With the recent release of “Battlefield 4,” gamers can now compare gameplay on Microsoft’s (NASDAQ:MSFT) Xbox One and Sony’s (NYSE:SNE) PlayStation 4. Video reviews of multiplayer maps as well as single-player missions have surfaced, and there are plenty of opinions to go around.
IGN and Digital Foundry both have video comparisons of Xbox One and PS4 “Battlefield 4” gameplay running side by side with other reviewers, including JackFrags, a popular YouTube game reviewer, offering a look at footage separately. The resolution rumors first surfaced with “BF4” as it was reported the game would run at 900p on the PS4 and 720p on the Xbox One. The resolution issue reached new heights when rumors indicated “Call of Duty: Ghosts” would run at 1080p on the PS4 and 720p on the Xbox One.
According to Eurogamer, the resolution test clearly goes to the PS4. Eurogamer states the Xbox One is running at 1280x720 compared to 1600x900 on the PS4, but Microsoft does plenty of things right that would help close the gap in resolution. “BF4” on the Xbox One appears to have more jagged edges and aliasing, but Eurogamer notes up-scaling issues from the PS4 erase some the advantages of the higher resolution. Despite the resolution and clarity edge going to the PS4, Eurogamer says, “Microsoft console manages to hold up despite the undeniable, quantifiably worse metrics in terms of both resolution and frame rate.”
Many gamers, including the NeoGAF forum discussing the footage, and comments note the main difference between the two consoles is the “look” of the gameplay, contrast and brightness appear to be higher in the Xbox One footage for “BF4” while the PS4 appears to be more “natural.” Other people have pointed out the difference in appearance between the Digital Foundry footage and footage from JackFrags or IGN. Eurogamer updated their review to discuss these concerns, saying they used their own hardware to produce lossless video whereas other sites were using hardware provided by EA DICE. The issue appears to be due to a RGB color-range capture issue, Eurogamer using 0-255 while the other footage that was captured had a scale of 16-235 and the site says, based on a source, “Current Xbox One hardware has issues with full-range RGB output that are not present on either PC or PS4.”
While the “BF4” and “COD: Ghosts” rumors lead to some heated debate, that may not matter much as they could be launch issues that get ironed out quickly. Kotaku spoke to a source that confirmed the resolution difference between launch titles but said any initial advantage would be erased in six months. Developers will learn each system, creating better games and, Kotaku notes, that prior to launch there is no way to know what issues should be of concern to gamers and what problems may be easily solved.