The Doodling Astronaut

I am actually nervous about KSP 2

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52 minutes ago, Rocketology said:

By the time KSP 2 releases, the new consoles will be more than a year old or more (and the release date *could* get bumped again),and the console version will be coming months after  the PC version release (unless their original release timeline of PC first, consoles later is altered). Then take into account that they have expanded the scope and depth of what what they are aiming for with KSP 2, and the hardware of current gen consoles may not cut it. Especially as the current gen consoles, even with their updated versions will be more than 4 years old by the time KSP 2 releases, which is old in tech terms. 
Then add in that MS & Sony will want to be selling as many of the new consoles as possible to recoup costs and saturate the market, it makes sense that they would push for KSP 2 to be released on the new consoles over the old.
That being said though, I wouldn't completely rule out a current console release of KSP 2, but that depends on a few things, how many copies of KSP 1 sold on console, and will current console hardware be able to push an enjoyable experience with the expanded scope and depth of what KSP 2 is shaping up to be?

I'll be very surprised if we get an XSX and PS5 release before an XBO and PS4 release, seeing as I don't see the XSX or PS5 selling that much. PC is selling more and more, and people are switching from consoles to PC. They'll want to go where the market is. If there's more people on XBO and PS4, they'll go with XBO and PS4. There's also the issue of the worldwide pandemic going on right now, which is expected to last well into next year. People won't have money to buy next gen consoles. 

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2 hours ago, GoldForest said:

Nope. Cheaper and easier to do it for old consoles. We'll get a XBO and PS4 release before we get an XSX and PS5 release. We may get backwards compatible versions for the next next gen consoles.

It's a Unity game. There's zero reason not to release on PC and both generations of consoles at the same time. The XBox versions will probably even have the same SKU via XBox Smart Delivery. It's actually going to be easier to release proper next-gen builds than trying to push through the XBOne and PS4 versions via backwards compatibility.

57 minutes ago, GoldForest said:

seeing as I don't see the XSX or PS5 selling that much

Game industry is currently experiencing almost no slow-down due to the pandemic. It's hard to insist definitively that this will continue to late 2021 and that the current trend in game sales will extend to consoles, but at the same time, there is currently no reason to suspect that next gen won't sell well. It looks like Sony finally figured out how to have their cake and eat it, and are shipping a console that still has familiar hardware and API to avoid pitfalls of PS3 release, while still providing plenty of amazing improvements that makes PS5 worth having. I'm sure you've heard about switch to an SSD, but I don't think you have any idea just how much of a difference that makes. It's nothing like installing SSD on your PC, because they've built the entire pipeline from SSD memory, to memory controllers, to hardware decoders, and into the chipset to completely streamline how data gets from SSD to RAM, and it's basically as fast as technologically possible right now. There are a few other improvements that are a bit technical to discuss, but will provide improvements to quality of gaming experience for both PS4 and PS5 era games running on PS5 with either zero or absolutely minimal effort from devs.

Microsoft hasn't been quite as open about what they're putting into their console so far, from what I've seen published, but they are also making improvements across the board. They are also going with an SSD, but it's hard to say if they're quite as all in as Sony. What we do know is that with next generation hardware support for ray tracing becomes an established feature across all major platforms, which is huge in and of itself. Again, it's a little hard to say for sure yet how big RT will be based on officially published info, but my biggest takeaway from last-year's SIGGRAPH and how heavily ray tracing has been featured, even a little goes long way, so long as you have hardware support for it. You don't have to render every pixel on the screen with rays to get a much better looking scene. It's subtle, but once you start playing games that feature good GI and shadows using RT, it will be hard to go back, and both systems claim to be capable of it. It won't be long until game developers embrace this new tech and it will be a must-have for a lot of new games. This means sales for next gen consoles and RT-capable graphics cards.

All in all, I think by late 2021 the install base for Series X and PS5 will be significant. They certainly won't come close to install base for current gen yet, but in terms of generated game sale revenue, they should start getting close.

 

But kind of a moot point, like I said. Even if install base for SX and PS5 will be tiny, there's just no reason not to have a build for them. You can justify having less QA on it, and maybe not bothering to tune for better performance, but given that install bases will grow, and you can patch the games later to leverage the hardware better, it's best just to ship all of the versions on the same date.

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2 hours ago, K^2 said:

It's a Unity game. There's zero reason not to release on PC and both generations of consoles at the same time. The XBox versions will probably even have the same SKU via XBox Smart Delivery. It's actually going to be easier to release proper next-gen builds than trying to push through the XBOne and PS4 versions via backwards compatibility.

I see two reasons:
Sales vs Sales. Will KSP 2 sell better/more on Next Gen or Current Gen.
And Certification process. The reason KSP 1 and its updates takes so long to get on to XBO and PS4 is Microsoft's and Sony's aggressive certification processes. That's why it can take up to six months to a year for the updates to hit the console versions, because Microsoft and especially Sony demand so much of the game. If they find one thing wrong, they send it back and the process starts all over again. I feel that Sony with double down on certification process.  

 

2 hours ago, K^2 said:

Game industry is currently experiencing almost no slow-down due to the pandemic. It's hard to insist definitively that this will continue to late 2021 and that the current trend in game sales will extend to consoles, but at the same time, there is currently no reason to suspect that next gen won't sell well.

Video games aren't suffering, no. That's thanks to digital platforms such as Steam. But consoles are physical hardware. Much different than a digital game. Games are also far cheaper than a console. It's easy to buy a sixty dollar game from paycheck to paycheck. Buying a $400 console on a paycheck to paycheck life style is not. 

Furthermore, there's talks about new lockdowns. If Sony or Microsoft have to halt production due to a lockdown, it will delay the sale of the PS5 and XSX. This will also force games to either delay release, or go with current gen releases, and I think they'd rather recompile the game and release with a slight delay on current gen consoles, than having to delay until the new consoles are out. 

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3 hours ago, K^2 said:

I'm sure you've heard about switch to an SSD, but I don't think you have any idea just how much of a difference that makes. It's nothing like installing SSD on your PC, because they've built the entire pipeline from SSD memory, to memory controllers, to hardware decoders, and into the chipset to completely streamline how data gets from SSD to RAM, and it's basically as fast as technologically possible right now.

I'd say this is mostly marketing babble and the real reason is simply that they were hoping to save the 50 or so Dollars on the upgrade to 32GB RAM. And that will come to haunt them in the second half of the lifecycle.

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31 minutes ago, Harry Rhodan said:

I'd say this is mostly marketing babble and the real reason is simply that they were hoping to save the 50 or so Dollars on the upgrade to 32GB RAM. And that will come to haunt them in the second half of the lifecycle.

Even if it isn't; RAM crushes even the fastest SSD's in raw IOPS by literal orders of magnitude. So PC's with slow storage can just use more RAM to compensate; storage will always be the bottleneck no matter what. PC's are designed to mitigate this with their memory model (Cashe, RAM, VRAM, Storage). Consoles have been using a unified memory model for this and the future gen (Sharing RAM with the GPU), and just like the AMD APU solutions the performance differences are killing them.

To me it looks like they're trying to reduce the impact of that shared memory model without going to dedicated VRAM on the GPU, and not much else. Only time will tell realistically, but the current hype and doomsaying about how HDDS are DEAD i think is very much premature. If hardware gets in hand and we see massive performance differences? Then I'll gladly admit I'm wrong, but right now iv'e heard the same extravagant claims before with each previous generation and i have no reason to take any of it at face value. Also much of this is a combination of bespoke hardware and software solutions, and we all know how much people LOVED programming for the PS3's custom CELL processor....

The biggest improvement in the new consoles in my opinion is actually the CPU; Ryzen will make more of a difference than these overhyped SSD's and rayeeeee tracing than i think people realize. The Jaguar cores in the current consoles are basically 6-year old mobile parts from some of AMD's worst architecture choices, and as a result their IPC is abysmal along with their thermals. Just the CPU grunt will make loading times drastically better, and their storage solutions will leverage this to help further.

If anything; I'm just excited that the new consoles are actually going to be competitive with current PC offerings rather than absolutely trash-tier garbage that's 3 years obsolete out of the box. The only question is will we actually get GAMES? Or will we get GambleWare, Live-services filled with empty promises and another 7 COD's? All the hardware in the world doesn't matter if people don't actually use it afterall.....

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15 hours ago, GoldForest said:

I see two reasons:
Sales vs Sales. Will KSP 2 sell better/more on Next Gen or Current Gen.
And Certification process. The reason KSP 1 and its updates takes so long to get on to XBO and PS4 is Microsoft's and Sony's aggressive certification processes. That's why it can take up to six months to a year for the updates to hit the console versions, because Microsoft and especially Sony demand so much of the game. If they find one thing wrong, they send it back and the process starts all over again. I feel that Sony with double down on certification process.

Smart Delivery allows for simultaneous cert for XB1 and SX. Like I said above, it's a single SKU. But even setting that aside, certification is nowhere near this bad. If somebody's telling your cert takes 6 months, they're trying to sell you a bridge. It's a process, and the reason why PC builds sometimes get shipped very raw and unfinished, which sometimes also means early, but even then, it's nowhere near 6 months.

Never having worked on KSP nor talked to anyone involved, I can't say for sure, but my best guess for why the lag is so large is because KSP UI is very different between PC and consoles, and UI is where a LOT of the bugs are coming from for a game like KSP. The PC is also clearly the lead platform, which means that while PC release is getting polish, the port team is just starting to work on UI for the new features. And yes, to update the UI, get all the bugs out, go through cert and release can open up a 6 months gap between PC and consoles. Very little of it is actually due to cert, and almost none of it applies to difference between console versions. If you have a working PS4 Unity game that passes cert, you have a working PS5 Unity game that passes cert. And passing a cert on that can take less than a week.

15 hours ago, GoldForest said:

Furthermore, there's talks about new lockdowns. If Sony or Microsoft have to halt production due to a lockdown, it will delay the sale of the PS5 and XSX. This will also force games to either delay release, or go with current gen releases, and I think they'd rather recompile the game and release with a slight delay on current gen consoles, than having to delay until the new consoles are out.

If we were actually talking about console release getting delayed past the game's scheduled release, yes. It would make sense to release on current gen and delay the next gen until the consoles are out or possibly even longer. But there is no way PS5 or SX are getting delayed to fall 2021. That just isn't happening. I would say that even a simple delay isn't happening, because production of hardware takes time, and to be ready for a holiday release, both consoles have to be in production already. Sony is almost certainly going to be fine releasing with insufficient units to cover demand, and Microsoft would most likely have to do the same in response rather than delay. So we can be talking about a shortage, but even that would get resolved by fall one way or another.

15 hours ago, GoldForest said:

Buying a $400 console on a paycheck to paycheck life style is not.

That kind of depends on demographic. Spending behavior among young adults suggests that they'll make cuts elsewhere more likely than not purchase the new console. You can take a look at iPhone sales as an indicator. Granted, a large segment of console sales is parents buying them for kids, and that will most certainly take a dive, but gamers are getting older and older as a demographic. I'm not saying situation is ideal for a console launch, but if you are expecting them to tank, you aren't looking at the right trends.

15 hours ago, Harry Rhodan said:

I'd say this is mostly marketing babble and the real reason is simply that they were hoping to save the 50 or so Dollars on the upgrade to 32GB RAM. And that will come to haunt them in the second half of the lifecycle.

Sony has released tech talks on the hardware they are using, and I know enough about how storage is used in games to tell you for a fact that what they're doing is going to make a huge impact*. The rest I can't really talk about, but I suggest you do a bit of your own research.

 

* I'm using PS5 as an example of improvements a lot more than SX because I've seen more officially published technical material from Sony. I don't want to even remotely imply that I'm drawing any sort of comparison between PS5 and SX capabilities.

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