Xbox Series S Page 3

  • Switch-v85 11 Sep 2020 09:33:16 4,203 posts
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    Hmmm. I canít see them taking the time to go though and update all the X enhanced back compat games for Series S.

    I think 1440p looks quite a lot better than 1080p so if they manage to follow through with that then great. In reality I expect most games will probably run with dynamic scaling and will drop to 1080p often.
  • Dazimus 11 Sep 2020 09:34:00 1,466 posts
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    @Switch-v85 Digital Foundry confirmed the S doesnít have enough RAM so it canít implement One X enhancements.
  • Switch-v85 11 Sep 2020 09:37:57 4,203 posts
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    Psiloc wrote:
    Switch-v85 wrote:
    I just need Microsoft to confirm how backwards compatibility will work. Iíve pretty much decided Iím getting a Series S but will it run the X enhancements or will it only run the basic versions? Would be a bit shit to have all that power and be stuck with the One S version of games.
    "All that power"? On a pure teraflop level it's noticeably weaker than a One X. Backwards compatibility isn't going to care about the ray tracing hardware or that stuff, but it certainly is going to care that it's Series X architecture and not the same hardware that was in the One family.

    I mean even if all of that is debatable (which I don't think it is) the memory footprint alone would kill it stone dead. I must admit I hadn't thought it through either beforehand but One X level of BC is surely a physical impossibility.
    All that power in comparison to an Xbox One S.
  • Psiloc 11 Sep 2020 09:48:17 5,803 posts
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    @Switch-v85 Ah I see, yeah fair enough. You probably know this then but it's just the fact that they'd have to launch a "Series S enhancement" program to accommodate the performance profile of this specific model. Which we don't expect them to do, and I wouldn't expect devs to support it anyway.

    Makes more sense to leave all enhancements for the X line; I guess in marketing terms as well as for practical reasons.
  • Malek86 11 Sep 2020 09:50:57 11,181 posts
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    @Dazimus tbf it's not really confirmation. It's still only speculation, although it makes sense so it's probably true. Even so, better wait for an official confirmation.
  • Derblington 11 Sep 2020 09:55:22 34,241 posts
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    It's a little odd that you're happy to buy the Series S and not have all the Series X enhancements, but you feel it's important to have the One X enhancements in backwards compatibility and not be reduced to One S performance :)
  • Psiloc 11 Sep 2020 09:57:28 5,803 posts
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    It's pretty well informed speculation though. Games with X enhancements will be using all of that 12GB of memory even if they don't really need to be. There's not going to be any decent way of recompiling games on the fly to handle 1/3rd less RAM.

    And I just don't see any devs creating yet another SKU of old games when the S version of BC slots right in.
  • Blackmarsh63 11 Sep 2020 09:57:54 3,887 posts
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    @Malek86 Exactly.

    "Beyond the lack of an optical drive, its 8GB of memory is going to be a tight squeeze for games developed for next-gen - as will the 500GB of on-board storage. Beyond that, there is much we still don't know and it's hard to say how the gaming experience might be impacted on Series S"

    What are people expecting for £250 ? If you want the full fat experience get the X.
  • monkman76 11 Sep 2020 09:58:07 17,162 posts
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    Is anyone else confused?
  • Blackmarsh63 11 Sep 2020 10:01:28 3,887 posts
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    @Psiloc "Cheapo version of Microsoft's flagship console doesn't run as well as the flagship console." Who'd have thought ....
  • Psiloc 11 Sep 2020 10:02:49 5,803 posts
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    @Blackmarsh63 ?
  • Switch-v85 11 Sep 2020 10:04:30 4,203 posts
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    @Derblington Yeah it does sound odd. I actually just bought an Xbox One X but it was DOA. Iím more interested in the backwards compatibility side of things than I am having an Xbox for next gen as Iíll be doing most of my gaming on a PS5 and this will be a second console.
  • nickthegun 11 Sep 2020 10:09:27 83,632 posts
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    The 'not running as as well' is to be expected, its the storage that would bother me. I appreciate they are trying to squeeze every penny out of it, but for an all digital console designed to get people hooked on the netflix of games, 500gb is a joke.

    A good chunk of your initial saving would be swallowed by the external drive you would need to install more than three games.
  • Derblington 11 Sep 2020 10:14:47 34,241 posts
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    The casual/core audience don't tend to install a lot, or will make do with un/re-installing as a consequence of saving money. There's a sizable group that only play 1-3 games a year.

    The 'needing everything installed to switch between at leisure' is more of a enthusiast thing.

    That said, the crossover will be larger due to the lower price-point of the S, and it may annoy those in having to pay a further £200 (or thereabouts) to increase storage size.
  • Phattso 11 Sep 2020 10:23:16 26,179 posts
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    Derblington wrote:
    That said, the crossover will be larger due to the lower price-point of the S, and it may annoy those in having to pay a further £200 (or thereabouts) to increase storage size.
    That's only if you want it at SSD rates. There's still the cheaper route with a mechanical external drive as a dumping ground to save re-downloading. If memory serves, It took about 25 minutes to transfer Red Dead Redemption 2 from my One X to an external drive. It took two full days to download it on my shitty Internet. :)
  • richardiox 11 Sep 2020 10:27:53 9,140 posts
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    Derblington wrote:
    The casual/core audience don't tend to install a lot, or will make do with un/re-installing as a consequence of saving money. There's a sizable group that only play 1-3 games a year.

    The 'needing everything installed to switch between at leisure' is more of a enthusiast thing.

    That said, the crossover will be larger due to the lower price-point of the S, and it may annoy those in having to pay a further £200 (or thereabouts) to increase storage size.
    You can increase storage using a cheap usb HDD. PS5 and Series X although having more SSD space than the S will also struggle when current gen games like COD, Red Dead, Gears 5 are all clocking in close to 150gigs. Pretty sure for example that PS5 "only" has 800gb of usable SSD storage.

    Basically, everyone will end up needing a USB HDD with their next gen machines and get used to keeping their "currently playing" selection on the SSD with everything else (and back compatible games) parked on an external HDD.
  • Malek86 11 Sep 2020 10:47:11 11,181 posts
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    For many people, they will only want a new console not for the extra shiny, but because in two years time, when last gen support is dropped, it will be the only way to play the new COD and whatnot.

    Technically I'm the same. I don't care much for better graphics, but I know that current consoles suddenly won't run many games once 2021 comes around, so I have no choice. A cheap option is best for me.
  • Blackmarsh63 11 Sep 2020 10:53:54 3,887 posts
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    @Psiloc Wrong person, apologies.
  • Derblington 11 Sep 2020 11:06:06 34,241 posts
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    Yeah, there are cheaper solutions but for the core audience that the S is aiming towards, they likely won't know them. They'll see the only option being the officially produced Xbox SSD drive.

    Not only because its the officially marketed thing, but also because it's the only one that works to play new titles and it doesn't require any research of faff. It's just plug and play.
    Install/delete is simple - it's binary. Storage management is a pain (as evidenced by everyone complaining about needing to do it in the first place).

    But it's the enthusiast end of the spectrum (regarding the internet, I guess pun intended) that will complain about this the loudest.
  • Derblington 11 Sep 2020 11:07:54 34,241 posts
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    Also, because I mentioned the dev complaints about the console differences yesterday, here's a twitter thread that's doing the rounds that supports MS's decision.
    I'm seeing this being debated atm too, but eitehr way things pan out it might be an interesting read for some of you.

    https://twitter.com/Gavavva/status/1304003862894989312?s=19
  • Psiloc 11 Sep 2020 11:32:14 5,803 posts
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    Derblington wrote:
    Also, because I mentioned the dev complaints about the console differences yesterday, here's a twitter thread that's doing the rounds that supports MS's decision.
    I'm seeing this being debated atm too, but eitehr way things pan out it might be an interesting read for some of you.

    https://twitter.com/Gavavva/status/1304003862894989312?s=19
    Hmm.

    I mean I support this decision and think its a shrewd move on MS's part but I don't think you can hand-wave away 6GB memory difference at one half to one sixth the speed with "but lower res" and smart delivery tricks. For one, the same smart delivery stuff will be in the SX so that doesn't bridge the gap at all.

    Ultimately his point is that it is a next gen machine (people are saying it's less powerful than a 1X), and he's right. But I don't think there's anything here to smooth over the difficulties devs are going to face with it.
  • Jubilee64 11 Sep 2020 11:56:34 26 posts
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    That Twitter thread assumes that the power of series X is all about delivering native 4K and you can scale down. I donít want next gen to just be about playing Fortnite at 4K and 120fps. Is the X series now just going to replace the 1X as a 4K box? Is native 4K worth all that grunt?
  • Phattso 11 Sep 2020 12:03:14 26,179 posts
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    Psiloc wrote:
    For one, the same smart delivery stuff will be in the SX so that doesn't bridge the gap at all.
    Not sure what you're getting at here? He's saying that, using Smart Delivery, the SeriesX gets 4K textures, and the Series S gets HD textures. How does that not bridge the gap? That's, in a very literal sense, what Smart Delivery is for. :)

    If they'd gimped the CPU, and had a GPU with a subset of features, there's maybe an argument to be made that this hamstrings the gen. But it's the same CPU, with a negligible drop, the same GPU feature set, but far fewer CU and a lower res target.

    As a "just downres your Series X version, dump some assets, dial back some detail, and you're done" type story, it checks out for me.

    Is it a pain in the balls for devs? A bit - but no moreso than having to support multiple targets in the previous gen, or PC in general, Shirley?

    I'd love some concrete examples of where this might not play out, from the devs raising the concerns.
  • Blackmarsh63 11 Sep 2020 12:10:30 3,887 posts
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    @Phattso "just downres your Series X version, dump some assets, dial back some detail, and you're done" doesn't sound like unticking a few check boxes on your dev kit software. Extra expense ?
  • Phattso 11 Sep 2020 12:14:49 26,179 posts
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    Blackmarsh63 wrote:
    @Phattso "just downres your Series X version, dump some assets, dial back some detail, and you're done" doesn't sound like unticking a few check boxes on your dev kit software. Extra expense ?
    Sure - and actually it's the QA that will be the real killer here - but come on people: this is literally what most software development is about. It's a known, measurable, solvable problem. And for most devs, they already do this to support all the different platforms. It's just a new target.

    Were any games held back by having Pro/Base PS4s? Nope. Control just turned itself into a slideshow and moved on. Were any games held back by the utterly wank OG XB One? Nope. They just put them down to 720p and moved on. The games they wanted to make (that were at least possible) all got made.

    This really isn't that big a deal. The only studios that don't already need to do this are the first parties on PlayStation. Why? Because first party on XBOX already has to support PC as well and so has to do all this already.

    So literally the only group that could be genuinely negatively impacted by this are first party PlayStation studios. And they don't have to care. All the others already have solutions in place.

    So. Yeah. Next gen is safe, I'm sure.

    Edited by Phattso at 12:16:11 11-09-2020
  • Psiloc 11 Sep 2020 12:30:06 5,803 posts
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    Phattso wrote:
    Psiloc wrote:
    For one, the same smart delivery stuff will be in the SX so that doesn't bridge the gap at all.
    Not sure what you're getting at here? He's saying that, using Smart Delivery, the SeriesX gets 4K textures, and the Series S gets HD textures. How does that not bridge the gap? That's, in a very literal sense, what Smart Delivery is for. :)
    They're talking about that stuff where textures that aren't visible to the player aren't loaded in memory but are swapped in and out seamlessly. That's the big tech demo they're showing ATM; but my point is it applies to both systems equally so has no bearing on this discussion.

    On your point, frankly I think the idea of smart delivery of textures based on the SKU is going to be one of those things it supports but nobody uses

    Edited by Psiloc at 12:32:25 11-09-2020
  • Dougs 11 Sep 2020 12:34:17 96,536 posts
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    monkman76 wrote:
    Is anyone else confused?
    Yes. And for that reason, I'm out.
  • Phattso 11 Sep 2020 12:35:35 26,179 posts
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    Psiloc wrote:
    They're talking about that stuff where textures that aren't visible to the player aren't loaded in memory but are swapped in and out seamlessly. That's the big tech demo they're showing ATM; but my point is it applies to both systems equally so has no bearing on this discussion.
    I'm not sure that's Smart Delivery, but called something else? Maybe I'm wrong. But I get what you're saying. Not sure I agree though - like any system, it'll have levers that can be pulled to make it more or less aggressive based on what you want. But yes - if a game came along and absolutely blasted that particular subsystem then yeah it might lost something in the translation.

    But Battlefield 1 lost something in the translation to XB One (about 75% of its resolution HEYOOOOOOO!) and it still got released. So not fatal.

    On your point, frankly I think the idea of smart delivery of textures based on the SKU is going to be one of those things it supports but nobody uses
    Quite possibly. But if it's that or the game doesn't run, I'm sure they'll just do that. :)
  • JamboWayOh 11 Sep 2020 12:35:51 21,498 posts
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    @Psiloc

    But you essentially get it now with the Xbox One X were you get higher res textures compared to the og xbox one, so I'm going to have to disagree.

    Edited by JamboWayOh at 12:36:03 11-09-2020
  • Derblington 11 Sep 2020 12:38:17 34,241 posts
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    Well, games aren't built for low spec PCs - they're made for mid-high to very-high end, and you lose a ton of shit when you drop down. The testing that's done is basic functionality but it's never focused or particularly worried about, and the min-spec system requirements move continually as games become more advanced.

    By introducing a "low-spec" (relative) baseline for the next gen you're saying that game must run there, and well, and potentially affecting overall design that needn't have been considered if the baseline was PS5 and Series X. We'll never know the full impact of that decision because we'll never see games that don't need to support the Series S, outside of PS5 exclusives which can't really be compared in the same way anyway.
    But essentially everything gets held back a bit or devs are forced to support different performance levels. Expect the path of least resistance.

    Edited by Derblington at 12:45:08 11-09-2020
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