Native 4K Is A Waste Of Xbox One Scorpio’s Power, DOOM Dev Says, Hints At Reconstruction Instead
He hints at temporal and spatial reconstruction instead to achieve 4K, while using the actual processing power for something else.
You know who knows a fair bit about tech? Anyone working at id Tech. Although the studio is hardly the pallbearer of cutting edge technology like it used to be back in the 1990s, they’re still pretty damn good at putting out some sick bits of code- just look at the new DOOM game.
So when the lead graphics programmer of DOOM says something about technology, you sit up and take notice. You’d already be doing that, since this is a pretty major member of the development community, but in this case, his stature earns him even more attention.
And what exactly is Tiago Sousa of id saying? Well, during E3 week he had a conversation with other developers about the Xbox One Scorpio’s specs. He thinks that 4K resolution is a complete and total waste of the Xbox One Scorpio’s immense processing power. Especially on consoles, where the player distance from the screen renders it completely useless, he thinks that the Scorpio’s power should be used for something else entirely.
Judging by a tweet related to the subject that he also retweeted, it seems as though he believes that 4K resolution is fine- just that native rendering shouldn’t be what the processing power is used for. Instead, a combination of spatial and temporal reconstruction should be used to reconstruct 4K resolutions (basically, think of it as upscaling, a technology used in Quantum Break), while the actual processing power that would have gone towards rendering images at those resolutions is used for something else- maybe CPU cycles and calculations, to render physics, or the like.
Of course, he knows what he is talking about, so who are we to disagree? And based on my limited knowledge and preferences, I will say I agree with him- I have always felt that the spec boosts with each generation of console hardware should be used to better gameplay more than graphics. Sadly, developers always opt for prettier looking games than better playing games. That leaves me with no hope that Sousa’s advice will be followed- we’ll probably end up with games that play no better or worse than current generation games, except thy’ll look prettier. Heck, if Microsoft enforce the kind of development parity policies for Scorpio and Xbox One that Sony are rumored to be doing with PS4 NEO and the base PS4, that alone may ensure that.