Just How More Detailed Are PS4 Characters Over PS3 Characters?

Just How More Detailed Are PS4 Characters Over PS3 Characters?

Last week, Guerrilla Games released a report on the studio’s PlayStation 4 reveal demonstration, which had people playing a real-time demo of the new Killzone game. It’s mostly super-technical, but there’s still enough interesting stuff in there for regular folk to get something out of.

Stuff like:

  • While the demo ran at “only” 30fps, it was also running at 1080p. Most current-gen shooters have been lucky to be running at 720p.
  • Guerilla is working with Sony on its own form of anti-aliasing, code-named TMAA. I’m guessing that stands for “Too Much Anti-Aliasing”.
  • The game is putting all that GDDR5 RAM to good use. 3GB is there JUST for the visuals.

Perhaps of most use for casual observers, though, are the comparisons between the 3D models used in Killzone 3 and those in the PS4 game.

In Killzone 3, the average character model had around 10,000 polygons. That number has jumped out to 40,000 on the PS4, resulting in much more detailed people. The same goes for environments; as you can see below, piles of rubble have a lot more… rubble in them.

As impressive as this may be in terms of raw numbers, though, I can’t help but feel it also highlights the inherent dangers — and risks — in the upcoming generation of games. Sure, 40,000 vs 10,000 sounds like a big improvement, but when you look at those comparison shots (which are admittedly slightly misleading, since the KZ3 character is being shown inside the PS4 game’s engine), does it matter that much to justify all-new hardware?

You can read the entire report below. Like I’ve said, it’s very technical — it’s aimed at helping other PS4 developers — but if you’re into this stuff, check it out.

Killzone: Shadow Fall Report [Guerrilla Games]


  • It’s the law of diminishing returns at work.

    Those two characters up the top look very similar. You’d never know one has 4 times the polygons than the other.

    What will be more interesting is the way that these characters behave and what they can do.

    • And you know what? That’s an awesome prospect. If developers have reached the point where they can’t wow you with graphics, They’ll have to do it in other ways.

    • Agreed. I’d like to see developers use the extra power and memory to create more believable worlds that’re more interactive than before. Something like Fallout 4, we’ll most definitely see a big graphical improvement over Fallout 3, but also hopefully in gameplay as well. At the end of the day, if you’re immersed in a game you switch off from noticing the graphics and notice limitations in what you can and can’t do in game.

    • Yep we have enough polygons to work with now. I reckon this generation will focus on lighting/shadows and more technical shaders.

    • I don’t think you have a 1080p HDTV. Because if you do then you’d know how important anti-aliasing in in Playstation games. Because in PS3 games, it was MISSING, and 1080p HDTV shows that very well. Anyways, I just felt your comment to be too ignorant so I told you. Don’t let anybody tell you otherwise.

      • It probably won’t happen. Something happened in the development of Unlimited Detail that made Euclideon distance themselves from the game industry.

        Check out their website. They maybe mention gaming once in passing.

    • I think those two charaters in the first image is a JOKE. I mean really, it’s just two real life replicas showing you how much different it is in body langauge. lol.

      But this is just the beginning. Animation rendering and modelling artists will always try to improve the graphics department weather we think it’s importsnt or not, I think.

  • Because development times haven’t increased enough 😛
    I love pretty things as much as the next person, but you know what they say about 4 times as many polygons…

  • Current gen engines already invest ample resources into character models, but they do it at the cost of detail in the environment. Look forward to next gen titles featuring environments that don’t fall back to low poly models and low res textures at short distances from the player character.

  • Instead of worrying about whats the shiniest game out, how about they use all that disc space and graphics to increase the games content rather then just opt for a cinematic approach.
    I couldn’t help but wonder why we had multiple discs for decent games on the original playstation which span over 30 hours easy down to a mere 10 hours (if that) with only one disc at best for games nowadays.
    Whilst I understand that making games isn’t exactly cheap, I would love to see a game that has both decent graphics and depth to the gameplay cause I’m sure we’ve drilled through many throw away titles (if you’ve bothered to even finish any of them) that don’t even compare to the games of the past.
    Call me cynical but thats just how it feels, all about dark gritty carbon copied worlds with flashy graphics that hold nearly no real appeal or what you would truly consider “fun” other then just to kill some time and get no real sense of enjoyment out of, in which case you might as well play a game on a smart phone.

    • Disc space has nothing to do with it.
      Those original Playstation games had more than 1 disc thanks to huge video/audio files. Any of the original PSX game assets for any game would fit on 1 CD. Same with most PS2 games and DVD and same with PS3 and Blu-Ray.

      Only some PC games now are managing to hit averages of more than 20gb thanks to massive texture and audio packs (and a modern disregard for compression).

      The whole reason so many games are short now is that it takes as much time, effort and money to make a 10 hour game with all the modern graphics/physics as it would to previously make a 30 hour game out of static sprites.

      Games these days are no less quality than older games, it’s us that has changed over time.

  • Also interesting is that the whole thing was only using something like 4.5 gb of RAM. Not even close to touching the sides of the 8 gb total (although probably more like 7 assuming about 1 gb set aside for system use).

    • I’m guessing some is also set aside for the video recording/streaming that is available at all times in every game.

      • Actually there was an interview where it said PS4 has its own hardware and ram for doing the real-time streaming and recording.

  • I see more detail, but it’s not a “mind-blowing” leap. Still, it’s nice to have better graphics and more memory for the developers to work with.


    Who wrote that title a five year old? If you’re going to use wording wrong. Don’t let it be the title.


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