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Inside Ratchet and Clank: Rift Apart on PS5: The Insomniac Technology Breakdown

Captain Toad

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On the other hand, he's not that presentable and doesn't rock a "hey I'm a gamer too" t-shirt, so he's probably just a poser and doesn't know shit.

yes, sarcasm
Nope, but he does rock the "I'm a gamer too" platinum trophies for some pretty tough games.
 
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ethomaz

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Nope, but he does rock the "I'm a gamer too" platinum trophies for some pretty tough games.
Well the best way to have insight in game design or even features to console hardware is playing diversity of games.

I like how Cerny are in touch with games to see the pros and cons of each one.
 
Mar 27, 2020
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Uncharted bunghole
You were claiming those assets are separate from gameplay assets. As in they’re only used for cinematic and or photomode which they’re not. Those assets exist in the game as “one model” with varying level of detail based on how far it is from the camera. Each model has several LOD levels that change based on distance from the camera, if you are able to get close to a model while in gameplay you can see that higher detail LOD. What you are implying is that you can only see those detail in cinematic or photomode. Photo mode allows you to zoom in very close so you are able to see LOD 0 at any time. Gameplay view is pulled out so you can’t see LOD 0 easily without trying very hard. There are no separate Cinematic or Photomode assets, they are same assets in cinematic, photomode and gameplay.

Put another way. Objects in the back of the scene use lower detail models because they take up less pixels and they don’t add a lot of detail to the output image. Doesn’t mean the higher detail model doesn’t exist in gameplay. When you get closer to the model the higher detail model loads in as they take up more pixels and add a lot of detail to the scene.
Another factor that plays a big role is lighting. Cinematic lighting are used for cutscenes that shows off more detail than general scene lighting. Guerrilla Games for instance has decided to use the cinematic lighting for Alloy during gameplay which some people are complaining about because it makes Alloy standout from the scene during gameplay. Even though some games have been doing that for ages to a lesser degree.

Honestly it just seems like a smart way to save on resources. If it's unnoticeable why should anyone care?

It's not an indication that the console is weak it's just the developers being smarter on how they allocate resources. The same principal could be applied to any system.
 
Mar 17, 2020
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Some good tidbits highlighted by Mubrik


3:50: caring less about data size due to built in hardware compression
5:00: the whole memory is used for each level and data is pulled in as/when needed. (Think the whole level blueprint is in memory, assets are pulled in only when required)
11:10: Still some performance left on the table for SSD
11:40: can the engine handle loading data in so quickly is a legit question. Lol
13:40: RT is using checkerboard technique
15:15: headroom from optimizing for 60fps made the 30fps mode even better (guess devs should shoot for 60 more lol)
17:25: there are some areas they could 120fps, headroom for optimizing GPU side for 120 fps available, CPU is difficult.
19:50: development started with focus being a PS5 title
23:05: nefarious head was a huge pain to work RT on lol
24:40 Glass behind glass is a pain for devs using RT
28:00: cinematic uses same assets as game assets
29:10: hair strand system LOD fills in strand texture the closer the camera in, rivet tail if you zoom in 500 thousand to a million polygons.
40:00: a lot of the dialogues were prerecorded in the actors home
Interesting that the CPU is already a bootleneck this year while the GPU is fine… makes a bit of sense because 120fps needs way more CPU than GPU.

A lot of trouble to implement RT… early days yet… devs needs to learn and find solutions.

17:25 - He specifically mentioned that its due to the way the Engine is constructed, thats why the CPU wouldn't be able to handle 120hz yet.
So it could be possible by further refining the Engine.
 
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Mister Wolf

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We just don't know what I/O rate was needed, and PC you couldn't compress as much.

But I don't know why you think anywhere near 100/75% of the game would need to be loaded. Doesn't this game have numerous worlds/asset sets? Why would any more than ~2 of those asset sets be needed?

I see. Too bad we will never get to see the PC workaround. For curiosities sake I would love to know how it would be accomplished and with what system requirements before the updates to PC I/O come out.
 

IntentionalPun

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I see. Too bad we will never get to see the PC workaround. For curiosities sake I would love to know how it would be accomplished and with what system requirements before the updates to PC I/O come out.

Well we probably wont' see anything truly push those speeds either on PC for a long time; games aren't going to design around it. So we also really don't know what's possible on a current bottlenecked nVME, for a small action game like this, using portals as a sort of fast-travel mechanic.

Ratchet only has 33GB total data on disk.. and some portion of that is compressed textures; so maybe ~60GB of total game assets once decompressed. In itself, it fits in RAM split in about 1/5th on the PS5 (assuming ~13GB available) probably.

As the dev said, there is SSD perf left on the table... the PS5 allows them to entirely switch asset sets nearly instantly (especially considering compression), it doesn't mean the game is really doing that. It's loading things that aren't there, but those things aren't suddenly taking up most of the RAM.
 
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jroc74

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Because they aren't swapping assets like a duplicate or a separate model. It's the systems in place that's doing the swapping on the fly like texture mips and how much fur to render and whatnot. It's the same "asset" but it's semantics really because the quality is different. It's unnoticeable to the eye at the gameplay size... And that's the point. There's no point in rendering more than you have to.
I get that. I'm about to post a screen shot soon of one of the flies at ground level in front of Rivet. It is possible to see that fly that detailed in game, you just have to chase it, lol.



This is the best I can get for right now, never really posted screenshots before today..... This is the fly at ground level. I dont know if the eye detail can be seen outside photo mode because you have to be...really....close with the camera.
 
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Mar 27, 2020
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I get that. I'm about to post a screen shot soon of one of the flies at ground level in front of Rivet. It is possible to see that fly that detailed in game, you just have to chase it, lol.



This is the best I can get for right now, never really posted screenshots before today..... This is the fly at ground level. I dont know if the eye detail can be seen outside photo mode because you have to be...really....close with the camera.

Zooming in I can see that hexagon pattern on the eyes.
 
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thewire

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Well we probably wont' see anything truly push those speeds either on PC for a long time; games aren't going to design around it. So we also really don't know what's possible on a current bottlenecked nVME, for a small action game like this, using portals as a sort of fast-travel mechanic.

Ratchet only has 33GB total data on disk.. and some portion of that is compressed textures; so maybe ~60GB of total game assets once decompressed. In itself, it fits in RAM split in about 1/5th on the PS5 (assuming ~13GB available) probably.

As the dev said, there is SSD perf left on the table... the PS5 allows them to entirely switch asset sets nearly instantly (especially considering compression), it doesn't mean the game is really doing that. It's loading things that aren't there, but those things aren't suddenly taking up most of the RAM.
Leviathan, the twitter user who’s a software engineer actually said rachet would take up about 200gbs if it was made using last gen methods, the compression & I/O technologies used in the ps5 allows it to compress to around 33gbs, which is astonishing
 

jroc74

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Zooming in I can see that hexagon pattern on the eyes.
I just noticed that too.

This is one good ass looking game....lol. Shiieeeet. Also, some worlds have teleport pads, extremely fast.

This game is an absolutely showcase for what the SSD, I/O can do. We wont be ready for later gen games.
 
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RaySoft

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What a great game! I'm about 1,5 hours in and I'm captivated. Not an easy game to put down for sure. Well it's true what everyone is saying, it's really extraordinary. Some of the best graphics I've seen real-time. I get why people compare it to Pixar. It's obvious we are dealing with expert devs here, they know how to get their point across.
The SSD is certainly being exploited here, but maybe not to the extend that most believe? Don't get me wrong, I'm not saying it's techically impossible, but after checking out some things, It's more likely that some worlds are already resident in memory rather than loaded in on the fly. (some places are though, like the regular rifts) But the ones you open with L1 and you can walk back and forth and even the ones you smash to get to the alternating universe are probably already resident in RAM. I say "probably" because with the theoretical bandwith it's not impossible to acheive. But what I DO know is that we uasually take the easier path that than the hard one as long as the end result is the same.
I broke all the boxes right next to a dimension crystal to check this out. The premise being it's easier to flush all and load an entire new world with it's default "settings" (i.e. breakable objects placements etc.) But when spawning back again the boxes was still destroid. This dosen't PROVE anything mind you, they could still keep track of every breakable thing you did and restore it when you shifted back again. But this comes again back to my earlier statement that why "complicate things" if you "don't have to". Either Insomniac are GODS (wich they really are anyways) or we are still being "tricked" by smart programming as per usual;-)

Gripes: Insomniac should unlock the freecam in camera mode for cutscenes. We know it's real-time anyways since you can turn on or off the visual effects in the scene.(and changing filters etc)

Just my 5 cents, this is a hellowa game. Congrats Insomniac; The next-get has finally become current-gen!

Edit: With further testing the ammo crates are actually respawning when you change dimmensions.
Edit2: Now I see that energy boxes and a regular box (wich didnt respawn earlier) where respawned when going back to back in the dimensions, so flushing and loadning seems kinda dynamic. Seems like they have a system in place to know when it's most efficient to keep things in memory or flush it and reload.. Impressive.

Seriously guys; I'm seeing every PS5 owner bying this game, you really should. 9,5/10 (so far)
 
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jroc74

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Now that I got a taste of doing screenshots.....lol.

The ray tracing in this game is wild. And I'm still learning about how all this works.
 

Tripolygon

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Honestly it just seems like a smart way to save on resources. If it's unnoticeable why should anyone care?

It's not an indication that the console is weak it's just the developers being smarter on how they allocate resources. The same principal could be applied to any system.
It is. There is no point in rendering what you can’t really see or what doesn’t add much to the final image. Reyes offline CGI rendering algorithms does the same thing too to a lesser extent, im oversimplifying of course.
 

IntentionalPun

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Leviathan, the twitter user who’s a software engineer actually said rachet would take up about 200gbs if it was made using last gen methods, the compression & I/O technologies used in the ps5 allows it to compress to around 33gbs, which is astonishing
A software engineer eh? lol Either way, you don't account for the lack of need to duplicate assets when discussing what would get pulled into RAM. .. not talking about "compared to last gen methods".. And I think that person is way exaggerating how much the total games assets would get compressed.
 
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dcmk7

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Stuff like this is why @dark10x doesn't post here any more.
Feel sorry for Dark10x, Xbox fans really got on his back when they couldn't cope with some bad news.

People take things way too far.
Do you know how much shit I've put up with after it turns out Xbox is massively underperforming?! Constant threats, harassment and even shit sent to my god damn house. All over these stupid plastic boxes. These people are insane and it's absolutely draining me. Now we have the opposite in this due to 'wording' that people read into. Just stop it.
 

Rea

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I zoomed in alot of things in this game during gameplay(fidelity mode) and they looks the same as photo mode. It truly is astonishing.
So, We can put the *Photo mode uses higher assets* FUD to rest. At least for this game.
 

Epic Sax CEO

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17:25 - He specifically mentioned that its due to the way the Engine is constructed, thats why the CPU wouldn't be able to handle 120hz yet.
So it could be possible by further refining the Engine.

Problem is both.
If the CPU were faster they wouldn't need to improve and further optimize the engine, brute force would push it there. Because the CPU isn't faster they need to improve the engine.
The CPUs in this generation are good, but good more to standardize 60fps, not to make 120fps a common thing.
 

Negotiator101

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Interesting that the CPU is already a bootleneck this year while the GPU is fine… makes a bit of sense because 120fps needs way more CPU than GPU.

A lot of trouble to implement RT… early days yet… devs needs to learn and find solutions.
GPU is also, why you think the resolution is dropping so much?
 
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ethomaz

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I see. Too bad we will never get to see the PC workaround. For curiosities sake I would love to know how it would be accomplished and with what system requirements before the updates to PC I/O come out.
We will actually get decompressors units in PC.
The Industry manufactures are already in talk but there is no consensus where it will be… Motherboard, GPU, CPU, etc.

But the Industry in the future will start to have similar decompressor units like PS5 has.
 

IntentionalPun

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We will actually get decompressors units in PC.
The Industry manufactures are already in talk but there is no consensus where it will be… Motherboard, GPU, CPU, etc.

But the Industry in the future will start to have similar decompressor units like PS5 has.
Well we also have GPU decompression coming for RTX GPUs.

Not sure what amount of the GPU they utilize, but it likely is much better than CPU utilization, and there's plenty of TF to spare on modern GPUs lol
 

assurdum

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They explicitly said that c’mon.
The fact the resolution is basically fixed tells you more than what you are trying to imply.
I don't knew, I'm not trying to imply anything.. I haven't seen the video. Just laughed about the opinion of the person who you quoted anyway.
 
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abel empire

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....but the dev just said they arent switching assets....

Its not that its not that detailed, its that we cant see it because its so small. Yeah...when I zoom in and out you can see it getting clearer. Same thing happens in game tho, just not as pronounced.

I just loaded it back up now, and you can see it, just cant see it up close because its so small. You have to follow this tiny thing around, and hope you be in a spot that the camera gets close enough. The beginning of that planet is a good spot to check for this.

Also wanna say this is the first or one of the few PS5 games that skips the studio logo when starting the game. Miles is hot or miss, this has been really consistent so far.
The cutscenes, photo mode are all realtime using the same assets nothing is pre rendered in this game so what are they arguing about.
 
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ethomaz

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Well we also have GPU decompression coming for RTX GPUs.

Not sure what amount of the GPU they utilize, but it likely is much better than CPU utilization, and there's plenty of TF to spare on modern GPUs lol
I believe most probably place will be GPU… but they will add fixed units and not use the Computer Power like nVidia is doing… nVidia is basically a half step to the goal.

IMO I really preferes it to be in the motherboard or CPU because that way it could work even in onboard GPUs but maybe there are latencies and bandwidth issues so Sony choose to put it near the GPU too.

In any case PC in the future will have the same or better decompressors than consoles.
 
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abel empire

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We just don't know what I/O rate was needed, and PC you couldn't compress as much.

But I don't know why you think anywhere near 100/75% of the game would need to be loaded. Doesn't this game have numerous worlds/asset sets? Why would any more than ~2 of those asset sets be needed?
Could be complicated or not problem with pc isnt memory its memory latency you have too many middle men cpu talks to ram talks to gpu talks to cpu talks to storage this long steps are the bottleneck,
 

IntentionalPun

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I believe most probably place will be GPU… but they will add fixed units and not use the Computer Power like nVidia is doing… nVidia is basically a half step to the goal.

IMO I really preferes it to be in the motherboard or CPU because that way it could work even in onboard GPUs but maybe there are latencies and bandwidth issues so Sony choose to put it near the GPU too.

In any case PC in the future will have the same or better decompressors than consoles.

Where are you getting that there is any movement to add fixed decompression units to PCs?
 

IntentionalPun

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Could be complicated or not problem with pc isnt memory its memory latency you have too many middle men cpu talks to ram talks to gpu talks to cpu talks to storage this long steps are the bottleneck,

It's really not latency, it's throughput. I don't know where this forum keeps getting that; throughput is bottlnecked on PC due to the need to go through CPU/system RAM. The latency is still incredibly low.

But DirectStorage removes that.
 
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ethomaz

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Where are you getting that there is any movement to add fixed decompression units to PCs?
These some manufacturers docs that tells you the possibility of dedicated units in the future are not out of question.

It is early yet and they probably test the options before have a more defined plan for that.
 
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SlimySnake

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It's right here:


Full vid/presentation here:
just goes to show how far ahead Cerny really was. this is an even bigger deal than 8GB GDDR5 which also took a while to become standard on mid to high end PC GPUs because the PS4 only had 5 GB of VRAM available for games and some of it was used for system ram which PC games have an abundance of.

This is almost 11 Zen 2 Cores of performance that they will need dedicated hardware for. Anything is possible, but I think cerny deserves a lot of credit for designing something that is years ahead of anything in the PC space and for only $399.
 

Negotiator101

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You clearly have no idea how bottlenecks work do you?

The higher the framerate is the more burden there is on the CPU to process each frame at the speed required.

Nice try though.
What's the dynamic resolution for mate? It's to reduce GPU workload, don't try to be smart 😁