Most of the PS4 Pro titles that we have analyzed here at GamingBolt have been pretty simplistic in their rendering methodology. They either scale up and down according to the display in use or use custom solutions such as checkerboard rendering to get the job done. But Middle-earth: Shadow of Mordor just like Final Fantasy 15 is a different story.
Other than the fact that it was one of the first games confirmed for PS4 Pro support, the developers have implemented a couple of options that should set a precedent on how Pro support should be patched in. Shadow of Mordor features two graphical options for PS4 Pro users…one mode which favors higher resolution and the other which prefers better graphical effects. Interestingly, there are also benefits for PS4 Pro owners who play on a 1080p TV as the game super-samples resulting into a much cleaner image quality compared to the base version.
While running in “Resolution” mode, Shadow of Mordor renders at a native 4K resolution, most of the times anyway. In the “Quality” mode, we see few effects amped up on the PS4 Pro. We witness slightly better draw distance, shadow quality, screen space reflections and less pop in. On a side note, the pop in issue in 4K mode could be quite distracting however it’s reduced and under control in “Quality” mode.
Other than these differences, we are largely looking at the some core assets and as is the case with these upgrades, they are often subtle and hidden but they all come together to create a far better experience compared to the base PS4 version.
So overall, we are quite impressed with Monolith’s effort here. The game now caters to all type of PS4 users and it’s nice to see that the developers hasn’t left anyone out. We hope that more and more developers follow this kind of implementation since it tells the user what exactly they should expect from their games.