Why PS1 and N64 Games Were Different

Back in the Mid-90s the Nintendo 64 [an] original Playstation dominated the fifth generation of consoles competition was fierce with.


Back in the Mid-90s the Nintendo 64 [an] original Playstation dominated the fifth generation of consoles competition was fierce with numerous classic games stacking up against each other on Playstation side you had narrative intensive games such as final fantasy 7 as well as content rich games such as gran Turismo and metal gear Solid Meanwhile the Nintendo 64 had the best action-Packed game such as good and I rogue Squadron and Starfox 64 It also had the best 3D platformer such as mario 64 and Banjo Kazooie What’s interesting is that these two consoles have different game libraries not just because designers were coming up of different ideas on each side but because [of] the technical differences between these two platforms Make no mistake these two systems are vastly [different] in how they operated which Force game designers Or clues the ones who knew what the hell they were doing to adapt their game’s design So what were those differences, and [how] [do] they manifest themselves? Well? Let’s answer that question today. I’m dr.. [watters] This is a game design wit and today. We’ll look at the four main differences that impact game design between the Nintendo 64 and Playstation the first significant difference is in static storage space Think of static storage is the location where you find out the game’s data such as images sounds environments and character models As you may know the Playstation 1 which [vacuum] odd area which is called PlayStation use CDS Which provided for its time a ton of static memory space? This magnet seemed matched by today’s standards, but back then the average super Nintendo game took two to three meg’s of space [we] are as in Playstation. You could fit six hundred meg’s in a CD This was a monstrous leap in gaming Meanwhile the Nintendo 64 relied on cartridges which held an average about 10 percent of what a CD could Now there were some exceptions to this rule like resident evil 2 but what this boils down to is that pretty much all nintendo 64 Games had to confront the fact that they simply wouldn’t have as much storage space as even the most banal PlayStation game had access to But it’s not like cartridges suck though. They did have an advantage over cDs. Which is the second main difference between these two consoles? Transfer speed you see static storage the CD is exactly what the word implies. It’s static. The console can’t change any information That’s there it can only read from it, but what’s the big deal? Then well you know in my removes from the left to the right that’s a change of information that can’t occur in static storage space Remember you can only read my rotation you can’t write a new one To address that consoles have to load the contents of static storage into volatile storage also known as [ram] It’s in [ram] that these two consoles can alter and play around with information It’s there that [Myra] can move jump punch and fly How fast a console loads information from static storage into ram is known as transfer speed and the Nintendo 64 could Load content a hundred times faster than the Playstation so what this all meant was the playstation games had slow access to a lot of content while Intelli 64 games had fast access to Less content, and this had a huge impact on the respective game design for example This is why you couldn’t have a game like fan offense to seven on the Nintendo 64 [this] game has hundreds of detailed background images each one detail in the world you were exploring Each time you entered a new location the game would read the background image from static storage and display to the user This game relied so heavily on this technique that it needed three cDS to put [discontent] together However reading each one of these images took time which is why the game forced the player to slowly? Traverse from one section of the background to the other even though there wasn’t any impending obstacle right in front of them Think about it if the player could move four times as fast they jump for the background so quickly [that] most of their actual play Time experience will be watching load screens these meant games that depend on on this technique of rich background images needed to have a slow pace This explains the rhythm of games such as resident evil Chrono cross legend of dragoon positive and man in black Remember [man] in black for the Playstation 1 me neither Meanwhile Nintendo 64 fast transfer speed allow designers to build games in which you could traverse from hard world to game level [and] back in Less than a few seconds this helped maintain the game’s immersion using this advantage designers built vast interconnected Environments, which players could freely explore games such as [mario] 64 Benja Kazoo and Jet Force Gemini? Leveraged this technique to great extent the fact that loading content was inexpensive method playing a game like Mario 64 was all about exploration And running and jumping and finding as much as he could about the world it meant you were not afraid to traverse back and explore Areas they [game] even invited you to do so since several of its secrets would only be found his way now I imagine that experience and playstation where each time you entered a room it would load and You would sit and wonder oh, no. I’m in the wrong room. Let me turn back and then load a bit more Super fun The third discrepancy between these two consoles is in their restoration capabilities Which is a fancy way of saying how they drew 3D stuff on the screen here is where it gets interesting because although the Nintendo 64 can Render 3D content Faster when compared to Playstation Playstation games like I said previously had the advantage of rely on larger library of content available in static storage What all of this meant was that the nintendo 64 can render more of the same stuff while [Playstation] can render less? But of more diverse things here’s an example take a look [at] Ocarina sometimes landscape The Nintendo 64 can render content all the way across the sky but notice that the grass is a repeated array of the same foliage covering the entire plane Meanwhile on a Playstation metal gear solid’s cameras play stop down to limit your [field] [of] [view] Even when looked in first view you still see how small the environment is when compared to the lush landscapes of Zelda however because PlayStation games had access to more content the small environments were rich with [detail] such as posters placement props sound effects and all sorts of different things due to high static storage but low [rating] capabilities Playstation games ride heavily on a technique called texture mapping Texture mapping is when you want to render a triangle And then overlay an image on top of it look at vagrant story Environments are filled with detail even though the [areas] they portray are quite small Meanwhile nintendo 64 games relied heavily on a technique called Garage shading there’s a lot of developer to state for each point in the 3D triangle a color which the hardware would then scale? evenly across Since you were only supplying data for three points on a triangle as opposed to using the entire image [grout] shading saved a ton of static storage which remembered the nintendo 64 it didn’t have as much as the playstation this explains the discrepancy of character models between say metal gear solid and Mario if you look at marist Characters model you see that it’s Largely composed of triangles your fault textures, but still contain an explicit color that’s spread across the model Meanwhile for metal gear you see the entire model overlaid with a texture Pretty much all character models between these two consoles display this technical and design discrepancy But characters are interests about how they look but also how they sound and act both these consoles can render 3D content? But their texture wasn’t up to speed improperly doing facial animations This really only came about on the six console generation since the Playstation has more room [for] storage But less 3D capabilities games like metal gear solid resorted to using live-action dialogue with our character [heads] moved to symbolize speech He’s alive. You’re the arms tech president Kenneth Baker [rice] Meanwhile games for the Nintendo 64 rely on text to Express dialogue, but resorted to exaggerated body movements to the nude emotions The fourth discrepancy is that Nintendo 64 games could render 3D content faster? And it had four controller ports as opposed to Playstation Which only had two this bending tendo dominated the split-screen multiplayer experience for consoles of that generation? Ask anyone that play good, and [I] multiplayer back in the day, and they’ll tell you that it was [freakin] awesome [then] ask them about their matter of fun or multiplayer experience. [oh], they’ll say oh man now ask too busy playing Goldeneye There’s one less discrepancy between these two consoles that I haven’t mentioned so far which is full motion videos which only the Playstation has and That’s all I’m going to say about that because [four] motion feeders are need your [game] [playing] [to] [our] proper movie No matter what anyone else says ever? Now before I go let me ask you a question. Why does any of this matter? Why am I spending my time to teach you about techniques that are mostly obsolete? I mean these consoles are so old they feel like they came before world war one The fact is just because some technical limitation is no longer [exist] doesn’t [mean] that all technical limitations. No longer exist Sure consoles nowadays are so powerful They can almost do your laundry But I guarantee you developers everywhere hitting their limitations on a daily basis if you work in game design You will eventually hit a brick [wall] with an idea you [have] Maybe the hardware isn’t powerful enough the beach control Scheme doesn’t play well with consoles. Maybe that awesome Love you made takes five minutes to load. It doesn’t matter what it is you will eventually Encounter a limitation in one way or another and it’s at that moment as a game designer that you have a choice you [can] back Away [from] your idea Or you could embrace whatever limitation You’re dealing with you can make that limitation part of your idea and turn it into an original and compelling Experience great design isn’t just about huge and grandiose Moments great design can be found within simple and mundane elements of gameplay be it a sound effect or a camera angle In the end the great game is the sum of its good parts as well as its limitations. Just like its creators Thanks for watching I’ll see you guys next time Hey, everyone Hope you guys enjoyed watching this video feel free to drop a comment below as well if you know of a technical limitation that turned into great game design I’m always curious to learn more [about] those myself also don’t forget to hit the subscribe button and share if you’d like to see more Lastly if you want to see another video where I discuss games as art click on this link right here

100 thoughts on “Why PS1 and N64 Games Were Different”

  1. I'm gonna experiment a bit with the ideas of using a technique similar to that of nintendo because sometimes I'm using illustrator to illustrate graphics for textiles but , in order to preview your renders in full color or filled in you need to spend a lot of RAM on the render. A Gaussian effect , could potentially allow me to create some filling effects without crashing the computer ( as using pattern swatches). Using a pattern swatch on illustrator usually takes more memory only if the pattern swatch has to many vectors or has got intricate shapes.
    When we develop graphics, at one point you notice that you can easily reach the limits of a home PC (RAM) with image editing software. I have always struggled a bit, (as a designer you learn that, your don't need a more powerful computer, you need better ideas, you need to develop a style where you can draw shapes with less vectors and become more "thrifty" in you use of the very computers resources. The less vectors you use, the faster and the more elegant your drawing will come out, it becomes a matter of personal technique and elegance in style…
    thank you keep the nice work.

  2. There are different and better cause the "politically correct" shit are no arrive to the videogames yet

  3. So is this why most bleeding edge games these days aren't fun? They are running out of limitations that force them to be creative?

  4. This video came up on my feed, and I'm glad I watched it. While I understood the general concepts of the PS1 and N64 architecture even back then, I never really knew the full ins and out. This was a great watch. Thanks for posting this a few years ago. Wish I saw it sooner

  5. Too easy bro's the most import diferent it's a processor , how now know a N64 have 64 bit over perifec hardward and PS only have 48bit , lo demás lo tengo que decir en español es muy tecnico

  6. I had both. I could not choose only one console! So many great titles on both. 3rd party releases were a toss up… advantages and disadvantages for both!

  7. 8:02 you missed one important piece of information, the PSX could play full motion video behind 3d rendered gameplay.
    Best example of this is in the final fantasy series they could use an FMV instead of a static image. Check out the Garden battle (end of disk 2) in Final fantasy 8 for the best example of this.

    (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jtfNu5wkGk8 – at 12:30 13:45 16:20, but the best bit is from 26:00 – 28:20 all gameplay with (mostly) fmv in background.)

  8. N64 came out a full 2 years after the PS…… stupid comparison. 2 years is HUGE in tech advancement.

  9. I did not own the n64 back in the day because i thought that it sucked. And now i…. Still think that it sucks.

  10. Average video, harped on the one real significant advantage that the N64 had (no load times). Minimized the significant advantages the PS1 had over the N64 like: PS1's massive game library, better controller (in my opinion), cd quality audio (and the fact that it played CD's!), games like the Spyro trilogy that were all about exploration and huge areas (due to polygons being more detailed the closer the user got to them).

  11. N64 was a better system with better games. Hell growing up, everyone I knew had one, I knew no one with a PS1, I only played PS1 games years later

  12. N64 games aged better tbh
    Since most focused on the pure gameplay, while PS1 games focused on graphics and cutscenes and had solow tedious gameplay

  13. The Nintendo 64 was, and still is, one of the greatest consoles ever made. It is second only to the Mattel Intellivision.

  14. I'm a former technician that worked on many different home gaming systems including these two.

    The N64 has a static load speed that is vastly more than the Sony PlayStation 1 but it lacks in dedicated memory for each task that Sony has done.

    In the N64, most of the 4 MiB (Mibibytes, this is base 16, Megabyte is base 10 and technically incorrect) RAM is used for graphics textures and sound files (pre-recorded and generated sound effects) [ on rare occasion].

    Nintendo tried to do too much with too little specialized hardware. Much of the higher end games were pre-baked data sets that were rendered on SGI based computers and the sound files were still using MIDI and other formats that took up way too much space in memory and didn't offer a high enough definition nor fidelity to the average consumer.

    Both units have static data transfers.

    N64/Ultra64 was max of 250 MiB/s (this time it's Mibibytes) but rarely got above 194 MiB, not enough memory to hit peak transfer rate over the cartridge socket bus.

    Sony Playstation 1 was max of 300 Kb/s (this is 300 Kilobits, base 10, so it's a smaller transfer than if it was base 16) over the CD-ROM bus, when audio was playing it dropped to 150 Kb/s.

    The scene data on the Playstation 1 was stored as chapters or stories on the Playstation 1 disk and would have specific sound effects and CD audio files assigned to each. If Sony had added 4 MiB of RAM on-board, the load speed would have dropped drastically between scenes because only the items that change often would need to be streamed but most of it would have been in RAM. The items that change would be little bursts here and there on the CD-ROM it wouldn't have caused latency issues.

    For example, the opening doors in the Resident Evil series, would have flung open and you'd be in the next room with the mobs ready to kick your ass, when you least expect it.

    Personally, I would have love to have seen 16 MiB on the mainboard for the Sony PlayStation 1 when it came out in 1994 in Japan and 1995 in the USA, increase the frame buffer to 4 MiB to compeat with the IBM clones of the time, that would have been amazing, last but not least using the 8x/10x CD-ROM drive assemblies that Sony already had available that could read their extra wide discs with ease. Had this been the specification out there, there would have been a lot of happy programmers and gamers way back in the day.

    Granted, these specs would have been seen as massive and expensive but if you're pushing out millions of these units the cost per unit comes down drastically. Of course, they don't want to tell you exactly how much each unit costs them to build, that would be corporate Hara-kiri.

  15. Duke Nukem 64 had all kinda stuff in the environment you could interact with. It also had posters and all kinds of details..

  16. To be honest some of my best multi-player memories were in a PlayStation with a 4 players adaptor, Crash Team Racing and Twisted Metal were my jam.

  17. N64 and PS1 ; when developers actually had the inspiration to release innovative and creative games that still captivate our minds more than 20 years later…

  18. This i did not know. But now i do. The answer for something i kind of wondered, but never really put much thought into.
    Thanks.

  19. Easy – people had no tools such as Unity or Unreal engine, no model packs 🙂
    They had no engines (or had leftovers from other companies) and had to compromise and create new engines, figure out what they can and can't do due to hardware…thus we got really cool and creative games!

  20. It's obvious that you prefer N64 than PS1 seeing you tried to hide your bias but you're always sarcastic when you're explaining the good things about PS1. And you also forgot to mention 1 thing… audio and music on PS1 are better than N64 because of its media. CD. CD's larger capacity allows it to have Audio CD quality sounds and background music. Your N64 can't do that

  21. I always hated how PS1 games would have these jittery graphics. It felt like the entire game took place under water. That's why I enjoyed the PS1 games with pre-rendered backgrounds more, like Resident Evil or FF7

  22. Sony always being a tryhard

    said by a person that grow up with a Psone but now sometimes kinda like more Nintendo than Sony and own both NSW and PS4

  23. Back in the 90's disc media was vastly superior in data size and costs vs cartridges. If Nintendo did not get so caught up in the industry push of the polygons. It could of aged well if it was 75% 2d cartoons. The advantage of cartridge based systems is there are no lasers to fry and disc drives to die.

  24. i don't care what the specs say. at the end of the day n64 games just looked better (and aged way better) than ps1 games.

  25. N64 didn't support 2D materials only 3D and that was a huge impact next to a small storage space the cartriges had. A huge flaw in design. They didn't learned their lesson even later with Gamecube, it was another flawed system. Come to think of it Nintendo never designed or developed anything properly yet for some reason it was a multy millionaire company. Still over time Sony took over that and it makes sense why. Nintendo's products are overpriced garbage that only naive and stupid people support. And the west is full of them it seems.

  26. Spyro the Dragon used meshes with different LOD to work around the limited view distance. A technic used in every game today offering a high view distance.

  27. the incredibly short draw distance on the PS1 and the workarround (Thick fog) created the silent hill experence if you could see further the game would not be nearly as pants shittingly scary

  28. PlayStation 1's load still isn't as bad as ppl think, I still play Ps1 on my phone n it's pretty smooth… Ppl ALWAYS Make It Seem Like It Takes U Out Of The Game Cuz Is "So Slow" But That's Jus NOT The Case @ All… Both Systems Were Great But Ps1 Got That Gen N Next Gen Hands Down…

  29. Really awesome video, i played the heck out of these two consoles when i was a kid and i never saw someone explaining these differences that clearly, congrats!

  30. 0:29 how dare you?

    The original crash trilogy blows SM64 and BK out of the water (as much as I love those games, they just didn’t have the same polish)

  31. I want a 1000 player vr game with a giant destructable world.
    damn not everyone can afford a vr headset and equipment
    damn not everyone can afford a high end system to support the vr headset decently
    damn there are no servers that can support such a connection and host so many vr users
    damn the comunity is too small to fill up a 1000 player server in less than 3-5hours
    gg

  32. Sorry, but what's the point in showing differences with video footage from emulators with better resolution, filters and even different aspect ratio from the original machines? If you can't capture from original hardware, you should at least use settings close to original specifications.

  33. Wait wait
    PlayStation was the powerful and the best consol of the generation and everybody should admit this
    For example at 4:40 you could gave an example with metal gear solid not final fantasy
    Ah! wait…. yes, metal gear has no loading screens even though it has a huge amount of details it's over 1gb sized game (500× the size of n64 games)
    But in this case it'll beat all n64 games so you talked about mib and final fantasy instead
    Also in 7:30
    It's true that the multiplayer experience of golden eye was the best at that time but also it was the only; there was not 100 n64 games that were famous for multiplayer capability!!!
    However ps also had amazing multiplayer titles such as gran turismo, crash team racing, wipeout, Tekken…..
    And about 2 players limit
    There is something called the multitape it'll add 4 controller plugins
    And finally why didn't you focus on the thing that ps was better at like including acting voices,
    Better sound and image quality,
    And full motion videos!!

  34. Awesome stuff.
    Only criticism is the speed of which you speak critical detail. It gets missed and the following sentence compounds this issue with another missed point. I genuinely feel this can become one of my favourite channels, just don't want to miss the details 🙂

  35. I will save you nine minutes and forty three seconds from your life: N64 had 64 bits, PS1 had 32. PS1 was disc based while N64 was cartridge based so PlayStation had to wait to load levels while N64 was already good to go but being cartridge based had less space to hold details and level data.

  36. I can tell that you were the kid with the N64. Dude, I had both, and the N64 blew, I found that I spent 90% of my time, and money on the PS1. THERE IS NO COMPARISON, THE PS1 is the reason cartridge consoles died. They sucked.

    P.s. I did live me some Big Headed Goldeneye though, that game was SO FUN!

  37. Horror games in the 2000's like silent hill and other's couldn't render the whole game background at once this led to fog and darkness grainy images and a much more frightening game. New games don't need fog now less scary.

  38. 7:11 "No you idiot I'm prime minister Winston Churchill."
    Snake : "Sir… you're Drunk."
    "Yes, and you're gay. But tomorrow, I'll be sober."

    Also on the techniques, optimizing your 3d models and all is the same, it's not really "obsolete". It allows you to make games more deep and complex instead of wasting gigs of ram into less optimized content that will not look much better than a game made ten years ago, only slightly. same for the 32-bit versus 64-bit, that's a huge step in programming in different environments especially today with the compatibility of software, between mobile (32bit) and desktop/consoles (64bit) versions.
    "and soon, 128-bit games!"
    on this, quantum computing and qbits will come before 128-bit processing, but this is a thing our grandchildren will start considering to plan in the end of carreer.

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