So there has been a lot of talk about the Call of Duty franchise as of late. The next generation has begun, but it seems the shiny new consoles just aren't up to snuff with what people should be expecting from them. I'm of course talking about all of the news and rumors swirling about the next generation Call of Duty: Ghosts and its supposed lack of 1080p on the Xbox One, something the PlayStation 4 has been apparently capable of.
Now, I'm nowhere near the person you should be relying on when it comes to your next generation purchases. And I'm certainly not the top authority on all things HD, but I'm still going to explain why I think all of this 720p nonsense is so important to the next gen. And don't worry, Sony and Activision are going to get their licks too. But we're going to start with the Xbox One.
The Xbox's 720 Problem
I myself can hardly tell the difference between 720p and 1080p resolutions thanks to the fact that my gaming television is so small and my eyesight is so poor. And there are probably a lot of people out there with the same opinion. I've even read articles with industry professionals stating that most people won't even be able to notice the difference. That may be, but that doesn't mean it isn't a problem. The Xbox One is coming out onto the market with a price tag $100 more than their main competitor. It doesn't matter how negligible the difference may be to some people, there is almost no excuse for it to not be able to match the PlayStation 4 in resolution.
Just think of the media nightmare they would have had with this name.
There is a reason I say 'almost no excuses,' but I'll get to that in a bit. Right now, we need to bring up something Microsoft said once news started coming out that Call of Duty would display at a lower resolution on the Xbox One. It was stated that the Xbox One could display games in 1080p and has done it before with different games releasing soon. That in itself is true. But they also said that in the end, developers choose which resolution their games will display at, and if Activision had to display their game at 720p, then it would be their choice. Not because of technical limitations.
Here's why that doesn't make a single lick of sense to me. Call of Duty: Ghosts supposedly released on the PlayStation 4 with a 1080p resolution. If Activision was actively choosing which resolution to display their games at, then why would they choose to gimp their Xbox One version by purposely giving it the lower resolution when they are clearly capable of getting out a 1080p product on the competitor's machine?
The Stuttering Frame Rates
Now consider this a rumor for the time being, but the word on the street is that all next generation versions of Call of Duty: Ghosts suffer from noticeable frame rate drops during gameplay. It isn't just the Xbox One version that is suffering; the PlayStation 4 and PC versions are both supposedly getting hit by frame rate issues as well. If this is true, then it looks like it would be a problem on the developer's side of things. I know that might sound hypocritical after saying it seems to be more of a problem on the Xbox side of things due to their lack of 1080p, but I have a reason for that.
I can't display frame rate drops in an image, so here's Ghostbusters.
When it came to resolution issues, the Xbox One was the only one affected. With the supposed frame rate problem, it's hitting all three. The PC version having frame rate issues would be the most obvious sign that this is a developer issue simply because of how powerful PCs can be in this day and age. We all know that the PC will always be stronger than the next gen consoles due to it's ability to constantly release new and better parts (also more expensive). So when the game is having issues on what should be the strongest of the three, it becomes clear that it is a problem with the game itself.
That is assuming these frame rate issues are real, and not something being spread around to fuel the fire of unnecessary Activision hate.
Excuses! Excuses For Everybody!
I said earlier that there was almost no excuse for a game to display in 720p on the next generation of consoles. It is time to explain what their one excuse is. Take a look at the image below. That's Uncharted 1, a PlayStation 3 launch title. Does it look anything like The Last Of Us, a game released at the end of the PS3's lifespan? Of course not. And it was the same way for the Xbox 360. Just look at Kameo compared to Gears of War 3. The difference will be night and day.
Its almost like things improved as time went on!
While we should expect the next generation of consoles to be able to display in 1080p without issue, we have to understand that this is only the beginning of what will likely be a decade of gaming ahead of us. There will be times when developers are just incapable of pushing the console to its limits, and that time is now. So while we can laugh at their problems right now, don't be surprised if you're being blown away by what they achieve after the first year. I mean, just look at what they have now! Those launch games look as good as games from the end of the last generation. Who knows what they'll look like in five years?! As always, thank you for reading.