PlayStation 4’s RAM Use, Optimization Explained by Naughty Dog

The team is using the lessons on its Uncharted project

By Andrei Dumitrescu on March 12th, 2014 12:25 GMT

The development team at Naughty Dog has long been associated with exclusive releases for the PlayStation brand of home console and it seems that the company has some insights into how the next-gen console from Sony uses its memory and how developers can optimize for it.

Jason Gregory, the lead programmer working on the studio, has given a complex presentation during the Semana Informatica event in Lisbon, showing how a game can be created to run really fast on the next-gen console.

The PlayStation 4 has 8 GB of memory, but only 5 of those are always allocated to a video game, with the rest reserved for console specific processes.

Naughty Dog tries to make sure that all the available space is well used, which means that fragmentation is its biggest enemy at the moment and that a lot of custom work is required for each game and process.

Gregory is quoted by DualShockers as saying that the Graphics Processing Unit of the PlayStation 4 is “more powerful than it’s necessary to render graphics at 1080p at 60 hz” and adds the new platform is “incredibly good at doing massive amounts of parallel processing.”

The superior power of the Sony device is quoted by many buyers as the reason they have chosen it over the rival Xbox One from Microsoft, but the price difference could also have played a role.

The lead engineer at Naughty Dog also says that his studio has designed a special job system for PlayStation 4 development with the team at Sony that actually created the hardware.

At the moment, the studio is confirmed as working on a new Uncharted title, but there are no clear details about it at the moment and a full reveal will probably take place during E3 2014.

Naughty Dog has suggested that it might abandon the main protagonist for the new PlayStation 4 entry in its main franchise and that some of the core gameplay elements might also be re-designed.

At the same time, the company has been hinting that there’s a strong possibility that it will create a sequel for The Last of Us, the title that managed to pick up many Game of the Year awards for 2013.

The studio is also involved in the development of an Uncharted movie project and recently writer Amy Henning has left the company, apparently for a chance to also work on a high-profile property.
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