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Planetside 2: Multi-threaded AMD chip could pose a challenge

by William Schwartz

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Despite Sony making the PlayStation 4 an easier system to develop for, and having been praised by developers across the industry, there still could be some hurdles for developing on the new console.

According to Matt Higby, a developer on Sony’s Planetside 2, the Forgelight Engine and AMD chips that rely on multi-threading, are posing a problem.

“People who have AMD chips have a disadvantage, because a single core on an AMD chip doesn’t really have as much horsepower as they really require,” said Higby in a recent interview with Eurogamer.

Higby’s problem is one that stems from a game that was developed for a different type of system. The problems that they are facing right now with Planetside 2 is that they are needing to re-engineer their game for the new platform.

“It’s very challenging to split those really closely connected pieces of functionality across in multiple threads. So it’s a big engineering task for them to do, but thankfully once they do it, AMD players who’ve been having sub-par performance on the PC will suddenly get a massive boost – just because of being able to take the engine and re-implement it as multi-threaded.”

While not all developers are likely to experience this type of challenge, Higby says that “Planetside 2 is a prime example” of challenge of making a game designed to work on “one really big thread” to be compatible with Sony’s multi-threaded AMD hardware.

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