Home » General » ‘Can’t Be Done On 360’ – What Does It Even Mean?

‘Can’t Be Done On 360’ – What Does It Even Mean?

uncharted-020Uncharted 2 can’t be done on the Xbox 360. inFamous 2 can’t be done on 360. There’s no way LittleBigPlanet could be done on 360. Such phrases have become common and often cause fervent Xbox 360 advocates froth at the mouth with barely contained rage. They spit and fume and swear to high heaven that it isn’t true and that Sony developers would say that. But is there actually any meaning in that phrase? Does it actually mean what it’s intended to mean?

For me, the intention of the phrase ‘can’t be done on 360’ is more important than it’s actual meaning. In the strictest terms such a statement is far too forward looking. It seems to suggest that what is being achieved on these PS3 games is not only impossible to achieve on a rival console now, but will always be impossible to achieve and can never be replicated. The last I checked there weren’t any psychics or time travellers working in the games industry (as much as some would like to paint themselves as such) so clearly the statement is erroneous.

How can we know what is and is not possible on the Xbox 360? Well while we not be clairvoyant, we can have a good guess based on current trends and on upcoming titles that we’re aware of. We can also make ourselves aware of exactly what is being done with these PS3 games that use the console in such unique ways. Uncharted 2 for instance draws on the huge processing power of the cell processors to help render huge amounts of background detail resulting in vistas that, currently, the Xbox 360 isn’t able to match. It might match them one day, but right now, it cannot.

LittleBigPlanet is a huge community game that thrives because of an open, post-release moderation scheme and an open approach to content sharing. This is also an aspect of the PSN service that Gabe Newell complimented at E3 and called the future of the industry. This too is currently not possible on the 360 as Microsoft’s policies on content and server management is far more restrictive. It could be done one day, but right now it cannot.

And inFamous 2 much like Uncharted is drawing on the processing power of the PS3 to get more out of its textures, depth of field and colour palette. Of course an open world game called inFamous 2 with an electricity throwing hero and an action adventure game called Uncharted with lots of shooting and climbing and a user generated platformer called LittleBigPlanet could all be achieved in some form on the Xbox 360, but they wouldn’t be the same. The experience would need to be altered in some way.

You might need to find middleware solutions or work an extra year trying to make it all work. You might need to lower resolutions or frame rates and you would certainly need to compress resolutions to fit everything on a DVD. These are all challenges that would make bring these games, made specifically for the PS3, difficult to replicate and perhaps impossible to replicate faithfully. But the day could yet come. Looking at title like Rage it would seem the barrier between the consoles could mean very little with the right engine behind it.

So when we say ‘[blank] can’t be done on Xbox 360’, what we really mean is, ‘this can’t be done on Xbox 360 at the moment and if they tried it wouldn’t be quite the same’.

I hope that clears things up a little

Originally posted on NowGamer.com




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  • Sean

    When/if the xbox reaches the current processing power of the PS3, I believe that by then the PS3 will have already improved even more, I think in terms of processing power and general Hardware capabilities the PS3 will always be a few steps ahead.

  • lDEFYl

    all I know is that Blu-ray discs have much more storage capacity

  • David

    The situation won’t really change until the next generation arrive. From what I understand 360 has a better graphics card, but the PS3 has better processing and more storage space. As for user generated content, Microsoft are to blame.