The PS5 and Xbox Series X are set to launch this holiday season, and now that both have been revealed, all eyes are on the lineup of games that the consoles have to offer. The PS5 is off to a fantastic start with strong platform exclusives like Horizon Forbidden West and Gran Turismo 7.
The Xbox Series X had a less than ideal start with its first games showcase in May, but that could all change this month when it unveils its first party lineup. However, for all the talk of how powerful the consoles are, and what that'll mean for next-gen games, there's a bit of a damp squib that no one has really addressed.
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The hardware for both machines have been the talk of the town, with Microsoft and Sony boasting about their respective consoles' power; Microsoft has even gone so far as to tease 120fps in Codemasters Dirt 5, but realistically, hitting even 60fps consistently and across the board isn't necessarily going to feasible - at least not without making some sacrifices.
Eurogamer's Digital Foundry explains that developers are going to have to choose between high frame rates and graphical fidelity, meaning that if they opt for a high frame rate, there will be sacrifices in other areas.
For example, the Miles Morales PS5 trailer sees Insomniac sticking with 30fps while making "transformative" improvements elsewhere, with Digital Foundry's Richard Leadbetter noting the ray tracing features, increased NPC volume, improved draw distance, and more adverse weather (in this case snow) that requires some heavy lifting.
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Another option is alternative modes that let the player choose between prioritising frame rate or graphics - something Codemasters has suggested will be the case in Dirt 5. There are a number of current-gen games that do the same, even managing to hit 60fps, so while it's not off the table completely for the Xbox Series X and PS5, there may be some compromises - particularly at launch. As Leadbetter points out:
"It may take time for developers to find their feet with the new systems - and there may be some disappointments along the way - but the fact is that both Xbox Series X and PlayStation 5 are more finely balanced between CPU and GPU than their predecessors, while developers have more options and fewer constraints from a hardware perspective."
Just don't get your hopes up too high for those launch titles!