Published on October 11th, 2011 | by Bob11
>Dear John Carmack,
“You can choose to design a game around the specs of a high-end PC and make console versions that fail to hit the design point, or design around the specs of the consoles and have a high-end PC provide incremental quality improvements… We chose the latter.
We do not see the PC as the leading platform for games… That statement will enrage some people, but it is hard to characterize it otherwise; both console versions will have larger audiences than the PC version. A high end PC is nearly 10 times as powerful as a console, and we could unquestionably provide a better experience if we chose that as our design point and we were able to expend the same amount of resources on it. Nowadays most of the quality of a game comes from the development effort put into it, not the technology it runs on. A game built with a tenth the resources on a platform 10 times as powerful would be an inferior product in almost all cases.” (Kotaku interview here)
The Carmack giveth, and the Carmack taketh away. I’m not enraged, John, I’m disappointed. I can’t keep it in any longer, and you just lost your free pass. There’s no excuse for what happened to RAGE on launch. If you want to place blame, look no further than your own team. You didn’t test it on a consumer equivalent PC before it was distributed? Really? You didn’t assume that someone would be running the Battlefield 3 Beta drivers? Even THIS is somehow EA’s fault?
The burden shouldn’t be on AMD for making a special driver build for your game; your game should operate on what they’ve provided for you. I think at this point, the industry has absolutely taken driver updates for granted. It may be in the interest of AMD and nVidia to provide driver updates to increase performance, but don’t release a game without testing it on “retail” or current drivers. You would have had plenty of time to test with even Catalyst 11.5.
Had you engineered the game on PC and ported to console, maybe you would have recognized the less-than-optimal implementation of your “incremental quality” increase by way of massive textures. You probably would have also recognized the need for fine adjustment controls in the video options menu.
It’s unfortunate that this launch has soured you. I never thought I’d see id Software, of all developers, choose console first and port to PC.
Come on, bro. We need some time apart. At least DICE made my preferred platform their priority. They get me. I’m moving on.