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Digital Foundry: Tech Evolution: Forza 3

Digital Foundry has already taken a look at core aspects of the technology powering Forza Motorsport 3 in the initial demo tech breakdown, but in this feature they're expanding their analysis of the game to cover both its past and its potential future.

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eurogamer.net
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MNicholas3274d ago (Edited 3274d ago )

1) Compared to Forza 2, somethings have been "scaled back" to make some improvements possible.

2) Multiple apologies and excuses for stating the obvious: GT5's lighting is much more sophisticated despite rendering twice as many cars at 50% higher resolution.

While the article stated outright that GT5P's visuals are far better than Forza 3, at least 20% of the article was dedicated to apologizing for the article and even for Turn10 and their supposed "development priorities".

Clearly, the terrible wrath of Xbox fanboys is all too present in the writer's mind.

MNicholas3274d ago (Edited 3274d ago )

Strange that this high profile analysis isn't making the front page of N4G.

At the time I'm writing this it's not showing up on N4G searches either.

The only reason I discovered it on N4G was because I tried to submit it myself and was presented with a link to this submission as proof that it was already submitted.

raztad3274d ago (Edited 3274d ago )

As GT5P is mentioned and Forza3 compared with, this article is meant to be discussed by PS3 owners as well.

The tone of the article discovers which one is the preferred console of the DF staff. No, it's not the PS3. The author spends more than a few lines trying to make up for GT5P blatantly superior technical capabilities.

I'm a bit surprised. I wasnt expecting to see the "definitive" racing sim this gen trumped so clearly by an old and glorified demo. I just cant imagine how unbelievable will GT5 be.

@Mnicholas

You are right, this is quite a detailed analysis of (arguably) one of the major xbox exclusives and nobody seems to be interested. So much for the 20 articles discussing how Bayonetta xbox360 is the superior version.

MNicholas3273d ago

it's due to lack of visibility.

This article had been intentionally made virtually "invisible."

As for the author, I don't think he prefers the 360. From the way he writes about some of the better PS3 games he can't seem to reign in his excitement. The wording gives away his enthusiasm.

I think, more than anything else, he is trying very hard to maintain a reputation of being "fair" in an environment where, if he did not give 360 fans various "outs" he would be instantly labeled a PS3 fanboy. That would basically mean the end of his association with Eurogamer.

aliveinboston3273d ago (Edited 3273d ago )

Compared to Forza 2

+ Artistic decisions are much improved
+ Lighting is no longer inconsistent
+ Specular maps on roads
+ Better reflection textures

- Less crowds (saves fill-rate and polygons)
- No anisotropic filtering (saves texture processing and bandwidth)

Just like Gears of War 2 the way they got improvements in lighting and textures was by cutting back where they felt people will notice it the least.

Compared with GT5 Prologue?

+ Replay mode has slightly better motion blur
+ V-synced to avoid tearing

- GT5P has far more sophisticated lighting
- GT5P in 720P has 4xMSAA (double of Forza 3)
- GT5P in 1080P mode has 50% higher resolution but still has 2xAA
- GT5P is processing twice as many cars
- GT5P has tons of transparencies like dust-clouds
- GT5P has lots of effects (like heat haze) that Forza 3 simply does not

MNicholas3273d ago (Edited 3273d ago )

What he failed to mention about Forza 3 is the warped camera perspective. While GT5P uses a realistic field of view, Forza 3 artifically warps it so that distant objects appear even farther away than they really are.

The benefit of this from a performance standpoint is that you can use lower detail models for much of the environment until the car is closer to them.

The pictures below are perfect for demostrating what Turn10 has done because it provides a common point of reference ... the ferris wheel.

You can see that nearby objects (like the ferris wheel) are the same size in both games but in Forza 3, everything farther away is much smaller and appear to be much more distant than they really are.

GT5 Prologue:
http://images.eurogamer.net...

Forza 3:
http://images.eurogamer.net...

By warping the perspective in this manner you conserve a lot of processing power and bandwidth which is why it's more commonly used in FPS games. Even Gears, a TPS, uses this trick to maintain frame-rate when you run. You'll notice that as soon as you hit the button anything farther away will magically shrink and when you stop running will grow back to normal size.

http://www.youtube.com/watc...

He also failed to mention the fact that unlike GT5 Prologue, Forza 3 blacks out nearly all of the interior surfaces to conserve polygons and processing.

Anisotropic Filtering (AF) is another point he missed. GT5 Prologue has it Forza 3 does not. Having no AF conserves processing and bandwidth. Anyone who has played PC games and turned off AF knows it's effect on frame-rate.

Prologue, was the first attempt by Polyphony Digital on the PS3 (who were simultaneously producing other games for PS2 and PSP) and was made on a much more complicated architecture. Despite working on multiple projects, Prologue was released just 18 months after they received their first PS3 dev-kits.

In contrast, Forza 3 is a second generation 360 game by a incredibly well funded first-party developer who only makes games for one easy to use platform, the 360. They have been working on 360 dev-kits for 4 years!

raztad3273d ago

From your last post we can draw two possible conclusions

1) Turn 10 is not a competent developer

2) xbox360 is definitely maxed out. Yes I said it, otherwise I couldnt understand how an old demo in the harder to develop for console, trounces the shinny new Forza 3 is every way. This is an 1-on-1 comparison, same genre, not multiplat restrictions and not excuses.

Pick your option.

Chubear3273d ago

Now you tell me something's not out of wack with N4G heating system. You're telling me this article got approved very quickly, has a number of commentary on it and the site got loads of hits via the link but it's only 20degrees?

That's total BS. I've seen articles get over 80degrees with no commentary at all.

Shadow Flare3273d ago

The reason this article isn't heating up is because of how the title is written. People will very easily glance over the titles and miss this article. If this article was called 'Forza 3 fails to beat Gran Turismo 5: Prologue', then we'd have a 400 degree article on our hands. Shame cos this is a very well written article

gaffyh3273d ago

How is it that this hasn't hit the front page??

I'm 100% sure that the admins are keeping the degrees of this story down on purpose, whereas some stories hit the front page with no comments at all.

Maddens Raiders3273d ago (Edited 3273d ago )

for a moment and thought to myself: self, "GT5 is going to sell a shyt tonne & be the #1 racing game for years to come"

I base this presumption on all of the juvenile hype and sophomoric histrionics T10 has been displaying against grandaddy PD which will not soon be forgotten; not to mention the ad-nauseam comparisons between F3 and a 2 year old demo, and the quiet confidence that PD delivers title after title -- it just all adds up to a (((massive)) pay day for PD as far as I can tell once the Goliath GT5 is finally revealed.

For me personally, GT5 is going to take a *substantial amount of my free and non-free time, as it should.

MNicholas3273d ago (Edited 3273d ago )

but that doesn't explain it not "heating up."

Just look at the articles that are on the front page. How many have exciting titles?

Look at this 180° title:

"This title brings back the challenge of old sch..."

Exciting?

Yet this article by Digital Foundry is stuck at 20° despite having more than twice as many comments and content that, if it were allowed on the front page, would easily get it into the hundreds of degrees or even over a thousand of degrees.

Shadow Flare3273d ago

In all honesty, that article title you mentioned isn't that boring. In fact I find it a little intrigueing. This article however has a very boring title. The only reason I found it was cos you linked it in another article. Otherwise i'd never have clicked on this article. So no, its not the mods. Its that there's nothing eye-catching in the title.

Which means its down to everyone here to help it out. If you want it in the front page, then we gotta link it in other articles and spread the word. Then hopefully it'll hit 50 degrees. I'm telling you though, the title offer to change. Its all marketing tactics.

aliveinboston3273d ago (Edited 3273d ago )

I'm with everyone else on this. GaffyH, Mnicolas, Chubear and Raztad I've giving you guys bubbles. You all speak the truth.

Digital Foundry articles always get tons of hits and comments on N4G regardless of the title.

@Shadowflare: If this not being on the front page was only due to the supposedly boring title and backlinks then how do you explain the rubbish articles that no one's reading or commenting on that have been on the front page all day?

It just doesnt add up!

Shadow Flare3273d ago

Look, i've seen quite a few articles in the past not make it on the front page when I really thought they should have. This isn't the first time its happened. Honestly, why would the mods block this article? Why? Its not even that offensive an article to any console. And they would want as much lively debates as possibly to get more hits to this site. So why would they block it? I know some other boring articles are on the front page, but it happens. This article has a particularly boring title. You would never see a newspaper with a headline like that cos it doesn't draw people's interest. Like I said before, I would never have clicked on this story had nobody linked to it. The description also says nothing about GT5P. And that was the real juicy bit of the article. So go figure. The contributor needs to learn how to catch people's eye. Even if this did hit the front page, with a title like that it wouldn't break 120 degrees

fishd3273d ago

LOL @ the mods

Way to go guys!

ChozenWoan3273d ago

Title of this article should have been "Forza 3: The Definitive Racing Comparison". Then this would be over 1000 degrees in two hours.

gaffyh3273d ago

I think this story was posted at an unfortunate time. After 1 day, I don't think the story will ever get more than 100 degrees. If anyone really wants this story to hit the front page, change the title and resubmit it. Then just hope it gets approved.

Chubear3273d ago (Edited 3273d ago )

I wrote an article about this very thing and ofcourse you can check out the comments calling me crazy.

I'm sorry but all these commentaries and it can't get to 25degrees? Yup, MS has some kind of pull with N4G for sure. Here's the article

http://n4g.com/industrynews...

Coincidentally, that article generated hundreds of views (clicks) on the site and still can't muster past 20degrees too. I find it sad but rather hoghly amusing too how blatant N4G is with this lol. Nah this is not for gamers by gamers, it's just an illusion that it is XD

Xgamerzus3272d ago (Edited 3272d ago )

as with all Forza games ,Dead Lifeless Backdrops???
What gives if we are to experience next gen why not have masssive crowds moving around and background events taking place .
This draws you into the world of racing but we dont it is the same lifeless crap..
I remember the Sega arcade engines racers had way more life than this!!!
Why because of massive RAM..etc.
I can't wait for the 64 Core CPU/GPU's to come out 2GBRAM SPec, plus 100GB Raid SSD
Consoles to come out this is a joke!!!
Next 360 please!!

griff23272d ago

"The pictures below are perfect for demostrating what Turn10 has done because it provides a common point of reference ... the ferris wheel.

You can see that nearby objects (like the ferris wheel) are the same size in both games but in Forza 3, everything farther away is much smaller and appear to be much more distant than they really are.

GT5 Prologue:
http://images.eurogamer.net...

Forza 3:
http://images.eurogamer.net...

By warping the perspective in this manner you conserve a lot of processing power and bandwidth which is why it's more commonly used in FPS games. Even Gears, a TPS, uses this trick to maintain frame-rate when you run. You'll notice that as soon as you hit the button anything farther away will magically shrink and when you stop running will grow back to normal size.

http://www.youtube.com/watc...

What you're describing is a wide angle lens view, which I must admit I was quite impressed by.

However, in terms of lighting, shadow and general detail I thought the GT images were superior.

O2_Addict3271d ago

is not only unrealistic (distorts the perspective) there's nothing the least bit "impressive" about it.

It's a last-gen trick used to conserve memory and processing by skewing LOD transitions towards lower detail. Among many others, the Burnout games on the PS2 and Xbox used it.

Some prominent exclusives on PS2 and Xbox used it as well but I'll avoid mentioning names in order to not fan fanboy flames.

+ Show (20) more repliesLast reply 3268d ago
frostypants3273d ago (Edited 3273d ago )

How is this NOT on the front page? Good lord...it's fanboy flamebait gold, is it not? How is this being suppressed?

MNicholas3273d ago

we all know the answer to your question.

DonCorneo3273d ago (Edited 3273d ago )

definitive FLOP!

LMAO!!1!

Beast_Master3273d ago

Not a flop..or a surprise.

nsky1713273d ago

well, maybe it's just monday..

MNicholas3273d ago (Edited 3273d ago )

Articles that no one cares about like newsletter updates.

There's clearly something wrong when a potential blockbuster article like this does not make it to the front page. It's been stuck at 20 degrees for a very long time.

JOLLY13273d ago

You really are butt hurt about all of this aren't you?

Unicron3273d ago

Hmmm... guess people care more about Bayonetta than the "definitive" racer of our time...

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