360: Five games tested for save to drive - High-Def Digest Forums
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Old 10-29-2008, 12:44 PM
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Default 360: Five games tested for save to drive

Results for some games where much better then others. Seems like it is going to depend on the game. Fallout3 seemed to benefit the most by installing it to the hard drive. Wish they would have tested Fable 2.

http://gameinformer.com/News/Story/2...1019.33076.htm

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Grand Theft Auto IV
While 1 minute and 20 seconds might not be a long time, when youíre itching to roam the streets of Liberty City, it can seem like a small eternity. Thatís how long it took to go from the dashboard to taking control of Nico. Could help be on the way? I certainly hoped so. After waiting a little over 10 minutes to install the game, I gave it another shot. The verdict? The hard-drive installation saved me about 25 seconds. Better yet, it was whisper quiet, which was a nice change of pace from the racket that the DVD drive usually spat out. Load times between missions were also reduced, and the whole experience felt tighter overall.

Halo 3
After see how GTA fared, I was stoked to see if Halo 3 would benefit from the same treatment. The initial time was 1 minute and 3 seconds from title screen to gameplayóshorted than GTA IVís stock time, but still a little slow. The install time was shorter this time, with the 6.8 GB file taking around at 7 minutes and 18 seconds to install, but the results were a disappointment. One minute and 3 seconds. To be fair, itís not like Bungie advertised time savings, and there arenít any guarantees.

Viva Pinata 2: Trouble in Paradise
Viva Pinata 2 enjoyed the most dramatic time savings in my experimentógoing from 1 minute and 2 seconds to 35 seconds after a 9-minute install. Loads throughout the game were reduced, too, which is a boon to anyone who enjoys fiddling around in the virtual garden but gets tired of watching spinning load boxes. It took 5.2 GBs of space on my hard drive to install the game files.

Fallout 3
I was originally pretty happy with how quickly the game loaded up, and while 48 seconds doesnít exactly set any land-speed records, it beats some of the other loading times out there. After waiting 8 minutes and 37 seconds for the 5.9 GBs worth of files to install, I gave it another shot. The second time around, times were cut to an even better 25 seconds from the dashboard menu to the action. I also timed the loading times for transitioning between inside and outside game environments. Before installing the game, these transitions took about 20 seconds; afterward, it was halved. If youíre planning on spending a serious amount of time with the game, that time savings is going to stack up over time.

Rock Band 2 (anecdotally)
The first game I downloaded to my hard drive was Rock Band 2, and I didnít time the process, unfortunately. I donít have hard numbers to back up my impressions, but everything about the game felt faster after doing so. The time between songs in multi-track sets was reduced, so my virtual band doesnít have to wait around awkwardly as the music is retrieved. The initial loading time is a lot faster, too.

So when itís all said and done, is it worth ripping your games? Iíd have to say yes, with a few caveats. If youíre only planning on renting or borrowing games from your friends for a few days, itís probably not worth going through the process. (You canít play the game without having it in the drive, either, before you get any sneaky ideas.) Iíd recommend it mostly for games that you play a lot and plan on playing a lot in the future. If you run out of space on your drive, you can delete the game data without compromising any associated save games.

Microsoft is playing up the noise reduction, but having speedier game experiences is certainly a welcome side effect of ripping games. When I spoke with company reps a few weeks ago, while they didnít seem to think that developers would specifically optimize disk-based games for such functionality, they wouldnít outright rule such a thing out entirely. For people who are as impatient as I am, letís hope that kind of optimization is something that upcoming games are designed for. Weíve got other things to do than wait!
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Old 10-29-2008, 02:09 PM
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Originally Posted by diggumsmax View Post
Wish they would have tested Fable 2.
From Gizmodo:

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I began installing Fable II at 10:14pm and it finished by 10:25pm. I'm not sure that the game loaded any fasterómaybe you could catch it with a stopwatch, but I couldnít with casual observation.

But I did notice that Fableís auto-guidance system reacted more quickly to my directional changes. Pop-ins may have been a little improved as well, though I was able to duplicate a few problems I experienced with the disc in.

The biggest benefit was that the DVD didnít spin nonstop. In fact, it didnít spin at all. Since my test 360 has gone through two optical drives already, I was happy to have the option to lessen the wear and tear on my 360.
http://gizmodo.com/5070189/new-xbox-...re-improvement
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Old 10-29-2008, 04:10 PM
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Quick question, how are these games being ripped so quickly?

I thought 5Gbs took roughly 20 mins or so to install, and 6.8Gbs for Halo 3 took less than half of that..

However it works I am all for it, extending the life of my console is always a good thing..
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Old 10-29-2008, 04:16 PM
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Yeah I can't wait to get rid of that disk noise from Fable 2. My 360 sounds like the disk is going to blow up at any time.
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Old 10-29-2008, 04:24 PM
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I don't want to hear any anecdotal evidence about the NXE installs (literally, the part of NXE I am most excited about), until someone times Mass Effect. To be honest, load times never bothered me much in any game (though the nearly 100% lack of loading in Uncharted made me giddy), the pop-ins in Mass Effect were a gd pain in the ass. If the installs fix that, and m ake transferring between inside and outside environments in Fallout and Oblivion go faster, then I will be in heaven.

Question: The Fallout 3 mention in the first referenced article said it took 20-30 seconds to load new environments (going inside, outside, or between wasteland and towns). So far, for myself (even with a faulty disc which I switched out) I havent had to wait more than 5-15 seconds i n loading times for the next environment. If the HDD install cuts down on that I'm in heaven.

(Hell, MGS4 with mandatory installs still has 30 second to 1 minute load times between scenes, which, in the event of the vehicle chase scenes, are only 30 seconds long in and of themselves.)
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Old 10-29-2008, 05:28 PM
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So much for the 1 hour install theory

Sounds awesome!
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Old 10-29-2008, 06:05 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mase View Post
Quick question, how are these games being ripped so quickly?

I thought 5Gbs took roughly 20 mins or so to install, and 6.8Gbs for Halo 3 took less than half of that..

However it works I am all for it, extending the life of my console is always a good thing..
Could it be an issue of seek times and harddrive read/write speed?
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Old 10-29-2008, 06:23 PM
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Originally Posted by BBM128 View Post
Could it be an issue of seek times and harddrive read/write speed?
Bingo, I knew I was forgetting something from the equation..

Thanks!
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Old 10-29-2008, 06:48 PM
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Yeah I don't know a ton about this stuff, but presumably it is optimized to know how to read/rip a 360 disc (as opposed to generic software reading any number of different formats of DVD+/-R type discs) plus the optimization of a unique Microsoft branded (knew that nickle and diming would come in handy some day) hard drive.
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