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 Korsakoff

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If you were reading Ars about a decade ago, you may remember our extensive coverage
of the baffling architecture behind the PlayStation 3's unique Cell processor. Many developers
reportedly encountered difficulties trying to program for it effectively. If you haven't read all
that, let Ars' Jon Stokes sum it up for you: "...the PlayStation 3 was all about more: more hype,
and more programming headaches."

Today, we can add another posthumous log to that already burning fire of developer ire for the
PlayStation 3 and the Cell architecture. Polyphony Digital CEO and Gran Turismo series lead
Kazunori Yamauchi told IGN this week that working on the PS3 "was really a nightmare for us."

After addressing the slumping sales for the two PS3 editions of the Gran Turismo series, Yamauchi
was quick to blame Sony's hardware for at least part of the series' development problems. "The
conditions for GT6 were really against us, mainly because the PlayStation 3 hardware was a very
difficult piece of hardware to develop for, and it caused our development team a lot of stress," he
said.

The PS3's Gran Turismo 5 was famously delayed multiple times between its 2006 announcement
and its eventual late 2010 release (Gran Turismo 6 followed three years later). Yamauchi often
cited his desire to create a "perfect" racing experience as the reason for those delays, but it
sounds like the programming headaches of the PS3 hardware may have also played into it.

FURTHER READING


AN X86 PLAYSTATION 4 COULD SIGNAL A SEA-CHANGE IN THE CONSOLE INDUSTRY
The next generation PlayStation 4 will use an AMD x86 processor and AMD's …

Sony seems to have responded to developer complaints in designing the PlayStation 4,
which runs on the much more straightforward and familiar x86 processor. Yamauchi
acknowledged those generational improvements for developers in the IGN interview, saying
that “compared to [the PS3], the PS4 is a piece of hardware that really has the ability to
answer to our expectations."

The PS4's architecture improvements—and a willingness to wait until well after launch
to start development—have made work on Gran Turismo Sport a much more enjoyable
experience, Yamauchi said. "We’re having a lot of fun developing it, and we’re discovering
a lot of things as we develop it," he told IGN. "So it was actually good for us that we started
developing for PS4 later on because we then really had the time to do [research and
development] on the performance of the hardware which enables us to do things like the
physics-based rendering, so it was really good for us that we weren’t in a rush to get
something out."



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