NOVA 3: The New iPad's first app hiccup

Discussion in 'iPad Apps' started by jabingla2810, May 10, 2012.

  1. jabingla2810 macrumors 68020

    Oct 15, 2008
    Today NOVA 3 was released, and it sets a new benchmark on what is possible graphically for iOS gaming.

    But it's not all good news for the new iPad.

    On the iPhone 4s and iPad 2 NOVA 3 is one of the first iOS games to use effects such as depth of field, advanced particle effects and even effects showing heat coming from the end of the gun.

    All these effects and more have been taken out of the new iPad version, and one can only assume that this is a compromise to have the game running smooth at the new higher resolution.

    There are screen shots in the thread here:

    I am not trolling here, I am an owner of the new iPad and love it, but this is the first sign that maybe the A5X isn't quite up to the job of delivering graphics at the new resolution.

    I would like the think that these effects will get added in an update, maybe the dev could have the game running at the same resolution as the iPad 2 version with some additional anti aliasing to smooth those jaggies out?

    Anyhow, just thought that this seems like a significant point in the story of the latest iPad and worth bringing up.
  2. Redjericho macrumors 6502a

    Sep 16, 2011
    Unfortunately, yeah I'm pretty sure you are right. The new iPad just can't handle games of that resolution and quality and still run smooth, and it's going to be a while until any tablet can, though apple probably could release a processor whenever they want that could easily handle it and fit in the iPad, they won't, because it's all about profits, so they stick with incremental upgrades.
  3. master-ceo macrumors 65816


    Sep 7, 2007
    The SUN
    lol And we got the so-called A5X (better graphics than A5?) in our iPad 3’s. This blows.
  4. Batavian macrumors 6502


    Mar 10, 2011
    It does look like a very interesting game though. Nice find.
  5. TheWheelMan macrumors 6502a


    Mar 15, 2011
    I wonder if maybe such effects will just have to be coded differently for the higher res display, or in other words, maybe there will have to be an iPad 3rd gen HD edition?
  6. Tinmania macrumors 68040


    Aug 8, 2011
    Well if this is the case I sure hope there is an option to run the iPad 2 version.

    I would like to be the one to decide if I want the lower res version, with more bells and whistles, or the retina version.

    But don't force the the retina version on me if it has decreased features.

  7. BFizzzle macrumors 68020


    May 31, 2010
    Austin TX
    i hope so! that really blows.

    and the a5x is better than the tegra! pshhh
  8. big samm macrumors 65816

    big samm

    Oct 27, 2008
    Now I feel like the A5X chip was all marketing...:(
  9. iMacDragon macrumors 68000


    Oct 18, 2008
    it does exactly what they said.. the trouble is, to keep up with ipad 2 quality on retina display would have needed octuple core graphics.
  10. bcam117 macrumors member

    May 1, 2012

    I hope devs learn to better deal with the res and GPU. I don't mind having games at lower res, especially 3d games. I'd rather have nice effects and AA and higher FPS. S
  11. nickn macrumors 6502

    Jun 17, 2011
    There is simply no way devs can create a comparable version of an app on an iPad 3. The iPad 3 has 2x the performance of the iPad 2, but has to drive 4x the pixels. There is no way they will ever been the same, the iPad 2 will always win performance wise. Apple should have included more GPU cores in the A5X to attempt to keep performance the same, but alas they didn't. Hopefully Gameloft will include a slider on newer versions of the app, so users can choose whether they want to load high res iPad 3 graphics, or the lower but better iPad 2 models. Galaxy on Fire 2 already does this with good results for everyone. Also, lets hope they put this on the PSP Vita. That will fly as it has 4 CPU and GPU cores on a much lower res screen. We are really getting to the point where mobile devices are starting to have modern console quality!
  12. sekazi macrumors 6502

    Jan 12, 2012
    I do not see why for 3D games they just do not give a option to play at 1024x768 instead. You will notice a quality drop on a 3D game less than you would a game using artwork especially if they use AA.
  13. Redjericho macrumors 6502a

    Sep 16, 2011
    Unfortunately, to those of you asking for the ability to switch between retina graphics and lower res graphics, first of all it isn't possible. It's either all retina for the iPad 3 or all low res, unless they release an entire separate app called like "NOVA 3 SD"

    Second of all, it wouldn't make a difference. The iPad 3 is always running the retina display, the processor is always running every pixel, so even if the resolution of the textures was reduced, it would still be the same amount of pixels, and therefore the same amount of processor power would be required (maybe slight less, but not enough to make it worth sacrificing retina graphics)

    This is the number one reason I hesitated on buying the iPad 3, and i would have waited for the 4 if I wasn't stuck with the first gen, which was all but unusable.
  14. newone757, May 10, 2012
    Last edited: May 10, 2012

    newone757 macrumors 6502

    Apr 5, 2011
    You couldn't be more wrong.

    Galaxy on Fire 2 does it. You have to go and enable retina graphics in the settings.

    You have no idea what you are talking about. The iPad is not "always running" all the pixels regardless of content. If something is not full res for the screen it is simply scaled up aka stretched to fit the screen. So, obviously, it doesn't require the the same amount of graphical power to output lower res graphics and stretch the picture to fit the screen than it does to output to full resolution on a 1:1 scale.
  15. gusping macrumors 6502a

    Mar 12, 2012
    London, UK
  16. jabingla2810 thread starter macrumors 68020

    Oct 15, 2008
    Nobody is complaining.

    We all have iPads, so I think we can all agree that we are all pretty fortunate people.

    However, this is just a discussion on a topic thatgot a lot of attention when they first anounced the new iPad.

    Is the A5X a big enough upgrade to compensate for the higher resolution?

    And for the first time we have some clear evidence that maybe it isn't.
  17. gregrose macrumors 6502

    Jun 24, 2010
    Glad I didn't waste my money on the 3....the 2 is perfect
  18. WeegieMac, May 11, 2012
    Last edited: May 11, 2012

    WeegieMac Guest


    Jan 29, 2008
    Glasgow, UK
    The new iPad has none of the smoke and flame effects on the buildings, for example, but they are present on the iPad 2.

    Interesting. I'd happily play the game at iPad 2 resolution on my new iPad to get all the effects, as opposed to a slightly sharper looking game.
  19. MythicFrost, May 11, 2012
    Last edited: May 11, 2012

    MythicFrost macrumors 68040


    Mar 11, 2009
    I've got an iPad 3 and iPad 2, and whilst the 2 does have some nice effects which are left out on the iPad 3, the 3 has a much crisper and sharper image.

    The A5X doubled the GPU horsepower available to developers, which is enough for most games to run at native resolution, but some will have to run around 1536x1152.

    The game likely looks a lot better at this resolution without those effects than it does at 1536x1152 with them, but the choice would be nice though.

    EDIT: I might point out as well that I found the iPad 2 version to lag somewhat, whilst the iPad 3 version doesn't.
  20. Maziar macrumors 6502

    May 22, 2010
    You probably haven't looked at the iPad's display then. It blows away iPad 2.
    Anyway,I haven't tried Nova 3 yet,but all the other games I've tested(real racing,infinity blade etc.) run smoothly.
  21. jabingla2810 thread starter macrumors 68020

    Oct 15, 2008
    I'm glad you've brought up Real Racing 2.

    That game now runs at the higher resolution while at the same time keeping and even improving some of the effects. It looks better on the new iPad in every way.

    So maybe an update could fix the issues with NOVA 3.

    Maybe they were so far into development when the new iPad was announced they haven't had time to optimise for it?
  22. MythicFrost macrumors 68040


    Mar 11, 2009
    There's nothing really to optimise.

    There's many different aspects to a game, such as shading, texturing, lighting, etc., and how much additional horsepower needed to compensate for those things when the resolution increases varies, and on top of that the PowerVR SGX543 has its strengths and weaknesses which factor into it as well.

    That's why some games like Infinity Blade 2 which are very graphic heavy games, with great lighting and shading, are only able to run at a resolution which is twice the pixels of 1024x768, as the A5X only doubled the GPU horsepower available, while other games such as Real Racing 2 are more lightweight and able to run at 2048x1536 and even with more AA than on the iPad 2.

    From what I can tell N.O.V.A 3 is quite a graphically impressive game, so I don't expect those effects will be able to be added in on the iPad 2 later.

    I'm very far from an expert on the topic though, so I may be wrong, but I can definitely tell you not to use Real Racing 2 as an example why the effects in N.O.V.A 3 on the iPad 2 might be added to the iPad 3 version, as it's just such a lightweight game.
  23. psonice macrumors 6502a

    Jul 22, 2005
    It's a curious move by the devs. They've decided to go for full res, but then drop some of the effects to keep speed up. Wonder why they didn't go for a compromise - render parts at full res, but not increase res on some of the other stuff? (It's not necessary to quadruple res for everything that gets rendered - this is why 2x performance increase is often enough to drive 4x the pixels).

    Also, anyone thinking the tegra 3 would have been better is seriously deluded. Tegra 3 was slower than the A5, which is half the speed of the A5x. Just consider how many effects would have been dropped if the iPad 3 had a tegra :D
  24. jabingla2810 thread starter macrumors 68020

    Oct 15, 2008
  25. Skika macrumors 68030

    Mar 11, 2009
    Maybe they could implement 2 modes of running it. A simple switch in the settings where you can have the retina resolution or the better fx.

    I think this would be a good solution.

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