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Digital Foundry: Soul Hackers 2: Atlus' New Persona-Lite Has Major Tech Issues

adamsapple

Or is it just one of Phil's balls in my throat?

Atlus is celebrated for its Persona titles and Soul Hackers 2 follows in a similar vein - but the problem is that the unambitious technology and cut 'n' paste dungeons really let the game down. And as for the last-gen consoles? The outlook is bleak.



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Text article:


- Game runs on Unity (Persona 5, for comparison, runs on Atlus's proprietary engine).
- The games rendering quality and visuals aren't that far ahead of PS3/360 games.
- Quote DF "The graphics are simply subpar"
- PS5|SX offer 2 modes. 4K/30 FPS and 1800p/60 FPS
- Series S offers single 1152p @ unlocked 60 FPS mode.

- 4K/30 FPS mode on both PS5|SX runs as expected, no drops and native resolution.
- In Performance mode, PS5 generally stays close to 60 with drops during intensive combat.
- Both Xbox consoles have a lot of drops to high 40's and low 50's

- On last Gen. Xbox versions run without FPS cap. PS versions run with 30 FPS cap.
- One S runs at 1080p but has big performance dips between 15-35fps
- One X runs at 2160p but generally 5~10 FPS faster than One S.
- PS4 runs at 1080p, can drop to 20s but stays close to 30.
- PS4 Pro runs at 1080p as well and generally a good 30 FPS.
 
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Shit optimisation this. Graphics like this should surely run 60fps on 4K. Even on a One X or PS4 Pro for that matter.
 
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Dj Khaled Mtv Emas GIF by 2020 MTV EMA


As in, another horribly optimized game.
 

AmuroChan

Member
I'm about 25 hours into the game. The game itself isn't bad, but there's no question that this is more of a budget title from Atlus.
 
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Shifty1897

Member
It is surprising that anybody is still using Unity considering performance, is it that easier to use over something like Unreal Engine?
 

STARSBarry

Gold Member
I got this on PS5 (good choice me) but yeah as soon as I saw that Unity I knew there was going to be drops...

I wonder what made them go with this engine?
 
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Rambone

Member
It has been a smooth experience on my Steam Deck, PC and PS5. The game definitely feels and plays like Tokyo Mirage Sessions which is a bite sized SMT and Persona Lite experience. Everything from the art, the animations to even a lot of design philosophy draws from that game. I can see how somebody might consider this a low budget version of SMT or Persona but seeing as the same people involved in Tokyo Mirage Sessions made this game, it feels like a natural progression of their experience and vision.

Overall its not bad, 7 or 8 out of 10 is about right, definitely a game recommended for fans of Tokyo Mirage Sessions as SMT and Persona fans might feel a bit slighted due to the downgrades in quality, functionality and experience they are used to getting from the mainline games.
 
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01011001

Member
It is surprising that anybody is still using Unity considering performance, is it that easier to use over something like Unreal Engine?

Unity is indeed easier to use, or more like easier to get started with.
Unreal Engine can be overwhelming for smaller developers or newcomes IMO.

what I don't get is whenever developers of 2D Sprite based games use Unity, because Game Maker Studio is way better for that and even easier to get in to.
 

01011001

Member
Unless you are developing a platformer, you shouldn’t use Unity.

even if you wanna do a platformer I wouldn't really use it if you can use anything else tbh.

I played around in Unity a while ago and in my really simple 2D platformer project I made I couldn't for the life of my get the fucking collision box to work properly.

I tested the collision by walking up to a straight wall/box I played, and jumping straight up.
sometimes the character object would somehow collide while going down and would stand on top of the box... but not every time.
I jump once, and the character lands where he started, I jump a second time... same result... I jump a third time, suddenly he collides with the box and lands on the box.

I have legit no idea how that can happen... I didn't go too deep with the engine but that also gave me a very bad first impression for using it
 

hemo memo

Member
even if you wanna do a platformer I wouldn't really use it if you can use anything else tbh.

I played around in Unity a while ago and in my really simple 2D platformer project I made I couldn't for the life of my get the fucking collision box to work properly.

I tested the collision by walking up to a straight wall/box I played, and jumping straight up.
sometimes the character object would somehow collide while going down and would stand on top of the box... but not every time.
I jump once, and the character lands where he started, I jump a second time... same result... I jump a third time, suddenly he collides with the box and lands on the box.

I have legit no idea how that can happen... I didn't go too deep with the engine but that also gave me a very bad first impression for using it
Ori and Cuphead are great examples of using Unity.
 
I'm about 25 hours into the game. The game itself isn't bad, but there's no question that this is more of a budget title from Atlus.

Yep, for sure. I'm around 15 hours in, and I'm having a lot of fun with it, but I can definitely tell it didn't have the budget of, say, Persona 5.
 

Danjin44

The nicest person on this forum
Soul Hackers 2 is solid game and if you are fan of MegaTen games then you are going to have some fun but it also way less ambitious compare to SMT5.
 

Barakov

Gold Member
Definitely feels like the PS5 version has drops at certain points in performance mode. Had a bad feeling when I saw the Unity logo.
 

adamsapple

Or is it just one of Phil's balls in my throat?
Purchased. Haven't started playing yet.

If you like Megaten games, it's good.

But, yes, DF are spot on in that this game feels like it was made for the PS3/360 gen. Everything in the production is a notable step back from Persona 5.
 

NeoIkaruGAF

Gold Member
Somehow each line in the OP is funnier than the one before it.

1800p/60 on current gen? With drops?

I’m surprised I haven’t seen Switch jokes yet.
 

RaZoR No1

Member
IMO the biggest issues are for me the long loading times on a Series X.
I mean come on, what needs to be loaded to have such long loading times on a next gen "optimized" game.
Playing on graphics mode btw.
 

tommib

Gold Member
Definitely feels like the PS5 version has drops at certain points in performance mode. Had a bad feeling when I saw the Unity logo.
From the article:

On PS5, the performance mode hits 60fps almost all of the time. The only exception really comes down to certain screen-filling attacks during combat - namely the 'breath' attacks that emit a high density of alpha particles. You'll often notice a brief clutch of dropped frames while these attacks are onscreen. Outside of that, however, the game locks to 60fps, and it's the better way to play.

Series X doesn't fare nearly as well with this option. The brief dips during combat return but the game really struggles in certain city areas, dropping into the 40s and 50s for extended periods. Certain cutscenes see prolonged performance dips as well. The combat issues are understandable, but the other problems don't make as much sense. Series S plays out much the same, even with its drastically reduced pixel count.
 
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ArcanineEX

Member
IMO the biggest issues are for me the long loading times on a Series X.
I mean come on, what needs to be loaded to have such long loading times on a next gen "optimized" game.
Playing on graphics mode btw.
You probably have tips enabled. Set it to "button advance" in the options menu.
 

adamsapple

Or is it just one of Phil's balls in my throat?
You probably have tips enabled. Set it to "button advance" in the options menu.


Or just disable them, there's nothing you wouldn't know from playing the game TBH :p

and yes, it definitely makes the load times go faster if you disable them, I can attest. I guess there's some forced time added when you have tips enabled so the player can read them or something.
 
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RaZoR No1

Member
You probably have tips enabled. Set it to "button advance" in the options menu.
Or just disable them, there's nothing you wouldn't know from playing the game TBH :p

and yes, it definitely makes the load times go faster if you disable them, I can attest. I guess there's some forced time added when you have tips enabled so the player can read them or something.
What..?

How did I miss that?
I will change that right now.
Thanks for saving me some life time :D

Edit:
WTF
I halved, no it is even faster , with the button prompt or hide option...
 
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azertydu91

Hard to Kill
Weird perfs for a game that doesn't look that demanding and weird resolution for the xss I am sure that if it was better optmimized the S could push 1440p and it's upgraded couterparts 4k/60.
 
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