Tenorman, on Wed Apr 4, 2012 6:15 PM, said:
This isn't quite true. Both systems are limited to 16 colors per sprite or tile. The PC Engine just allows for a for greater number of sub-palettes to be selected from for each sprite or tile. All tiles and sprites for the Genesis have to come from 4 different 16 color sub-palettes, the PC Engine allows for 16 sprite and 16 background palettes.
Wow, I worded that poorly!
I should have said "more color variety" or "more palette variety". It made sense in my head to say "colors per sprite/tile", though, you're right that doesn't quite make sense and doesn't have the same mathematical-proportion-nonsense meaning as it did when I thought of it in my head.
Anyway, 61 on screen colors for the Genesis VS. the 481 available on screen for the PC Engine is a bit of an obnoxious skew. I really don't remember seeing any really-really-colorful games until way later into the genesis' life with stuff like Ristar and Sonic 3.
It's the reason alot of Sega games have ditherfests (Super Hydlide is a big culprit there). I could have sworn the MD had some other limitation to coloring tiles, but I wouldn't be surprised if I've mixed that up with some other platform I've only read about in passing and never actually did any dev for.
Though I would still say comparing the ROM sizes is a bad comparison. Even if they had the same ROM size, I'd bet the SGX one would still look better.
As an example of this, compare Lords of Thunder for PCE and MegaCD. It's a PLAIN PCE game, not a SGX one. You'll quickly see that the PCE one looks better. You could do this for other games too that exist on both platforms. Typically, the PC Engine wins out because of colors.
There are plenty of PCE vs. Genesis (PLAIN PCE, not SGX.) comparisons showing the Genesis not doing as good simply due to the color limitations. More ROM size isn't going to increase the amount of on screen colors at all, so even if you have more space for tiles, you're still going to have a bunch of redundant colors and general "blehness" brought on by not being able to use alot of colors.
I like this one:
Yeah you get the advantage of a CD for the PCE one, but you also have the disadvantage of having to stop and load new crap. This isn't always great.
Also, the Genesis has twice the workram of the SGX (doesn't it?). The SGX has more VRAM, but with shades of gray here. It's got two VDCs to work with, so 64k per VDC.
@ Paranoia, I thought the Genesis had 3 planes, but two share the same space. I'm not 100% sure though, since I don't do any Genesis dev. Just PC Engine.
EDIT: Also, all of this aside, the Genesis one is still great. I grew up playing that one, and still think it's awesome. I like the Genesis a lot, even if the PCE is prettier.
Edited by Arkhan, Thu Apr 5, 2012 8:38 AM.