‘Dying Light’ dev discusses the power, flexibility and potential of the PS4′s GPU
A developer working with Techland on the upcoming survival-horror game Dying Light illuminates some details on the PS4′s GPU.
Developers are always the go-to guys (and gals) to learn the truth about a console. Indie developers, for example, aren’t tied to any publisher and can freely express their thoughts without restriction–thus making them a veritable fount of honesty.
As the PlayStation 4 took shape over this last year, many devs across the spectrum (from indies to AAA franchises) have voiced their opinions on Sony’s next-gen contender, offering unanimous praise of the system’s flexible x86 architecture and customized APU.
Tomasz Szalkowski, the senior engine programmer for Techland, has similar praise for the PS4′s GPU. In a recent interview with Gaming Bolt, Szalkowski reflected on his experiences so far with the console while developing the studio’s upcoming open-world horror game Dying Light.
According to the programmer, the PS4′s “high performance GPU” is in no small part thanks to the API, which “allows a strict control over all processes” and “facilitates optimization and experimentation”:
“PS4 is a truly fantastic piece of hardware! Its high GPU performance comes from the API, which allows a strict control over all processes, and facilitates optimization and experimentation. Obviously, with greater control comes greater responsibility, for example for correct synchronization between processing units.”
Thanks to the PS4′s internal components–an advanced GPU, capable API and a unified APU–the devs at Techland are able to implement new strategies and methods that they couldn’t take advantage of with current-gen tech:
“A modern GPU, an adequate API and a unified GPU/CPU address space let us develop new algorithms and techniques that simply weren’t possible before: a ShaderModel5 hardware working with DX11 was limited in terms of capabilities comparing to how the hardware actually could perform, and many things were beyond control.
“Now the GPU alone is fast enough to not only render high quality visuals at 1080p, but it can also take on some task of the main processor.”
He also adds that there is a wealth of potential waiting to be tapped to bring out the best of Chrome Engine 6, the engine that powers Dying Light:
The first presentation of Dying Light for PS4 is just the taste of what the Chrome Engine 6 can do on this console!
Szalkowski is just one of the many devs who have sang their praise for the PS4; one developer at Witch Beam (an indie studio behind the PS4′s upcoming twin-stick shooter Assault Android Cactus) went so far as to say that the console’s advanced GPU made it “the most powerful console in the world“.
Anton Yudintsev of Gaijin Games chimed in as well, saying that the PS4′s GPU is “40% more powerful than the Xbox One’s”.
As time goes by and developers will be able to tap into the PlayStation 4 in new ways, learning a variety of tricks and techniques to refine their games. Due to the x86 architecture, the console is much easier to develop for, making it a huge leap from the development nightmare of the PS3′s byzantine (yet powerful) Cell processor.
Overall Dying Light looks to be a great hit, with a combination of styles including a mix-up of Fallout‘s post-apocalyptic wasteland-esque sentiments with the parkour action found in Mirror’s Edge and of course the horrifying and emotional survival elements found in the Dead Island series.
It will be interesting to see how Techland utilizes the console’s GPU capabilities to streamline Dying Light, but we’ll have to wait until it’s released across multiple platforms in 2014.
Luckily we don’t have to wait that long to see the game in action, and we’ve included video footage below that gives a nice look at gameplay with some illuminating commentary.
Via Gaming Bolt