Smoke and Sacrifice team feels developers will continue to prioritize visual fidelity over performance.
One of the most common demands people have from the next generation of game consoles is that graphics should hit 4K and 60 frames per second. It’s a noble ask- but it is not likely to happen. For time immemorial, developers have chosen to prioritize increased visual fidelity over improved frame-rates (you can’t market frame-rates as well as better graphics).
Which is why it’s not clear if that will happen next generation, either- it’s far likelier that developers use the increased power of the PS5 and Xbox Scarlet (or whatever the next Xbox will be called) to deliver better graphics with shinier effects, rather than use those resources for frame-rate. This is something that Tancred Dyke-Wells and Neil Millstone – the co-founders of Solar Sail Games, who are developing Smoke and Sacrifice – believe as well.
“Well, arguably 4k and 60fps are already here with PS4 Pro and Xbox One X so sure, that should be the baseline, although not necessarily together,” they said, in an interview with GamingBolt. “In general, developers tend to choose to go with 30 frames per second in order to prioritize graphical quality over frame rate for most of the bigger titles, and I’m not sure that will change other than for multiplayer or fast action titles. But hopefully the next gen will offer something more than graphical fidelity, since with each new round of hardware the returns diminish – modern games already look amazing. I’m more interested in platforms that offer improved discoverability and which promote unique, interesting titles to players who might not otherwise find out about them!”
They definitely hit the nail on the head with diminishing returns as well. While graphics always can and will continue to look better and better, I think we are now officially past the point of diminishing returns for video games- it’s why Switch doesn’t look as hopelessly outdated next to PS4 and Xbox One as Wii did next to PS3 and Xbox 360, for example.
I do think that it would be better now for developers to emphasize performance- but I also don’t see that happening. History, at least, is indicative of the fact that it won’t.