Gulf Between Arcades and Consoles

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jon
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Gulf Between Arcades and Consoles

Postby jon » May 6th, 2015, 6:27 pm

I've been thinking a lot about the old arcades. And it was always so odd how much more advanced arcades were in the mid 90s than consoles. I love the 3do and Jaguar to pieces, but obviously they were not big players. So basically, until the day the PS1 came out (in late 1995) there was an incredible difference in technology between how powerful the arcades were (amazing 2d, exciting 3d) and how primitive the home market was, with the laughably inferior technological accomplishment that is Donkey Kong Country. Has there ever been a difference in quality like it was then? And, it was really hard for me to take the SNES/Genesis seriously by '94-'95,

Sut
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Re: Gulf Between Arcades and Consoles

Postby Sut » May 8th, 2015, 8:47 am

But that had always been the case ? Arcade technology would always have a gulf as the hardware side would be tailored to the game in question and constantly evolving wheras consoles usually have a 5 year timespan and thus usually older technology.

I don't think the systems your referring to fared any worse than its predecessors or its successors when it came to arcade ports.

I could also point out some exceptional arcade ports from that era

Golden Axe - MegaDrive/Genesis
Street Fighter 2 - SNES
Final Fight - Sega CD
R-Type - PC Engine

To name but a few, likewise I've recently been playing Atari Anthology and the gulf between the arcade versions of Asteroids and Battlezone is great, but Atari put up great playing conversions for the 2600. Fast forward to the mid 90's there is a vast gulf between the Sega model 2 arcade board and the Saturn but the Saturn delivered versions of Sega Rally and Virtua Fighter 2 that played brilliantly.

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scotland
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Re: Gulf Between Arcades and Consoles

Postby scotland » May 8th, 2015, 9:20 am

I agree there has always been a gulf. The 2600 could not port a dedicated expensive arcade game made after it was, especially one using vector graphics, but it tried and did okay. Arcade machines could have specialized controllers a home console will never have, like a hang on motorcycle. Even a simple game like Pac Man, ported pretty well to the NES I think, and with the NES having a great dpad, is not the same as the very sensitive Pac Man joystick (which frustrates the heck out of me as I am used to playing at home). Even something like Missile Command needs a honking big trak ball. Those modern rhythm games may not port well into modern consoles today. Arcade ports are tricky things.

ThePixelatedGenocide
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Re: Gulf Between Arcades and Consoles

Postby ThePixelatedGenocide » May 10th, 2015, 10:00 am

Really, the only thing arcades could do that you couldn't get at home was massive sprite scaling. Watching home ports of Thunderblade hit a frame rate better suited for a graphical text adventure was depressing...

But I'm not sure why we're picking on the SNES? It may have been a joke in terms of the technology, but in terms of aesthetics and design, games like Donkey Kong Country and Yoshi's Island were a generation ahead of their arcade competitors. The first experiments with 3d texture mapping looked like someone punching you in the face with a bad photograph of someone else playing a Megadrive game. And in terms of sound, I'm not sure what Capcom was smoking at the time, but the compositions of their arcade soundtracks actually got worse, to the point where most people would still rather listen to Megaman 2 than the best of the vs. series.

jon
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Re: Gulf Between Arcades and Consoles

Postby jon » May 10th, 2015, 8:43 pm

Certainly the first year of 3d it didn't look that good. But by 1994, games like Virtua Fighter 2, Daytona USA, Virtua Striker looked amazing. And the 2d games (usually fighters) that got ported to consoles looked way better in the arcades. So much better that you were losing a lot of realism and it felt 2nd rate. I should have mentioned computers too, because that too was way better than the home market. I was playing 3d sports games with dynasty modes in 1993 way before consoles could do anything like that. And tons of other games like realistic Indy Car simulators that were released even before then. And it sucked that they really didn't get the recognition they deserved (Front Page Sports Football Pro series, especially '95) since they were so much more advanced than the SNES, it was joke. Anyone who only played the SNES/Genesis was missing out. Even adventure games from the mid to late 80s like the King's Quest series I feel like console owners were totally missing out.

ThePixelatedGenocide
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Re: Gulf Between Arcades and Consoles

Postby ThePixelatedGenocide » May 12th, 2015, 1:05 pm

Sega's second generation polygonal 3d was amazing, I'll grant you. I'll probably play Virtua Fighter 2 after finishing this comment.

Meanwhile, Namco's arcade releases were eyesores all the way up until the Dreamcast made it unacceptable. Many still prefered 2d.

Including arcade developers.

Midway was chasing digitized perfection, which. Capcom was expanding busy expanding traditional sprites into a flashy fireworks display even the Playstation would struggle with. It was painstaking animation, which made SNK untouchable for years after the NEO GEO ended. In my small town, a store used Metal Slug 3 to sell the original X-Box - it was still impressive, years later.

The SNES couldn't match any of these, yet it still came closer than most will admit. The only thing that really wrecks Alpha 2 are the load times to uncompress data...for the sounds, I'm told. For many reasons, it would be a much better game without the announcer.

Loading times were also why the SNES would have handled the vs. line of games better than the next generation which followed it.

But please keep in mind, we're talking about the end of the console's life, when the PSOne, Saturn, 3D0, Jaguar, 32X, Amiga 32, and others were all alternatives. At the beginning, ports of Smash TV and Parodius were so exacting that few noticed any changes without looking at screenshots side by side. Streetfighter II was the first sign that we'd need another upgrade, and soon, but the sprites were close enough to pass for most players of the era, despite the ugly resolution hit that drives purists insane. (Look at Chun-Li's hair! On the SNES it looks like...let's be charitable and call it Play-Doh.)

As for sports games...I can't touch your argument. I'm simply not qualified.

But -

Nobody missed King's Quest on the console side. It's what computer gamers settled for, when there weren't as many decent games on their platform. The poor design, which could screw you over without a walk-through, is legendary now, for all the wrong reasons.

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Oltobaz
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Re: Gulf Between Arcades and Consoles

Postby Oltobaz » May 12th, 2015, 1:31 pm

Some valid points here and there. Still, I disagree with the idea the SNES would have been a better fit than the PSONE and the Saturn for vs fighting games such as XMEN, Marvel Super Heroes... Or maybe I'm missing something. Not saying it doesn't handle Street Fighter Alpha 2 like a champ, but this is a bit of stretch.

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VideoGameCritic
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Re: Gulf Between Arcades and Consoles

Postby VideoGameCritic » May 13th, 2015, 10:05 pm

What's great about the Dreamcast is that when it came out it actually matched the arcades for the first time. Remember Soul Calibur, House of the Dead 2, and Hydro Thunder? It was really the last arcade-oriented console.

jon
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Re: Gulf Between Arcades and Consoles

Postby jon » May 14th, 2015, 5:22 pm

I'd hate to think that arcade games are a relic of the past too. I loved how the games were so manic it seemed like the guys making the game were on crack. The money for those kinds of games has evaporated as well. But everything's ok. We have Yooka-Laylee.

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Hardcore Sadism
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Re: Gulf Between Arcades and Consoles

Postby Hardcore Sadism » May 14th, 2015, 6:37 pm

jon wrote:We have Yooka-Laylee.


Because the number of contributions Jon had made to gaming: 0

I still opt we go with a laptop-style arcade machine with modular boards and authentic control layouts with their respective construction materials.


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