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Old 07 April 2017, 22:48   #67
Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: Kansas
Posts: 1,284
Originally Posted by Gilbert View Post
They could have probably cranked up the clock speed of a standard 68000 (maybe doubled it for compatability) and by saving money here, then added more graphics features, sprites etc, made hardware scrolling more useable (Amiga hardware scrolling was always a bit difficult). Look at a game like Fast Striker in Maniac mode on the Neo Geo. Looks almost like a modern bullet-hell schmup and no slowdown.The Neo Geo just has a 12mhz 68k and a load of sprites - that's all. You needed a massmarket base spec that sells. Something that looks impressive, sells! AGA was just not powerful enough for the time it was released. The Megadrive was 3 years old and comfortably outguns it in most games. Games are what sold the Amiga to most people in the first place and made it popular.
The 68000 ISA would have been a limitation even if the 68020 ISA could have been better. A 68000 ISA only CPU could have been easily clocked up with a new design but it would be weaker per/MHz than the 68020 ISA. CPU performance and efficiency are more about being higher performance with a lower clock and less energy use (which also determines how much they can be clocked up). Lower clocked hardware is cheaper to design and manufacture. Also, the 68020 ISA is significantly easier to program with many limitations removed, especially for larger programs using more memory.

The Neo Geo hardware route was one of the few affordable choices when processor performance was a limitation. Now days it is easier to use BOBs (Blitter Objects) with a blitter and/or SIMD unit. It may not be as retro as a bunch of hardware sprites but it is easier to program and more flexible. This is the route the Amiga chose for sprite like objects but they didn't add enough gfx or CPU performance to keep improving it.
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