We won’t be stuck below 1080p forever, Microsoft's Xbox hardware chief says. These early days of the current gen have seen a number of games running at 1080p on the PS4 and sub-1080p on the Xbox One, leading to a lot of people concluding that the Xbox One just doesn’t have the horsepower of its chief competition, or is at least much more difficult to code for. It isn’t that we’ve seen no 1080p games on Xbox One, but we’ve definitely seen less. While the early tech spec battle has unquestionably gone to the PS4, Xbox Director of Development Boyd Multerer told Official Xbox Magazine that we can expect future a lot more 1080p games in the future.
“I fully expect that to happen,” he told OXM. ”The [graphics processing units] are really complicated beasts this time around.”
We always expect graphics to improve over the course of a console generation, but there’s been a lot of speculation that certain technical limitations might hold Microsoft’s Xbox One back in ways that are going to be hard to get around. He says that developers are still learning how to tune their data with respect to the Xbox One’s ESRAM. Though, Multerer points out, resolution isn’t the only number we should be concerned about.
“Part of it is learning how to tune, part of it is I think a very legitimate question of quality of pixels versus number of pixels, and of course both are interesting.”
The rub here is that as developers get better at using Xbox One, they’ll also get better at using PS4, where they already appear to be having a smooth transition. Combine that with PS4′s existing install base advantage, and you can start to see an ecosystem where developers put are allocating more resources and making more streamlined products on the PS4. We saw some of this last generation, where games like Call of Duty and Skyrim sometimes struggled on PS3′s complex architecture.
I still tend to feel that the resolution of games can definitely change the player experience, but I’m skeptical that it can move the needle all that much when it comes to hardware sales. Just look at Titanfall, probably the biggest game launch of this young generation and running at a curious 792p. Some customers, particularly those with a strong forum presence, care a whole lot about the technical specs of their games, but I’d guess that most of the most committed gear heads gravitate toward PC, and those just below them committed to PS4 long ago.
Microsoft has taken this Game Developer’s Conference to focus on its ID@Xbox program, announcing 25 new exclusive and not indie games at a showcase in San Francisco. The focus, however, was unquestionably on chief rival Playstation, which finally announced its long-rumored Vr Headset: “Project Morpheus.”