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Carmack: Consoles hampering raw horsepower of PCs


  • Carmack: Consoles hampering raw horsepower of PCs

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ID:	596753 Industry legend and genius, John Carmack of id Software rants about the current state of games hardware and what the future holds at E3 2011. Carmack has told CVG "their best cards (nVidia and AMD) are literally in order of magnitude more powerful than the consoles."

    "It is a little bit of a shame that despite the raw horsepower, we are hampered by the arm's length API interface because it is, unhappily, true that we have the consoles here running at 60 frames per second and we can have these massively more powerful PC systems that struggle sometimes to hold the framerate because of unnecessary overheads.

    "Where, if we were programming that hardware directly on the metal the same way we do the consoles, it would be significantly more powerful."

    The end note was a positive one however, as Carmack said, "But there are moves afoot to be improving that and we are working closely with all the vendors to address that."

    In the end Carmack concedes that the dominance of console over PC at the moment is an economic one:

    "There's no doubt we have an order of magnitude more power on the PCs. There's several developers that if you said 'Go for it' on here we would make vastly better looking stuff if we really made that our focus.

    "But the timetables are so long, to do best of breed on here takes years to develop and engine and develop the content to go with it and you'll just run yourself out of business doing things that way.

    "And those just end up being the cold hard economic truths," he concluded, "that you can spent $100 million working on a game now, and if you did that focused on the PC you'd be out of business."

    E3 2011: Carmack: Consoles hampering raw horsepower of PCs
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