How much more powerful was the N64 compared to the PlayStation anyway?

Sep 5, 2011
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Did Conker's have a high resolution option? Pretty misleading shot, if no.
Not misleading at all, a poster asked for any N64 game that looked better than Chrono Cross or FF9.

I thought it was an odd thing to say since even Mario 64, a launch title, looked better than both of those.
 

cube444

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No, if you cut the resolution to Now, there are a few DC games that push the system more, and show that it had more power than most of its games showed. Dead or Alive 2 would be a good example of that, or Test Drive Le Mans for racing games. So sure, the N64 couldn't match DC games that actually get the most out of the system. However, in the DC's very short life span, most of the games actually released for it don't get anywhere near there. Most look more like, well, PS1 or N64 games with those three categories I mentioned improved on. Of course, many were exactly that, but the exclusives weren't much better, a lot of the time.
Soul Calibur says hi.
 

KageMaru

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Lots of late N64 games looked like dreamcast games to me back in the day. But from what i have seen, without getting into tech specs or whatever, the N64 was a beast in comparison. Conker's bad fur day, Turok 2, Perfect dark, banjo tooie, and the legend of zelda majora's mask looked stunning. And later on, when i Found out about games like Sin & Punishment I had no doubt in my mind the n64 was more powerful
Wait, what games came anywhere close to Soul Calibur, Sonic Adventure, Blue Stinger, or Trickstyle? They weren't even in the same universe in graphics.
 

brumx

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Dreamcast was

5X more power than N64
20X more power than PS1
PS2 was 2-4X the Dreamcast in power

Of course I prefer the Saturn due to Burning rangers, Saga,Sonic Jam
 
Aug 6, 2006
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Soul Calibur says hi.
Soul Calibur actually has lower polygon counts than even many other 3d Dreamcast fighting games, surprisingly enough... Dead or Alive 2's pushing a lot more polys.

And anyway, the arcade Soul Calibur machine was on more PS1-like hardware. The DC game has better graphics than that, but that shows that a weaker-looking version of the game could have been on the N64 and/or PS1.

Really? 64 was more powerful than PSOne?
About three times more powerful, probably, I think. Somewhere between two and four times more powerful, anyway.
 

jett

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Wow we are comparing the N64 to the Dreamcast? :lol The DC was the single biggest generational leap I've ever experienced. Some people are talking crazy now.
 

cube444

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but that shows that a weaker-looking version of the game could have been on the N64 and/or PS1.
That can be done and said for any console/game.

Who would even want that?


jett said:
Wow we are comparing the N64 to the Dreamcast? :lol The DC was the single biggest generational leap I've ever experienced. Some people are talking crazy now.
Totally agree and that's why I was never "wowed" by the PS2/Xbox like so many of my friends were that skipped the DC.
 
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N64 was CLEARLY more powerful.
I got Wave Race 64 at launch and no PS1 game could touch that graphically.
Another game that blew me away was NFL QB Club from Acclaim.
Also Diddy Kong Racing.
Only downsides were the infamous fog & low frame-rates.
 

jett

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PS1 games were so damn jaggy, but they benefit from emulation soooo much. It's really surprising how good some of the texture work is compared to the blurry shit in N64 games.
The problem with running PS1 games in high resolution is that makes the warping texture issue immeasurably more noticeable and annoying. There are some exceptions but when running PS1 games on my PC I actually prefer to leave the resolution untouched most of the time. For instance Ridge Racer Type 4 looks better to me in low-res because the texture warping issue is barely noticeable. In 1080p you see these freaking waves of textures of moving on the sidelines. :p It's unfortunate emulation hasn't been able to correct this.

Speaking of Ridge Racer, comparing RRT4 to RR64 actually showcases the strengths of the PS1 and weakness of the N64. The textures on RR64 are a blurry mess and the both the scenery and cars are much less detailed.
 

Tain

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Not misleading at all, a poster asked for any N64 game that looked better than Chrono Cross or FF9.

I thought it was an odd thing to say since even Mario 64, a launch title, looked better than both of those.
If the game ran in progressive mode, that is a misleading shot. Regardless of whether it or the real thing looks better than those games.
 
Aug 6, 2006
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That can be done and said for any console/game.

Who would even want that?
That's not true. And anyway, see what I said about the arcade game. A PS1 version would be more like that, instead of being enhanced like the DC release was. Would it be a worse game? Yes. But it'd be Soul Calibur, mostly.

But no, you can't say that about any game ever... I mean, not in a recognizably similar game. And most DC games don't do much more than improve on those three categories I mentioned...

The problem with running PS1 games in high resolution is that makes the warping texture issue immeasurably more noticeable and annoying. There are some exceptions but when running PS1 games on my PC I actually prefer to leave the resolution untouched most of the time. For instance Ridge Racer Type 4 looks better to me in low-res because the texture warping issue is barely noticeable. In 1080p you see these freaking waves of textures of moving on the sidelines. :p It's unfortunate emulation hasn't been able to correct this.

Speaking of Ridge Racer, comparing RRT4 to RR64 actually showcases the strengths of the PS1 and weakness of the N64. The textures on RR64 are a blurry mess and the both the scenery and cars are much less detailed.
I think RR64 definitely looks better than R4, myself. Other things matter more than textures.
 

krackerjack

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I remember I had a copy of Mortal Kombat Trilogy for PS1 and my buddy had a copy for
N64. The N64 version had audio that sounded like it was recorded in a bathroom!
 

cube444

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That's not true. And anyway, see what I said about the arcade game. A PS1 version would be more like that, instead of being enhanced like the DC release was. Would it be a worse game? Yes. But it'd be Soul Calibur, mostly.

But no, you can't say that about any game ever... I mean, not in a recognizably similar game. And most DC games don't do much more than improve on those three categories I mentioned...
Yes I can. Ages ago when the SNES was out, EGM ran a picture of SFII for the NES. The game never saw the light of day but again, what's the point of having an inferior/lesser game on a weaker console?

The N64 was largely inferior to the DC.
 

jett

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That's not true. And anyway, see what I said about the arcade game. A PS1 version would be more like that, instead of being enhanced like the DC release was. Would it be a worse game? Yes. But it'd be Soul Calibur, mostly.

But no, you can't say that about any game ever... I mean, not in a recognizably similar game. And most DC games don't do much more than improve on those three categories I mentioned...



I think RR64 definitely looks better than R4, myself. Other things matter more than textures.
You're insane. RR4 featured gourad shading on the cars, colored lighting effects and even a rudimentary form of motion blur. And, of course, immeasurably superior art design.



vs

 

beril

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The problems the PS1 (and Saturn) are multifold, but most of it comes down to lacking a Z-Buffer.
Without a Z-Buffer they can not do per a pixel depth, without per a pixel depth you can not do perspective correct texture mapping (that is the reason that textures distort).
Lack of per a pixel depth also means you have to do polygon sorting to find out what polygon is in front of the other (that is why in PS1 and Saturn games polygons can appear through objects that are in front of them).
It also means that you can not do texture filtering.


The problems with the N64 are that all textures that are going to be used in a frame all had to be loaded into a very small onchip texture cache (the reason it had so many low res textures).

The other problem is that RSP 'microcode" was kind of slow, in reality the RSP was another MIPS CPU and the microcode was just the program it runs to do polygon processing.
The depth buffer has nothing to do with texture filtering; or really with perspectice correct mapping either; you need to calculate the z coordinate for the interpolation but you don't need the zbuffer
 

ghst

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when dr. ian malcolm makes his famous "they didn't stop to think if they should" monologue, he is actually referring to the deployment of anti-aliasing on n64.

if i get cataracts in my old age, atleast i can say i'll have come full circle.
 

KageMaru

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And most DC games don't do much more than improve on those three categories I mentioned...
I was agreeing with your posts before you went on about the DC. I don't see how any system from the 32/64-bit Gen could do MDK2, shenmue, DoA2, or other games that pushed the system.
 

Mama Robotnik

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A Black Falcon, that was a really, really insightful post as per usual. I learned from it!

Just to emphasise - later into the Sega Saturn's life, the system was pulling off some very competitive 3D - unfortunately the format was on life support and barely anyone noticed.

Especially given the limitations of the hardware, these efforts proved the machine could perform miracles in the right (and very patient) hands.







I'd never argue that the Saturn is as capable of 3D as the N64 - but I do think its capabilities have been far-too-often unfairly maligned. As demonstrated by Saturn Quake and Duke Nukem 3d - with the right programmers it could soundly defeat its PS1 counterparts.

(There's a number of people posting screenshots from clearly-emulated PS1 games, just going to emphasise that I knocked together these three gifs based on direct Saturn footage obtained on YouTube).
 

jett

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A Black Falcon, that was a really, really insightful post as per usual. I learned from it!

Just to emphasise - later into the Sega Saturn's life, the system was pulling off some very competitive 3D - unfortunately the format was on life support and barely anyone noticed.

Especially given the limitations of the hardware, these efforts proved the machine could perform miracles in the right (and very patient) hands.







I'd never argue that the Saturn is as capable of 3D as the N64 - but I do think its capabilities have been far-too-often unfairly maligned. As demonstrated by Saturn Quake and Duke Nukem 3d - with the right programmers it could soundly defeat its PS1 counterparts.

(There's a number of people posting screenshots from clearly-emulated PS1 games, just going to emphasise that I knocked together these three gifs based on direct Saturn footage obtained on YouTube).
Tobal 2 picture I posted is a direct feed shot taken by myself. It features no added effects or texture filtering or anything of the sort. T2 already ran in high resolution on the PS1. The Xenogears picture does seem to be emulated but I only wanted to point out how good that texture looked. :p

Your gifs look nice, but what I remember of Saturn 3D is being exceptionally ugly. Distinctly remember being "shocked" by Panzer Dragoon Zwei.
 

Zabka

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Lords knows I loved my Saturn to an unnatural degree but Metal Gear Solid and Tekken 3 blew my mind back then.
 

rjc571

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N64 was better at rendering larger open areas but PSX could pack more detail into small environments. PSX probably couldn't have handled the Zelda or Banjo Kazooie games, while the N64 wouldn't have been able to run the Crash Bandicoot games.

Soul Calibur actually has lower polygon counts than even many other 3d Saturn fighting games, surprisingly enough
That's the most hilariously incorrect statement I've ever read... Soul Calibur was drawing over 1.5 million vertices per second. The Saturn couldn't even theoretically reach 20% of that number.
 

encephalon

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Was texture warping a bigger problem in some games moreso than others? Front Mission 3 seemed to have more considerable warping than other games I've played. I'm wondering if there were ways that the warping was reduced.

Anyways, I wonder if those who worry about "jaggies" today are more fond of the N64's graphics. Personally, I have no issue with seeing pixels on my screen and prefer the showing on the PS1 to the N64 for the most part (despite never owning the original PS1 console, but a N64 instead).
 
Aug 6, 2006
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Yes I can. Ages ago when the SNES was out, EGM ran a picture of SFII for the NES. The game never saw the light of day but again, what's the point of having an inferior/lesser game on a weaker console?
There's a difference between that and a case where the original arcade game looks more like the older system's visuals, though, like is true for Soul Calibur... there you're talking about downgraded ports to older systems, but Soul Calibur was an upgraded port to a newer system. Different thing. And as I said, it's actually pushing fewer polygons than many other DC fighters, despite how impressive it looks (and I agree, it looks great).

The N64 was largely inferior to the DC.
Sure, the DC was more powerful, of course. However, first, those three things I said, better textures, better framerates, and progressive scan, use up lots of polygons versus what 5th gen consoles were doing. And second, as I said, most Dreamcast games didn't get anywhere near actually pushing the hardware. As a result, in terms of polygons-on-screen-per-frame, lots of DC games don't push things much at all above 5th gen levels.

I was agreeing with your posts before you went on about the DC. I don't see how any system from the 32/64-bit Gen could do MDK2, shenmue, DoA2, or other games that pushed the system.
I've already suggested how they could have done Shenmue (look at the Saturn version, it'd be more like that), but didn't you notice how I mentioned how DoA2 was one of those few DC games that actually did look fully next-gen and clearly did use the power of the system? So yeah, I agree in that case. As for MDK2, I've never played it for DC, so I don't know. I played the PC version back when the game came out (great game!).

Yeah it was a launch title. In fact, the Gamecube was when they first launched a system without a Mario title. I don't count Luigi's Mansion as a Mario game.
First console, yes, but first system, no. The Virtual Boy and Game Boy Color both did not launch with Mario titles. And actually, Luigi's Mansion is closer to being a Mario game than anything out for the GBC launch... at least the VB did get Mario's Tennis at launch, even if it wasn't a platformer. The GBC didn't even have something like that, unless you count Game & Watch Gallery 2 as a Mario game. Sure he's in it, but that's a pretty sketchy case...

A Black Falcon, that was a really, really insightful post as per usual. I learned from it!

Just to emphasise - later into the Sega Saturn's life, the system was pulling off some very competitive 3D - unfortunately the format was on life support and barely anyone noticed.

Especially given the limitations of the hardware, these efforts proved the machine could perform miracles in the right (and very patient) hands.

http://i.minus.com/i3cbkkhnn80w3.gif

http://i.minus.com/ibo6kAyzMtWbm0.gif

http://i.minus.com/iOdC9nJOV9GhL.gif

I'd never argue that the Saturn is as capable of 3D as the N64 - but I do think its capabilities have been far-too-often unfairly maligned. As demonstrated by Saturn Quake and Duke Nukem 3d - with the right programmers it could soundly defeat its PS1 counterparts.

(There's a number of people posting screenshots from clearly-emulated PS1 games, just going to emphasise that I knocked together these three gifs based on direct Saturn footage obtained on YouTube).
I agree for sure, Saturn 3d is maligned far, far beyond the actual difference between it and the PS1. Actually play both systems, and restrict yourself to PS1 games from launch to 1997 or 1998, and you'll see how small the difference is.

As for emulators vs. real systems, yeah, that's a big issue for the N64 and PS1 particularly -- emulator shots, and videos, are everywhere for both systems. That's why I like that Rush 2049 N64 video I linked -- it's actually original-hardware, and not yet another emulator video.

You're insane. RR4 featured gourad shading on the cars, colored lighting effects and even a rudimentary form of motion blur. And, of course, immeasurably superior art design.



vs

Hah, did you delete that other shot because of how horribly jaggy it was? That's sort of how the game looks, though... ugly PS1 3d. They tried, but the PS1 can't do N64 image quality... I got the game hoping that it'd at least look good, but... eh. It's nice for the PS1, sure, though I don't think it quite matches stuff like Rollcage or Wipeout 3, but I like the N64 one's graphics more.

As for the gameplay though, I don't like the series in general; I think the first version of Daytona for the Saturn is a far better game, gameplay-wise, than anything in the Ridge Racer series (note: I'm one of those people who actually like the first Saturn version of Daytona), and the N64 is my favorite 5th gen platform overall for racing games.

Not only that, it was a Japanese launch title. Stands still as the best original launch title to ever be released.
I don't know, while Mario 64 is certainly at the top of my list too, it does have some competition. Most obviously, Super Mario World and F-Zero were both Japanese SNES launch titles, and both are incredibly mind-blowing for that late 1990 release...
 

DjRoomba

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lol i think people forget just how shit ps1 games looked sometimes. The overall blurriness of the n64 is way better than the eye-bleedingly bad wavy, unstable, jaggy textures. ps1 could have orchestrated music though, the only advantage.
 

KageMaru

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Is it wrong that I've never been impressed with Mario 64? I enjoyed the game but all I saw was low poly scenes, blurry textures, and sprites everywhere.

N64 was better at rendering larger open areas but PSX could pack more detail into small environments. PSX probably couldn't have handled the Zelda or Banjo Kazooie games, while the N64 wouldn't have been able to run the Crash Bandicoot games.
How does this even make sense?
 

dimb

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Is it wrong that I've never been impressed with Mario 64? I enjoyed the game but all I saw was low poly scenes, blurry textures, and sprites everywhere.
I would imagine it's the game design people are impressed with.
 
Aug 6, 2006
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N64 was better at rendering larger open areas but PSX could pack more detail into small environments. PSX probably couldn't have handled the Zelda or Banjo Kazooie games, while the N64 wouldn't have been able to run the Crash Bandicoot games.
The N64 couldn't do Crash? Why not? Just because no one tried? Well, Rayman 2 is linear too, but I guess that's more open than Crash so I don't know if you'd count it. The same goes for Tonic Trouble. The closest to Crash on the N64 that I can think of, though, would be Donald Duck: Goin' Quackers. Half of that game's a Crash-style title, the other half's a 2.5d platformer.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Se1wU303Owk (original hardware video)

That's the most hilariously incorrect statement I've ever read... Soul Calibur was drawing over 1.5 million vertices per second. The Saturn couldn't even theoretically reach 20% of that number.
Gah, sorry, I mean Dreamcast of course!
 

jett

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Hah, did you delete that other shot because of how horribly jaggy it was? That's sort of how the game looks, though... ugly PS1 3d. They tried, but the PS1 can't do N64 image quality... I got the game hoping that it'd at least look good, but... eh. It's nice for the PS1, sure, though I don't think it quite matches stuff like Rollcage or Wipeout 3, but I like the N64 one's graphics more.
I only deleted it cuz I couldn't find a comparable shot of RR64. Here it is again



That looks better than anything on RR64. That game is fucking ugly, I find it incredible you're actually defending it against R4.
 

Mama Robotnik

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Is it wrong that I've never been impressed with Mario 64? I enjoyed the game but all I saw was low poly scenes, blurry textures, and sprites everywhere.
I played it a few months after it came out - I was young and had only seen screenshots of the game.

When I realised that I could literally jump into the river and swim under the bridge, no invisible walls, I was dumbfounded. When I first approached a painting and it shimmered like a wall of water, I felt that in this mere ten minutes, there was nothing like this in gaming - it was an advancement of exploration into 3D the likes of which the console industry had never seen.

At the time, describing myself as being "impressed" would be a dramatic understatement. It was revolutionary, in visuals, 3D control and design, and in opportunities for exploration.
 

raziel

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never liked the way N64 games looked. they all looked like quest 64 to me. blocky, muddy, and barren. the poor framerates and sound just contributed to the overall feeling of something not quite ready for showtime.
 

Dion Blaster

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Mario 64 was my first home console video game. My mind was blown. I can only imagine how amazing it was to people who had played through the NES and SNES eras.
 
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Was texture warping a bigger problem in some games moreso than others? Front Mission 3 seemed to have more considerable warping than other games I've played. I'm wondering if there were ways that the warping was reduced.
The only way to reduce it is to have versions of the objects split into more polygons, even for flat surfaces. I hesitate to use the word tessellation because a lot of people on GAF get over excited by that word. The shapes of the polygons themselves are perspective correct, it's just the textures aren't, so the more polygons you use, the better it looks.

I think Metal Gear Solid does some of that, When you're crawling through the vents, as you get nearer to them, the surfaces pop into a more corrected look. Or I might be remembering it wrong.


Of course if Font Mission 3 was purely an isometric style view, there wouldn't be a problem because not much perspective would be involved.
 

Dion Blaster

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never liked the way N64 games looked. they all looked like quest 64 to me. blocky, muddy, and barren. the poor framerates and sound just contributed to the overall feeling of something not quite ready for showtime.
I feel similarly about PS1 games but for different reasons. I think that because the consoles were SO different that something just seemed off (different) about whichever one you weren't used to.