Being that the big thing on the internet right now is the XBONE vs PS4 controversy, I figured I’d weigh in.
Something that is interesting to note is that I’ve read a ton of different blogs, gaming websites, etc… and all of them assume that people know certain things inherently. A big term I see being thrown around is “Up-scaling” or “Up-converting”. What exactly does that mean?
We’ll take Call of Duty Ghosts as the example here. CoD: Ghosts runs 1080p natively on the Playstation 4 but is up-scaled from 720p on the XBox One. Essentially what that means is that the xbox video is being enlarged to reach the 1080p mark. So think about the following analogy: You have a picture and you enlarge it to post on your wall. The more you enlarge it, the more distorted it becomes. Essentially, when you upscale a video you are doing the same thing. How good it ends up looking has a lot to do with the size of your TV. On a 32” TV the difference wouldn’t be as noticeable as it would be on a 72” TV.
I would post a comparison video or pictures but the underlying truth is… the difference is not going to be that noticeable. I could get into the technical jargon which may prove that yes, looking purely at the numbers, there is a difference. However, where the difference really matters is at the point where you are playing the game and at least for me, I can’t really tell the difference.
The other comparison going around and what the next gen console games are touting is the coveted 60 frames per second (FPS). It can be argued that a game running at 30 FPS looks just as good as a game running at 60 FPS. A really good example can be seen here:
Shown from that example, the 60 FPS does in fact look smoother. Another example can be seen here:
The video example shows something interesting. The difference is more noticeable when you slow down the video but at normal playing speed there is barely a noticeable difference. Let’s go back to gaming though. This example is taking from Sleeping Dogs:
Can you see a difference? Now take a look at F1 2013 running at 30 FPS:
Can you see a difference?
The FPS argument is one that changes based on the person. Some videophiles claim to be able to notice the difference more drastically than a non-videophile which is why you see so many arguments all over the internet regarding this topic. As a typical gamer though, my purchasing of a console or game wouldn’t be changed solely based on the fact that a game was developed to use 30 FPS vs 60 FPS.
With all that being said I personally will still be purchasing both next gen consoles. Something that gets overlooked is the fact that these consoles are just coming out and the optimization is not the best yet. Being that both the XBox One and Playstation 4 are almost identical in specifications the question is why the huge difference? It can be explained by the optimization process that currently exists. The optimization processes may not be fully developed yet and as time goes on the games will look and perform better. To give this a visual: http://kotaku.com/the-ps3-had-12-games-at-launch-heres-what-they-looked-513396910 .
So in the XBONE vs PS4 battle, I fall somewhere in the middle. We’ll see how that changes once I get my hands on the two consoles and have some time to really dig into them.