DriveClub, one of the PlayStation 4’s launch titles, will take full advantage of the new console’s graphical grunt. Speaking in a recent interview, developer Evolution’s Scott Kirkland said that “there’s a whole load of special sauce that’s gone into the GPU development” and the CPU has “made it really easy for us to gain great performance from the outset.”
Sony’s approach to the PS4’s chipset is night and day compared to how they built the PS3, which revolved around the new but unwieldy Cell processor. The next-gen successor is more like a PC, with far more approachable elements that mean developers can get to grips with the technology much more quickly.
“I mean, in terms of features that really help us out, there’s the CPU, having that symmetrical architecture, that’s made it really easy for us to gain great performance from the outset,” said Kirkland. “When we look at PS3 development, it was very powerful architecture, but one that took a fair amount of time to get up to speed with and exploit, and that showed on each iteration of Motorstorm.”
“Whereas with Drive Club that power is just there, on the table, all very accessible right from the outset. Knowing every console is going to have a hard-drive in it, that’s something we’re able to plan for, we’ve got brilliant strategies for boosting the time spent playing the game.”
Kirkland added that the built in hard-drive will mean that the game will have much smaller load and download times compared to PS3 and Xbox.
“From a GPU perspective, there’s a whole load of special sauce that’s gone into the GPU development,” he continued. “And that paves the way for us to do all sorts of general purpose compute work on there as well. It’s always going to be a balancing act between the kind of hardcore graphics guys who want to use all that power for what goes on the screen, but there’s some great complimentary stuff that we can do with the GPU as well.”
Kirkland said that the GPU is much closer to a regular PC one, with features familiar to PC developers. Evolution are therefore having to catch-up with the tech, mentioning things like texture arrays, hardware instancing, volume textures, tessellation and texture compression.
He also confirmed that DriveClub will support live-streaming of the game.
You can read our DriveClub preview here.