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Capcom details the tech behind Deep Down; can't say if PS4 exclusive or not

shinobi602

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Thanks DualShockers


Some of those questions were answered by Capcom’s Deputy General Manager of Technology Research and Development Masaru ijuin and by Programmers Daisuke Shimizu and Hitoshi Mishima as part of a very extensive interview on the Japanese website Game Watch.

The development of Panta Rhei started in the summer of 2011, to address problems with Capcom’s proprietary engine MT Framework that led to the deterioration of development efficiency.
The Deep Down demo ran in real time at the PS4 presentation and displayed between 10 and 20 million polygons per frame. It had a variable frame rate above 30 frames per second and a total texture capacity of 2 GB. It ran 30 different shaders at the same time.

The demo can run on a PC with an NVIDIA Geforce GTX 570, 8 GB of RAM, and an Intel Core i7 CPU. The development machines used at Capcom have Geforce GTX 680 and GTX 590 GPUs.

The peak performance of the PS4 is lower than that of an high end PC theoretically, but due to the ease of development and the streamlined architecture there are areas in which it can be superior. The same can be said about the Xbox One which has a similar architecture and potential.

The engine can use Tessellation and in certain areas Approximating Catmull-Clark Subdivision Surfaces, that is unfortunately too heavy to be used systematically for every element . It also uses Dynamic Level of Detail (DLOD) to avoid pop-in. Thanks to the PS4′s high memory capacity it’s possible to achieve both stable performance and avoiding pop-in with LOD.

The rendering pipeline has been redesigned. It can use Tile Based Deferred Rendering combined with Forward Rendering for special and semi transparent materials. Tile Based Deferred Rendering can grant very high performance but Forward rendering can be used when you want to use the Bidirectional Reflectance Distribution Function (a four-dimensional function that defines how light is reflected at an opaque surface) or render translucent materials. Material rendering is done with a diffuse map, a specular map, a normal map and a roughness map.

It’s possible to use Partially Resident textures both on PS4 and Xbox One. It’s the same technology as the Mega Texture used in Rage by id Software and the DirectX 11.2 Tiled Resources technology flaunted by Microsoft at BUILD 2013 is pretty exactly that. Panta Rhei Can do it as well.


Those DF shots make even more clear that we were actually seeing real time footage.

I took a glance of the watch article using google translate, there were some complementary info:

- 10-20 million per frame, 10x increase of the previous gen. However that's the amount of polygons per frame, it doesn't mean the scene is composed of 10-20 millions polys. For instance they have to redrawn any object that cast shadow for the shadow maps.

- To develop the engine and the game, they presumed Ps4 would be about 8 times more powerful than Ps3. From the specs Ps4 falls in line with they expected.

- The 30 shaders they are using are not comparable to previous gen shaders. With Dx9 and last gen shaders had to be much simpler because dynamic branching would destroy performance. Now they can have more complex/intelligent shaders and so they can use less of them to achieve the desired look.

- Apparently the Pc demo uses only 1.2GB of video ram (compared to Ps4's 2GB)... There's a explanation for that, but due poor translation I couldn't make sense of it.

- Apparently they are using tesselation for LOD, but not for drawing objects with higher poly count.

- For increasing geometry using tesselation, they used Catmull-Clark sub division surfaces, but that proved too resource heavy to be used everywhere. For the demo, it was only being used on the robe the witch was using.

- They are testing faster algorithms of tesselation that would allow them to enable tessellation on all drawn objects.

- For rendering they use Tile based deferred rendering, and for transparent objects they use a mix of foward rendering too.

- They talk about performances advantages of TBDR, but that is also impossible to understand, but I think papers on the tech shouldn't be hard to find.

- They seem to use physically correct shaders and area lights.

- They initially wanted to have real time GI using SVOGI (the same of the Ue4 demo). But creating and maintaining the octree was too heavy for the Ps4 to handle alongside the game.

- But the work done there allowed them to use the voxel cone tracing algorithm in more some areas. Specifically for the demo, this technique is used to handle the dragon's flames. Just like the UE4 elemental demo, voxel cone tracing allows an entire object to become emissive (in essentially, a light source). That was also used in the demo: The rocks and the shield that receive the flames become emissive of lights too.

- They talk about a 3d mega texture using GCN Partially resident textures. It could be useful for static geometry, and could be a way to get SVOGI working on the next gen consoles.

- In some place there they say that the flames propagation are actually simulated used fluid dynamics, and I think the voxel representation of the flames also helped that...
 

Josman

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How fast is the GTX570 compared to the ps4's GPU? Edit: read it wrong, seems cool now, I don't expect this game to be exclusive, is there any hope for TGS?
 

Anteater

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It also uses Dynamic Level of Detail (DLOD) to avoiod pop-in. Thanks to the PS4′s high memory capacity it’s possible to achieve both stable performance and avoiding pop-in with LOD.

That's cool, I hope they can eliminate all the pop-ins for their games with far draw distance, so we don't get another case of dragon's dogma.
 

Silky

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Apr 6, 2013
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An exclusive engine for a game, or Deep Down being exclusive to PS4....? I don't really see that. I can see Deep Down being PS4, but other Panta Rhei engine titles should be multiplat
strictly PS4/PC
 

badcrumble

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May 12, 2006
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Was that demo actually confirmed to be running on PS4 hardware and not just a target render? I'm not trying to concern troll here, I actually don't know.
 

AgentChris

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This is Capcom. They wouldn't do exclusives on PS maybe other systems. "can't say if exclusive or not" - waiting on SCE to write the check.
 

Mrbob

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Jun 7, 2004
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Game will be PS4 exclusive, in Japan.

No reason for it to be exclusive in the West.
 

RoboPlato

I'd be in the dick
Oct 29, 2006
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How fast is the GTX570 compared to the ps4's GPU? Seriously introducing your engine for a next-gen console but having it run on a PC is not cool, at least UE was running on the PS4... Right?
They in the video we saw in February it was running on PS4 at the presentation but they run it on PCs with those specs internally.
 

Wynnebeck

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Aug 5, 2012
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This is Capcom. They wouldn't do exclusives on PS maybe other systems. "can't say if exclusive or not" - waiting on SCE to write the check.

Especially considering how Capcom treats their other franchises, nothing is ever set in stone with these blockheads.
 

IonicSnake

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Nov 6, 2009
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I don't think Deep Down will be PS4 exclusive but it is weird that Capcom of all companies still haven't confirmed if it's going to come to Xbone. As soon as MS showed the Xbone we started hearing from devs that their games was coming to it as well, but not from Capcom about this game and still nothing as of now.
 

DieH@rd

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Dec 9, 2006
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How fast is the GTX570 compared to the ps4's GPU? Edit: read it wrong, seems cool now, I don't expect this game to be exclusive, is there any hope for TGS?

Its little faster than PS4 GPU if you compare them in PC space [which is pointless]... but with console lightweight API, PS4 GPU is undeniably faster.
 

RoboPlato

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Oct 29, 2006
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"Dead Rising 3" & "Titanfall"?
DR3 isn't a huge game and Titanfall is releasing on three platforms with others probably coming at a later date. That said, I don't think Deep Down will be exclusive unless it's timed or just for Japan.
 

sublimit

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There's no way this game will be an exclusive for either platform.

It also uses Dynamic Level of Detail (DLOD) to avoid pop-in. Thanks to the PS4′s high memory capacity it’s possible to achieve both stable performance and avoiding pop-in with LOD.

That's excellent news.Pop in is one of my biggest pet peeves in games and one of my favourite games this gen (Dragon's Dogma) had a lot of it unfortunatelly.If they manage to have great performance with zero pop-in that would be awesome.
 

Chuck

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Feb 19, 2011
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Is there a source for the budget of the game? Dead Rising is one of Capcom's major franchises. There is nothing to indicate it's budget is much higher than DR3's.

Of course there isn't a source. Just more "this is way more triple a than that triple a" from people who don't know what it means at all.
 

GetemMa

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Feb 17, 2013
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I really doubt it is exclusive.

These games cost too much for 3rd party developers to limit a game to one system.
 

RoboPlato

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That's excellent news.Pop in is one of my biggest pet peeves in games and one of my favourite games this gen (Dragon's Dogma) had a lot of it unfortunatelly.If they manage to have great performance with zero pop-in that would be awesome.
I hope stuff like DLoD and SubD becomes standard next gen. It helps a lot and next gen is easily capable of it.
 

GameSeeker

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Jan 13, 2008
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Well, at least this eliminates the FUD about the Deep Down demo being CG and not actual code running on a PS4.
 

MikeE21286

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The demo can run on a PC with an NVIDIA Geforce GTX 570, 8 GB of RAM, and an Intel Core i7 CPU

This is basically my PC (except I have 12GB or RAM)

Hopefully this bodes well for it being good for next-gen games.
 

Lulubop

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May 27, 2011
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No way is this exclusive to PS4, but I'm hoping Capcom doesn't give us the cold shoulder like they did with Dogma.