I note with a growing sense of bewilderment and amusement the range of talk at E3 about "maxing out" the current generation gaming systems. EA claims it has "maxed out" Xbox 360, but not PS3. Rather more plausibly, Infinity Ward asserts that it has "pushed the upper limits" of the Microsoft console for its latest Modern Warfare epic. The truth is of course, that very, very few developers can actually claim to have squeezed out every last drop of potential from any gaming hardware, but if pressed, I'd say that Sony's Santa Monica studio got close with their God of War titles on PS2.
And now while others claim that their titles push the current generation to the limit, the God of War team has yet to release its first actual game on PS3: the new Kratos death spree is set to debut in stores in early 2010. What we do have in the here and now however, is the presentation footage of God of War 3 from E3. You can see it here and it looks like being a worthy continuation of the incredibly blood-thirsty mythological saga.
Technical breakdown: early reports of 1080p can be pretty much dismissed from the off (though an upscaling solution for 1080i-only HDTV owners is likely). Analysis of the marketing materials shown to date, including this video, reveals a definite 720p resolution, with 2x multi-sampling anti-aliasing. With no 60Hz feed to work from (only 30FPS vid has been released), frame rate analysis is inconclusive, but there are sections where the game currently drops below 30FPS. Moving on from those elements, it's business as usual for the Santa Monica team - just about everything we've seen in the video oozes technical class, especially in terms of lighting and texture work. Gameplay-wise, we've little concern here. It's God of War. The formula remains in the same vein, and I expect great things from the final game.
Digital Foundry specialises in technical analysis of gaming hardware and software, using state-of-the-art capture systems and bespoke software to show you how well games and hardware run, visualising precisely what they're capable of. In order to show you what 4K gaming actually looks like we needed to build our own platform to supply high quality 4K video for offline viewing. So we did.
Our videos are multi-gigabyte files and we've chosen a high quality provider to ensure fast downloads. However, that bandwidth isn't free and so we charge a small monthly subscription fee of £4.50. We think it's a small price to pay for unlimited access to top-tier quality encodes of our content. Thank you.Support Digital Foundry