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Old 05-07-17, 06:35 PM   #1
Sub-Zero
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Video games that really pushed a console to its limits?

What console video games really pushed the video game console that it was on to its limits?
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Old 05-07-17, 06:42 PM   #2
mhg83
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Re: Video games that really pushed a console to its limits?

The Last of us and Uncharted 3 (PS3)
Skyrim (360, PS3)
Tomb Raider reboot (360)
GTA V on PS3 and 360
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Old 05-08-17, 12:01 AM   #3
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Re: Video games that really pushed a console to its limits?

Strider (Genesis)
Sonic CD (Sega CD)
Silpheed (Sega CD)
Street Fighter II (Super Nintendo)
Star Fox (Super Nintendo)
Super Ghouls n Ghosts (Super Nintendo)
Contra 3 (Super Nintendo)
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Old 05-08-17, 09:44 AM   #4
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Re: Video games that really pushed a console to its limits?

Tekken 3 (PS)
GTA V (PS3)
The Last Of Us (PS3)
Vectorman (Genesis)
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Old 05-08-17, 09:48 AM   #5
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Re: Video games that really pushed a console to its limits?

I guess I don't know enough about console specs vs. game needs to really answer. My first thought was how you had to put a special FX chip or whatever in your Super Nintendo for Starfox, or was that for N64?
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Old 05-08-17, 05:20 PM   #6
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Re: Video games that really pushed a console to its limits?

Quote:
Originally Posted by story View Post
I guess I don't know enough about console specs vs. game needs to really answer. My first thought was how you had to put a special FX chip or whatever in your Super Nintendo for Starfox, or was that for N64?
SuperNES
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Old 05-08-17, 07:02 PM   #7
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Re: Video games that really pushed a console to its limits?

Probably thinking of the N64 Expansion Pack, but Starfox came with the Rumble Pack.
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Old 05-08-17, 07:05 PM   #8
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Re: Video games that really pushed a console to its limits?

Crysis! Oh wait, console
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Old 05-12-17, 02:46 PM   #9
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Re: Video games that really pushed a console to its limits?

Back in the days of cartridges, games could push a console past its limits by putting special processing chips in the cartridge themselves. NES games used MMC chips to store more than the official NES storage limit:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Memory...ent_controller

The Famicom also allowed for "expansion audio" sound chips, although this feature was removed from the NES:
http://famitracker.com/wiki/index.ph...xpansion_sound

The SNES went further with co-processors like Super-FX included in cartridges:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_o...ancement_chips

The N64 didn't have special chips in cartridges, but some games could use the optional Expansion Pack to deliver enhanced gameplay:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ninten..._.28NUS-007.29

Once consoles switch to disc-based games, they were mostly limited to what the console itself could do, barring any expansion of the hardware.

On the PS2, FF IX required the HDD expansion, to the point where it was packed in. Other games could exploit the HDD to improve gameplay:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/PlaySt...ard_disk_drive

Jak and Daxter on PS2 really pushed the limits of the hardware, which made the PS3 remasters difficult. See around the 7:56 mark on this video, where they mention the tricks include "doing things on the old PS1 processor you weren't supposed to":

There are "homebrew" titles that really push the hardware they're developed on, years or decades later. There's a homebrew PacMan for the Atari 2600 that puts the original "official" release to shame:
http://retrogamingmagazine.com/2015/...rew-developer/


On PC, Macrocom got 16 color games out of CGA, which was usually limited to 4 colors in "graphics" mode.
http://www.mobygames.com/featured_ar...10/section,39/

Hoembrewers decades later would squeeze 1024 colors out of CGA over composite output:
http://8088mph.blogspot.com/2015/04/...lustrated.html


I also found some articles that try to cover this topic:

http://www.racketboy.com/retro/games...-limits-part-1
http://sagamer.co.za/2014/07/10/what...ts-part-5-of-5
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Old 05-12-17, 08:22 PM   #10
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Re: Video games that really pushed a console to its limits?

Quote:
Originally Posted by fumanstan View Post
Crysis! Oh wait, console
That's a good point, I would say the Crysis series did push the last gen consoles.
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Old 05-16-17, 05:10 PM   #11
Sub-Zero
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Re: Video games that really pushed a console to its limits?

Thanks for all of the replies.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jay G. View Post
Back in the days of cartridges, games could push a console past its limits by putting special processing chips in the cartridge themselves. NES games used MMC chips to store more than the official NES storage limit:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Memory...ent_controller

The Famicom also allowed for "expansion audio" sound chips, although this feature was removed from the NES:
http://famitracker.com/wiki/index.ph...xpansion_sound

The SNES went further with co-processors like Super-FX included in cartridges:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_o...ancement_chips

The N64 didn't have special chips in cartridges, but some games could use the optional Expansion Pack to deliver enhanced gameplay:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ninten..._.28NUS-007.29

Once consoles switch to disc-based games, they were mostly limited to what the console itself could do, barring any expansion of the hardware.

On the PS2, FF IX required the HDD expansion, to the point where it was packed in. Other games could exploit the HDD to improve gameplay:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/PlaySt...ard_disk_drive

Jak and Daxter on PS2 really pushed the limits of the hardware, which made the PS3 remasters difficult. See around the 7:56 mark on this video, where they mention the tricks include "doing things on the old PS1 processor you weren't supposed to":
https://youtu.be/GT4Ppbg257g?t=7m56s

There are "homebrew" titles that really push the hardware they're developed on, years or decades later. There's a homebrew PacMan for the Atari 2600 that puts the original "official" release to shame:
http://retrogamingmagazine.com/2015/...rew-developer/


On PC, Macrocom got 16 color games out of CGA, which was usually limited to 4 colors in "graphics" mode.
http://www.mobygames.com/featured_ar...10/section,39/

Hoembrewers decades later would squeeze 1024 colors out of CGA over composite output:
http://8088mph.blogspot.com/2015/04/...lustrated.html


I also found some articles that try to cover this topic:

http://www.racketboy.com/retro/games...-limits-part-1
http://sagamer.co.za/2014/07/10/what...ts-part-5-of-5
Thank you for the information about some of the enhancement chips used in some NES and Super NES games, as well as the links.

Thanks again for the information and all of the replies.
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Old 05-16-17, 06:24 PM   #12
Jay G.
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Re: Video games that really pushed a console to its limits?

Ha, I feel like I killed the thread.

One interesting thing I found is that Super Smash Bros on the original 3DS used resources not normally available to developers to get to full performance:
http://www.neogaf.com/forum/showthre...#post148369097
Quote:
Super Smash Bros. for 3DS. The original 3DS that is, not the New one.
It uses more resources than any other 3DS game is allowed to use, even some things on the 3DS home menu are disabled are because the game is so demanding. And when you turn the game off the 3DS restarts to make it run like normal.

But it was worth it, looks great with 60 fps and anti-aliasing in 2D.
More info:
https://www.reddit.com/r/3DS/comment..._3ds_whenever/
http://www.nintendolife.com/news/201...per_smash_bros


Pokemon Sun and Moon also later did the same trick:
http://nintendoeverything.com/pokemo...ds-to-the-max/
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Old 05-17-17, 02:21 AM   #13
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Re: Video games that really pushed a console to its limits?

I think Crysis series put the consoles on its limits.
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Old 05-17-17, 11:05 AM   #14
Jay G.
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Re: Video games that really pushed a console to its limits?

Regarding enhancement chips in cartridges, the Sega Mega Drive/Genesis had one game, Virtua Racing, that used an enhancement chip, the SVP (Sega Virtua Processor). It was developed in response to the SuperFX chip on SNES. However, the cart ended up costing $100 due to the chip, and Sega cancelled future game releases utilizing the chip, instead focusing on the 32X add-on and the Sega Saturn:
http://www.sega-16.com/2006/03/segas...oad-not-taken/
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Virtua...rive.2FGenesis
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sega_G...rtua_Processor
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