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[GamesIndustry.biz] The Year In Numbers 2017

Posted: Thu Dec 21, 2017 1:49 am
by Shobai
GamesIndustry.biz has presented their review of the year - the death of PC gaming continues apace.

Re: [GamesIndustry.biz] The Year In Numbers 2017

Posted: Mon Dec 25, 2017 7:42 pm
by LostCat
I'd like a breakdown on how much of that money is spent on BS like dx9 games or cosmetic garbage.

Re: [GamesIndustry.biz] The Year In Numbers 2017

Posted: Tue Dec 26, 2017 4:38 am
by meerkt
Global PC/console is 49/51% (though PC stats include browser games), but in the UK it's 1/99% ?!

And what a way to show the data. That's one seriously poor quality JPEG. It's like you're on AnandTech.

Re: [GamesIndustry.biz] The Year In Numbers 2017

Posted: Tue Dec 26, 2017 8:12 am
by sweatshopking
Actually, the rise of mobile gaming is shocking. that does show a serious problem for pc/consoles.

Re: [GamesIndustry.biz] The Year In Numbers 2017

Posted: Fri Dec 29, 2017 2:52 am
by Kougar
Shobai wrote:
GamesIndustry.biz has presented their review of the year - the death of PC gaming continues apace.


Was that sarcasm? Looks like PC game sales are still growing. The "gaming" market is simply continuing to reach an ever widening audience thanks to mobile devices, rather than cannibalizing marketshare from within the gaming market..

sweatshopking wrote:
Actually, the rise of mobile gaming is shocking. that does show a serious problem for pc/consoles.


Possibly. Mobile gaming is growing because it's rapidly being adopted by people that would never have fallen under the usual gaming label. Said people aren't usually interested in consoles or PC games to begin with.

I am more curious how it will affect consoles, when mobile devices are quickly catching up to consoles in hardware capabilities. If consoles want to stay a thing they will have to take advantage of their form factor and use higher end hardware that phones simply can't offer instead of sticking to the lowest common denominator. Either that or all consoles are going to turn into the equivalent to the Nintendo Switch or VR headsets. In another twenty years consoles may just be phones that plug into the TV or headset instead of a console anyway. Especially when a number of console sales are simply retro hardware emulators these days. :P

Re: [GamesIndustry.biz] The Year In Numbers 2017

Posted: Fri Dec 29, 2017 3:25 am
by LostCat
Kougar wrote:
I am more curious how it will affect consoles, when mobile devices are quickly catching up to consoles in hardware capabilities.

They've been 'quickly catching up to consoles in hardware capabilities' every year that it's the year of Linux on the desktop, heh.

As long as they rely on batteries, it's not going to happen.

Re: [GamesIndustry.biz] The Year In Numbers 2017

Posted: Fri Dec 29, 2017 11:49 am
by Vhalidictes
LostCat wrote:
Kougar wrote:
I am more curious how it will affect consoles, when mobile devices are quickly catching up to consoles in hardware capabilities.

They've been 'quickly catching up to consoles in hardware capabilities' every year that it's the year of Linux on the desktop, heh.

As long as they rely on batteries, it's not going to happen.


That's a good point! Fortunately, the Nintendo Switch isn't a tablet and doesn't have a battery...

Re: [GamesIndustry.biz] The Year In Numbers 2017

Posted: Sat Dec 30, 2017 11:22 am
by Kougar
LostCat wrote:
They've been 'quickly catching up to consoles in hardware capabilities' every year that it's the year of Linux on the desktop, heh.


The Switch doesn't use anything novel or fast by current standards, yet it has turned into a successful "console" for being just an average tablet with a dock. :P

There's probably big caveats involved somewhere, but the A11 Bionic somehow posts better than the i5-7300U in Geekbench

I think Nintendo saw the future, either consoles will have to earn their PC-sized performance, or downsize into Switch-esque form factors. And right now MS/Sony both seem focused on going the downsizing route.

Re: [GamesIndustry.biz] The Year In Numbers 2017

Posted: Sat Dec 30, 2017 11:58 pm
by LostCat
Kougar wrote:
And right now MS/Sony both seem focused on going the downsizing route.

Err....PS4 Pro and Xbox One X are the flagship products, neither of which qualifies as downsizing.
Vhalidictes wrote:
That's a good point! Fortunately, the Nintendo Switch isn't a tablet and doesn't have a battery...

I'm assuming you were being sarcastic. The Switch doesn't really qualify as caught up to the Xbox One or PS4. It's close, but as I mentioned neither of those is the flagship console right now. So getting close to hardware releases from 2013 isn't that big a win.

Re: [GamesIndustry.biz] The Year In Numbers 2017

Posted: Mon Jan 01, 2018 11:06 am
by Kougar
LostCat wrote:
Err....PS4 Pro and Xbox One X are the flagship products, neither of which qualifies as downsizing.


Flagship or not, the Jaguar core was at the bottom of the charts the day the original Xbox One and PS4 launched, and since then both Sony and Microsoft have been focused on shrinking the internals and console itself to cut production costs rather than add performance.

Let's look at the Jaguar core itself. AMD's Bulldozer could outperform the Jaguar core. The 2500K obliterates it it in a quad vs quad matchup. The 920 still offers 50% better single-thread performance in Cinebench. Even the ancient 2006 Core 2 Duo E6400 looks to equal the single-thread performance as the 2.1Ghz Jaguar in the PS4 Pro.

So, by that comparison just glue eight 2006 "Conroe" architecture cores together and you have a 2018 "flagship" console processor. Which if correct, means the smartphone A11 Bionic already outperforms Jaguar in single-thread performance. Equalize the core counts and the A11 Bionic probably would run circles around the Jaguar chip. The latest consoles still use 5400RPM drives, and smartphones already use faster NAND storage. So at this point the only thing making a console more powerful than the iphone X would be it's graphics capabilities.

Re: [GamesIndustry.biz] The Year In Numbers 2017

Posted: Mon Jan 01, 2018 8:32 pm
by LostCat
Kougar wrote:
So, by that comparison just glue eight 2006 "Conroe" architecture cores together and you have a 2018 "flagship" console processor. Which if correct, means the smartphone A11 Bionic already outperforms Jaguar in single-thread performance. Equalize the core counts and the A11 Bionic probably would run circles around the Jaguar chip. The latest consoles still use 5400RPM drives, and smartphones already use faster NAND storage. So at this point the only thing making a console more powerful than the iphone X would be it's graphics capabilities.

I don't think any console has been concerned about single thread performance since...what, the original Xbox? Or maybe before that? On consoles it barely matters because the software is optimized for the hardware available, not peoples dual core systems from ten years ago.

Not to mention the X1X has custom instructions to cut the amount of work for rendering significantly, so it's not exactly 'Jaguar' anymore. I would hope said instructions will be coming to PC.

Smartphones faster NAND storage comes at the obvious cost of not even being able to store one game from higher end machines, so there is that. If you need faster storage on a console, there're plenty of USB3 SSDs out there. (Surprisingly, the X1X loads stuff fast enough from the hard drive a lot of people can barely tell the difference. It's very odd.)

Re: [GamesIndustry.biz] The Year In Numbers 2017

Posted: Tue Jan 02, 2018 11:52 am
by Vhalidictes
Kougar wrote:
LostCat wrote:
Err....PS4 Pro and Xbox One X are the flagship products, neither of which qualifies as downsizing.


Flagship or not, the Jaguar core was at the bottom of the charts the day the original Xbox One and PS4 launched, and since then both Sony and Microsoft have been focused on shrinking the internals and console itself to cut production costs rather than add performance.

Let's look at the Jaguar core itself. AMD's Bulldozer could outperform the Jaguar core. The 2500K obliterates it it in a quad vs quad matchup. The 920 still offers 50% better single-thread performance in Cinebench. Even the ancient 2006 Core 2 Duo E6400 looks to equal the single-thread performance as the 2.1Ghz Jaguar in the PS4 Pro.

So, by that comparison just glue eight 2006 "Conroe" architecture cores together and you have a 2018 "flagship" console processor. Which if correct, means the smartphone A11 Bionic already outperforms Jaguar in single-thread performance. Equalize the core counts and the A11 Bionic probably would run circles around the Jaguar chip. The latest consoles still use 5400RPM drives, and smartphones already use faster NAND storage. So at this point the only thing making a console more powerful than the iphone X would be it's graphics capabilities.


The AMD "cat" cores were intended for netbooks, as an equivalent to Intel's Atom series. In that regard they basically overperform. I assume that they were used for modern consoles because they were 1) fast enough, 2) cheap, and 3) relatively low-power.

Re: [GamesIndustry.biz] The Year In Numbers 2017

Posted: Tue Jan 02, 2018 1:33 pm
by DPete27
IMO, it would only take one industry shift for PC games could drastically cannibalize console market share = Split-screen multi-player.

I've been sour about this for quite a few years now, and I'd credit this shortcoming to the "failure" of steam machines. It makes no sense to me why devs include split-screen multi-player in console ports, but then completely drop the functionality when they create the PC port. Especially with consoles being closer to a PC than ever before (x86).

I think it's a conspiracy.

Re: [GamesIndustry.biz] The Year In Numbers 2017

Posted: Tue Jan 02, 2018 1:43 pm
by Usacomp2k3
I remember playing a car racing game back in 2001, I think it was. Maybe late 2000 We had 2 people sharing a single keyboard for the split screen. I can't remember the name of it. It was the cars that flipped upside-down and right-side up. It was fabulous. That a turn-based games like the old capture the flag from ~1995 are the only same-PC multi-player games I've played.

Re: [GamesIndustry.biz] The Year In Numbers 2017

Posted: Tue Jan 02, 2018 1:59 pm
by drfish
Rollcage.

Also, the CTF game you're talking about is something I've wanted to see redone as an FPS ever since.

Re: [GamesIndustry.biz] The Year In Numbers 2017

Posted: Tue Jan 02, 2018 4:09 pm
by Usacomp2k3
drfish wrote:
Rollcage.

That's exactly it.
drfish wrote:
Also, the CTF game you're talking about is something I've wanted to see redone as an FPS ever since.

I had a paintball game from back in the day that was a straight-fps. That was the closest thing to a virtual form of a game that could actually be played physically.

Re: [GamesIndustry.biz] The Year In Numbers 2017

Posted: Tue Jan 02, 2018 5:16 pm
by derFunkenstein
Usacomp2k3 wrote:
I had a paintball game from back in the day that was a straight-fps. That was the closest thing to a virtual form of a game that could actually be played physically.

Baseball. :p

Re: [GamesIndustry.biz] The Year In Numbers 2017

Posted: Wed Jan 03, 2018 2:48 am
by Kougar
Vhalidictes wrote:
The AMD "cat" cores were intended for netbooks, as an equivalent to Intel's Atom series. In that regard they basically overperform. I assume that they were used for modern consoles because they were 1) fast enough, 2) cheap, and 3) relatively low-power.


Aye. Though one thing I don't understand is that it is a little odd consoles use eight of them when PC gaming can't even get past four cores.

If the rumor about Apple developing its own graphics pans out, it will be very interesting to see how it matches up.

Re: [GamesIndustry.biz] The Year In Numbers 2017

Posted: Wed Jan 03, 2018 9:02 am
by derFunkenstein
Kougar wrote:
Aye. Though one thing I don't understand is that it is a little odd consoles use eight of them when PC gaming can't even get past four cores.

If the rumor about Apple developing its own graphics pans out, it will be very interesting to see how it matches up.

It's not hard to understand. At least on the Xbox One, two of the cores and a good chunk of RAM are dedicated to the OS.

That link is from pre-release, and some of it isn't true anymore - when Microsoft dropped the Kinect requirement, it freed up full use of the GPU. But some of it remains, including some CPU hardware partitioning.

Re: [GamesIndustry.biz] The Year In Numbers 2017

Posted: Wed Jan 03, 2018 10:31 am
by drfish
Usacomp2k3 wrote:
I had a paintball game from back in the day that was a straight-fps. That was the closest thing to a virtual form of a game that could actually be played physically.


It's old, and it runs best with a Glide wrapper[!], but Nerf Arena Blast is worth a look if you've never tried it. I still have my original CD. :D

Re: [GamesIndustry.biz] The Year In Numbers 2017

Posted: Wed Jan 03, 2018 10:33 am
by Kougar
derFunkenstein wrote:
It's not hard to understand. At least on the Xbox One, two of the cores and a good chunk of RAM are dedicated to the OS.


The Xbox supposedly uses a more streamlined build of Windows 10 making it lighter and more efficient. Yet for running a heavier OS with background apps, desktop users still don't need to dedicate two cores to the OS, or see much if any benefit to have six cores to run games.

Re: [GamesIndustry.biz] The Year In Numbers 2017

Posted: Wed Jan 03, 2018 11:17 am
by Glorious
Kougar wrote:
The Xbox supposedly uses a more streamlined build of Windows 10 making it lighter and more efficient. Yet for running a heavier OS with background apps, desktop users still don't need to dedicate two cores to the OS, or see much if any benefit to have six cores to run games.


The consoles don't have a choice. A ~$50 dollar Celeron (skylake) on the market today has twice the single-threaded performance of even the upgraded consoles.

If you buy the ~125 dollar recent i3, that's now a quad-core so it *completely* outclasses the console. Even with the full 8 cores, the AMD jaguar-based consoles could never keep up.

It isn't a matter of PC gaming not being able to get past 4 fully-utilized threads, it's a matter of the consoles not being able to meet the feature/performance targets without the painful effort of using all 6-7.

If a PC-game really did require 6 fully-utilized high performance threads for -CPU- performance, that's problematic. They typically aren't used for the workloads we've shunted to GPUs: things like rendering which is basically concurrently non-sequential: if you drop a frame or half-render a frame (like tearing), so what? That's output to the void, essentially. It's also easily scalable: I don't much care if a frame is 800x600 or 3840x2160, as long as it gets rendered in 16ms or whatever, that's aces. The synchronisation is basically the GPU doing that work independently and then going "DING!" to let me know it's done so the human on the other side of that void doesn't get angry.

No, CPUs are used for sequential things. Sure, we can make them concurrent with multi-threading, but we got keep that all synchronized or we lose sequence and the program crashes. Or, it doesn't crash, but runs slower than if we hadn't bothered to thread it in the first place. It's also not neatly scalable like graphics, even conceptually: playing a RTS at 1080p versus 4k could confer an advantage in visibility perhaps, but if my pathfinding units do a better job than yours in multiplayer, that's competition breaking.

Basically, the scalability that we're accustomed to in PC gaming is almost universally dependent upon the GPU, or the CPU facilitating the GPU. The stuff that doesn't relate to the GPU/Graphics is a baseline that everyone must have, thus there isn't much pressure to figure out how to use 6 or more cores: if you can keep the GPU fully-driven with 4, you're unavoidably toying with the baseline, and thus your potential market.

Re: [GamesIndustry.biz] The Year In Numbers 2017

Posted: Wed Jan 03, 2018 6:19 pm
by Kougar
Interesting read, thanks Glorious. Though, the lack of thread scalability is exactly why I made my original comment about the eight cores.

The thing for me is that the only distinguishing factor left preventing a tablet from replacing a console is the GPU performance. The entire SoC for the Xbox One X is a 359mm2 die. Assuming next-gen consoles stick with AMD they will probably drop GDDR5 for HBM2 or HBM3 and will come in even smaller form factors thanks to the space+power savings.

Re: [GamesIndustry.biz] The Year In Numbers 2017

Posted: Wed Jan 03, 2018 10:40 pm
by Usacomp2k3
drfish wrote:
Usacomp2k3 wrote:
I had a paintball game from back in the day that was a straight-fps. That was the closest thing to a virtual form of a game that could actually be played physically.


It's old, and it runs best with a Glide wrapper[!], but Nerf Arena Blast is worth a look if you've never tried it. I still have my original CD. :D

I’ll have to look that up. My son might enjoy it too.

Re: [GamesIndustry.biz] The Year In Numbers 2017

Posted: Thu Jan 04, 2018 2:51 pm
by Glorious
Kougar wrote:
The thing for me is that the only distinguishing factor left preventing a tablet from replacing a console is the GPU performance.


In single-threaded performance, something like Apple's A9X or A10X would almost certainly substantially beat those consoles, yes.

You just can't compete in GPU performance with a tablet-sized power budget, and those Ipad Pros cost 2-3 times what those consoles do.