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Is it all smoke and mirrors


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No offense (I know there will be some) but it always amazes me how people don't get this. It's mentioned in basically every thread where frame rate comes up.

 

I guess I'm technically minded so it seems really obvious.

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15 minutes ago, dumpster said:

Been thinking of starting a thread for a couple of weeks, inspired by my recent raiding of the garage, the situation with the pS5 and a general apathy I'm feeling about life in general.

 

So today I got a HDMI adaptor for the PS2, which i modded last week with a hard drive.  I ripped my game collection, then legally bought some ISO files off a reutable internet website such as iTunes, and basically had a blast.  I'm flogging some stuff on Facebook to get a new Xbox and PS5 and it's lead to the weirdest of situations....  I've unplugged and disconnected my Xbox One and the space under the TV now has a Playstation 2 under it.  And it's not just nostalgia - I'm blown away by stuff I missed in the past as well as old favourites that I played today in glorious 480i.

 

Burnout 2 (There, I've said it) is just outstanding.  The twitchiness and responsiveness of the controls is superb.  When a car comes towards you, you see them flash their lights and you can dodge with a reactive stick movement.  I've been really enjoying Need For Speed Hot Pursuit on the PS4 recently, but it feels heavy and sluggish in comparison. I'm not sure what that's down to, but it's very obvious that Burnout 2 is benefitting massively from being 60fps no matter what happens. 

 

I don't know if I'm right, but it feels to me like a 60fps game isn't just smoother to look at, but it also makes the controller more responsive - like the console is reading your inputs more regularly too.  Is that how these things work?  

 

Also the graphics are good, but they are not overly detailed.  We discussed in the Dangerous Driving thread how the shadows and other detail make it harder to see where you're going.  And Burnout may have simpler graphics but they are not BAD, they're just, simpler.  And the game works, and I'm still impressed 25 years after launch. And the controllers haven't broken, didn't need batteries changing and felt just as responsive as my PS5 pads that cost double the price.

 

The first thing that struck me on Parappa The Rapper 2 was the 60fps, bright colours and great music, but when you play it today (and i hope this doesn't come across as hyperbole), it feels next gen.  It's beautifully animated, things whizz about on screen in a very obvious 60Fps.

 

I have loads of other examples. Sega Rally 95 and Sega Rally 2006 look amazing through HDMI, Gradius 5 is superb and wouldn't look any better on a PS5, and even a blast on '24 -The Game'  put a big smile on my face (they captured the feel of the TV show really well). Neo Contra isn't great, but even that's 60fps and feels great, it's just a bit repetitive.  And tonight I will play Silent Hill 2 for the first time, and I can't wait.

 

To me, its as if the PS2 era peaked as the level of performance matched or exceeded the requirements of an SDTV.  I remember when the magazines would say that a new console could draw so many polygons and it all felt like a meaningless statistic (how big are the polygons? Are they filled?  Whos's counting them anyway?) but it's really apparent in these older games that a Playstation 2 seems more than capable of doing great graphics on an SD TV at 60fps, which, in a way makes it more powerful than a PS4 trying to play a similar game genre and only hitting 30fps because it's ray tracing and trying to draw it all in 1080p.

 

It just seems weird to me that the PS2 has taken centre stage under the TV.  And then, as I read the PS5 thread I see complaints about the store being unfinished, consoles being too noisy, there's only a handful of games and they're all £70, the controllers are breaking too easily, the UI is rubbish and I'm wondering, why am I even bothering trying to get one?  Surely there's going to be a smaller, better looking version in a years time? Maybe it will drop in price?  

 

To me, I'm seeing that technology advancement in the TV marketplace has driven the "need" for a new console that takes advantage of the HDR, the frame rates, the 4K and all that.  But in terms of overall gameplay the PS5 and Xbox Series X are now boasting 60fps gaming that we had back in 2002 on the PS2.  

 

Anyone else feel it? Anyone know what I mean?  Do I need a new console, or am I falling for the hype? Is the new stuff really the groundbreaking content they're promising or is it all smoke and mirrors?  


The Series X feels like the first console since the cartridge era that hasn’t compromised something for better graphics. 
 

Mainly, of course, I’m referring to loading times which are now as short in most cases as getting past the title screen on a cart or, if not, you save the time of having to change cart etc, or with quick resume you’re straight back in. 
 

These things matter to me and they might not as much to others. You sound like you’re enjoying some ‘no bullshit’ aspects of the past. I think online connectivity ruined that a bit and as someone who doesn’t play online there’s not been much upside but I understand why it’s a must these days. It just also means 100gb patches. 
 

I don’t think I’ve seen anything especially impressive on the X, nothing my PC couldn’t do anyway, but it’s the most convenient and hassle free console I’ve had since the SNES, and that’s worth a LOT to me. 

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16 minutes ago, smac said:

Wait, this is just another 60FPS topic? Jeez, people, we heard you the first time.

I guess but also the overall theme of what we're getting for our money. We're all trying to get hold of a PS5 and I'm just wondering if I'm still in the market for one, having realised how little progress we've seen in some areas.  I'm still playing The Missing on PS4, Bloodstained and the 8 bit versions....  Why am I desperate to get a PS5? I'm honestly not sure. 

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7 minutes ago, deKay said:

Legal ISOs from iTunes? Eh?

It's my standard line....  I made a legal purchase of all the games I wanted in ISO format. No piracy chat here, I bought them all legitimately from a legal service such as iTunes.  I'd link to it but my fingers are broken.

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1 hour ago, dumpster said:

I guess but also the overall theme of what we're getting for our money. We're all trying to get hold of a PS5 and I'm just wondering if I'm still in the market for one, having realised how little progress we've seen in some areas.  I'm still playing The Missing on PS4, Bloodstained and the 8 bit versions....  Why am I desperate to get a PS5? I'm honestly not sure. 


I don’t know. Buy a series X and get better texture filtering and 60fps on more games, and game pass too.

 

even the 60fps ps4 games on PS5 are a bit confusing because the filtering is still diabolical. And clearly you’re not going to be sold on the controller.

 

so why are you trying to buy one?

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1 hour ago, Fry Crayola said:

This thread reminds me of movies and TV shows set in the past, where a character turns on the radio and it's nothing but hit after hit.

 

Of course the games you've selected to play on the PS2 are brilliant, because you're going back to the best examples with the benefit of a fifteen year filter.


and 24: The Game 

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I know these companies do their best with backwards compatibility, but it’s the throwaway culture once a new console comes out that is part of the problem. Look at how many PS4 Pros and Xbox One X consoles people are wanting to shift now. And with that a whole generation of gaming is dismissed - despite the inclusion of backwards compatibility!  Which in reality doesn’t get used a great deal. As soon as the new Nintendo console ( Switch pro? ) comes out, the current Switch will be toast. All that investment in a top class product just ends. Nintendo are kings at it :lol:  it’s the kind of practice that destroyed Sega in the end. 

 

So where does it leave us?  It’s up to people like dumpster to rediscover and realise what they missed. Hundreds of us trawling through eBay buying old Sega Saturn or N64 games and consoles. ( et all ) 

 

then of course there’s the other can of worms... Console emulation! Where we find out it probably was all smoke and mirrors...

 

:sherlock:

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10 minutes ago, Madness said:


and 24: The Game 

 

I’ve got this and went through it all some years back because I loved the series so much that I wanted to see what this was about. Admittedly the gameplay itself while trying to offer different styles of stages does border on the low end amateur side of the spectrum, but I loved how they created a full season of story which I read was written by the writers who made the actual show itself. It’s also cool how it has some of the main characters in there voiced by the actual actors too. So nothing groundbreaking by any stretch but I enjoyed it. 

 

Also to add to the topic theme, I’ve been doing the same since some point last year where I decided to play some things on the PS3 but then bought Siren 1 & 2 from here which allowed me to set up my old PS2 again and I’ve decided to stick with it and start playing more of the things I’ve missed. The last main one being Drakengard 2 which I spent around 130 hours on or so over months doing it three times to get all three endings. I’ve also fixed an issue (which I think I mentioned it in another thread with you @dumpster when discussing the Shmups you had, pretty sure it was you) that fixed my CD laser allowing me to now play numerous games I’ve got that are all blue disc only and have never even been played ever since I got them. 

 

Its funny because I switched originally as friend of mine who doesn’t work only has a PS3 and it started with me wanting to play through a Star Ocean game at the same time he was going though it, and seeing as his PS3 supports ps2 games, he’s now asking to play through some of the ps2 stuff I have so it’s rubbing off onto him as well. This has completely stopped me thinking about the PS5 entirely. 

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3 hours ago, dumpster said:

It's my standard line....  I made a legal purchase of all the games I wanted in ISO format. No piracy chat here, I bought them all legitimately from a legal service such as iTunes.  I'd link to it but my fingers are broken.

 

Does Jiminy Cricket break your fingers every time you tell a lie? :P

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It's a Dumpster thread. Lots of words with a golden days bent. Only buzzing. Your threads seem to go down well. It's good to talk. 

 

Will read soon.

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During the ps2 days i kind of thought the same and put it across (on a forum of course) as something like 'we've pretty much reached the zenith of gaming in terms control input' and someone got annoyed in a way that seemed irrational, like it supposed gaming couldn't grow any more. Tonally, narratively, conceptually, they could/can. 

 

The racing genre is probably the perfect example of how more power hasn't meant anything in new games in terms of recognising the core elements of what make the genre exciting; speed and number of competing racers in the race. 

 

It's kind of analogous to fast percussive music. It stands out from every other genre i think, it can be distilled to an abstract pure form of sensory thrill, scenery rushing past you. 

 

With music i mostly use it to energize me, i get an urge for something loud and aggressive occasionally and it just rips through the blandnes of life, it's pure ecstacy, pure visceral thrill that i crave. So i think that's where my attraction for the genre comes from, I've never been into cars or bikes or f1 more than the average casual fan. Which makes sense, it's those too into cars and motorsport who can't detach their passion from the essence of the genre. There is room for racing sims and something else but we don't get the something else. 

 

It's funny, people try to replicate the thrill of rallying with a rally game with the seat, steering wheel, gearbox, pedals but you can't. When i played F Zero X or Ride On The Edge 2 (not even 60 fps) i remember that thrill of speed, you really feel it. 

 

I also remember a long time ago complaining about simulation driving games and someone offering 'what's the issue? We like them and will always like them'. Some might think the genre isn't dead but i don't think it's alive. 

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7 hours ago, Hello Goaty ♥ said:

.... As soon as the new Nintendo console ( Switch pro? ) comes out, the current Switch will be toast. All that investment in a top class product just ends. Nintendo are kings at it :lol:  it’s the kind of practice that destroyed Sega in the end. 

 

I think this may not happen. The Switch is still sold out permanently, I expect the Pro to be sold alongside it, not instead of it.

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One thing that was definitely smoke and mirrors was the introduction of flat screen displays (before HD).  I remember the first time I watched TV on one at my Dad's house. He'd bought a Sony LCD and it was impressively thin compared to the CRT it replaced. But the sound was tinny (thin speakers I guess), and the picture was just weird.

 

Static images were very clear and sharp but moving images blurred like a Gameboy. There were no trails or anything but it meant that when something didn't move it was  in clear focus, sharper than anything that was moving. The newsreader would have pin sharp hair until they moved their head, at which point all the hair became a blur before pinging into focus again.  Similarly football would have a single frame of super sharp image when the camera changed direction.  

 

Somehow the world didn't notice that these TV were very obviously not as good as what we had and the flat panel was enough to get everyone to upgrade to a worse TV.

 

 

 

 

 

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1 hour ago, dumpster said:

One thing that was definitely smoke and mirrors was the introduction of flat screen displays (before HD).  I remember the first time I watched TV on one at my Dad's house. He'd bought a Sony LCD and it was impressively thin compared to the CRT it replaced. But the sound was tinny (thin speakers I guess), and the picture was just weird.

 

Static images were very clear and sharp but moving images blurred like a Gameboy. There were no trails or anything but it meant that when something didn't move it was  in clear focus, sharper than anything that was moving. The newsreader would have pin sharp hair until they moved their head, at which point all the hair became a blur before pinging into focus again.  Similarly football would have a single frame of super sharp image when the camera changed direction.  

 

Somehow the world didn't notice that these TV were very obviously not as good as what we had and the flat panel was enough to get everyone to upgrade to a worse TV.

 

 

 

 

 


Bullshit.

 

It’s not smoke and mirrors at all. It’s different. It offers different benefits as well as some drawbacks (at least initially). Much bigger screens for much smaller space (or the need for a projector in most cases).

 

Yes they were often inferior screens with worse picture for many uses but for most people it was worth it. Christ people have always used crazy fill modes to stretch 4:3 to widescreen displays or the stupid AutoMotion crap on modern TVs. Most people cannot or will not see the difference. Or they choose not to care.

 

On here people spent years claiming that they couldn’t see the inference in 60fps. Not they claim they couldn’t do without it. This very topic is filled with how terrible gaming is (or at least maybe was in the dark 30fps days) but everyone kept buying it, no liked it. I don’t remember any fuss. Games have always come with different trade offs based on availability technology and what the audience chooses to prioritise.

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35 minutes ago, Spacehost said:

I'm starting to think no one actually knows what this means.


I liked Broken Sword 2: The Smoking Mirror.

 

If that helps at all.

 

 

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1 hour ago, Spacehost said:

I'm starting to think no one actually knows what this means.

 

When I read this topic title I assumed it was a thread about examples of tricks/shortcuts that developers used to produce impressive-looking effects, but which are obvious once you know what you're looking for.

 

Like how the cloud and bush in Super Mario Bros share the same sprite. Or how games use zig-zagging corridors and forced walking sections to disguise loading sections. Or the stuff that Jon Burton from Travellers Tales talks about on his GameHut/Coding Secrets YouTube channels.

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