Ex-Naughty Dog Dev Talks About Memory Requirements and Current Gen


Naughty Dog developer and founder of Filmic Worlds, John Hable in an interview with GamingBolt, has shared his thoughts on the memory requirements of latest AAA games and his opinion as to whether current gen consoles will be able to keep up.

“In general, I would not worry about the consoles becoming outdated. Remember, the PS3 and Xbox 360 have only 512MB of RAM, but the PC versions of the same games usually require 2GB or more. On consoles you have more control over memory allocations. The 8GB of RAM in both the Xbox One and PS4 should be plenty for the remainder of this console generation,”

John Hable was the person responsible for the amazing HDR Lighting tech in Uncharted 2: Among Thieves. With current gen games employing more complex techniques such as global illumination and physical based rendering, Hable explains that despite the use of advanced shadow smoothing techniques such as HBAO, high quality shadows are still an issue.

“For me, my major complaint these days with games is light leaking. It is too expensive to have a shadow on every light that you make in a game so you have this effect where light seems to bleed through objects. As an example, you might see a character with a bright light behind him or her. Then you will see these bright lights on the creases of his or her clothes which should not be there. That is light leaking and it drives me crazy. You also see it a lot on muzzle flashes. That is the next thing that I would like to see improved.”

“Global Illumination still needs some work too. In many games with Global Illumination I still feel like objects lack good contact shadows in ambient light. And the falloff often does not look natural to me. Good baked lighting in a video game is still not a solved problem.”

Truth is, more games are using higher resolution textures now and the number will definitely keep on growing. PC games get Ultra textures and support for 4K resolution which drives the memory requirement even higher. Multi-platform games are already showing lower resolution assets on the consoles, so before long the PlayStation 4 and the Xbox One will really begin to look a lot worse in comparison. The last generation of consoles lasted far more than the generations before it, but current gen consoles are already holding PC development back, as developers try to attain parity between the console and PC versions.

Dated hardware is holding game development back, and it would be surprising if we won't be seeing a new console in the next couple of years. Nintendo will most likely be releasing their new platform, be it a new console, a handheld or a hybrid, it better be something more powerful than its competitors, a way to force their hand so it won't be too long before we get an upgrade.