Valve Still Not Interested in the PlayStation 3

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mapesdhs

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Another possible badly ported PS3 game example would be Oblivion GOTY edition,
ie. the bugs present in the PC version were not removed (so a friend who bought
it for his PS3 told me). This can ruin the gameplay sometimes, on occasion even
halt the gameplay completely.

I know a company in Greece that was working on an RPG. In the end they decided
not to do a PS3 port precisely because of the coding complexity.

For me though, the PS3 is just too expensive. It has more merit as a combined
gaming platform and blue ray player, rather than just for games. Despite being
an ardent fan of the N64 when it came out (I had the 1st ever web site on the
N64, when it was still known as the Ultra64), I do like the flexibility of PC
gaming, eg. the mods available for games such as Stalker and Oblivion. And the
fact that I can choose at what level to play games in terms of visual realism
by spending more if I want to. I'm already playing these games at 2048x1536,
well beyond what the PS3 can output, and that's just with a simple 8800GT
and dual-3GHz AMD, not remotely up-to-date by modern standards. Plus of course
I can use the PC for other things, especially video encoding (digitising large
VHS documentary archive).

It's also true that for many it's good fun putting together their PC gaming rigs,
no doubt mixed in with the tech buzz of CPU/gfx overclocking. It's something
future industry needs, people who like doing this sort of thing. A liken it to
the way many people like myself had so much fun messing around with 8bit/16bit
systems when they first appeared in the early/mid-1980s, writing our own
programs, hacking the hardware, coding in assembly, etc. Can't really do this
sort of thing today, so PC gfx/CPU overclocking, building gaming rigs,
experimenting with advanced cooling solutions, etc. is like the modern
replacement hobby. We need people to get into this sort of thing as a source
of future engineers, etc.

I still like playing PS2 games though. The thing about console games is they're
easy to just dip into. I'm currently playing CoD2 (Big Red One) for PS2 again,
for about the 5th time. :D I just like how it plays, perfect for a quick 20
minute bash when I need a break, or if I've just finished watching a movie
like 'A Bridge Too Far' or 'Band of Brothers' (hehe, get in the mood!). By
contrast, I don't like to play Oblivion/Stalker on my PC unless I can spend
a good couple of hours or more to get well into it.

The truth is, the market needs both kinds of platform. People have different
needs and different tastes. But an earlier poster is right in saying it would
be sad if the games being made were driven purely from a business perspective,
as that would lead to little new innovation and certainly nothing like the Wii
(not a platform I'd ever buy, but many love it without a doubt and it's
definitely opened up gaming to a wider audience). We need a mix for the market
to be healthy, and long may that continue. I might get a PS3 when a) they're
cheap enough, b) HDTV has matured and one can get a huge OLED screen without
taking out a double mortgage. :D

Ian.

 

JeanLuc

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There's no chacne that the PS3 will become the next Sega Saturn the PS3 in it's currant state has sold more then enough units to avoid that happing. The Saturn was being outsold 3/5 to 1 by the PSX that's not the case with the PS3 and the 360, although the 360 has a good lead in terms of hardware it's not enough to bury the PS3 for good.
 

geoffs

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[citation][nom]otacon[/nom]...and since the upcoming PS4 is supposedly going to use the same Cell chip he doesn't see it changing for many many years.[/citation]All the more reason to start learning it now. Nobody said develop exclusively for the PS3, but leverage your investment in PC/Xbox360 development by porting many of those games to the PS3. If you can get just 5% of PS3 owners as buyers, that's an extra 1M copies of each. That will pay for a pretty good bit of development.

Or you could take Valve's approach. Let's ignore 20+ million (and growing) potential buyers now, knowing that 20+M may grow to 50M in the next 5 years.

Since most of Valve's games are based upon a game engine, port the engine one time, and porting the games should be relatively inexpensive (compared to total cost of developing and marketing a new game). You can divide the cost of porting the engine among all the games based upon that engine that you port.

Then, make sure your next engine is designed to take advantage of multi-core CPUs and GPUs (because that's what you can expect in PCs and consoles for the next 10+ years), and that's it's not too dependent upon a specific hardware architecture. That will make it even easier to develop games for any platform with enough power to run that game.

Gee, with that approach, you might also be able to port those games to the Mac and have another 30+M potential customers (although you probably can't count on selling to even 5% of those, gamers buy consoles and/or gaming machines, so incremental sales to Mac owners might only be in the 1-2% range).

The beauty of developing for a console (even though they current ones now outclassed in terms of performance) is that you have a consistent, known hardware environment for a number of years. That extends the shelf life of any games you develop for that platform. That also keeps performance consistent and makes development and support much easier than developing for the wide variety of CPU/OS/RAM/GPU/Motherboard combinations on PCs.

Developing a game for the latest, fastest CPUs and or GPUs on a PC severely limits the potential customer base, as those are expensive and the user base can't/won't upgrade every 12 months. It's cool, probably a lot of fun, and exciting. But being on the "bleeding" edge is never mass market, because it's expensive. At the cost of developing the major game titles today, you need a mass market into which you can sell, and people will balk at spending $500-$1000 to upgrade their machine to play a $50 game. 1.5-3 yr old PCs give you a mass market, but consoles give you that with lower support costs.
 

antilycus

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They payoff to spend time training developers and then making a game for it, is simply just a money pit. Developers and publishers wont make their money back trying to learn how ot take advantage of the PS3. PS2, sure but this isnt 8 years ago
 

dreamphantom_1977

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LOVE STEAM!!!!!! :D

I've been in this argument 100 times. I work in a pawn shop, and we only give 50cents for ps2,xbox games, and only 5 dollars for xbox 360 games and ps3 games. So my only comment is, when they finally come out with the new xbox or the new ps4, then how much do you think you are gonna get for all those games you bought for your new system?

I am a computer gamer for life, and still have and still play most of my older games. Plus, my pc plays way better then the newest consoles. Games are smoother, graphics are way better. And, yes, i play with a xbox 360 controller, keyboard, and mouse. So that argument doesn't work.

Oh, and I do play xbox 360 and ps3 all the time at work. Only because they won't let me bring my pc in. And they both play about the same, except on any game, pc is better.

Oh, and for the selling statistics, they don't include pc hardware, and not all game developers submit there online game sales.. And you have to account for that, otherwise the comparison doesn't really matter. It's just an estimate, and unless "ALL" the numbers are accounted for, then they don't count... I have well over $200 pc games, and thats actually in the package, from the store, not including on my online accounts.

You want to know why consoles are selling so well? Ever since i've ever went into a store, 10 years ago, 5 years ago, last year, last month, the console section has always been 2-10 times larger then the pc sect. PC sales are down because they don't push the sales like they do for the console. If they did, I am confident the pc would outsell all the consoles combined. Last time I checked in a store I seen 6 year old graphics cards. Still pushing the original pci cards. No wonder new gamers shun the pc. How do they expect to sell pc games when the only place to get good hardware is online?

 

dreamphantom_1977

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LOVE STEAM!!!!!! :D

I've been in this argument 100 times. I work in a pawn shop, and we only give 50cents for ps2,xbox games, and only 5 dollars for xbox 360 games and ps3 games. So my only comment is, when they finally come out with the new xbox or the new ps4, then how much do you think you are gonna get for all those games you bought for your new system?

I am a computer gamer for life, and still have and still play most of my older games. Plus, my pc plays way better then the newest consoles. Games are smoother, graphics are way better. And, yes, i play with a xbox 360 controller, keyboard, and mouse. So that argument doesn't work.

Oh, and I do play xbox 360 and ps3 all the time at work. Only because they won't let me bring my pc in. And they both play about the same, except on any game, pc is better.

Oh, and for the selling statistics, they don't include pc hardware, and not all game developers submit there online game sales.. And you have to account for that, otherwise the comparison doesn't really matter. It's just an estimate, and unless "ALL" the numbers are accounted for, then they don't count... I have well over $200 pc games, and thats actually in the package, from the store, not including on my online accounts.

You want to know why consoles are selling so well? Ever since i've ever went into a store, 10 years ago, 5 years ago, last year, last month, the console section has always been 2-10 times larger then the pc sect. PC sales are down because they don't push the sales like they do for the console. If they did, I am confident the pc would outsell all the consoles combined. Last time I checked in a store I seen 6 year old graphics cards. Still pushing the original pci cards. No wonder new gamers shun the pc. How do they expect to sell pc games when the only place to get good hardware is online?

 

10tacle

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As both a PC gamer and PS3 gamer, it does not bother me that Valve is refusing to develop games for the PS3. Besides, I also use the PS3 as a home entertainment tool for playing home movies, downloading movie & game trailers, showing pictures, and streaming music. So many people get lost and hung up thinking the PS3 is just a game console/BD player and nothing else. For me and many others, it's a media centerpiece of a home theater system.
 
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From a technical perspective, I can understand why Valve does not want to invest in learning the PS3 architecture. As a developer, if you ask me to make a new program for you with the option of a) using a framework and architecture I'm already familiar with or b) using a less main-stream and significantly more complex architecture that will net me, at best, a slight performance increase but overall worse textures, then option a is a no-brainer. Now, if option b becomes a less main-stream and significantly more complex architecture that, when applied correctly, offers considerable performance and maintainability benefits, I'll jump on b in a heartbeat.

Learning newer, more complex technologies that move everything forward is always a good thing. Learning newer, more complex technologies that offer the same benefits as existing ones is always a waste of time.

It's kind of funny but I went through this at my job 7 months ago. I was at a crossroad where my manager offered me to work on one of two products. The first product is their main product. It was originally built by an outsourced company and uses a custom javascript library and dependency injection framework. It is also structured (for some retarded reason) around the Visitor pattern (one quick search on google will inform you that the Visitor patter is more complex than necessary and has several drawbacks that are not worth the complexity). The second product is a secondary product we offer. The product was originally built in-house using jQuery on the client, Unity as the dependency injection framework and is structured around the Model-View-Presenter pattern (this was before ASP.NET MVC went out of beta). I went with the second option, not because it was easier or required less work from me, but because the skill set is more relevant and reusable whereas the first product is needlessly complex and learning it will give me no technical benefit.

This is all from a technical perspective. You can argue consumer base and sales figures all day but, being that Gabe is first and foremost a computer and tech geek, I can sympathize with his lack of interest in learning the PS3 architecture.

It’s the reason why c# was able to make a name for itself in a previously Java world. It offers similar if not better performance but also has a more elegant syntax, easier to use framework, more modern and sophisticated development tools, and supports newer programming structures (Java still relies on interfaces as its “event” model). If you are free to make the choice, why learn Java instead of C#? (I feel a cross-platform debate brewing with this last line…)
 
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