PS4 and 60 FPS: Driveclub dev weighs graphics vs. smoothness
In an interview with Official PlayStation Magazine UK, Driveclub's art director Alex Perkins discussed an internal debate within Evolution Studios that prompts the developer to determine which aspect of gameplay, visuals or fluidity of performance, is of greater importance.
Being the art director, Perkins' stance should not surprise:
"If I had my way, I'd rather have more stuff going on at a prettier level and a lower frame rate, but that's where the arguments start."
"There is a hell of a lot going on," Perkins continued. "Increased visual fidelity does cost, there's no argument about it. The PlayStation 4 is very capable of doing both but we've gone for a fully dynamic environment, so you can go any time of day, anywhere on the planet, and it'll calculate the atmospheric density, whether you're up the top of a mountain or at sea level."
Those working on the game's code, however, are eager to push the PlayStation 4's hardware and attempt to achieve 60 frames per second:
"The coders would rather have a higher frame rate, and put less stuff in. So it comes down to Col [Rodgers, game director]'s decision in the long run. Personally I'm quite happy with a 30 frames a second game, as long as it's rock solid at thirty, and being an art director I want it to look beautiful."
Instead of choosing to sacrifice one or the other, Evolution Studios is attempting to balance the game's smoothness and visual prowess.
"While we are aiming for sixty," Perkins said, "there is always the chance that we'll never quite reach there."
This is not the first time the developer has discussed its desires to reach 60 FPS, with Evolution Studios revealing its goal shortly after this year's E3. The decision before the Driveclub team is certainly a challenging one, not as easy to determine as for a simulation title, something Evolution Studios has openly stated its next-gen racer is not attempting to be.
Do you think Evolution Studios should put its focus on visuals over performance? Let us know in the comments section below.
Steven Chaffin, Jr. is an American editor for PlayStation Universe. When the PS4 launches this holiday season, Steven will be leading the front lines in Battlefield 4, and will be exploring the open-world of The Witcher 3 when it releases in 2014. You can get more from Steven on his personal blog, or on Twitter @steven_chaffin.