The resolution debate between the PS4 and Xbox One continued Wednesday with CD Projekt Red discussing how both systems perform with "The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt." While the results aren't surprising based on the brief history of the two consoles, there is hope for Xbox owners.
In an interview with Eurogamer, executive producer John Mamais confirmed that "The Witcher 3" stage demo at the Microsoft E3 press conference ran at 900p and 30 frames per second (fps). While Mamias also revealed that the Playstation 4 version of the role-playing game is already at 1080p and 60fps, that’s not the whole story as the game still has many months to go before release.
CD Projekt Red is aiming for 900p as a minimum for "The Witcher 3," but Mamais says, "We will hit 900p no problem. We'd like to get it up to 1080p on Xbox One. That's our goal. Whether we can do it or not I don't know. We've got to squeeze everything we can out of the hardware."
The Xbox One software development kit update that frees up power reserved for Kinect will come into play to help squeeze out that extra power in the console. However, that’s not the only place that CD Projekt Red can go to improve performance.
"The Witcher 3" is built on the new REDengine 3 game engine designed specifically for open worlds. At the same time the developer is creating the game, it is also working on the engine to improve its performance on the PS4, Xbox One and PC. "Any optimisation we do for one platform goes into the other platform and just speeds it up, basically," Mamais explained.
The PS4 still appears to be the console that reaps the most benefits though thanks to its streamlined architecture, more powerful GPU and faster memory. Microsoft built in 32MB of ESRAM to compensate for the slower memory but that also complicates the architecture.
"It's just a slightly more powerful machine," Mamais said of the PS4. "That's pretty known. But I think in the longer run everything is going to be on both platforms running at 1080p. It's just taking developers longer to do it than they expected because the architecture is a little more challenging on the Xbox One.
"It's actually easier to develop for Xbox One for us because we're PC developers. So everything we do on PC is for DirectX 11. And Xbox is also based on DX. So for the rendering side it's a more natural progression for us to go to Xbox.
"But we anticipate being able to do 1080p on PS4 a little bit easier than on the Xbox."
"The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt" was originally slated to be released this fall. It will now launch on Feb. 24, 2015 for the PS4, Xbox One and PC.