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Can We Take A Minute To Celebrate the Technical Achievements of the Next Gen Consoles?

Tqaulity

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At the eve of the next gen console launches we have the typical amount of warring, negativity, and complaining. But I think that as gamers and fans of technology in general we really should take a minute and appreciate what both Microsoft and Sony are accomplishing with their next gen consoles. When you really pay attention and see how well they are delivering on their vision and promises it truly is unprecedented.

First, both console were actually designed to deliver a spec that matches the highest end experience you can get in gaming today (on PC). In other words, both deliver powerful state of the art hardware in a greatly engineered console form factor at a remarkable price. Zen2 CPU, RDNA2 GPU, cutting edge SSD, pioneering controller tech, and more all for <$500 is quite remarkable. But now that we are seeing more and more games, we can truly appreciate the achievements that are now realized with this technology. We've been promised the world before (N64 and PS3 come to mind first and foremost) but the reality typically involves many more compromises than we were led to believe.

A quick trip back to the beginning of the Xbox360/PS3 launches where the state of the art was 1080p graphics and both machines were presented initially as being able to deliver a "full HD" experience. Yet even at launch, we saw 720p be the max most games could achieve with many games going below that. PS4/XB1 generation was the 2nd attempt (7 years later) to deliver on the 1080p dream and even then at launch we saw many games struggle to achieve that (particularly on Xbox One). By that time, the state of the art on PC was at least 1440p/60 with 4K and 60+ fps becoming a reality soon after. Those console were still pretty far from that level of quality at launch and beyond.

Fast forward to now and the "holy grail" for gaming today is 4K/60fps which remains extremely rare and demanding for even high even PCs costing many times more than a console. Yet, we are seeing a number of games at launch deliver on all the promises of this generation including native 4K visuals, 60-120fps, and near instant loading. Some highlights worth mentioning:
  • Spider Man Miles Morales is delivering a AAA open world game that remains one of the best technical achievements on current gen at a full native 4K, locked 30fps with w/ real time ray-tracing. Think about this for a minute, it was only within the last 2 years or so that real time ray tracing was even something thought of to be used for current games and even then it is extremely expensive on ultra high end PCs. Can you guys appreciate that at launch we have a full AAA open world in a bustling city with real time ray traced reflections throughout all while running at native 4K, unwavering performance, and graphical fidelity much higher than the current gen game? This is freaking amazing! Even the performance mode runs at a higher resolution than the PS4 pro version of 2018 Spiderman while keeping a locked 60fps with added graphical detail (sans ray-tracing)
  • Gears 5 is delivering greater than PC ultra settings at 4K with a locked 60fps and 120fps mode in multiplayer. We're talking about one of the generation's best looking games pushed beyond the best of what we've seen to date on PC and delivering a smooth 120fps performance again right at launch! Just really shows how much more horsepower these consoles possess over current gen
  • Assassin's Creed Valhalla is delivering a full 4K/60fps experience right at launch! Again, Assassin's creed games are some of the largest open worlds you will find in gaming. Let's not recall how ACIV: Black Flag ran at only 30fps on then "next gen" consoles despite the game being a cross gen title (and let's not even discuss the state of AC Unity at launch). The real kicker: across more than 25 games released there has NEVER been an Assassin's creed game released on console running at 60fps! That includes the remasters of the early AC games from X360/PS3/Vita running on the current "enhanced consoles". As many with powerful PCs can attest to, it is not easy to get most AC games running at 60fps and high settings even on PC. Valhalla is the first AC game to run at 60fps right out of the box on console. This is such a great milestone that doesn't get enough attention!
  • Ori and Will of the Wisps is one of the best looking games on the market pushing a full native 4K and 120fps on Series X. Sure it's not the most demanding title, but to have that much excess horsepower to push the game to those levels at launch is indeed impressive (~RTX 2080ti level of performance)
I could go on and on with other 120fps examples at launch (DMC V, Dirt 5), how the vast majority of games (both first and third party) are delivering 4K resolution right out of the gate, how the percentage of 60 or higher fps games at launch is possibly higher than ever before, how both systems are offering enhanced backwards compatibility that is transforming some current gen games, how the SSDs are delivering near cartridge level loading times and "quick resume" features that will forever transform gaming, or how the PS5's DualSense has exceeded all expectations and has many proclaiming it to be the most exciting new tech of any system at launch.

Even though it hasn't even officially begun, this generation is looking to be an absolutely stellar one with both Microsoft and Sony making some remarkable achievements that we really need to appreciated more. There is true innovation and technical achievements that can be appreciated by the full spectrum of gamers from the casual to the most hardcore. Guys, think about the value we are getting to have full 8 core Zen2 CPUs, cutting edge RDNA2 GPUs w/ray tracing, cutting edge SSDs (which alone are almost the price of the consoles), HDMI 2.1 (still no other source devices support this), and services like Gamepass for the same price as a Xbox One at launch (and less than a PS3 at launch). Nobody thought the next gen consoles could even include an SSD at all due to the cost. Several years ago, many people argued that they would be limited to a Vega 64 level GPU at best (even the Radeon VII was considered out of reach). Honestly, all of our initial expectations have been exceeded!

Sony and Microsoft: I salute you! I know how difficult it is to build a new console and juggle all of the various factors and limitations such as cost, heat, noise, technology, services, and software. It's it very rare when we see 1 console actual deliver on most of the promises for a new generation....never mind 2. Truly an amazing time to be a gamer :messenger_beaming:
 

MrFunSocks

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Bit of a different take to your thread like 2 days ago about “being honest” about next gen and how the PS5 was just in a league of its own and how far behind MS were and how bad the series x was lol.

Trying to paint yourself as unbiased now before all the comparisons etc come out I think.

It’s great that we have 2 competing companies releasing consoles. Anyone wishing for the death of one of them is an idiot that doesn’t actually like games, just likes supporting a team.
 
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Karmic Raze

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I’m very excited for this next gen of consoles. I think we’re all in for a real treat starting next week. It’s a good time to be a gamer for sure!
 

Celcius

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Yep next gen will be great. I thought they would cost more than they do given all of the tech inside of them and SSDs at last.
 
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nkarafo

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Sorry. After witnessing earlier generational leaps like 8bit to 16bit, 16bit to early 3D textured era and early 3D to a more matured PS2/CG/XBOX 3D, i'm not impressed at all by this jump. It's just current games at higher resolution and better iq so far. Most of the times i can't tell if i'm watching a PS4 or a PS5 game. I know, jumps can't be as significant anymore (i always forget the word that describes this) but damn, it's the least significant one yet. Feels more like a PS4pro+ and XBOXoneX+ than a new generation.
 
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Bonfires Down

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Yea, it seems like they made the best choices possible considering the tech currently available. Only issue would be for them to offer some form of reconstruction to 4k for third party devs, and the lack of gyro and other features in the Xbox controller.
 

Zones

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Sony and Microsoft: I salute you!
Lisa Su:
 
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Kagey K

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Great post OP. It's amazing to stop and think about how much power and innovation we are getting for less than the cost of a good graphics card.
This looks like one of those no matter who wins we must come together posts. Unless we don’t win.

Just look at this shit 3 days ago.

Tqaulity Tqaulity care to discuss?
 
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SLoWMoTIoN

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Call me when I can play games at 4k and at 60fps that look like spooderman. Next gen consoles? More like 30fps consoles heh.
 
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Tqaulity

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This looks like one of those no matter who wins we must come together posts. Unless we don’t win.

Just look at this shit 3 days ago.

Tqaulity Tqaulity care to discuss?
It’s called you guys jumping to conclusions and trying to put words in my mouth. I am a gamer in general and I have been for over 3 decades. I play games on everything and am truly excited about next gen. I can still have my opinions or thoughts and I do think that PS5 is the better platform for multiplats for the reasons I outlined. Does that mean Xbox sucks and that the Series X hardware is trash? Absolutely not and in my entire post history I’ve never said anything of the sort.
 

Tqaulity

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Bit of a different take to your thread like 2 days ago about “being honest” about next gen and how the PS5 was just in a league of its own and how far behind MS were and how bad the series x was lol.

Trying to paint yourself as unbiased now before all the comparisons etc come out I think.
Exactly what I mean by putting words in my mouth. Never once in that post did I say Series X sucks or that PS5 was in a “league of its own”. I simply said that PS5 appears to offer more for multiplats which I still believe for the reasons I outlined. Doesn’t mean Xbox sucks or has no value in general
 

Kagey K

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It’s called you guys jumping to conclusions and trying to put words in my mouth. I am a gamer in general and I have been for over 3 decades. I play games on everything and am truly excited about next gen. I can still have my opinions or thoughts and I do think that PS5 is the better platform for multiplats for the reasons I outlined. Does that mean Xbox sucks and that the Series X hardware is trash? Absolutely not and in my entire post history I’ve never said anything of the sort.
 

Reallink

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Call me when there's a game that looks like the UE5 or Hellblade 2 trailers. As it stands you're rattling off games that don't look sufficiently different than Pro and Xbone X titles. I don't care about 60fps in "spectacle" single players games, nor do I care about increasing 1600-1800p to native 4K. These aren't achievements, they're wastes of resources. Anyone wanting marginal P's or Hz bumps should just dump their $500 into a GPU, not consoles. Any potato PC can achieve 4K and 60FPS with a 3070 or RX6800 at console settings.
 
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Blood Borne

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Hardware will always advance. New gen, new tech and whatnot, however I’m more interested in the software and it’s looking really dire on that front.

Each gen, we’re getting less games, less new IPs and less critically acclaimed games. This is the trend, since the PS360 gen and it doesn’t seem to be getting any better. I mean, just look at the launch games.

With all the talk and focus on ray tracing, SSD, fps, resolution, backwards compatibility and little about games and new IPs, I’m just not excited.
 
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-Arcadia-

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We don’t quite match PC, but there’s no doubt that this generation is a whole different ballgame compared to last. We’re back to the 360/PS3 style of pushing things to the absolute limit, which I think is where console gaming, or at least Sony and Microsoft’s brand of it, should be.

I’m really happy with the new consoles. I can’t imagine the challenges, especially after just delivering state-of-the-art visual upgrades a few years ago, but I think it’s going to pay off with two consoles that really stand apart, push gaming forward, and become loved.
 

Tqaulity

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The jump isn't that impressive right now.
And that is your conclusion after playing them for extended periods of time? Given that the systems are not final and more than half of the launch lineups are still not available I’m wondering what you have played to draw that conclusion?
 
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GymWolf

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I was graphically more impressed by ryse, inf3 and kz sf, but at least now we have decent cpus inside the consoles.

Curious to see full fledged new ps5 titles (so no remake or crossgen).
 
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GymWolf

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Ratchet it's a full fledged PS5 title.

Still not that impressive.
Fair point, but the cartoon artstyle doens't help imo, also for his genre it looks pretty good (in screenshots it look basically cg) and better than any other ps5 launch game.

I think gow ragnarock is gonna blow minds if it's not crossgen.

And if we consider how good are guerrilla with graphics, i bet that even horizon 2 has good chance of making me a next-gen believer.
 

supernova8

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The technical achievement of the machines themselves is great but it kinda feels like a waste to release them in 2020 when there are almost no new games to play. This really is the first generation where there is nothing to show on your shiny new device to say " look at these next gen graphics!".

Sure it's not necessarily all about graphics, but it's not not about graphics either. Anyone claiming it isn't is just being pretentious. People do want shiny new graphics.

If they (and we) just fuckin waited until late 2021 we could have a big console launch with (relatively) plenty of new games from both sides.
Instead we've got PS5 with Spiderman ray tracing edition, Demons Souls with a new lick of paint.... and then Xbox with a load of games from the Antiques Roadshow, and of course... who could forget.. Halo: Ghost of Craig.
 
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Kumomeme

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both consoles and engineering team excels at stuff they good at

there lot of complaint that current gen game is same as previous generation before. it just better visual and resolution. hopefully with better specs like cpu, fast ssd and i/o will bring something different for next gen. there lot of potential to fast storage and stronger cpu that could define and completely change how game design is. hopefully, devs can craft something special, hopefully we never heard again stuff like "this generation is same as before " or "nothing this gen can do that previous gen cant" etc.
 
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MCplayer

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Im gonna be harsh, yes its a great achievement, but I wont be impressed until I see some serious next gen looking games at minimum 1440p 60FPS
 
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Zuzu

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The consoles are so awesome this time around. Last Gen was terrible hardware relative to the era but now the consoles are back with great, powerful hardware. The hardware and software engineers deserve a lot of commendations in both companies.
 

Tqaulity

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"Technical achievement" and "30fps" should never occupy the same sentence.
You’re entitled to your opinion but I always thought that is just a BS statement. By that logic then all the state of the art prerendered movies wouldn’t be technical achievements because they are typically 24 or 30 FPS?

Ok in terms of games the best looking and most advanced games of this generation are almost all 30fps. Horizon, Driveclub, God of War, Ryse, Spider-Man, The Last of Us, Red Dead Remption 2...all 30fps. You’re saying those are not technical achievements in graphic design and real time rendering?
 
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MrS

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"Perfect is the enemy of good"

I agree, OP. These consoles are beasts and are doing great things. Lets not get too hung up on the small shit.
 
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