DVD Could Hold Back Unreal Tournament 3 X360 (Updated, Reorganized)

64
The Xbox 360 version of Epic's Unreal Tournament III may face some challenges due to the smaller capacity of the console's DVD-9 discs, Epic VP Mark Rein indicated at his Edinburg Interactive Festival session.

"We may have fewer maps on the 360 version," Rein admitted when discussing the upcoming shooter in the presence of a GamesIndustry.biz reporter. "[The PlayStation 3's] Blu-ray has definitely given us a lot of legroom."

Microsoft's decision to forgo a higher-capacity storage medium in the Xbox 360 hardware has drawn criticism from certain members of the industry. Some claim that the limitation of about 9 GB of data per DVD restricts developers, whereas the PlayStation 3's Blu-ray discs can hold around 50 GB.

At QuakeCon, id Software announced that the the Xbox 360 edition of its id Tech 5-powered shooter-driving hybrid Rage would arrive on two DVDs while the PlayStation 3 edition will occupy only one Blu-ray disc. The PC and Mac editions of the game will to ship on two DVDs as well, with Blu-ray editions a possibility.

"The simple facts state that the optical disc on the PS3 holds more data than the optical disc on the 360. If we exceed size of the 360s optical disc then we'll have to find alternative ways to get the content to 360 users such as making it downloadable," Rein wrote on Epic's official message board. "I continue to be disappointed that folks on the internet treat any positive thing we say about one platform as some sort of critique of another platform."

"We're all very used to downloading extra content for console games and with UT3 there will be lots of it for all supported platforms," he continued. "I don't know the exact numbers but I suspect the version of Gears of War that most of our customers play today on their 360s, when you combine the downloadable content with the content on the disc, is larger than what we could fit on the 360's optical disc alone."

Earlier this week, Microsoft revealed that MMO developers could require the optional Xbox 360 HDD for their games--a concession previously made for Square Enix's Final Fantasy XI and Sega's Europe-only Football Manager 2006. Reported by MCV, the company did not provide any clarification for non-MMO titles, though Rein's comments suggest the HDD may be required for the Xbox 360 edition of UT3 to match the content of the other versions.

Both the PlayStation 3 and PC iterations of Unreal Tournament III are due out this fall, whereas the Xbox 360 version isn't expected until sometime next year. Rein partly attributed the Xbox 360 delay to Epic and Microsoft's inability to come to an understanding regarding the support and distribution of free user-created mods. Rein has also confirmed the PS3 edition will support keyboard and mouse controls, a feature not likely to be found in the Xbox 360 effort.

From The Chatty
  • reply
    August 15, 2007 11:56 AM

    When I see stories like this I can only think of that game that was 200kb and won that contest for it and had graphics that were almost on par with Doom 3, it even had dynamic lighting. Remember what I'm talking about?

    • reply
      August 15, 2007 12:00 PM

      While awesome and impressive, it's not really analogous.

    • reply
      August 15, 2007 12:00 PM

      Graphics that were on par with doom3? No definitely not but still suprising for being only that small of a file size.

    • reply
      August 15, 2007 12:01 PM

      Yes, it used procedural graphic generation which is what a lot of companies are moving towards - though ID tech 5 goes in the "opposite" direction. It is easy to get Doom 3-style effects like self shading and shit with that sort of technology, but it is harder to get interesting and involving environments.

      • reply
        August 15, 2007 12:06 PM

        This is a question of style and content creation, though. You can have a great deal of procedurally-generated content, but that inherently takes away the control that artists have over the look of things.

        Procedural generation of assets is a very big thing for games like Spore, where the user will have a great deal of freedom over everything about the game, but procedural generation of assets in first-person shooters is begging for a stale look that lacks that "extra personality" which an artist can inject into textures, models, and so on.

      • reply
        August 15, 2007 1:56 PM

        they are not really moving towards procedural generation, maybe for textures but for levels it's just pretty pointless and so much harder than actually modelling a level

    • reply
      August 15, 2007 12:12 PM

      .kkrieger (96KB), 2004

      http://www.theprodukkt.com/kkrieger

      • reply
        August 15, 2007 1:53 PM

        Holy fucking shit...that is unbelievable. How come this fucking thing is not talked about more often.

        That's seriously mind-blowing.

        • reply
          August 15, 2007 1:56 PM

          because it has no feasible application in games

          • reply
            August 15, 2007 2:06 PM

            Why is that?

            • reply
              August 15, 2007 2:10 PM

              because you have to work out clever formulas to generate levels (for textures it's more applicable) and in the end it never comes out as you really want, so you need artists to edit the levels anyway. so in the end you could just as well use an artist to model the entire thing.
              also, you are basically asking programmers to be artists, which is never a good idea :)

              • reply
                August 15, 2007 2:37 PM

                Haha, I see. But I still don't understand how it could not be applied to games to reduce them in size tremendously. I mean, the whole time I was playing that game I was just sitting there going "What the fuck? How in God's name does all that fit in 96kb?"

                • reply
                  August 15, 2007 2:46 PM

                  Yeah but when I played the game I thought "wow this is neat and all but it's a shitty game" - it has no sound (right? It's been a while since I played it), it was slower than dirt, it had like one enemy, and it was over quick. It's an extremely amazing achievement in terms of what they were able to accomplish in a joke of a file size, but it's in no way a competitor for a AAA game (not that it was aiming to be, but some people don't seem to get that there's a difference)

                  • reply
                    August 15, 2007 2:57 PM

                    A few corrections. It does have sound, even background music. It has 4 or 5 enemies, 5 weapons, and it ran as smooth as butter on my machine. The thing that amazed me the most were that the textures were incredibly crisp.

                    Obviously it couldn't compete with any decent retail title, but the point is that they made a fucking first person shooter using only 96 kilobytes of space. I mean, Jesus Christ.

                    If they tweaked a lot of shit, made the movement faster, added some different effects, and added LAN multiplayer, that could be one fucking awesome 5MB game.

                    • reply
                      August 15, 2007 3:14 PM

                      Agreed, but wouldn't it kinda suck every time to sit there and wait for the textures to be regenerated every time? I guess you could write them out to disk but then you've sort of defeated the purpose (if memory serves, .kkreiger doesn't write them out).

                    • reply
                      August 15, 2007 3:14 PM

                      when I rate the fun factor of a game I do not care about exe or directory size.

                      "This game would have been way more fun if it were only a 1 gig install instead of 7."

            • reply
              August 15, 2007 4:50 PM

              Cause the mouse isn't inverted.

        • reply
          August 15, 2007 4:24 PM

          It has generated quite a bit of talk over the years. .kkrieger pops up on forums from time to time, even these days.

    • reply
      August 15, 2007 1:12 PM

      LOL. Yeah OK.

    • reply
      August 15, 2007 2:39 PM

      Spore is trying the same approach of procedural generation for content... yeah...

    • reply
      August 15, 2007 3:18 PM

      this too 180kb and really amazing looking - http://www.pouet.net/prod.php?which=30244