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DICE: PC Development Has Positive Trickle-Down Effect

By - Source: PC Gamer | B 38 comments

Making the PC as the primary development platform has its benefits according to DICE.

In an interview with PC Gamer, EA/DICE executive producer Patrick Bach said that leading game development on the PC has a positive trickle-down effect for the Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3.

Unfortunately, not everyone in the industry agrees, focusing solely on the console sector and ignoring PC gamers entirely due to concerns over "piracy" and "fragmentation." Still, it's good to hear a top publisher/developer stick up for the PC gaming sector as a leading platform despite all those in the business who have settled on consoles.

"Our biggest benefit for the console has been that we’re leading on PC," said Bach. "It has forced us to push the limited technology of consoles compared to the PC to a new level, because we set the bar with what we wanted to create on PC and said, 'How the heck are we going to do this on consoles?'"

He added that by developing primarily on the PC, DICE had to prioritize its decisions on what to toss out for the console versions. "The PC version can include things that are really cool but not key for the gaming experience," he said. "You know it’s easier for you to make those decisions when you have a robust PC build to look at, and the console versions look great because of the PC."

Bach also went on to talk about multiplayer and how a certain number of simultaneous players on one map could be overkill. "Games are about having fun, it’s not about doing the most you can do," he said. "If we can jump two meters it must be better to jump four meters. No. 64 players is kind of the maximum where it’s still fun and you can still control the Battlefield. It’s like I can understand where I got shot from and why."

Guess Battlefield 3 will never see more than 64 players in multiplayer at one time.

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  • 20 Hide
    whysobluepandabear , October 28, 2011 4:25 AM
    Wait a sec, you're telling me a company actually realizes that consoles are poor mans' PC's?
  • 15 Hide
    AbdullahG , October 28, 2011 4:20 AM
    The biggest benefit is making the minorities of the gaming world happy. I favor developers that think about the PC gamers first, especially if that's where their roots are from and what really gave them a name. Developers overact when it comes to piracy. If you make a great game and you spend time on it, chances are, it will turn out well on all platforms regardless of piracy. Consoles will bring in the most sales, and you'll benefit PC gamers as well. It's a win for all.
  • 13 Hide
    bdizzle11 , October 28, 2011 4:10 AM
    Quote:
    Guess Battlefield 3 will never see more than 64 players in multiplayer at one time.

    Guess people forgot about the modders who were running 200 person servers in the beta. It'll be a short time before we see the same thing here.
Other Comments
  • 13 Hide
    bdizzle11 , October 28, 2011 4:10 AM
    Quote:
    Guess Battlefield 3 will never see more than 64 players in multiplayer at one time.

    Guess people forgot about the modders who were running 200 person servers in the beta. It'll be a short time before we see the same thing here.
  • -2 Hide
    kcorp2003 , October 28, 2011 4:11 AM
    yeah DICE is awesome. really enjoying this game on my PC. the mechanics was greatly improved from the BETA. Knifing my enemy is so much fun. My clan is already setting up tournaments. plus i got accepted into DICE platoon on battlelog. yay :) 
  • 15 Hide
    AbdullahG , October 28, 2011 4:20 AM
    The biggest benefit is making the minorities of the gaming world happy. I favor developers that think about the PC gamers first, especially if that's where their roots are from and what really gave them a name. Developers overact when it comes to piracy. If you make a great game and you spend time on it, chances are, it will turn out well on all platforms regardless of piracy. Consoles will bring in the most sales, and you'll benefit PC gamers as well. It's a win for all.
  • -5 Hide
    thestrangebrew , October 28, 2011 4:22 AM
    That's great and all, Dice is cool, but I still can't play BF3 w/o it crashing/freezing on me within a minute of loading. Fix this before worrying about what the consoles look like or how they benefit and I'll be a believer again...
  • 20 Hide
    whysobluepandabear , October 28, 2011 4:25 AM
    Wait a sec, you're telling me a company actually realizes that consoles are poor mans' PC's?
  • 9 Hide
    tomfreak , October 28, 2011 4:32 AM
    PC leading platform is what makes the game sell to some enthusiast gamer. This is what Crysis 2 is lacking. Heck it doesnt even outsell crysis 1 despite with 360+PS3+PC combine lol.

    As for 64players, it is all about map size. I dont see a reason why we shouldnt go beyond 64players, if our map size is right. In BF3 most of map size is smaller than the ones in the classic BF1942. Woudlnt it be fun to have 5 tanks(2 players each), 5 Jeeps(5 players each) 5 Jets, 5 Helis, 20 diff class free-running soldiers doing all that in one big map? In real world with dont fight a war with just 64 soldiers.
  • 11 Hide
    MasterMace , October 28, 2011 4:33 AM
    thestrangebrewThat's great and all, Dice is cool, but I still can't play BF3 w/o it crashing/freezing on me within a minute of loading. Fix this before worrying about what the consoles look like or how they benefit and I'll be a believer again...


    Problem exists between the keyboard and chair.


    DICE will be one of the few companies to survive the longterm. They understand that developing for the PC is developing for the future. Maxing out current console hardware is like hitting a ball passed the pitcher's mound: it was tough when you were 2, but is a joke now.
  • 5 Hide
    tomfreak , October 28, 2011 4:34 AM
    TomfreakWoudlnt it be fun to have 5 tanks(2 players each), 5 Jeeps(5 players each) 5 Jets, 5 Helis, 20 diff class free-running soldiers doing all that in one big map? In real world with dont fight a war with just 64 soldiers.
    Note I mean all those in 1 side not both sides.

  • 5 Hide
    RabidFace , October 28, 2011 4:34 AM
    Why...why Mr. Carmack don't you have this passion with the PC sector anymore? Oh yeah, I remember, $$$.

    Remember the Shareware days Mr. Carmack? It wasn't about money, it was about getting your product out there.

    And all this crap about piracy is crap. Have less DRM, make a quality game and people will buy your product. Put horrible DRM and make a crappy/buggy game, people won't buy your product, it's that simple.

    The PC market might not be as big as it used to be, as I too have kind of jumped ship, but we still want quality titles, not half assed console ports and DICE realizes this. If the PC gets put first, maybe more people will be willing to buy/build a computer to play those games? I own the BF series up to BF2, and haven't played in years, but looks like I will finally get my BF fix back with BF3. 1943 is ehhh.

    Thank you DICE, I still have your back because I have pretty much given up hope with iD. Even though I own all iD games up to Quake 4, which was solid in my opinion, Single Player was forgettable.

    I wish I had to rig to play BF3, but I don't :(  But looks like I will get a solid experience on my PS3. My laptop will at least play all Source games at decent framerates ;) 

    GO DICE!
  • -2 Hide
    JOSHSKORN , October 28, 2011 4:50 AM
    I preordered BF3. It came and I tried to load multiplayer. I couldn't past the "LOADING TEHRAN HIGHWAY" screen. On my second attempt a couple days later, I got the same thing. Then, I opened up my Resource Monitor. I found that my 4 GB of RAM had been maxed out. After closing a few other applications, the problem went away. I messed around with the main menu a little bit but still haven't played. Not sure I like the graphical presentation of the menus. I only care about actual game play, which I will check out tonight.
  • 6 Hide
    amk-aka-Phantom , October 28, 2011 5:02 AM
    Quote:
    And all this crap about piracy is crap. Have less DRM, make a quality game and people will buy your product. Put horrible DRM and make a crappy/buggy game, people won't buy your product, it's that simple.


    You forgot to mention that piracy is the stupidest excuse ever because of the simple fact that it's also possible on consoles.

    So, in other words, putting PC first is NOT as difficult as Carmack and EA pretend... no really? Good to see that at least someone has some sense. What's easier, develop a game for the PC, then scale down the graphics and cut some content - everyone is happy, PC and console players alike - or develop for consoles, make a half-assed port with outdated graphics and badly ported controls (yes, I'm talking about you, SW:TFU) - PC gamers pissed off? I think that RAGE showed that the first is a better path because it went the second path and screwed up.

    I don't like BF3 so much because I'm not into military shooters, but that DICE executive producer has some brains. Even if it's a publicity stunt, it's a good one. Better than Carmack's ranting about PC drivers' fault or how cool consoles are. (Where're you now, haters who thumbed me down when I said that Carmack is FOS - before RAGE came out? Huh? What?) As the article said:

    Quote:
    It has forced us to push the limited technology of consoles compared to the PC to a new level


    Limited technology. Get it? That's all consoles will ever be. Push their hardware limits all you like, release new generation, whatever - PC is always ahead. Simply because I can throw in a $160 graphics card to any $700 modern office machine and kick any console's ass in visual quality. Simply because the excuse "PC gaming is too expensive" is bull$h!t - you get what you pay for. Simply because PC is the way it's meant to be played.
  • -4 Hide
    alidan , October 28, 2011 5:11 AM
    you know, i played a bit on my brothers pc, i see no reason why they couldn't make a dx9 version after the 10 and 11... i just cant.
  • 0 Hide
    gio2vanni86 , October 28, 2011 5:44 AM
    Played the multiplayer for well over 12 hours now and its an amazing game. Lots of bugs and tweaks that need to be made but its a PC game. And if you played BF2 from the past the patches weren't like 5mb's on Xbox 360, more like 500-1.3GB's now that's called patches =D As for the maps themselves you can tell that in some way the PC version is consolized, what i mean is the maps themselves for aircraft is very limited. Go back and fly in battlefield 2 and you will get what i mean, it felt like it took you a minute to get from one side to another. The jets in BF3 fly over the whole thing in under 5-15 seconds. Don't get me wrong the maps are massive but the control points are very close together, with only 1-2 being quite far apart. Overall if the game had more then 64 players i am all for it. Which is why even though they said they wouldn't, i really hope they release the dev tools and modding community will make it possible and I'm sure it will be just or even more fun. Great game dice, looking forward to patches, and the extra 4 maps that are not out yet from the old BF2 =D.
  • 1 Hide
    KelvinTy , October 28, 2011 5:47 AM
    "64 players is kind of the maximum where it’s still fun and you can still control the Battlefield. It’s like I can understand where I got shot from and why."
    Em... Are you talking about Battlefield 3 or some other game??? Super backspawning, proning in every single bush available, being shot around the corner and having suicidal quadbikes??? Those sound more familiar than "understanding where I got shot from and why."...
    But yea, the statement is really nice, it's not the typical rage inducing crap other developer tends to put out now-a-day...
  • 0 Hide
    amk-aka-Phantom , October 28, 2011 5:59 AM
    Quote:
    you know, i played a bit on my brothers pc, i see no reason why they couldn't make a dx9 version after the 10 and 11... i just cant.


    Cut off your Windows 7 hatred already and get it... :D 
  • 5 Hide
    dicfeynman , October 28, 2011 6:00 AM
    when i first saw the battlefield footage, i thought... well the games in 2020 will have real life like graphics, then i ruminated some more and came to this conclusion, just follow my reasoning.......
    xbox 720 will be released in 2013-14, it will have the configuration of a mid range 2008-2009 pc (that is purely based on what wii u will be, plus some more),it will have a 5-7 yr life cycle so the gaming on all platforms in 2020 will depend on what a 2008 mid range pc looked like.
    the consoles are barricades on the road to the "world of ultimate gaming" and i am not getting any younger.
    so sad!!!!!!!
  • 3 Hide
    gio2vanni86 , October 28, 2011 6:09 AM
    dicfeynmanwhen i first saw the battlefield footage, i thought... well the games in 2020 will have real life like graphics, then i ruminated some more and came to this conclusion, just follow my reasoning.......xbox 720 will be released in 2013-14, it will have the configuration of a mid range 2008-2009 pc (that is purely based on what wii u will be, plus some more),it will have a 5-7 yr life cycle so the gaming on all platforms in 2020 will depend on what a 2008 mid range pc looked like.the consoles are barricades on the road to the "world of ultimate gaming" and i am not getting any younger.so sad!!!!!!!


    They may have there drawbacks in terms of how long there cycles are now, but in reality the PS3/Xbox 360 were equipped with a custom 7800GTX GPU in them. That card was released around the time those consoles came out. Yes i know it was only for the PS3 but the Xbox 360 had a similar ATI card in it. So i am sure when the Xbox 720 comes out it will be running either 2013's GPU of the year or 2014's. Just saying, but i get where your coming from.
  • 3 Hide
    RabidFace , October 28, 2011 6:16 AM
    amk-aka-phantomYou forgot to mention that piracy is the stupidest excuse ever because of the simple fact that it's also possible on consoles.


    And also, piracy has been around since the dawn of time. It's like they are only looking at piracy today and aren't looking at piracy of yesterday. Copying floppies anyone? And you are right. Pirating console games is almost just as easy as PC games, with a few more hoops.

    Also, to whoever you might be, what didn't you like about my post? I am open to constructive criticism.

    Also for the people that don't know, BF1943 in both PS3 and 360. Wasn't talking about 1942. God I miss Desert Combat :) 

    Speaking of Desert Combat, I just want to say, I miss the mod community for games of the early 2000s :) 
  • 0 Hide
    cats_Paw , October 28, 2011 8:42 AM
    Well, Dice for one is smart enought to use this not only as a marketing hype, but also as a way to improve graphics. I dont think the competition will be in big trouble however since games like call of duty will still be very strong in sales as its basicly a title many people want.

    However i am not one bit concerned about PC gaming. Main rule about economics is that when there is a gap to fill for profit, it will fill, and if all developers move away from pc, there will be those that move in. If they are small, we will have less games but with better quality.

    If Big companies, we will have more games with lesser quality. Lets see...
  • 0 Hide
    Anonymous , October 28, 2011 8:55 AM
    Game devs ... FYI there is piracy even on console ! I don't recall at least ONE game console in my country that is not hacked. And i can show you at least 3 torrent trackers with console games (xbox, ps, psp, wii)
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