Devs Discuss PS4 Neo And Xbox One Scorpio Development

Devs Discuss PS4 Neo And Xbox One Scorpio Development

Consoles have traditionally adopted a fairly lengthy development cycle and single specification to maintain simplicity for the consumer. Of course, the lack of hardware upgrades makes it challenge to improve graphical fidelity through a console generation. Any enhanced visuals rely on optimisation and devs learning how to eke out every last bit of power over time. However, this has dramatically changed with the PlayStation 4 and Xbox One and it`s looking likely that both companies will unveil new hardware soon. Firstly, the PlayStation Neo has been confirmed by Sony and features an enhanced CPU and GPU compared to the original model. This unit is designed to work alongside the standard PlayStation 4 and be an additional option for those prepared to pay more for a better experience.

In contrast to this, the Xbox Scorpio could be a brand new console with new games exclusive to that platform. To be perfectly clear, this is still unknown and we`re hoping to hear more details later today. Apparently, the Scorpio is significantly more powerful than the PlayStation Neo and could help Microsoft to compete better in the current console market. This could be the first instance of consoles moving towards the PC upgrade cycle and it raises questions about the future direction of console gaming. Recently, WCCFTech published an interview with the developers of Dead Effect 2 and discussed how the new console strategy might affect development:

Q. You will surely have read about the rumours concerning potentially enhanced PlayStation 4 and Xbox One consoles. As a developer, would you welcome more powerful hardware with open arms or perhaps you’d rather not have more platforms to deal with?

A. Every developer likes to get his product on as many platforms as reasonably possible, with the best possible quality. The enhanced console versions might provide enough power to support the 4K resolution and that would be definitely great. If all we had to do was to create two performance profiles, for standard and enhanced console, we’re definitely interested. It would be still a lot easier than attempting to provide enough settings for a wild variety of PCs in the world.

Q. What is your target resolution/frame rate for PS4 & XB1? Will there be a significant drop in graphical fidelity when compared to the PC version of Dead Effect 2?

A. The versions we’re right now tuning and testing are graphically comparable with PC high quality on PS4 and medium for Xbox One, but we’re still working and looking for ways to improve the quality. We want to keep the game at stable 60FPS on both platforms. We were considering the idea of 30fps lock while using a better quality graphics, but we’ve decided that smooth action play is more important, even if the visuals will have to suffer a bit.

Clearly, this particular developer believes moving towards multiple console models is a positive move and gives studios the extra power to provide an enhanced experience. The PC can do this remarkably well via graphics settings so I’m not entirely convinced by the comment regarding how much easier it will be to code for consoles. While the number of hardware configurations can complicate matters, it shouldn’t pose a problem for competent developers who want to release their games to audiences across various platforms.

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