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Games Entertainment Technology

Game Technology To Watch In 2009 123

IGN has compiled a list of gaming technology they expect to have a significant effect on this year's products. Leading the list is the 3D technology being pushed in television and films. A number of popular games are already set up to handle this, and more are on the way. They also suggest that improved Blu-ray technology, which allows much more storage, will pave the way for even bigger and better looking games. IGN hopes that brain-computer interfaces, such as Emotiv's headset, will become responsive enough to be taken seriously, and notes that DirectX 11 and a broader adoption for PhysX are on the horizon.
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Game Technology To Watch In 2009

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  • by neokushan ( 932374 ) on Tuesday February 24, 2009 @05:34AM (#26967275)

    They also suggest that improved Blu-ray technology, which allows much more storage, will pave the way for even bigger and better looking games.

    I wasn't aware that we were hitting the 50Gb limit of today's BR-DL disks. To my knowledge, only one game has even come close (MGS4) and even then, it apparently only uses about 31Gb.

  • My Predictions (Score:5, Insightful)

    by AndrewStephens ( 815287 ) on Tuesday February 24, 2009 @06:02AM (#26967401) Homepage

    I predicted the article would be bollocks before I clicked, and I was right! Let me make some other predictions:

    3D Gaming - these glasses have been around for years. Maybe they work better now that everyone has bigger screens with higher refresh rates, but they were useless before. Nobody wants to sit in front of a PC wearing glasses. Perhaps if it were released for consoles it may take off, but I don't think the penetration of 120Mhz TVs is large enough to justify it.

    Blu-Ray Super Disc - do games really need that much storage? Nope. My prediction for the number of games released in 2009 using super discs? Zero.

    Brain Computer Interfaces - I am sure they could sell a few as a gimmick but my understanding is that control is very limited - a few noisy axises at best. I have a hard time imagining a game that could be controlled by brain easier than by fingers. I put it in the Sounds-Good-to-Investors-Neat-Picture-For-Press-Release-Consumers-Don't-Care bucket.

    OLED screens - on their way, but immature. It will take years before they are competitive with LCD. In any case, not really gaming related as such.

    Wii MotionPlus - well duh, great scoop there, IGN! The MotionPlus opens up some additional options for games, I expect some neat things. But it won't be the game-changer that the Wii originally was. Nintendo have a history of adding stuff to consoles, none of their previous efforts have really set the world alight. A modest success, used by only a few games (but these may be classics).

    Windows 7/DirectX11 - better faster, stronger, snore. Nothing revolutionary from the users perspective. Developers might be tempted if Windows7 takes off (which I think it will, if only because it will be shoved down our throats)

    240Mhz TVs - good I guess, but this is not the time to launch an expensive piece of equipment. Its not like consoles are actually going to output at 240Mhz, so the motion-compensation filters had better be good.

    Play-TV - could be a game changer if Sony pulls finger and markets it world-wide. Sony really needs to give the public a new reason to have a PS3, PlayTV could be the tipping point. But I think it might be too little, too late since PVRs aren't exactly rare at this point and it seems limited.

  • by Rah'Dick ( 976472 ) on Tuesday February 24, 2009 @06:08AM (#26967431)

    Additionally, there is still the problem of content creation - which game studio has the time and resources to generate that much actual game content nowadays, not just pre-rendered ultra-HD cutscenes or music? MGS4 is a pretty good example. It takes an immense amount of work to create a game with that much detail that it fills up a Bluray disk.

    Most of that space could be filled up with procedurally generated environments, but that's just the same "more of the good old stuff" philosophy that Sony's been following with the PS3. Once you max out one factor (horsepower), the highest possible output becomes dependent on other factors.

  • by grumbel ( 592662 ) <> on Tuesday February 24, 2009 @06:28AM (#26967521) Homepage

    And also lets not forget that BluRay is pretty damn slow. In the case of MGS4 you needed 8 minutes of install time to the HD and then again like 4 minutes on each chapter change, not fun. Having gigantic amounts of storage isn't all that useful when you can't read them from the disc fast enough.

  • by Kokuyo ( 549451 ) on Tuesday February 24, 2009 @07:04AM (#26967717) Journal

    Frankly, _I_ like my TV shows in boxes. Married... with Children is effing long and I want it to take a considerable part of my DVD rack.

    If I was all about size I could just as well download everything as DivX and store it on my NAS/Mediacenter.

    Also, I think prices for those should would have to come down (and would thus have much more of an impact than squeezing everything onto a single disc). I don't know how it is in America, but here they even started splitting the Star Trek seasons up in the hopes that people would buy them that way. They still don't think that the cost of 30 bucks for two or four (I'm not sure) episodes was a tad high.

    I believe a show has to cost a certain amount of $. There is a price limit somewhere that people are willing to pay. If the show is very long it might move that limit a bit but it is not proportional.

    Also, a lot of stuff that gets released is mastered in a very awful way. The Cosby Show, for instance, does not have the intro and outro chaptered here, making you have to fast forward and try to hit the exact moment the show starts. This wouldn't be bad if you were watching one episode at a time, but if you watch four episodes an eveing, three evenings in a row, you get highly fed up with that waste of time.

    So in conclusion: Bluray discs cost somewhere around 50 to 80% more here with debatable additional value for the customer (I don't give a shit about FullHD), while production cost clearly does not reflect that price.

    Technical gimmicks are usually not what Joe Average wants, I believe. Joe Average wants to be entertained with as little hassle as possible (and the more expensive, the less of it he can afford). So cut the crap with technical gimmicks already and start marketing a good cost/value proportion.

  • Re:My Predictions (Score:3, Insightful)

    by -noefordeg- ( 697342 ) on Tuesday February 24, 2009 @07:42AM (#26967907)

    I can't agree more. "Bigger/Better/Faster"... Yay!

    What about native DirectX support for other platforms, so I can start playing games again. I don't have any Windows-based computers at all (both at office and home).

    What about an open game platform where you can play games, with mods, in an Xbox Live'ish environment. I like some parts of Xbox Live, but the lack of dedicated community based servers/mods make it inferior to PC.

    What about internet/browser based gaming. ID Software is coming with Quake Live now. I want more of this. I don't have 2-3 hours to do "dedicated gaming". I just want to play against people for 15-30 minutes (say, during lunch).

    Blu-Ray... Yes! We all know that games became SO MUCH BETTER when CDs where introduced. And lets not forget DVDs. Oh yeah! Games released on DVDs are The Best!

  • Retro (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Hognoxious ( 631665 ) on Tuesday February 24, 2009 @08:08AM (#26968043) Homepage Journal
    Money's tight, people aren't going to shell out megabucks on the latest and greatest games - or the hardware to run it.

The trouble with the rat-race is that even if you win, you're still a rat. -- Lily Tomlin