By Jared Newman | Tuesday, July 21, 2009 at 5:50 pm
Sony likes to boast that it’s selling “future technology” in the Playstation 3, but let’s be honest, most games hardly show it.
An exception could come from Doom 4, a distant release that will apparently take full advantage of the PS3’s Blu-ray discs. In a Game Informer interview (via VG247), id Software’s John Carmack said the game will “almost certainly” be split into three DVDs for the Xbox 360, while the PS3 version will only require one Blu-ray disc.
This, I think, is more important than any advantage you might see in graphics. Give me a big-screen HDTV, and I’ll generally be pretty happy no matter which console you put in front of me. Making me get up after a cliffhanger moment to swap out discs — twice — is a different story.
The Xbox 360’s inability to store everything on one disc poses other challenges if games begin demanding more storage space. Carmack said another upcoming id game, a racing and shooting adventure called Rage, will need two discs for the Xbox 360 version, but still just one for Blu-ray. It would’ve been easier to split Rage in thirds for the Xbox 360 version, Carmack said, but the game is designed around two major wastelands, so three discs wouldn’t work as well.
Now, think about non-linear games, such as Grand Theft Auto. I can’t say it would be impossible to split this kind of adventure into several discs, but it could be problematic unless each disc contained the entire game world.
On the flip side, Carmack said programming for the PS3 required much more “sweat equity” than the Xbox 360, despite its lack of size constraints. But if game developers someday embrace the roominess afforded by the PS3’s Blu-ray discs, Microsoft will find itself at a real technical disadvantage.