casual gamers did revive last 2 years. Also, Scali, you mentioned the “transition from mostly 2d to 3d”. Most old games were attempted to be converted th 3d, see the Worms franchise, for example, Worms 3D. These 3D conversions I find to be worse and worse. I’d always prefer the 2D game “Worms Armageddon” over the “Worms 3D”. More 2d originally games failed at entering the 3D dimension. And that is why “2.5D” games started to appear. I find “Worms Revolution” better than “Worms 3D”. But, BUT, BUT… WHERE are my gamemodes??? Where is the editor?? And WHYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYY in all moderd games, Gamemodes start to go AWAY???? Will this change? When will I see a game that is really better than its first/second version?
        Also, I won’t forget Minecraft. I play it more often than needed, just because of its gameplay.

  8. Pingback: What people like caveman-jim still don’t get about tessellation… | Scali's blog

  9. Adrian says:

    Dude you have to correct one very important part; AMD’s default tessellation look on Crysis is the exact same as Nvidia’s, the flat look is when you use the driver to cap the ammount of subdivisions overriding the game (hence, not default).

    “It’s not the default setting for AMD, but the top image is rather running with the Catalyst driver overriding the game’s tessellation settings. It’s not a default setting but it’s something that you can enable in the driver in the same way that you can force AA and AF. “

    • Scali says:

      I think you misunderstood. This is the ‘default’ setting of the tessellation ‘optimization’ setting in the AMD driver, the “AMD optimized” setting, that is.
      The point I’m making is that this tessellation hack is inadequate. By the time they limit tessellation far enough to get performance back to reasonable levels, the visual impact is already quite obvious.
      So although AMD claims they try to find the best balance between visual quality and performance, in reality it is just not feasible.
      The game should just tessellate the way it was designed, since anything less will impact performance. In other words: it already has a good balance of performance and visual quality, and artificially limiting it will impact visual quality before it even improves performance. AMD’s assumption is simply false: Games aren’t over-tessellating, so you can’t limit tessellation without visual impact.
      AMD just needs to develop a better tessellator.

  10. sirdan says:

    Quite interesting comment on Crysis 2 tesselation by game modder here: http://maldotex.blogspot.com/

  11. Pingback: AMD and tessellation: A difficult relationship | Scali's blog

  12. Pingback: Remember caveman-jim? | Scali's blog

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