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Graphics Sony Games

Don't Go 3D For 3D's Sake, Says Sony 132

Posted by Soulskill
from the out-of-their-depth dept.
Sony is determined to push 3D graphics into the realm of gaming, but the company seems to be aware that quality, not quantity, is what can win over gamers. They've been telling game developers to take the plunge only if it makes for a better gaming experience, and not just to take advantage of an industry buzz word. Sony's Mick Hocking said, "We need to, and we're trying to encourage everyone to learn about 3D properly and come and talk to us so we'll support them when they convert the games. But only deliver the best quality 3D. As we've seen in some other industries, if you make great quality 3D, in film you could say Avatar – it's the most successful film of all time, it's the highest grossing film of all time – but since then that hasn't been followed up with the same degree of success. ... If people see great quality 3D it does enhance the experience. It's a great feature for a game. But if they see poor quality 3D it can put them off. Unfortunately some people are producing poor quality 3D, in all mediums. Over the last 12 months we've seen TV, film, some games, where the quality hasn't been there. It's just a case of people need to understand how to work with 3D, how to make it technically correct and then how to use it creatively. Only add 3D where it makes a difference to the gameplay experience. It must add something. Don't just add depth for the sake of it."
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Don't Go 3D For 3D's Sake, Says Sony

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  • by Anonymous Coward on Thursday July 21, 2011 @04:44AM (#36832518)

    The problem is that we've been screwing around with the 3d word. Remember when "3D" cards came out. The original OpenGL spec also defined a left and right frame buffer. And then there were Shutter glasses going back to things like the Sega Master System.

    3D never, ever, works. The primary problem Nintendo learned with the VR boy. People get headaches from it because it's impossible to calibrate them to work with every pair of eyes. Everyone gets motion sickness or headaches with a "VR set" and when you put it on a flat screen, you force the eyes to go cross-eyed, resulting in headaches and eyestrain.

    In the theater, they use polarizing glasses, which work in a pinch but require the picture to be much brighter than normal. The problem again being that not everyones stereo vision is calibrated the same. Like for me, with the exception of a few key scenes in Avatar, 3D is lost on me, the brain tunes it out after 5 minutes. I still see some films in 3D because they're the only properly calibrated projection screens, but overall it's never been worth seeing anything in 3D, since 3D adds very little value.

    Now here's where I think we can make a difference, but I don't think we'll see it in current generation systems. Take the Kinect device and combine it with a auto-stereoscopic monitor. Now you have a true 3d interaction. Until this is possible, 3D will remain as glue and sparkles, looks pretty, but functionally useless.

    There is some promise for 3D, but I don't see any games being able to make use of 3D without completely doing away with the glasses. Any real benefit to 3D stereography would require being able to see light bounce off 3D objects, which doesn't happen, hence why it fails. There's no depth, so the eyes can't focus.

    Avatar was good, but if you turn the 3D off, most people wouldn't have noticed after the first 10 minutes.

  • by White Flame (1074973) on Thursday July 21, 2011 @05:06AM (#36832586)

    Mind you, I've only seen the 3D portions of Gran Turismo 5 and Sly 3, but each of those games only seemed to have a divergence of about 5 horizontal pixels onscreen between the 2 views even at the farthest Z-buffer depth. The actual 3D effect was incredibly understated and pointless. Sure as a graphics geek, I'm all for having superfluous 3D just for random kicks once in a while, but even from that end of things it did not deliver.

    Every 3D game should have a configuration for adjusting the "strength" of the parallax divergence, especially as display sizes and other factors could benefit from them. Neither of those 2 games I tried seemed to have that at all. Trying to make a "safe" default divergence strength makes the gimmick effectively disappear.

    (If I understand correctly, the 3DS has some sort of depth adjustment slider. Does it affect the rendering convergence, or just help focus at the hardware level?)

  • FTFY (Score:5, Interesting)

    by mwvdlee (775178) on Thursday July 21, 2011 @05:23AM (#36832632) Homepage

    Sony needs to recoup their investment in 3D technology by making sure the public sees value in 3D, so they will buy into it.
    Game developers need to recoup their investment in the game by making sure their most recent game sells; i.e. use buzz-word technology.
    It is not in the game devs best interests to ignore short term profit; in fact, it is in their best interest to have this type of tech die out in a few years so they can focus on new buzz-words that sell.

The opposite of a correct statement is a false statement. But the opposite of a profound truth may well be another profound truth. -- Niels Bohr

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