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JackHandy said:

I see. Pretty neat stuff. Thanks!

But I have a question. In the past (Pre-PS4 gen), developers use to say that a system's architecture dictated what they could or could no do. For instance, PS1 got more 3D games than Saturn due to the unique abilities of the machine. Same for Xbox 360, due to the difficulties of working with the Cell processor. So what's changed? How are these people able to develop for consoles without knowing the full specs? That's what I'm not understanding. Has the way these companies built their consoles changed so something like that is possible? 

What @KratosLives said, and also yes, the way Sony builds their consoles has changed. The cell processor was the last outing to an 'exotic' architecture that was harder to program for. PS4 and now PS5 are much like PC with more standard components. The non standard part is the SSD direct to RAM loading (which windows is getting as well soon in the form of DirectStorage) which the (GT Sport) engine is likely not tuned for.

Ray tracing was a long time coming though and PS5 likely won't be able to make full use of it yet

Polyphony Digital has been working on real-time ray tracing in Gran Turismo for a number of years. While GT Sport uses a pre-rendered ray tracing environment, PD has also developed real-time ray tracing for Gran Turismo assets.

One noteworthy topic discussed in the presentation is Polyphony Digital’s newly developed “Iris” rendering system. It’s a “Monte Carlo ray tracing system”

Polyphony Digital built Iris entirely in-house and it was used for the first time in Gran Turismo Sport. Iris uses a “baking” method which pre-renders lighting in the environment. This generates realistic light and shadows, but it is almost certainly the reason we don’t have dynamic time-of-day or dynamic weather conditions in Sport.

Baking a course like the Nürburgring — which the paper explains is 42GB of compressed data — is distributed to eight rendering servers with 40 CPU cores each. The 320 total cores can render lighting data for all 42GB in about 30 minutes.

That won't be running on PS5 in real time, but I guess as with everything else coming this gen, it will be a mix of pre-baked lighting with real time ray tracing on top for the cars. It should blend well since the environments are all the assets have been made with ray tracing in mind.