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Bangaio

Digital foundry has spoilt the art of playing games (for me)

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Reading the console war sticky and thinking about my recent buying and selling of consoles to get the best (2 box one x, 2 PS4 slim and 1 PS4 pro over 14 months) often predicated with scouring digital foundry youtube videos comparing machines I realised that this super dry technical analysis has meant that, for me, I have spent countless hours wondering if what I am playing is the best version, how it could be bettered and so on and if I had spent that time actually just playing games and not stressing it I’d have more money and probably some happier more satisfying memories. 
 

Glad I’ve got that off my chest! 

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Instead of constantly buying and selling to 'find the best console' why not buy both big platforms and keep them? Not a criticism, I genuinely wonder why you would do this if you're not happy doing it. Keep both consoles, buy any game you want on whichever platform it happens to be the best on.

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It's all relative.

 

I got a One S in 2018 to replace my 360. Everything on it looks amazing in comparison even though most big games are sub 1080p.

 

I just got my first new desktop PC in 10 years. Back then there was a big price difference and respective performance increase between tiers of graphics cards. It was easier to choose a specific card based on price. Now with all the varients of individual chip sets there's always a slightly better card for slightly more money. That's just the GPU, never mind the rest of the system. 

 

It's the same with the consoles, you have the base models, the souped up ones, but then what TV or sound system do you want? Do you want to get in to PSVR? Swap out your internal drive for an SSD? Buy an elite controller? 

 

There’s almost no upper limit when you factor everything in, it's not worth chasing imo. 

 

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This issue is only going to get worse, as more and more platforms increase and porting to multiple platforms becomes easier. Eventually game devs will make games that are set up to automatically adapt to just about any device/platform (other than exclusivity issues).

 

 

 

 

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51 minutes ago, Bangaio said:

Reading the console war sticky and thinking about my recent buying and selling of consoles to get the best (2 box one x, 2 PS4 slim and 1 PS4 pro over 14 months) often predicated with scouring digital foundry youtube videos comparing machines I realised that this super dry technical analysis has meant that, for me, I have spent countless hours wondering if what I am playing is the best version, how it could be bettered and so on and if I had spent that time actually just playing games and not stressing it I’d have more money and probably some happier more satisfying memories. 
 

Glad I’ve got that off my chest! 

 

3 minutes ago, Mr. Gerbik said:

Instead of constantly buying and selling to 'find the best console' why not buy both big platforms and keep them? Not a criticism, I genuinely wonder why you would do this if you're not happy doing it. Keep both consoles, buy any game you want on whichever platform it happens to be the best on.


...and double up on the cost of a console and all the subscription services. 
 

This is the thing that differentiates the last console generation (or two) from the past. In the past it was custom hardware with mostly exclusive games and the odd “multiplatform” title that had wildly different versions that were almost completely different games. 
 

Now you have two platforms that are almost identical with such a small differential that in reality it totally doesn’t matter, but like you say you might have the nagging thought that the game on the other platform might have very slight better shadows or something. 
 

I flipped flopped with the 360/PS3 generation, which led to some double dipping and not really being all that happy. 
 

Ive just picked a side, which is PlayStation and could not be happier. I’d only consider having the other machine if there was enough exclusives to justify having it too. 
 

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I try to buy everything on PC as I have a pretty good setup. Obviously the exclusives, I just buy for the best version of the hardware out there. 

 

A good game is a good game though regardless of the hardware, you only have to look at the Switch for that.

 

 

 

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I remember not getting Bayonetta for PS3 at the time, because Digital Foundry did a bad tech review of it (which they've refreshed my memory of this weekend in their review of the re-release.) I suspect it wasn't anything like bad enough to change the quality of experience of playing the game.

 

These days, it's even less relevant to playing the games, I think. They're basically the same. Slightly lower res and/or framerate stability on Bone vs PS4, slightly lower res/framerate on Pro versus One X. And mostly, you need a microscope or framerate counter to know.

 

If it's getting in the way of enjoying the games, do what you need to such that you aren't exposed to it. 

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34 minutes ago, Uncle Mike said:

I remember not getting Bayonetta for PS3 at the time, because Digital Foundry did a bad tech review of it (which they've refreshed my memory of this weekend in their review of the re-release.) I suspect it wasn't anything like bad enough to change the quality of experience of playing the game.

 

These days, it's even less relevant to playing the games, I think. They're basically the same. Slightly lower res and/or framerate stability on Bone vs PS4, slightly lower res/framerate on Pro versus One X. And mostly, you need a microscope or framerate counter to know.

 

If it's getting in the way of enjoying the games, do what you need to such that you aren't exposed to it. 

Bayonetta was really bad on PS3, it may have been patched but the 360 version was utterly superior in every way possible.

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Yeah, the difference last gen was the performance delta. For multiplatform games the Xbox 360 outclassed the PS3 almost every time. There was a clear material difference between many games. 

 

This gen, that flipped, but the difference wasn't anywhere as pronounced. Multiplatform games run fine on both unless you're really analysing every pixel. 

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2 hours ago, Bangaio said:

my recent buying and selling of consoles to get the best (2 box one x, 2 PS4 slim and 1 PS4 pro over 14 months)


I would love to hear what on Earth happened here and why a PS4 slim would feature at all. 

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Digital Foundry stuff I use to get to know a little more about general graphical trickery and use it as a launch point to go look into those techniques.   If you look at the comparison videos for most games you'll only notice a difference if you pause the game or go slow mo and then really zoom in on an area.  Who the hell is going to notice on the midst of a frantic game? It's nice to know which is the best version but I don't think I've let it influence where I buy my multplatform games.

 

Hardware wise in the end, I've bought them all but I game more on the platform that suits my particular use case best which is ease of use for multiple machines in the house.  That's about it.

 

 

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Most of the time I really can’t notice a difference between those DF comparisons even side by side (except if one version is actually broken).

 

Even downgraded Switch versions look more or less the same to me.

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2 hours ago, Thor said:

Yeah, the difference last gen was the performance delta

 

 

You spelled 'ease of development' wrong there, tbh. In a fairly wanky way :)

 

Krazy Ken's box of tricks took more time and work to get the best out of it, but time is money for developers - the 360 was the obvious choice last gen, no doubt. PS3 Bayonetta was farmed out and an absolute disaster. I'm pretty sure Platinum started Vanquish development on PS3 and was the better version. If you're a proper nerd about IQ/performance.

 

I do agree with @Bangaio, though. A friend of mine constantly sends me Digital Foundry videos arguing the toss about the best way to play a videogame. I occasionally remind him I have a PC, but he seems to throw up in his mouth a bit and gets a bit upset with me, because apparently PCs are really hard work and require all sorts of .ini file editing.

 

TL;DR - If Digital Foundry winds you up, consider having fun playing videogames instead.

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I can very rarely see the difference they're pointing out in the videos, unless it's framerate. 

 

DF Retro is awesome, the tech analysis of current games stuff clearly appeals to people but I think it's unhealthy. 

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1 minute ago, Lyrical Donut said:

You spelled 'ease of development' wrong there, tbh. In a fairly wanky way :)

Heh, you can call it what you want, but there was a clear difference in performance of multiplatform games during that gen. 

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1 minute ago, deerokus said:

I can very rarely see the difference they're pointing out in the videos, unless it's framerate. 

 

DF Retro is awesome, the tech analysis of current games stuff clearly appeals to people but I think it's unhealthy. 

 

Yeah, I like the retro stuff they put out, for sure.

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1 hour ago, HarryBizzle said:


I would love to hear what on Earth happened here and why a PS4 slim would feature at all. 

Well, I bought a slim. Got a stack of games for it got a bit overwhelmed. Watched lots of digital foundry videos particularly the RDR2 one. Sold it bought an x. Realised that I actually enjoyed some of the games I could only play on the PS4. Went back and happy camper for 8 months. Bought a pro but it buzzed like an electric toothbrush so I returned it. Fast forward and the temptation of the. Shiny saw me buy an x but it’s now not been played after I realised that for me, the backlog  I have still got to play through on PS4 mean that other than Forza horizon 4 there’s. It a lot I want to experience on it that I can’t on the PS4 and that the difference while clear doesn’t add up to needing two consoles. Basically I’m a bit of a mug. 
 

36 minutes ago, Pob said:

I find Digital Foundry strangely relaxing to watch, but quite often when I’m watching footage of some zoomed in game slowed right down in an attempt to show some slightly soft shadows or something, I think back to the platform differences of the past:

 

89CCBBA2-24AA-41AE-900F-DA74E4592C1A.jpeg.3090da90a6d1d50e2884037bc5b65d49.jpeg
A5F40B0D-154C-4496-9E88-8186B0CF5CE8.jpeg.a3c3152214f94ba323756dc23f2e99c3.jpeg

 

“If you look closely, you may just be able to see some subtle colour palette differences, and that they look like two completely fucking different games”


 

and that’s what I’m talking about. I’m 42 and back then the difference always stark and in plenty of cases games just didn’t even appear on some platforms. We’ve never really had it so good!

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42 minutes ago, Thor said:

Heh, you can call it what you want, but there was a clear difference in performance of multiplatform games during that gen. 

 

Yes. Nice quoting skills. I kind of tried to explain things in the next sentence I posted, based on game programmers I know who worked on both consoles. But that's fine. It's fine. HONEST.

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@Pob nails it there. 

 

I'm in my late 30s and the difference between modern games are negligible, not like the days of Speccy and C64, where the games were completely different at times. 

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Playing the ‘inferior’ version almost always makes no bloody difference.

 

I don’t remember having any less fun with GTAV or TLOU on PS3 than I did on PS4, or with Resi4 on a PS2 rather than a GameCube, or Witcher 3 on a PS4 rather than XboxOneX.

 

If it’s just a truly shite conversion then that’s a different story, but a few frames here and there and some dodgy textures? Couldn’t give a bollocks.

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5 hours ago, Timmo said:

I've refused to upgrade my base PS4 as I think mid generation upgrades are bullshit.

 

Interesting take on the mid-gen consoles.  Unless down to affordability issues I see zero reason not to upgrade to the Pro and X.  Better IQ with improved performance for 3-4 years has been a blessing.  Especially if playing on a base XO.

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1 hour ago, womblingfree said:

If it’s just a truly shite conversion then that’s a different story, but a few frames here and there and some dodgy textures? Couldn’t give a bollocks.

 

Still watch movies on VHS? ;)

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They're probably useful if you have both a One X and a PS4 Pro and want to see which version of the latest game you should buy, but other than that I can't see the point other than getting ammo for online console wars.

I do find the videos where they do 10x zoom to show the difference in graphics amusing, but I'm not sure if that's DF or one of the other big comparison channels.

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