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Processing leaves is hard: Digital Foundry disassembled ray tracing in marvel's Spider-Man remaster

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Apr 18, 2020
In late September 2020, Insomniac Games unveiled a remaster of marvel's Spider-Man for the PS5. The developers showed, among other things, how ray tracing will work in the game — and drew criticism from players because of the reduced resolution in reflections and the lack of individual elements like leaves.

On October 3, experts from Digital Foundry published an analysis of raytracing in the updated marvel's Spider-Man, as well as the General principles by which ray Tracing works. I chose the main thing from the article and video.
  1. Marvel's Spider-Man will run on the PS5 in two modes: 4K at 30 frames per second and downsampled at 60 frames per second. In high-quality mode, ray tracing will provide not only more detailed reflections but also additional background shading (ambient occlusion). This effect is difficult to see in screenshots and videos, but in the game, you can see it in those corners and places where light does not penetrate well.
  2. In performance mode, there will be no global ray tracing — reflections will only be processed in screen space.
  3. Tracing still requires significant performance, and developers are just learning how to use it on consoles. Therefore, in order to save resources and processes faster, they have to optimize the work of raytracing.
  4. This is why Insomniac refused to process the effects of particles like smoke or fog — they are not on the reflections. Leaves on trees are rendered but not all of them, which is why their appearance in reflections is not so detailed.
  5. At the same time, the Studio has achieved drawing in the reflections of those objects that are at a great distance — for example, skyscrapers and other buildings.
  6. The resolution of all objects in the reflections had to be lowered by about 75%.
  7. Insomniac also simplified the materials processed by tracing, which, for example, makes the spider-Man costume look slightly different in reflection-but this increases the rendering speed.
  8. Despite the compromises that the Studio had to make, Digital Foundry positively assessed the result of their work with ray tracing and expressed the hope that in the future developers of all games for consoles will be able to use raytracing more effectively.
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Reactions: CrustyBritches


Sep 5, 2013
Just learning on consoles ? Its also hard on 3080, people need to get realistic

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