The Witness: Blow confirms game currently uses 5GB of PS4 RAM

Monday, 10th June 2013 13:11 GMT By Dave Cook

The Witness developer Jonathan Blow has shed some light on to the technical grunt of his PS4-exclusive puzzler. The creator has confirmed that it currently uses 5GB of the console’s 8GB RAM.

Blow took to Twitter to discuss the game’s technical prowess yesterday. Luckily NeoGAF user shinobi602 capped the conversation as it unfolded.

Blow then discussed the reason for such high RAM with fans:

So while The Witness is still being developed, it’s hard to say if the game will use 5GB of RAM at launch, but what do you think of the numbers at the moment? Do they make sense, or is there room for scaling thing down yet?

Meanwhile, you can see a PS4 development video for The Witness here.



  1. Joe Musashi

    I know how that’d want to be perceived from a PR standpoint. But, critically, claiming you’re using heaps of ram isn’t a great statement.

    You can write about 10 lines of java and get it to eat up an indefinite amount of ram, for example.


    #1 2 years ago
  2. Malmer

    Since all major engines use asset streaming today I don’t see the problem. It is only when making your own engine that doesn’t support streaming you have problems. And streaming is good because it limits load times dramatically.

    #2 2 years ago
  3. TheBlackHole

    More RAM = less need to optimise.

    Developers can be lazy in the early days of a new generation, as they have more power than necessary at their disposal.

    As the years pass though they will have to reign in some of their early gen extravagance.

    #3 2 years ago
  4. actuallyisnotafox

    thats kinda worrying.. who says sony wont expand upon that

    #4 2 years ago
  5. DrDamn

    If it’s a smaller Indie game and they can fit the whole lot in memory then an initial load hit = no load times after that. Not every game can take this approach, but if you can then why not?

    #5 2 years ago
  6. Malmer

    @5 You’re right. So in this case it is the right approach. But I don’t see it as a problem overall. 8 GB of memory will be enough for quite some time.

    #6 2 years ago
  7. Fin


    Pretty sure any Java uses an indefinite amount of RAM ;)

    C 4 LYFE!!!!1

    #7 2 years ago
  8. Llewelyn_MT

    The biggest maps in Battlefield 3 for 64 players don’t need as much, and it’s not a particularly well optimized game.

    #8 2 years ago
  9. KAP


    Look at RDR and GTAV, look at what you can do with 512Mb of RAM… Don’t worry your pretty little head of what the next gen is capable of.. There must be plenty of background programming in the witness he clearly hasn’t devulged yet.

    #9 2 years ago
  10. monkeygourmet


    This is only wrong as ‘Blow’ is presenting it as a failure on MS’s part. Rather than explaining why he is actually using 5Gb.

    Ultimatly,the RAM difference won’t me as much as a problem as the weaker GPU in X1 for MS.

    *Edit, scratch that: He explained it quite well! ;)

    #10 2 years ago
  11. ps3fanboy

    lazy ass developer… optimize your shit or get the fuck outta here… fucking crybaby.

    #11 2 years ago
  12. sagtlthl

    I’m a Playstation gamer, but really want to hear something from Erth regarding this to have some fun reading his PC comments.

    #12 2 years ago
  13. Night Hunter

    Fuck the infinite power of the cloud. We need da infinite powa of teh GDDR5! ;)

    #13 2 years ago
  14. monkeygourmet


    I’ll have a go:

    “Double texture size? Yeah, good luck running that with GPU from 1999, welcome to the future.

    Ram is not such a big deal, especially when GPU / CPU are straight out of my Grandma’s laptop, have fun playing games in 1080p @ 30fps Sony bots.”

    AmIdoin’itright?! :)

    -only messin’ Erth!

    #14 2 years ago
  15. manamana

    Considering that by the end of this year 4GB of RAM will even be available in phones and tablets …

    #15 2 years ago
  16. manamana

    #14 I smell an alt-account :-D

    #16 2 years ago
  17. sagtlthl

    @14 You did great, another Erth is in town
    Really, loving reading your comments guys, thank you

    #17 2 years ago
  18. monkeygourmet


    :D I think I just about nailed it!

    #18 2 years ago
  19. Irani

    Shame to Sony , PS4 is Shiiiiiiit

    #19 2 years ago
  20. sagtlthl

    Irani, What about you are Shiiiiiiit

    #20 2 years ago
  21. KineticCalvaria

    @14, you missed ‘shitty’ out, he seems to like that word. But otherwise thanks for the advice erth!

    #21 2 years ago
  22. CyberMarco


    4GB at what cost. You have to consider also the bang for you bucks! I can still create a NASA computer and go around saying, hey console peasants suck this, ignoring the fact that I could have spent 3000$+

    #22 2 years ago
  23. Tavarish

    News like this will just create hype about how wise Sony was with 8 GB of GDDR 5. People most likely will just forget that it’s 8 GB of unified memory meaning everything is in same space. Everything aka sounds, textures, models, map data etc.

    Of course it takes a lot RAM just like PC games take a lot RAM if you combine RAM + VRAM usage.

    #23 2 years ago
  24. ps3fanboy

    Jonathan blows…

    #24 2 years ago
  25. monkeygourmet



    “Double size textures? Whats the point with shitty kitchen sink GPU? Double size textures would reduce gameplay down to 5fps on this ‘next gen’ GPU lulz…2

    “My grandma laptop from 1999 CPU/GPU better than shitty station 4, enjoy indie games at 1080p 30fps on your PS3.5″


    #25 2 years ago
  26. backup

    5gb for f***ing indie game

    #26 2 years ago
  27. sh4dow

    Seems that during E3, the cream of the crop of VG247′s user base comes out to play…

    #27 2 years ago
  28. sh4dow

    And I failed to comment on the technical stuff here but as is usually the case, Blow is of course spot on. In a new computer, 16GB of RAM are standard and so are 3GB of graphics card memory.
    Which… are how many gigs in total? Anybody? Exactly…

    8GB is basically nothing already. Although of course in addition to the 3GB of graphics card memory, games don’t tend to eat up like 10GB of RAM, so the PS4 is going to be fine. Still… saying 8GB is plenty or Blow would be a lazy developer… jeez.

    #28 2 years ago
  29. TheBlackHole

    Crysis 3 min spec: 2gb GDDR3 RAM.

    JoBlo’s Witness: 5gb GDDR5 RAM.

    Someone needs to learn how to optimise.

    #29 2 years ago
  30. KineticCalvaria

    @29, completely different games, Crysis 3 for instance has loading screens as its mission based. The Witness is open world without loading screens.

    #30 2 years ago
  31. TheBlackHole

    @30 I was being semi-serious, but are you really defending the use of 5gb of GDDR5 RAM for an indie title?

    Next gen or otherwise, that’s patently ridiculous.

    #31 2 years ago
  32. KineticCalvaria

    @31, Well I’ll wait to play the final game before I judge it :), don’t really care how much RAM it uses if the games good and plays well.

    #32 2 years ago
  33. Stardog

    This entire comment thread is a symptom our gaming journalists not having a clue about game engines. It turns their commenters into a bunch of slavering, gormless zombies.

    All the people claiming Crysis 1 was “unoptimized” are back in force.

    @31 Why is it ridiculous?

    #33 2 years ago

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