Developers still haven't figured out how to best utilize the Wii U's CPU, says Dynasty Warriors producer Akihiro Suzuki.
During the Tokyo Game Show on Friday, Akihiro Suzuki, producer of the Dynasty Warriors franchise, complained to Eurogamer about the Wii U's CPU after the site pointed out the performance of the new console's upcoming launch title, Warriors Orochi 3 Hyper.
In the report, Eurogamer claimed that the Wii U game wasn't up to performance levels of past Dynasty Warriors titles in terms of frame rate and number of enemies on the screen. The game was even shadowed by Dynasty Warriors 7 Empires, a PlayStation 3 exclusive, which was on display in Tecmo Koei's booth.
Suzuki pointed to the Wii U's CPU – made by IBM and consists of three Power PC cores – for the lack of performance, saying that it's "a bit less" than what's offered on the Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3.
"For games in the Warriors series, including Dynasty Warriors and Warriors Orochi, when you have a lot of enemies coming at you at once, the performance tends to be affected because of the CPU," Suzuki admitted. "Dealing with that is a challenge."
The actual hardware specifics of the Wii U CPU still remain unknown, but this isn't the first CPU-based performance complaint dished out by developers. Compensating for the lackluster CPU – which reportedly under-performs when compared to the Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3 – is the console's custom Radeon 7-series GPU provided by AMD, and 1 GB of RAM – double that of the Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3.
Because of this custom GPU and RAM, Suzuki said that the development team could create better visuals on the Wii U console than what could have been offered on the current-gen competitors. That said, it sounds as if the Wii U provides superior visuals, but inferior performance when there's a lot going on screen-wise.
"Developing on new hardware in itself was a challenge, and also making that launch date was a challenge," he said. "But from a visual standpoint, based on the performance of the Wii U, we knew the game had the capability of having much better graphics than games on PS3 and Xbox 360. Make no mistake, from a visual standpoint, it is able to produce better graphics. So our challenge was to make a higher quality graphics. We were able to meet that."
"While the visuals are great, as is being able to improve them, we had to deal with the lower CPU power and how we can get around that issue," he added. "Actually, we're still working on that. If you see the demo on the show floor and you try it, you'll probably feel it's not up to the PS3 level. But we're working on it!"
Suzuki said that developers are still trying to figure out how to best utilize the console's CPU, indicating that the first wave of games won't fully utilize the console's hardware.
"With the Wii U being new hardware, we're still getting used to developing for it, so there are still a lot of things we don't know yet to bring out the most of the processing power," he said. "There's a lot that still needs to be explored in that area."