Wednesday, July 07, 2004

Next Gen consoles to look like Unreal Engine 3.0?

Hello again, today’s topic is about the Athlon 64 3200. It’s a simple question. Do I invest into Pentium 4 or the more powerful Athlon 64? Athlon 64s run hotter than Pentium 4s which means they might burn up if you over clock them too much. I know I’m getting 1 GB of SDRAM for my Athlon 64. I owned my first Pentium 4 PC (clocked at 3.2 GHz.) This runs games like Unreal Tournament 2004 really well. I have to use my older video cards. I am really excited to get a 512 MB Geforce 4 6800 sometime. ATI and Nvidia are the big players in videocards. Nvidia is leading in technology. I know why too…the new games are more compatible with Geforce than Radeon thus the numerous glitches. A few examples are Spellforce: Order of the Dawn and Halo: Combat Evolved. A Radeon on Pentium 4s are better than a Geforce on AMD Athlon XP CPUs. I have personal experience on this, so I almost know what I’m talking about here. I had difficulty running Halo on my Athlon XP computer for whatever reason. The patches failed to fix the glitch. Unreal Tournament 2004 had a little trouble running at the higher resolutions on my Geforce FX 5600 but with average CPU power (2.1 GHz). The frame rate was down to 25 FPS at 1600x1200.

To get back to Athlon 64, they say that the performance is 8% higher than a Pentium 4 that is about 1 GHz more powerful. This is done to drive the costs down to a mainstream price. Athlon 64 3200s are expensive right now…like $450 for the processor. These Athlon 64s run really hot at 2.2 GHz, but they’re more powerful than any Pentium 4 out. Intel has a 64-bit processor though it’s so out of anybody’s price range that’s it not a question of what the benchmarks are…it’s a question of who is willing to pull out the doe for it. Athlon 64s are really only for gamers, but I’m a gamer so that makes me worthy of an Athlon 64! My parents know my reason and they agree with me on this. The specs behind the bus speed of Athlon 64s is 1600 MHz compared to Pentium 4’s 800 MHz. That’s twice the CPU power! That would hold true if the GHz were the same which they aren’t. But if they were than what I said would be true. Athlon 64s need an extremely large fan to cool it off. The power requirements are more. When I get an Athlon 64….it’s going to be off so I can save some money.

Today I’ve reinstalled Diablo 2 Lord of Destruction, and was going to be playing it today. My account is still online and I was playing online a couple hours this morning. I leveled up my character from level 75 – level 77. Nothing really special today as far as my character goes. I don’t have any armor sets on her. Not even the low level character armor sets. An armor set includes boots, armor, gloves, helms, swords, shields, staffs, bows, etc of a particular name in the game for an example, Tal Rasha’s Armor Set. The armor set has bonus points that go to the Vitality, Strength, Dexterity, or Mana automatically. In my frame of thinking, having an entire armor set is just to say you have it. But if you DO have a good armor set than more power too ya! I always concentrate on getting the best possible damage with what I get free from drops or free trades. I can make it to act 5 (hell difficulty) by myself which says a lot about me. I don’t have 4 accounts with 4 or 5 characters on each nor do I have accounts on several servers. I spend all my time with one character until it reaches a high level like 70 or so before I move on to another character. You’ll understand this if you’ve played Diablo 2. If you haven’t, you should, it’s an extremely well done game. I don’t play as much as anymore. I use to play Diablo 2 every day after school.

Earlier - I was playing Mega Man 2, 3 and 6 today on Playstation 2! It is possible finally to own all these games on DVD! I have a Mega Man anthology now, and what a wonderful anthology it is! My friend Bob will want to borrow it now, more than likely! But it’s all mine! The midis in these are cool and very ‘oldskool’ so to speak. I’ve been playing it for a bit today before I finished version one of this entry. The games are quite difficult. I know I most people don’t get the games right off the bat, but these games are special. They saved me a lot of money. I could have bought 6 Mega Man games for NES which would have cost me 4 times as much. Now I have Mega Man 1, 2, 3, 4 , 5, 6, 7, 8, Power Battles 1, 2, X4, X6, and the rest are computer ROMS. My favorite Mega Man game is Mega Man 2. It has the best sound of any Mega Man game for the NES. I haven’t had the chance to play them all so I don’t know which one is the best. I have a feeling I’ll soon find out. I heard that the PS2 game, Mega Man X7, is hard as hell to finish. My skill level is beginner in these ‘oldskool’ games. I can’t get my hand on the d-pad on the dual shock II controller very well, thus being open to air attacks are what is known today as ‘cheap shots’.

I went to school yesterday to download the huge Battlefield 1942 patch which is a huge 250 MB download off I’m afraid to play Battlefield 1942 before I’ve installed the patch. Actually, I’m thinking of playing this game after I go to the gaming store at noon today. The one in Hudson, WI opens up at 11:00 AM. I hope they have something good. I don’t expect them to give me hints on which game to buy. The choice is always mine in which game to buy. I do research. I will have to decide if I rather get Baldur’s Gate Deadly Alliance II for Xbox in River Falls today or buy another N64 for 20 dollars. I am always looking at the greatest hits collection but I have all the highly rated videogames for the PS2’s greatest hits. Maybe I’ll get Silent Hill 3 or Dark Cloud 2 for PS2 today if I can find a copy. I can not be sure what is there. What games are there today is unlikely to be there the next time around. It’ll really depend if I’m in RPG mood or Mature (mood shooting the undead and weird gory creatures) mood. Kicking ass with a gun.

[2 hours later] I came home from the Game store. Games 4 trade had Mega Man Anniversary Collection on the shelf, although I already bought it 10 minutes before at Target. So I didn’t see any game I wanted to spend my money on so I left. There was a 16 year old at the cash register, and I didn’t want to really speak to him. I don’t feel I want to over-complicate game talk by talking about which game is cool and not, he’s here to sell games, not to talk about them. I hate those people. I didn’t leave empty handed, I went over to Target, and bought Project Gotham Racing 2 for the Xbox. Project Gotham Racing 2 is probably the best racing title for Xbox, not to mention the most detailed. I think I’ll play this game next week. Now if only I had someone to play with me besides the CPU. I decided not to get a another N64 and/or Baldur’s Gate Deadly Alliance II (Bob wants this game badly for PS2)

Anyways, my friend Bob won’t be able to hang out with me this week because he won’t have any free time he says until this weekend. Randy is working a lot this week so I won’t see him either. We usually visit each other at his house after work. He’s the one that’s working…I’m the one home…really, really bored Randy is like me with side burns, and a short hair cut - this is normal in Wisconsin. Not to worry, the hickish past of Wisconsinites has gotten much smaller. (No offence to my friends and family) Wisconsinites like I have joined the rest of the nation (we have the oldest phone systems in the country from the late 80s early 90s), but we do have people coming from the Twin Cities to live out where I am. I hate Minnesotan’s driving skills when they’re in Western Wisconsin. First they go 55 MPH than 45 MPH than up to 50 MPH than 55 MPH again on the highway by our house all the way to Hudson or River Falls. We have a lot of hills in our country so most people go a little slower up hills…I understand this. Our area has been built up a lot in the pass few years. Farm fields of the mid-90s now look like small villages in themselves.

I have some horrible news, Ultima X, the game that I thought I was going to get into this fall is canceled. confirmed it this week. I was going to buy this game because it seems that Ultima Online is doing well and has many followers. Ultima X is the sequel to Ultima IX which was released in 1999. The Ultima X was running on the first Unreal Engine used in Unreal Tournament (1999), the developer enhanced it quite a bit which included higher resolution textures and a 3D roaming RPG game play which is new to Ultima franchise. I don’t know much about it since I haven’t seen Ultima Online in stores.

Now these are the believed console specs of both Microsoft’s code-name Xenon console (which has been leaked on the Internet), and the two versions of Nintendo code-named “Revolution” console. Nintendo has confirmed company partnership with ATI and NEC while Microsoft has switched from Intel to IBM to create their new processor.


Microsoft Xenon Confirmed Specs – [ ]

Power PC based IBM 3.5 GHz Processor, 256 MB of RAM, 256-bit ATI graphics chip 500 MHz, 46-billion texture operations per second ????, Dual-layer DVD format running on 24x DVD-ROM, 10/100 BASE T Ethernet, external hard drive, 64 MB flash memory


Intel Pentium 3 at 733 MHz, 128-bit Nvidia Geforce 3 processor clocked at 250 MHz also called XGPU, 64 MB of SDRAM running at 200 MHz, DVD-format (4.7 GB), texture bandwidth 3.2 MB, 10 GB hard drive, 10/100 BASE T Ethernet

Nintendo Revolution Rumored Specs

Prototype A : Power PC based on NEC’s 2.7 GHz processor ("Gecko 2A"). 512 MB of RAM and 600 MHz ATI graphics chip (Flipper 2A?) Nintendo Gameboy Advance and Nintendo DS connectivity. 15 GB hard drive

Prototype B : Allegedly featured dual 1.8GHz PowerPC G5 processors called Gecko 2B. 256MBS of DDR Main Memory RAM, 128MBS of GDDR3 Video RAM, and a 500MHz graphics chip called Flipper2B. 15 GB hard drive

Current Gamecube Specs

485 MHz IBM “Gecko” Processor based on 0.18 micron technology, 24 MB RAM, 64 MB ATI Graphics Chip at 162 MHz developed by ArtX called Flipper, Texture Cache 1 MB, 10.5 Gigaflops floating point. Sound system called Muzy X created by Factor 5, 8 inch mini-DVD media (1.5 GB capacity), 24-bit color.

I know that Nintendo will come out as second place when they release their console. Rumors are the “Super Mario 128” platform game will be one of Revolution’s launch titles, not Gamecube. Nintendo has a great software list including Legend of Zelda – The Wind Waker, Metroid Prime 1 and 2, Resident Evil [0, remake, 4,] Orcania of Time Bonus Disc, Mario Kart Double Dash, Viewiful Joe, Metal Gear Solid Twin Snakes, Eternal Darkness. Their next console will look really good with a new Mario platform game on it. I buy all the Mario platform games right away because they all have good simple fun and Mario is in it. And the new Legend of Zelda game a year later. Whoa! I’m already amazed. That is if these specs turn out as true! I want Nintendo to go with Revolution “Version 1” because it seems more powerful than “Version 2.” I hear dual processors aren’t all what they are cracked up to be. A good example of this is Saturn’s dual processors. The Playstation beat Saturn in graphics although the Sega Saturn was a more powerful console by 10 MHz. Dual processors don’t work well, and aren’t worth the price it costs for the enhanced performance. Two Pentium 3s can’t do the same calculations as one Pentium 4, it’s kind of like that. I’ll have a PC that’ll have the power of Nintendo Revolution by late 2008 maybe. My current PC can out perform Xbox in benchmark tests. I don’t think the Xbox has the power to run Unreal Tournament 2004 because the UT 2004 takes a lot of CPU unless it’s on a low resolution like 800x600. I think either Far Cry or UT2004 need the most requirements of any game out today. And for good reason…they’re beautiful games. I can’t run Far Cry at the highest resolution without the frame rate going down. Well not even my computer can run everything at the highest resolution. Games shouldn’t even use that low resolution anymore. The lowest resolution should be 1200x980 in any game. In fact most games have it at the resolution at default. The difference between 800x600 and 1200x980 is huge. Sometimes games like UT2004 run better at 1200x980 than 800x600 on faster computers like mine.

I hope I’m on a verge of something new! I mean I know I was right about Super Mario 128 being a platform game, and not a technical demo for Gamecube. Gamecube was not the worst console in this videogame generation, Xbox was. After all, the typical gamer can have all that power for 100 dollars, 50 dollars less than Xbox. Nintendo Revolution may be the same way and cost 150 dollars when it’s released – at least yets hope it will. Cost will be a big factor in console sales next time around. I don’t think I will get a Playstation 3 first. I’m betting that the new PS3 will be 150 dollars more expensive than Microsoft or Nintendo’s next gen. videogame console.

Thank me for the spoilers and have fun with it. Comment if there is any changes in actual specs on this entry because that would be cool. I find that no one will actually go to my webpage so I just posted all the stuff on this entry. But this is okay, isn’t it?

Okay, I’m going to close up here. Here are some images to further display what PS3, Xenon and Nintendo Revolution 1st generation titles may look like. As you can see these picks demonstrate PC power not yet on the market but will be very soon if a people are willing to cash out to run the game at the highest resolution and get the best processor and videocard available. As you can see there are about 6000 polygons on each object. This game will probably add 500 MHz to Unreal Tournament 2004 requirements (1.2 GHz) Xbox’s stats could run this game at a very high resolution. My PC could probably run it at 1200/960 at a far frame rate, but that’s it. Just look at the screenshots of Epic Game’s Unreal 3.0 engine to appear in Unreal Tournament 2006! It might be a great game to play with 64-bit Athlon 64 though…if I can afford one right now. UT2006 is unofficial, but the demo appeared at this year’s E3. Breath taking graphics aren’t they? And this engine will look better as time progresses. It’s still in the beta. One thing is certain the next Unreal Tournament game will be compatible with UT2004 and UT2003 maps. If PS3 can run this game then more power too it.

Images of the Unreal 3.0 Engine (kick ass graphics!)

Unreal Engine 3.0
Unreal Engine 3.0
Unreal Engine 3.0
Unreal Engine 3.0
Unreal Engine 3.0
Unreal Engine 3.0

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