Go behind the scenes at Massive Entertainment — A Ubisoft Studio, and discover the power of the Snowdrop engine; Massive’s in-house answer to video game creation on the new generation of consoles. Snowdrop supports the philosophy of the studio to work better, not bigger, by giving content creators the freedom to experiment, prototype and truly unleash their creativity.
A Link Between Worlds, the latest 3DS Zelda adventure derived from the SNES classic, A Link to the Past, will be launching on November 22nd. Review copies have been shipping out, and USGamer has weighed in on the game, utterly deriding the graphics, while praising the controls and overall gameplay. The site’s Jeremy Parish calls the gameplay smooth and fast, while calling the graphics both “crummy” and “barfy-looking.” In a couple more weeks, gamers will be able to decide for themselves whether or not the game’s visuals live up to these descriptions. A transcript of USGamer’s write-up on the title appears below.
What do you think? Does A Link Between Worlds look amateurish based on the videos that can be viewed online? Let us know in the comments!
“You can’t help but be disappointed by this outcome, as the Zelda games have generally featured fairly attractive graphics. You’d certainly never know about this legacy by looking at this latest entry, though. Even the DS games, low-resolution as they were, demonstrated a pleasant art style that worked well within that system’s constraints. A Link Between Worlds reminds me less of Phantom Hourglass and more of those laughably terrible CDi games that Philips developed (leaving a permanent stain on the franchise’s reputation to serve as Nintendo’s penance for backing out on their “Play Station” deal with Sony). I am many hours into A Link Between Worlds at this point, and throughout the entire adventure I’ve cringed at the agony being inflicted on my eyes every time I glance at the screen”
The creator of Smash Bros. has recently made the following statement about the Wii U and Nintendo 3DS versions of the long-awaited game.
The Wii U version will have more detail and “bigger stages as seen on previous home consoles”- which is to be expected. And regarding the 3DS version, he highlights the fact that the 3DS version, though displayed through screenshots, really has to be played to be appreciated. He points out the fact “that everything on 3DS is designed for that screen, and that’s where they look the best.” He then went on to say “Too bad we can’t show everybody what it looks like on the system.” Well Sakurai, too bad you aren’t familiar with the eShop where developers have allowed demos of their games to be played (and seen in person) for years!
What do you guys think? Should a downloadable demo version of Smash Bros be available so that people can “appreciate” its graphics? Also, what sort of ‘connectivity’ do you expect from the 3DS and Wii U versions as he had previously mentioned? Sound off in the comments!
Cevat Yerli, chief executive of Crytek, is absolutely convinced that Crysis 3 will be a graphical and technical benchmark for games for at least two years. Yerli says that even Unreal Engine 4 would have difficulty running the technically impressive Crysis 3, which is due out on February 19th. Here’s some of his thoughts.
“Crysis 3 on PC is going to be a benchmark experience for at least two years. When I see what’s happening on the PC market, and even what we do. The PC market is not going to grow vastly more before a lot of games catch up. We had the same thing with the first Crysis on PC. When Crysis launched, it was the high-end benchmark for a good three years. I think Crysis 3 is going to do that again.”
“I honestly think that Unreal Engine 4 would not be able to do Crysis 3 on consoles right now. The PC version could do it, maybe, but it would call for a higher PC spec. CryEngine 3 is capable of doing anything Unreal Engine 4 can. We don’t need to tick up the number to CryEngine 4.”
“As far as next-gen console games, I think Crysis 3 on the PC will be very comparable. Because it’s a high-end PC title, implicitly it’s a next-gen game. It’s just a next-gen PC game.”
Graphics technology company Umbra Software is an official middleware tools provider with Nintendo for the Wii U console. The company has announced that a customized version of Umbra’s latest rendering optimization middleware is available for evaluations for licensed Wii U developers. Wii U’s version of Mass Effect 3, for example, is a title that uses Umbra’s rendering optimization.
Eurogamer have revised their headline that claimed Sega said Wii U graphics are on-par with current generation consoles. Now they make it clear that developer Sumo Digital was actually referring to the graphics of the Wii U version of Sonic & All-Stars Racing Transformed, rather than the Wii U console’s graphics. Eurogamer apologizes for the confusion that the original article has caused.
Eurogamer’s Revised Headline: Sega: Sonic and Sega All-Stars Racing Transformed Wii U graphics on-par with PlayStation 3 version, “maybe even better”
UPDATE: We’ve updated the headline of this article to better reflect the content of the story. Sega was referring to the visuals of Sonic and Sega All-Stars Racing Transformed on Wii U compared to the visuals of the other versions, not the graphics capabilities of the Wii U itself. Sorry for the confusion this has caused.
Mark Rein, the VP of Unreal Engine 4 studio Epic Games, says that next generation console visuals will be the graphical equivalent of Adam West’s Batman to Christian Bale’s Dark Knight Rises. Rein says that once you’ve succumb to next generation visuals it’s extremely difficult to go back to current generation games.
“Pushing the visuals will always be important. Humans evolve very slowly (over millions of years) but their tastes evolve at exponentially faster rates. This is true for pretty much all forms of entertainment and media.”
“During my own brief lifetime thus far I’ve gone from watching the Adam West Batman shows of the ‘60s to watching Christian Bale’s Dark Knight today. It’s hard to go back to watch the older series, and people generally don’t.”
“Their expectations evolve as new technologies become commonplace. Think of what mobile games looked like before the iPhone came out, and that was only five years ago!”
Satoru Iwata believes that developers are currently using only half of the Wii U’s full potential. Iwata mentions how existing HD consoles have been on the market for over six years, and developers have been continuously improving their games’ visuals over time. Recent Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3 titles look a lot better than games that were released during or close to the consoles’ launches. Wii U games’ visuals will improve as time goes on.
“While existing platforms have engines that development teams have tuned and optimized for six to seven years after their respective launches, the Wii U is a new platform that has slightly different architecture and, since development teams have only just begun development on software for it, they are only at the halfway point to utilising its full potential.”
“Despite this fact, however, if you look at the game Assassin’s Creed 3, which was recently announced or shown, you can’t see much difference when you compare it with games for other companies’ systems.”
“We just had to go about it in a clever way in terms of how we create our levels,” Pinkney explained, “systems that we’ve put in place to keep them varied, all of the different character animations and so on. We had to be very clever to include all of this, but yes this is pushing the limits of the console.”
- Dawn Pinkney, Activison
Nintendo has not revealed any specs for the 3DS system, but expect it to well surpass the Nintendo DS in visual and processor capabilities. To provide stereoscopic 3D effects the system must have the ability to render each game field twice, one for each of the player’s eyes, a technique that will require significant horsepower to produce.
Several developers that have experienced 3DS in its current form have reported, off the record, that it has processing capabilities that far exceed the Nintendo Wii and bring the device with abilities that are close to HD consoles such as PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360.
- IGN sources