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Old 12 November 2011, 15:13   #56
Going nowhere

Galahad/FLT's Avatar
Join Date: Oct 2001
Location: United Kingdom
Age: 43
Posts: 6,222
Originally Posted by fishyfish View Post
It comes down to the game to a degree I guess. It is indeed possible to create a good game soley with the 1 meg chipram, but for a bigger more elaborate game it gets harder and harder to squeeze good results. Code itself eats in to available chipram, which is quite valuable when your storage medium isnt "instant". More and more tricks are needed to squeeze in required gfx data, like realtime decompression of data, which itself eats into resources. Given an extra 8/16/32megabit of ram (well rom really) data can be stored in ways that make less "tricks" required leaving the full potential of the hardware to be used. Not to mention that chipram is slower than ram dedicated to the cpu (hence the term "fast ram).

Had the a500 had its chipram plus a few meg (say 16megabit) fastram, even with everything else unchanged there would have been more potential to let the hardware shine.
Just a shame that potential was never really tapped as by the time a typical amiga was upgraded with extra ram commercial development had pretty much ceased.
Personaly I think its a shame that there's not real games that use the potential of an upgraded aga machine in an "amiga style" game, but even ocs/ecs system could have produced games with fewer comprimises had megabytes of storage space been instantly available (like in a cartridge for example).
Firstly your use of 'megabit' is a misnomer (32megabit= 4megabytes), it was a measurement used by console manufacturers to make out that their games were bigger than they were, plenty of Amiga games were far in excess of that size with ease.

Secondly, 1 meg of memory on the Amiga was pretty much the norm by late 1990 early 1991, the Amiga was still plenty commercially viable at that point.

Team 17 made a point of making nothing but 1meg only games, and plenty of other software companies were doing the same.

Secondly, console game makers would also use depack routines and the like to fit as much as possible onto a smaller cartridge as it could significantly bring the cost of developing on Megadrive and SNES down by requiring a smaller ROM.

And no it doesn't mean its harder to create a bigger and better game if it exceeds the 1Meg of memory..... that is after all what floppy loading routines and disks are for!
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