PS4 ‘COD: Ghosts’ chokes on next-gen engine

COD Ghosts online reveal

Call of Duty: Ghosts was released on Xbox, PlayStation 3 and the Wii U 5 November. While it has been receiving some great feedback from the gaming community there are reports that the framerate drops significantly when played on the unreleased PlayStation 4. Activision has also reported that it’s made US$1-billion in sales in the first 24 hours.

Game review sites which have managed to get an early hands-on of Sony’s next-gen console have been reporting that while the PS4 outperforms the Xbox One in terms of its hardware specs, frames are dropped causing a stutter-effect or a slight lag.

Most notably Joystiq, said in its Ghosts review that “frame rate hitches happen throughout the campaign on PlayStation 4 and, in a series known for its Hollywood-inspired bombast, it detracted from the experience.” The gaming website further states that the PS4 version of CoD: Ghosts has “noticeable technical issues, sometimes slowing to a crawl, particularly during set-piece moments with multiple effects.”

The Xbox One and Nintendo’s Wii U versions of the game are downscaled to a 720p HD resolution while the PlayStation 4 runs CoD: Ghosts at 1080p Full HD. Mark Rubin, executive producer at Infinity Ward has mentioned earlier this week that developing a graphically intensive game like CoD: Ghosts for two different consoles “creates a massive engineering nightmare.”

Rubin further pointed out that the memory management was the main issue. Simply put, it seems that there’s a trade-off to be made — release CoD: Ghosts running at 1080p with a little stutter here and there or release it running at a “poorer [and smoother] 720p”.

First-person shooters, more specifically Call of Duty titles, strive to run at the legendary 60fps. As reported by the BBC, Rubin said that maintaining a smooth gameplay experience is a massive priority.

“One of the key pillars of Call of Duty has been 60 frames per second… and ensuring that was of utmost importance, and the resolutions that appear are geared around that,” said Mark Rubin. Besides simply “taking away from the experience”, the hitches can kill, virtually of course. A poor frame rate means death in most instances.

There is still some time for Activision to release a CoD: Ghosts software update before the official release of the PS4 version, 15 November. We’ll just have to wait and see.



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