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Unreal Engine 5 Demo to Require RTX 2070 SUPER GPU at Minimum for Smooth Gameplay

Epic Games has just recently unveiled its Unreal Engine version 5, which was demonstrated on next-generation PlayStation 5 console. Showing off some impressive details, Epic Games has managed to use all of the power available to them from the new hardware in the PS5 console. Rocking a custom APU from AMD, the PS5 console has 10.28 TeraFLOPs of computing power, which is paired with a fast NVMe SSD. Such a combination allows for the impressive demo we have seen just a few days ago.

However, if you wonder what equivalent PC hardware would you need to run the demo on, World Today News has concluded that you would need at least to have NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2070 SUPER graphics card to run a demo if you could. The RTX 2070S GPU has 9 TeraFLOPs of computing power, and the demonstration would "run pretty good" on that GPU. By the time first Unreal Engine 5 based games come out, next-generation graphics cards should already be available and you wouldn't need to worry if you are getting an upgrade. For the people owning RTX 2070S and faster, they should be good to go for when games based on Unreal Engine 5 hit the market.
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Epic Games Gives Mesmerizing Look at Unreal Engine 5 Running Real Time on PlayStation 5

Epic Games has just released a trailer for version 5 of their industry/acclaimed Unreal Engine. Dubbed "Lumen in the Land of Nanite", the demo they've shared is nothing short of mindblowing when it comes to the amount of environment and character detail. Unreal Engine 5 will feature a new geometry processing engine Epic is calling Nanite, which the company promises will virtually eliminate polygon budgets for developers, with automatic stream and scaling, thus eliminating the need to develop LOD levels for particular assets. Another addition, and an as impressive one, is the Lumen global illumination engine, which will save developers the need to manually bake lightmaps accounting for every little change in a scene's lighting - the global illumination system makes these changes in lighting conditions as seamless and integrated as they can be. This among other features already introduced with version 4.25 such as Niagara VFX and Chaos destruction systems.

Unreal Engine 5 is pegged for an early 2021 release; Epic Games has already announced they will be porting their popular Fortnite videogame into the engine, which makes sense, considering it's being particularly optimized for PC and next-generation consoles. These will become the backbone of games development - and an important source of Epic's Fortnite revenue stream. Take a look at the trailer after the break - and remember this was all running real-time in a PlayStation 5 console.

Sony Announces PlayStation Studios Initiative

Sony in the buildup for the launch of the PlayStation 5 has announced a new umbrella initiative focusing on its first-party studios. The new PlayStation studios umbrella will serve as a marketing branding for their first-party games, similar to Microsoft's Game Studios, which will make it loud and clear that a game has been developed in partnership with Sony. This might not mean much by itself, but it could, speculatively, serve as a way for Sony to extend its brand image to platforms other than the PS5 - case in point, PC.

Sony has already been bringing its first-party, exclusive games to the PC for a while now - Quantic Dream has already brought its full cadre of games to the PC, and Guerrilla will be launching their much-acclaimed Horizon: Zero Dawn this summer (still waiting for God of War, Sony, make it happen). This new branding initiative will appear in game trailers and in game boot sequences, but will only be imparted in games come the PS5 launch in Holiday 2020.

Codemasters Reveals DIRT 5 for PC, Xbox, Playstation & Stadia

As revealed during Microsoft's Inside Xbox show, Codemasters is delighted to announce DIRT 5, launching from October 2020 on Xbox Series X, PlayStation 5, Windows PC (via Steam) and the current generation of Xbox and PlayStation consoles. A Google Stadia version will be released in early 2021. Whilst respecting the heritage and retaining the DNA of the franchise, DIRT 5 writes a new chapter in the legacy of DIRT - bolder and braver than ever before. DIRT 5 is more than relentless rallying, more than suspension-shaking jumps, more than hairpins and handbrakes. Join an energised world of off-road racing, and be part of a vibe that delivers big on epic action, pure expression, and unbridled style.

EA Confirms its Games Will Receive Free Patches for PlayStation 5, Xbox Series X Compatibility

EA has confirmed that it's existing games for Xbox One and Playstation 4 will receive free patches to upgrade them for next-generation consoles. The PS5 and Xbox Series X both feature ways to play current-generation games, both consoles will attempt to automatically boost games up to 4k resolution. While these options ensure broad inter-generation compatibility issues can arise from game limitations, this is where manual patches come in allowing developers to take advantage of the extra performance and radically overhaul their games.

Electronic Arts CFO Blake Jorgensen confirmed in a recent earnings call that EA would not charge consumers for these patches. "As usual, we have presented the quarterly phasing of our net bookings in our earnings presentation. Note that this year, the phasing includes the effect of revenue recognition from the games we are launching for the current generation of consoles that can also be upgraded free for the next generation."

AMD Ramps Up Custom SoC Production for Next-Generation Consoles

Both Sony and Microsoft are expected to soon launch their next-generation consoles, which are highly anticipated among console gamers as they will bring some of the latest advancements in graphics, like ray tracing. The current situation in the world is that everything is slowed down due to the COVID-19 outbreak. Companies across the world have mostly slowed down their production lines due to the less demand, however, AMD has done exactly the opposite for their custom SoC customers. In wake of expected high demand, AMD has ramped up its production lines so it can supply Sony and Microsoft for their next-generation consoles—PlayStation 5 and Xbox Series X. This is an encouraging sign that the demand is going to be strong - and that AMD is up to the task of delivering.
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AMD Confirms Zen 3 and RDNA2 by Late-2020

AMD in its post Q1-2020 earnings release disclosures stated that the company is "on track" to launching its next-generation "Zen 3" CPU microarchitecture and RDNA2 graphics architecture in late-2020. The company did not reveal in what shape or form the two will debut. AMD is readying "Zen 3" based EPYC "Milan" enterprise processors, "Vermeer" Ryzen desktop processors, and "Cezanne" Ryzen mobile APUs based on "Zen 3," although there's no word on which product line the microarchitecture will debut with. "Zen 3" compute dies (CCDs) are expected to do away with the quad-core compute complex (CCX) arrangement of cores, and are expected to be built on a refined 7 nm-class silicon fabrication process, either TSMC N7P or N7+.

The only confirmed RDNA2 based products we have as of now are the semi-custom SoCs that drive the Sony PlayStation 5 and Microsoft Xbox Series X next-generation consoles, which are expected to debut by late-2020. The AMD tweet, however, specifies "GPUs" (possibly referring to discrete GPUs). Also, with AMD forking its graphics IP to RDNA (for graphics processors) and CDNA (for headless compute accelerators), we're fairly sure AMD is referring to a Radeon RX or Radeon Pro launch in the tweet. Microsoft's announcement of the DirectX 12 Ultimate logo is expected to expedite launch of Radeon RX discrete GPUs based on RDNA2, as the current RDNA architecture doesn't meet the logo requirements.

Philips Intros 345M1CR Momentum Ultrawide 144 Hz Monitors for Next Gen Consoles

Philips late last week introduced the 345M1CR Momentum, a 21:9, 34-inch ultrawide monitor designed for next-generation game consoles (PlayStation 5 and Xbox Series X), without naming them as such. The monitor offers UWQHD (3440 x 1440 pixels) resolution, 4 ms response time (1 ms with low blur mode), and 144 Hz refresh rates, and possibly features HDMI 2.0b connectivity to work with next-gen consoles. 4K UHD at 60 Hz is the core design goal of both Microsoft and Sony, although it's quite conceivable that the two could enable support (including in-game optimization) for ultrawide formats and high refresh-rates (beyond 120 Hz). There's no word on pricing or availability.

Sony Reveals DualSense, the New Wireless Game Controller for PlayStation 5

Sony has revealed the design for DualSense, which will bring the sense of touch to PS5 gameplay. The new controller introduces haptic feedback, adaptive triggers for L2 / R2, a new "Create" button to replace "Share" and a microphone array built in.

We've reached an exciting milestone with PlayStation 5, as we're starting to ship our new controller in its final design to developers who are implementing its unique features into their games. But first, we wanted everyone in the PlayStation community to get a first look at the DualSense wireless controller, and hear our vision for how the new controller will captivate more of your senses as you interact with the virtual worlds in PS5 games. The features of DualSense, along with PS5's Tempest 3D AudioTech, will deliver a new feeling of immersion to players.

GameStop Downsizes, Over 300 Stores to Permanently Close

GameStop announced that it will permanently close down over 300 brick-and-mortar stores in an effort to "de-diversity" its business. The company closed down 331 stores last year, bringing the store strength down to 5,500 locations. Much of GameStop's focus markets are those parts of the U.S. with sub-optimal Internet bandwidth that blunts the advantage digital retailers like Steam have over it. Besides game hard-copies and coupons for cash, GameStop also retails game consoles and accessories. The earnings call that included this announcement also had a comment about a possible delay in the release of PlayStation 5 and Xbox Series X as supply-chains around the world are severely disrupted, not to mention people's disposable incomes.

Sony Reveals PS5 Hardware: RDNA2 Raytracing, 16 GB GDDR6, 6 GB/s SSD, 2304 GPU Cores

Sony in a YouTube stream keynote by PlayStation 5 lead system architect Mark Cerny, detailed the upcoming entertainment system's hardware. There are three key areas where the company has invested heavily in driving forward the platform by "balancing revolutionary and evolutionary" technologies. A key design focus with PlayStation 5 is storage. Cerny elaborated on how past generations of the PlayStation guided game developers' art direction as the low bandwidths and latencies of optical discs and HDDs posed crippling latencies arising out of mechanical seeks, resulting in infinitesimally lower data transfer rates than what the media is capable of in best case scenario (seeking a block of data from its outermost sectors). SSD was the #1 most requested hardware feature by game developers during the development of PS5, and Sony responded with something special.

Each PlayStation 5 ships with a PCI-Express 4.0 x4 SSD with a flash controller that has been designed in-house by Sony. The controller features 12 flash channels, and is capable of at least 5.5 GB/s transfer speeds. When you factor in the exponential gains in access time, Sony expects the SSD to provide a 100x boost in effective storage sub-system performance, resulting in practically no load times.

Sony's Mark Cerny to Detail PS5 Architecture March 18th

Sony has announced via Twitter that their lead system architect Mark Cerny will "provide a deep dive into PS5's system architecture, and how it will shape the future of games" tomorrow. This is likely the start of Sony's marketing campaign for the release of the PS5 which is due out Holidays 2020.

The Japanese company has remained puzzlingly tight-lipped regarding their next-gen games console, which is a far cry from Microsoft's position, who have been releasing details and teasing their next-gen Xbox Series X system for a while now. It remains to be seen how Sony's system will differ from Microsoft's Xbox Series X, since most specs are rumored to be close on both consoles. The underlying Zen 2 architecture for the CPUs is confirmed in both consoles, and so should the fabrication process and RDNA2-based graphics with dedicated ray tracing hardware. It remains to be seen how the companies will aim to differentiate their offerings.

AMD-made PlayStation 5 Semi-custom Chip Has Ray-tracing Hardware (not a software solution)

Sony's next-generation PlayStation 5 could land under many Christmas trees...in the year 2020, as the company plans a Holiday 2020 launch for the 4K-ready, 8K-capable entertainment system that has a semi-custom chip many times more powerful than the current generation, to support its lofty design goals. By late-2020, Sony calculates that some form of ray-tracing could be a must-have for gaming, and is working with its chip designer AMD to add just that - hardware-acceleration for ray-tracing, and not just something that's pre-baked or emulated over GPGPU.

Mark Cerny, a system architect at Sony's US headquarters, in an interview with Wired, got into the specifics of the hardware driving the company's big platform launch for the turn of the decade. "There is ray-tracing acceleration in the GPU hardware," he said, adding "which I believe is the statement that people were looking for." Besides raw processing power increases, Sony will focus on getting the memory and storage subsystems right. Both are interdependent, and with fast NAND flash-based storage, Sony can rework memory-management to free up more processing resources. AMD has been rather tight-lipped about ray-tracing on its Radeon GPUs. CEO Lisa Su has been dismissive about the prominence of the tech saying "it's one of the many technologies these days." The company's mid-2019 launch of the "Navi" family of GPUs sees the company skip ray-tracing hardware. The semi-custom chip's GPU at the heart of PlayStation 5 was last reported to be based on the same RDNA architecture.

Sony Toys with the Idea of Porting PlayStation-exclusives to PC

Sony Interactive Entertainment (SIE) is opening up to the idea of porting PlayStation-exclusive games to the PC, which is growing in popularity on the backs of titles that play best on this platform, such as Fortnite and Minecraft. At the moment, Shawn Layden, who heads SIE, is interested in putting some its first-party titles (developed and published entirely by SIE) on the PC platform. Compared to arch-rival Microsoft, Sony's garden has had taller walls. Microsoft has interests in both its Xbox console, and the Windows PC ecosystem, particularly the Microsoft Store, and has shepherded many of its ecosystem partners to co-develop for both platforms. Its latest move is the Xbox for PC GamePass, that brings about some coherence between the PC and Xbox.

Sony is gearing up for the next round of the Console Wars against Microsoft, in which its PlayStation 5 console will compete with Microsoft's codenamed "Project Scarlett" console. Both consoles will be designed for 4K Ultra HD televisions, with preparation for higher resolutions, such as 8K. Speaking on the development, Layden said "We must support the PlayStation platform — that is nonnegotiable. That said, you will see in the future some titles coming out of my collection of studios which may need to lean into a wider installed base."

Sony PlayStation 5 Promises 4K 120Hz Gaming

Sony has finalized the design and specification of its PlayStation 5 entertainment system. Unlike buzzwords Microsoft threw around like "8K capable" for its "Project Scarlett" console, Sony has a slightly different design goal: 4K UHD at 120 Hz, guaranteed. The most notable absentee at E3 2019, Sony is designing the PlayStation 5 to leverage the latest hardware to guarantee 120 frames per second on your 4K display. Much like "Project Scarlett," the SoC at the heart of the PlayStation 5 is a semi-custom chip co-designed by AMD and Sony.

This unnamed SoC reportedly features an 8-core/16-thread CPU based on AMD's latest "Zen 2" microarchitecture, which is a massive leap from the 8 low-power "Jaguar" cores pulling the PS4 Pro. The GPU will implement AMD's new RDNA architecture. The SoC will use GDDR6 memory, shared between the CPU and GPU. Much like "Project Scarlett," the PS5 will include an NVMe SSD as standard equipment, and the operating system will use a portion of it as virtual memory. There will also be dedicated hardware for 3D positional audio. Sony also confirmed full backwards compatibility with PS4 titles.

Sony PlayStation 5 Console Confirmed Powered by 8-core Zen 2 CPU, Navi and Ray Tracing Confirmed

Sony's own lead system architect Mark Cerny spilled the beans on the company's upcoming "PlayStation 5" games console - the name isn't confirmed, but it's a PlayStation, and it's the fifth, so, following from the previous nomenclature just makes sense, doesn't it? One particular detail, however, is of most interest to us PC hardware junkies, and that one little fact is the confirmed Navi GPU that will power it. This is, almost certainly, a semi-custom Navi-based GPU, however; but the tidbit that PlayStation 5 will have raytracing support is the one game changer for hardware expectations - on paper, at least.

Of course, Navi is expected to debut much sooner in the consumer space than on next-gen consoles, but the fact that PlayStation 5 development kits are already being seeded - and an increasing rate, according to Sony - bodes well for the feature's inclusion on AMD's consumer-based cards. Either that or the company is taking a software approach to raytracing, which, if NVIDIA's 1000 and 10*0 series is any indication, wouldn't go very well with performance intentions. This does mean that raytracing is about to receive a much-needed market penetration boost for its adoption by developers. NVIDIA will of course be able to wave the flag of having been the first company to introduce the technology to consumers.
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