It’s been a long ride since the launch of the Xbox One, though it hasn’t even been a year since the console launched. Compulsion Games, which developed Contrast for the PS4 and PC before eventually bringing the shadow-play puzzle platformer to the Xbox One, recently held an AMA to talk about how the tool kit has developed as compared to when they first received it.
In response to the same, Compulsion stated on Reddit, “Hmm, I don’t have a great deal of info for you. We only updated once since starting developing on it in January/February, and then we were done three months later. However, the tools are always more mature after (compared to before) launch, and there were in reasonably good shape.
“Generally we stick to one version of an SDK, unless we need to upgrade (whether that need is tech driven, ie the new SDK supports a feature we want to use, or because that SDK isn’t release supported any more).”
Compulsion’s Contrast was also one of the first few big-name indie games to be available for PlayStation Plus subscribers shortly after its official release. What led to the inclusion in PS+ and how would it – along with Games With Gold – affect the developer? Compulsion answers, “We got asked. We have a pretty good relationship with Sony, and when it looked like we were going to make the launch date, we started talking about it. We had hoped that the marketing support would mean we’d reach way more people.
“The PS+ and GwG programs are great for visibility. There is a substantial number of people who would never have known who we are, except for PS+. It’ll be really interesting to see how GwG grows over the next year, I think.”
It was also interesting to hear about Compulsion’s use of the Xbox One’s eSRAM. This has been under scrutiny since before the console’s release. While it has been praised for its texture streaming capabilities, it’s also been criticized for being hard to develop for (in comparison to the PS4’s unified architecture) and underpowered. What is Compulsion doing with it? They first state that, “Yes we did use the Xbox One’s ESRAM. We didn’t spend a huge amount of time tuning it; but we use it to store our most sensitive/commonly used visual elements.”
Compulsion further added that, “It’ll be interesting to see how people use it – we didn’t need to take too much advantage of it.”
Contrast is currently available for the Xbox One. Have you had a chance to play it? Let us know what you think in the comments, along with Compulsion’s use of eSRAM? Let us know in the comments.