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

May 24, 2012
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I remember the day I decided to buy a dreamcast.... it was the day they discovered how to boot homebrew without any sort of mod chip or other trickery... Just burn a disc using disc juggler, insert homebrew disc, run NES games.

Yes, my dreamcast was a $99 NES and I loved it.
 
Apr 7, 2006
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I remember PSX was a name the gaming press used before the system was released.

Found an article with some stuff on the term: http://www.edge-online.com/features/making-playstation?page=5
A larger sticking point, however, was PlayStation branding. SCEA hated the name and wanted to change it to PSX, a contraction of the project’s codename. “This was actually a huge internal battle, to the point where there was research done among consumer groups,” says Harrison, who, having seen various youth groups reacting badly to the name PlayStation, had his own fears about it. “I remember thinking, ‘Oh my God, the name is bombing and everyone is going to hate it’. I shared the information with Tokunaka-san, and he said, ‘Oh, that’s nothing, you should have heard what people said about Walkman’. And that pretty much ended the debate.” In Europe, at least: the US nevertheless went ahead with early trade promotion, calling it PSX, and had even come up with its own mascot, Polygon Man.
 
May 17, 2010
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The jiggling look is from the low precision fixed point* transformations. The DS has the same problem.
*I think they were fixed point anyway.
The fixed point had it's limitations, but it wasn't the ultimate reason.

Lack of sub-pixel precision on triangle drawing caused vertexes to pop from pixel center to pixel center and caused the most obvious problem.

Remember the first time our coder implemented sub-pixel precision and showed the difference, we were floored scene looked stable even without perspective correction. (this was on fixed point precision.)
 
Feb 25, 2012
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Why would I want to soil my eyes with that hideous crap when I can play this?

Lol oh man. That was the first game I purchased with my PSX based purely on the Toriyama artwork on the case. The FF7 demo didn't hurt either.

The graphics imo were equally shitty on both systems but the PSX having great pre rendered stuff in a lot of games made it look better.

I think the PSX being able to deliver things like FMV cutscenes, better audio, better controller and the blossoming of a bunch of fantastic franchises (metal gear, tekken, square support, tony hawk, castlevania) is what made it really thrive.

The N64 was my go to system for more party oriented games due to the 4 controller support. The PSX with multitap still wasn't anywhere close to party friendly as the N64 was. Fantastic 1st party support has always steered Nintendo in the right direction but their lack of any good 3rd party games was meh.
 
Aug 6, 2006
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What did the X stand for?
PlayStation eXperimental. It was a prerelease codename, but Sony of America liked "PSX" as an acronym for the system, instead of just PS, and used that acronym early on. Sony of Japan never used it.

PSX kind of caught on when sony introduced it's DVR/PS1/2 hybrid
No, that was Sony of Japan ignoring that Sony of America had used PSX to refer to the PS1 for years, and releasing something completely different with the same acronym anyway. At least they didn't release it here under that same name, that would have been quite confusing.

PsOne was actually the official name of the 2000 PlayStation redesign.
This is true, the small redesign is called the PSone (one in lowercase, PS in caps).

How did Sega Saturn fare on this, same trouble as PS1?
Yes, the SS is pretty much the same as the PS1 on that score.

I remember PSX was a name the gaming press used before the system was released.

Found an article with some stuff on the term: http://www.edge-online.com/features/making-playstation?page=5
Yeah, the early Playstation ads had Polygon Man in them as Sony's mascot. Because you know, everyone needed a mascot, and this was before Crash... he didn't catch on, though, and Sony ditched him after too long. He never was in any games.
 
Jan 12, 2012
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To me 3D just looks much cleaner on the N64.

I was visually impressed by games like RE2 and MGS on PS1 because they were so detailed, but something always looked flickery and blurry.
The N64 did have a really nice port of Resident Evil 2, it was an excellent showcase of Angel Studios software compression algorithms. Quite impressive how the managed to fit 2 discs worth of data into one 64MB (512Mbit) cartridge. Though, the N64 version did suffer a bit from badly compressed video and the odd lower resolution 2D backdrop. It did have slightly higher resolution 3D models and I think it may have had better model textures as well.

Though there was a nice postmortem write up on Gameasutra where one of the developers says that with a little more time they could've actually improved the quality of the videos in the N64 port.



Sonic Adventure definitely isn't Dreamcast's best.
This is very true. I wouldn't list Sonic Adventure 1 as one of the better looking games on the console either. But you would still be hard pressed to find any N64 game that could compete with the same level of visual fidelity of a first generation Dreamcast game like SA1.

The Dreamcast was pretty capable of bringing decent PC ports of games like Unreal Tournament 99 and Quake 3 at the time. Sure they could never match up to their higher end PC brethren running on 3DFX, Riva TNT/ Geforce 256 cards of that era. But the console still did a pretty admirable job.


PSX kind of caught on when sony introduced it's DVR/PS1 hybrid
Huh? I remember gaming magazines and online gaming sites calling the console the PSX long before 2003. I'm not actually sure what the 'X' stood for. But there are rumours that Sony called it the PSx internally during development to differentiate it from the original SNES Playstation add-on. Though I am not sure if that is true.
 
Sep 5, 2011
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FWIW, going slightly off topic, PSX games look surprisingly solid on the Vita. Some are still eyesoars, but most of them hold up really well. I was actually surprised by this. Because playing a PSX game on the PS3 on a big screen - IMO- looks like a blurry mess from hell.
They look better on the PSP screen than they ever looked on a CRT too. Probably the size of the screen but the PSP screen has nice colors.

I am sure it looks even better on the Vita.
 
Aug 6, 2006
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Yoshi's story is not the type of game you use to prove a point of N64 having better graphics. Better artstyle maybe, better graphics? No. Yoshi's story was just a (somehow) less graphically impressive version of Yoshi's Island.
No, Yoshi's Story has outstanding 2d graphics. It's really a showcase for what the N64 can do in 2d, but almost never did because developers were all doing 3d on the system.
 
Aug 15, 2007
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Something about lack of VRAM.
Fun facts:

The N64 had 4kb of texture memory, but could put its framebuffer and Z buffer anywhere in main memory. This led to some seriously cool debug modes where you could visualize all your RAM - the black spaces were places you were allocating a lot of memory you weren't using.

4kb = one 64x64x8 bit texture (256 color palette.) There were many other texture formats that were valid, but no texture could ever go over 4kb.

Its main memory was 9 bits per byte instead of 8 bits. The extra bit was used as a coverage bit for its built in antialiasing, which really sucked to work around when you wanted something to actually be crisp. It was pretty much free, though.

It had an actual Z buffer and perspective correct texturing. This was Seriously Cool At The Time.

Its graphics chip was programmable; there was 4kb (if I am remembering right) of space for microcode that implemented vertex transform and display list processing. This wasn't generally something we were allowed to do ourselves.

The entire PilotWings 64 game occupied 8 megabytes of memory (the size of its cartridge.) For some perspective, 8 megs = two 1024x1024x32 bit texture maps - a pretty common size in games these days.

Good times, good times.
 
No, Yoshi's Story has outstanding 2d graphics. It's really a showcase for what the N64 can do in 2d, but almost never did because developers were all doing 3d on the system.
This has always interested me, were there any other 2D games on the N64 that are noteworthy? I always thought the console was bad at 2D. Looking back, they should have made a Donkey Kong in the sort of pre-rendered cgi look that Yosh's Story had on the N64.
 
Jul 16, 2004
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The gap between Psx and n64 was IMO bigger than the gap between the ps2 and the gc or Xbox. Different generation much like dreamcast was over n64

N64 had huge 3d worlds and effects ( like lens flares!) that were never replicated on playstation which itself was only more impressive to some who didn't know the difference between real time and pre rendered graphics.

Zelda, goldeneye , perfect dark, conker, pod racer, rogue squadron, Turok , 1080 , wave race had no zero competition on playstation.

Amazing that even when nintendo had far and away the most powerful console
Of its time, people still attacked or failed to respect the hardwares capabilities.
 
Oct 10, 2004
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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.
No offense to A Black Falcon but, while the N64 is factually faster and a more advanced 3D system than the PSone (even with its share of limitations), he just loves the system a little bit too much sometimes (and making long ass posts while he's at it!).
 

whitehawk

leeches are the best bait when attempting to land bass
Jan 27, 2008
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Nope that's not ugly in the slightest. Not the best game, but certainly not ugly.
Yoshi's Island is my favourite game of all time. I never played Yoshi's Story, so I gave it a shot a few years ago on VC. I had to stop less than an hour in, wasn't enjoying any of it.

Also I will admit I think the visuals are hurt by the N64s poor ability to output good 2D graphics.
 
Jul 5, 2010
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More PSX porn


Dino Crisis - Capcom understanding the PSX architecture so much more after Resident Evil - The moving of the camera as you move as opposed to the sudden perspective shifts made the game jaw-dropping to me.





Vagrant Story - The poster boy of how good art direction can go a very, VERY long way towards making your game look amazing, despite any tech limitations you are working with. On PSP / VITA, this is still pleasant to look at

 

GDGF

Soothsayer
Jun 6, 2004
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Fun facts:

The N64 had 4kb of texture memory, but could put its framebuffer and Z buffer anywhere in main memory. This led to some seriously cool debug modes where you could visualize all your RAM - the black spaces were places you were allocating a lot of memory you weren't using.

4kb = one 64x64x8 bit texture (256 color palette.) There were many other texture formats that were valid, but no texture could ever go over 4kb.

Its main memory was 9 bits per byte instead of 8 bits. The extra bit was used as a coverage bit for its built in antialiasing, which really sucked to work around when you wanted something to actually be crisp. It was pretty much free, though.

It had an actual Z buffer and perspective correct texturing. This was Seriously Cool At The Time.

Its graphics chip was programmable; there was 4kb (if I am remembering right) of space for microcode that implemented vertex transform and display list processing. This wasn't generally something we were allowed to do ourselves.

The entire PilotWings 64 game occupied 8 megabytes of memory (the size of its cartridge.) For some perspective, 8 megs = two 1024x1024x32 bit texture maps - a pretty common size in games these days.

Good times, good times.
Paradigm?
 
Sep 21, 2011
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First time in years that I tried to boot up GT1 and GT2, I busted out laughing. It looked like a moving mosaic to me. Like, I wanted to ask "Why is the whole screen censored?"

GT2 was one of my favorites back then, but I wonder how the hell I played it on PS1 and PS2. Naw, naw...gotta do this on a emulator.
 
Oct 4, 2009
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IMO overall it was better however it had some serious bottleneck in the form of cache, cartridge space and unoptimised (for videogames) microcode.

Inferior to the Saturn.
at 2d
Quote for truth.

EDIT:
Fun facts:

The N64 had 4kb of texture memory, but could put its framebuffer and Z buffer anywhere in main memory. This led to some seriously cool debug modes where you could visualize all your RAM - the black spaces were places you were allocating a lot of memory you weren't using.

4kb = one 64x64x8 bit texture (256 color palette.) There were many other texture formats that were valid, but no texture could ever go over 4kb.

Its main memory was 9 bits per byte instead of 8 bits. The extra bit was used as a coverage bit for its built in antialiasing, which really sucked to work around when you wanted something to actually be crisp. It was pretty much free, though.

It had an actual Z buffer and perspective correct texturing. This was Seriously Cool At The Time.

Its graphics chip was programmable; there was 4kb (if I am remembering right) of space for microcode that implemented vertex transform and display list processing. This wasn't generally something we were allowed to do ourselves.

The entire PilotWings 64 game occupied 8 megabytes of memory (the size of its cartridge.) For some perspective, 8 megs = two 1024x1024x32 bit texture maps - a pretty common size in games these days.

Good times, good times.
More info on Pilotwing 64 sequel pls.
 

Goron2000

best junior ever
Dec 8, 2008
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T3 for PSX is 30 FPS, not 60.Compared to arcade version, polygons are fewer and the backgrounds are paralax and not 3D.

It's the same technics AM2 used when they ported VF2 to Saturn.

But, yeah, both games was miracles when they were released for 32-bits brothers.
Several sources said 60 but either way it's amazing.