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Avast ye Microsoft are finally showing the Power of the Cloud

Wind the clock back to 2013 and you’d find a new appreciation for digital clocks. However, once you’d got over the irritation of winding a clock back some 1500+ days, and you’ve taken care of important business, you might find you have a bit of time to check out then-current gaming news. What you’d find is Microsoft boisterously declaring that the “power of the cloud” would revolutionize gaming. Unlimited CPU power, seamless, persistent worlds, a genuine ‘game changer’.

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Kribwalker231d ago

That water tech is amazing. persistent across everyone’s games. Which huge changes all in real-time. Pretty cool

fr0sty231d ago

Using the server to calculate terrain, as well as to connect a player with new players as they navigate the world, is something that has been done in online games for years. Server-side collision detection has been done in online games for just about as long as they've been around, the only real difference here is the collision detection is being done on a moving target (waves) instead of static objects like trees or the ground. Nothing revolutionary, nothing made exclusively possible by "microsoft's cloud" by any stretch. Them bringing another player your way every 20 minutes or so is nothing more than a glorified form of matchmaking, one that likely lacks many of the options most matchmaking systems use since you don't seem to have any control over it at all.

When I hear talk of the MS cloud, I expect to see things online games haven't already been doing for years. Crackdown looked to deliver there, but as the article states, it has been delayed into obscurity for a reason.

sinspirit231d ago (Edited 231d ago )

Thing about Crackdown though. It's graphics were very bland and basic. Other than the bullet holes, the physics of things breaking apart and falling was also very basic. It didn't sell me on the cloud and looked like it was more just the games physics engine. We have games with more advanced physics already out, not exactly on the scale of a city, but I think it's for the games design and not technical limitations.

SolidGear3231d ago

See Red Faction: Armageddon for reference of how to do destruction properly. Game still impresses me.

fr0sty231d ago

The online modes in crackdown had some impressive physics (in the demo, at least), but the offline stuff is quite bland. Perhaps you were referring to that. Red Faction had some nice destruction, but it wasn't as impressive as the stuff shown in the Crackdown cloud demo. That said, nobody has ever seen what that demo did running in the wild, for all we know the servers processing that data could have been in the next room directly connected with a 10 meter ethernet cable. I want to see how this stuff works on the open internet, but they keep delaying the game.

AmstradAmiga231d ago

Sigh, Frosty again playing down anything remotely positive re: MS. Didn't need the Cloud to compute that one.

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Slurms231d ago

"Using the server to calculate terrain"
-You mean geometry, and not really.

"as well as to connect a player with new players as they navigate the world"
-Multiplayer games already exist? No way!

"Server-side collision detection has been done in online games for just about as long as they've been around, the only real difference here is the collision detection is being done on a moving target (waves) instead of static objects like trees or the ground"
-Yeah, "only" several orders of magnitude more complex. Actually other games have calculated waves server-side before, such as the Battlefield games. Much smaller scale though, and scale is pretty much the key word that defines cloud infrastructure.

"Nothing revolutionary, nothing made exclusively possible by "microsoft's cloud" by any stretch"
-Sea of Thieves is absolutely made possible by Cloud infrastructure. Nobody is saying "Microsoft" are the only ones with the tech, not sure why you injected that?

"Them bringing another player your way every 20 minutes or so is nothing more than a glorified form of matchmaking"
-It is actually pretty impressive, but probably to someone that lacks even a basic grasp of the challenges.

"When I hear talk of the MS cloud, I expect to see things online games haven't already been doing for years."
-Open your eyes and you just might.

fr0sty230d ago (Edited 230d ago )

Slurms... the server doesn't calculate geometry, it calculates collision detection with geometry, but nice try trying to appear like you have an idea what you are talking about there. You almost succeeded.

The waves in BF4 don't look as good as they do in SOT, but as for general complexity, the shapes the waves take on, they're not far off. I'm not seeing revolutionary levels of advancement in what SOT is doing as far as collision detection on waves goes vs. what has been done in the past.

Microsoft were the ones saying only their cloud infrastructure would be powerful enough to do what they claimed (but have yet to show) it can do. If you'd open YOUR eyes, you would have seen that years ago.

TheCommentator230d ago

"Crackdown looked to deliver there, but as the article states, it has been delayed into obscurity for a reason."

Realtime Worlds helped Cloudgine build their cloud-enhanced processing technology through the development of Crackdown 3. Building Cloudgine is what's taken years and it just finished up recently, as evidenced by the Campaign getting started last year and more recent purchase of Cloudgine by Epic once the engine was finished.

Slurms230d ago (Edited 230d ago )

@Frosty, I didn't say servers calculate geometry. You said "servers calculate terrain", which is erroneous at best. I was helping you with your terminology, and also disagreeing. I wholeheartedly agree that it sounded like the the argument of someone that has no idea what they're talking about. It was your argument. D'oh!

When did Microsoft say they're the only ones with cloud technology?

zb1ftw777230d ago

The idea might not be revolutionary.

But the raw power to actually achieve it is.

3-4-5230d ago

The cloud is supposed to allow them to do more things efficiently and smoothly...not some amazing new super awesome thing.......and they have done just that.

fathertime4464230d ago

@frosty
It's doing a what existing games have done yes, are they on a grander scale?yes!
If you wish to down play this as an achievement that's fine, however let me ask you something. How has Sony pushed online gaming? It hasn't. Microsoft perfected it and maid it mainstream on console with the og Xbox. Microsoft made it possible on the dreamcast. So honestly down play all you want, but MS is pushing it further than anyone else has on a console with sot.
As a more broad spectrum question let me ask, who's pushing games further than just graphically? Not MS, not Sony, and not Nintendo. There are only 2 ways to push and that's better multiplayer interactions and vr/at.
Personally I can't wait for holographic

abstractel230d ago

Cloud power will probably one day become a reality, but the last few years it's just been MS talk without anything really revolutionary to show for it. Show us your revolutionary games, then people will appreciate these things. It's still just talk and Sea of Thieves doesn't change anything.

There are obvious problems with Crackdown or it would have been out a pretty long time ago. To me, deliver first, brag later.

sinspirit230d ago (Edited 230d ago )

Okay. This is just getting ridiculous...

The waters graphical quality has absolutely zero to do with the Cloud. The graphical fidelity is great. But, that is nothing to do with the server. I feel like just because the water looks really good graphically that everyone assumes that this means the cloud "rendering water" has to do with it. No, it's just calculating how the ships, players, and various things are placed and react to the predetermined paths of the waves so that it matches the same on everyones screen. All they have to do is run a 1:1 mesh. One for the pretty looking water that is rendered by the games engine, and the other that runs the physics calculations prior, which the server simply has to send the bits of data to each console to render the same. Basically, the water is not so advanced. It's actually pretty basic to loop similar patterns over and over. Bobbing the ship up down, side to side, forwards and backward, based on the water levels and direction the waves flow is really the most strenuous thing to be done.

It's not difficult at all. It's not "more advanced". It's just more pronounced and in your face than most games before since few are so based on open waters with emphasis on ship based combat being affected by it.

Blackwake has been out for a year now and does the same thing. If they want to change the scale of the waves they could easily do so. It's just game design and what they chose to stick with.

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notachance231d ago

it's cool in US where MS has multiple server farms across the nation..

there's only one country with MS server for my whole region.. I was excited to get this on PC, but now I wonder how the game'll turn out to be..

Rarefaction230d ago

pretty sure battlefield 4 boasted this tech years ago. On all platforms too.

They showed how waves needed to be consistent for all players to make sea combat fair

Slurms230d ago (Edited 230d ago )

Yes Battlefield 4 definitely had server-side physics for the bodies of water. Elements of the destruction, and projectile physics were server-side too. BF games don't get enough credit for this stuff.

Sea of Thieves is a different animal though. The workload is spread across multiple servers.

The Wood231d ago (Edited 231d ago )

We shall see Ms asa . . . .

I'm hearing good things about the water. . .YouTube videos don't cut it so I'll have to see it in the flesh. . . Somehow

Maybe it's the power of another entity. . . . .

GrubsterBeater231d ago (Edited 231d ago )

It's sad when the only thing that people are hyping and looking forward to more than anything isn't a game.... but water IN a game.. not only that.. but the one thing that PROVES the powah of da cloud... the showcase that sets future precendence for pushing forward the gaming standard... 4 years later.... BEHOLDDDD, WATER!

Oh, XBox .... I guess when there not much given on a console, then the diehards of that console will get super pumped about anything that they are given... in this case: High quality H2O...

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Stogz231d ago

@TangentialShark this is you in the Gran Turismo thread.

"Another mediocre game out of Sony. Nothing new..."
I love how fanboys play the victim. Just looking at your post history is enough to condemn you of doing the same thing. Stay hypocritical dude!

GrubsterBeater231d ago

@TangentialShark

"What's more telling is how upset this water makes owners of competing consoles feel. They won't ever play the game, but they go out of their way to write paragraphs explaining why no on should be excited. Show's how lowly their lives must be."

What's more telling is your assumptions regarding my emotional state related to the graphical quality of water on a competing console.. It tells me that you are using what's called "projection", and trying to attribute your deep, subconsious emotionally addled state onto me, in an attempt to salvage your shattered ego that has been destroyed by XBox and it's inability to deliver anything above mediocrity this generation that would "stick it to those Sony Ponies who made fun of my console the past four years, while always making us the butt of the joke regarding gaming in general". You did this merely for my pointing out a laughable observation about water in a game.

So who is upset here....?

Not me.. In fact, this is not only the farthest thing from "upsetting" to me, but it's laughable to me. None of these articles affect my emotions in any way (aside from joy seeing nonstop PlayStation exclusives announced, then released to critical acclaim for the most part.). It seems to have upset you though, Tangential... I didn't mean to hurt your wittle feewings by speaking ill of the water you hold so dear, apparently.. I know it's hard to have anything to celebrate as an XBox-only gamer, but you shouldn't let things like people talking badly about water affect your emotional state as it seems to have done on you..

mark_parch231d ago

@GrubsterBeater
"It's sad when the only thing people are hyping and looking forward to more than anything isn't a game....but water IN a game... not only that..but the one thing that PROVES the powah of da cloud..d

First of all how is it the only thing people are hyping lol. go on youtube, mixer and twitch and there're plenty of people who have played the game who are hyped about many aspects of the game other than water, the water just happens to be stunning. Second this is literally the first article i have seen about sea of thieves using the cloud, i wasn't even aware it used the cloud. You guys need to give it a rest with the constant xbox bashing, if you have played the game and have genuine concerns feel free to share them

Kribwalker231d ago

@grubsterbear
judging by the length of your response to Tabgient I’d say you are upset. Otherwise a simple “I’m not upset” would suffice

GrubsterBeater231d ago (Edited 231d ago )

@Kribwalker

"@grubsterbear 
judging by the length of your response to Tabgient I’d say you are upset. Otherwise a simple “I’m not upset” would suffice"

What would the fun in that be? Seems I struck a nerve with you as well..

I was unaware that speaking more than three words would default my emotional status as upset or sad. When you ask your wife or girlfriend if she had a good day, and she goes on a long rant about how great it was, does that mean she's lying and had an awful day because she could have said "it was good"?

Sound logic you got there, Krib. It would seem as though you have no real response to the subject matter.

DarXyde231d ago

Microsoft seems most interested in making games that utilize cloud processing for physics. I actually feel this is useful. For games like Sea of Thieves and Crackdown 3, it teeters more towards cosmetic and help with that "sense of immersion" or whatever.

On the other hand, games where physics truly matter (i.e., Forza) would greatly benefit from it.

Dragonscale231d ago

@tangent, upset? Its fecking hilarious. The greatest thing about sea of theives is the water. LMFAO. Face it the game looks meh lol.

Ben Dover231d ago

Ouch! Tangential got owned hardcore there! Need some bandage?

rainslacker230d ago

I've seen quite a few great water simulations in games over the years. Sometimes it's pretty impressive given the tech involved. However, every time, without fail, the impact of those water effects are more of a momentary awe inducing visual aspect of the graphics engine, and don't do anything to effect the game play itself, so ultimately, it doesn't add much to the game except it's graphical appeal, or overall realism that helps to immerse the player.

For instance, some deal was made about the water effects in the original uncharted game way back when. While the actual look of the water was nowhere near the level of SoT....which is great....when a character had to go through water, that water would actually change the look on their clothes. It added a bit of immersion, but didn't affect anything else. It was a wow cool factor that got a bit of attention, and showed just how much care was put into creating little details. In Uncharted 4, it was the physics engine of the way the Jeep would interact with the mud....which in itself was pretty damn impressive on a technical level.

Is that same care put in here? Does the water actually affect game play? Or is it just another visual treat? What does the water actually do to affect game play? If it has an effect, is that effect meaningful? For instance, does a persistent world through the cloud cause the physics of waves in a storm force a ship, or ships towards a certain area where you will more likely come into contact with other players....maybe through a grounded ship or what not?

Regardless, I don't see how the power of the cloud is relevant here. The water is still rendered on the system itself. It can't do more because of the cloud. All the cloud here seems to be doing is making sure it's consistent across the world....which would be server side physics. But that isn't something that is exclusive to the power of the cloud in the way MS has marketed it. That's just server side calculation that has been done extensively through any number of online persistent world games for over 20 years now. Most of those servers do not have the extensive server farms that Azure has, but when it comes to most modern MMO's, they still run on cloud based principals, and they're available to any system that can connect to the internet.

Gahl1k230d ago

"A man who stands for nothing will fall for anything." - - Malcolm X

rlow1230d ago

Well when it's a game that takes place mainly on the water I would consider that an important piece. You would be right to talk bs if the water was a side show, but it's what makes this game immersive and the main conduit for travel. Plus it also presents challenges in the form of storms. sea life, and plays a major role in combat.............But I guess when diehards get bored playing on their console, they come here to bash Xbox articles. lol

mozzie229d ago

dude it‘s a freaking pirate game in which you probably spend most time on the sea. why wouldn‘t you be excited about great water physics?

+ Show (10) more repliesLast reply 229d ago
Brian7655492231d ago

This could be the perfect game to deliver on the promise of cloud gaming along with games as a service if it's done right. Milking the consumer with a bare bones game, then added paid dlc and other microtransactions will be the death of it. Balancing that fine line can be tough. We don't expect developers to keep adding content and not getting paid but we also need to fill satisfied with our original purchase.

NoPeace_Walker231d ago

It is like the Hulk ( XB1 X) get injected with a second dose of Gamma radiation (cloud compute power). Amazing. 👍🏼

frostypants231d ago (Edited 231d ago )

Meh. Still waiting for the OG One to be more powerful than the PS4 with cloud powah, like everyone was claiming years ago.

DialgaMarine231d ago

Yeah, my Xbone was supposed to be comparable to PS7, last I heard.

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InKnight7s231d ago

Ps4 what? Xbox one according to MS the Clouddd powaaaah is unlimited. The ACTUAL limitations are developer abilities😂.

snoopgg231d ago

Calm down shelden cooper.

rainslacker230d ago

It's not going to do anything more on the X1X than it does for the OGX1. That's kind of the whole point. All you'll get from the X1X is prettier graphics, and I maybe higher frame rate if the devs implemented that. While I'm sure the server side stuff on this game does affect the game in some way....like persistent worlds, and some physics calculations, those things are nothing new in the world of online games, and have been done for a couple decades now. MS just hyped it up as if they were now the innovators of such technology, and mislead the customer into thinking that it was going to somehow change gaming as we knew it, all while using it as a major selling point of their console upon release.

Thatguy-310231d ago

LMAO ppl are really impressed with the water in this game. If that's what it only has going for it then that's underwhelming

Cy231d ago

This just in, games are only allowed to have only allowed to have one good feature.

subtenko231d ago

This just in Microsoft and xbox rely on one trick points and a bunch of talk with little to show....Seas of Thieves being something to show at least. I might get it on PC but there are so many games Im planning on getting already.

Valkron1231d ago

This just in, check your post before you post it

Godmars290230d ago

Especially when presented with the launch of the platform that *ONE* game is on, five years after the fact?

And this just in: HA-HA-HA-HA...