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Microsoft’s Phil Spencer feels “resolutiongate” will blow over once Xbox One is released

Wednesday, 6th November 2013 21:21 GMT By Stephany Nunneley

Microsoft Studios VP Phil Spencer is of the opinion people shouldn’t be so focused on the 1080/720p and 30/60 fps debates going on at the moment in regards to next-gen, in fact, he has defended Xbox One, saying the focus shouldn’t be on the numbers in the first place.

Speaking with Shacknews during the Xbox One showcase, Spencer said it’s the experience that matters, and once Xbox One is released, “resolutiongate” will blow over.

“Go look at the games. Go play the games and tell us what you think about what they look. Right now, gamers don’t have the games to go play. They can’t walk into their local store and play the games. So, it doesn’t really surprise me that they’re going to focus on the specs that they can. I don’t criticize anyone for doing that. In the end, we play the games, not the resolution,” said Spencer.

“Our proposition with Xbox One starts with the games: we’ve got a great launch lineup of over 20 games. We’ve got some great franchises, great third-party relationships. And we’ve built a system that natively understands you and your entertainment. I think in the long run, our hope and bet is that power will play out and show people that everything they’ve learned about gaming on 360 can now augment everything they can do on their television.”

“You look at high-end PC games right now. If you were just looking at screen resolution and framerate, you’d be a PC gamer. Because you can spend $800 on a video card and put it in. I’ve built those rigs. I can play those games. And I understand that. But that doesn’t mean the best games are there. It doesn’t mean it’s the best all-in-one experience.”

Meanwhile, over on Eurogamer, the developers themselves comment on the resolution/frame rate debate, discussing why respective titles such as Ryse: Ron of Rome, Dead Rising 3, Forza 4, Kinect Sports Rivals and others run the way they do.

According to Crytek’s design director on Ryse, P J Esteves, “It’s a lot less to do with the actual specs and more to do with what you do with those specs.”

Xbox One is out November 22.

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33 Comments

  1. Djoenz

    Blablabla it should be called next gen for a reason. .

    #1 11 months ago
  2. Beta

    You just know that if PS4 were less powerful, they’d be trumpeting their specs so hard.

    And Crytek saying it’s not about specs? Really?..

    #2 11 months ago
  3. Joe Musashi

    “Go look at the games..”

    Er..isn’t ‘looking’ at things what resolutiongate revolves around?

    JM

    #3 11 months ago
  4. monkeygourmet

    All it means is potentially sub 720p games in the future. If the bar wasn’t initially set high, the more taxing games become the resolution will potentially drop even more…

    That prospect isn’t that attractive for someone thinking about handing over the best part of 500 knicker for a ‘next gen’ experience.

    1080p & 60fps on launch would have happily slipped into 720p / 30fps 3 or so years down the line when games look a lot better and need to drop the resolution to display more effects / textures or whatever.

    #4 11 months ago
  5. schnide

    @2, 3 & 4

    Spot on. This damage control on Microsoft’s part is cringeworthy. I’d actually have more respect for them if they came out and admitted they’re having issues. At present, they haven’t even had the decency to explain why there are issues with the resolution on XB1. Where’s your answer to that, Phil?

    #5 11 months ago
  6. Beta

    The average consumer likely won’t even know about this.

    And any shortcomings will be blurred by the expensive flashy marketing.

    I’m hoping for strong sales of both consoles. Keep eachother on their toes. And I don’t think Sony can afford PS4 to fail.

    But I will admit I’m undecided on X ONE. MS’s tone has been very defensive.

    #6 11 months ago
  7. schnide

    “They can’t walk into their local store and play the games.”

    And they also can’t read the reviews Phil, because you’ve put an embargo on them. Once again, where’s the explanation for why that is if you’re so proud of them?

    #7 11 months ago
  8. SplatteredHouse

    Another Eurogamer piece, this time from DF: http://www.eurogamer.net/articles/digitalfoundry-resolutiongate-the-fallout
    Offers indication that Microsoft may be as much as three months behind in their development, in terms of stability; and also predicts (or, at least offers suggestion) that they might want to get ready to dig in until the storm passes, as that gap may not be overcome overnight.

    @2 Right on the nose. How absurd, that CRYTEK of all companies, is trying to downplay the importance of technology in games, too!

    #8 11 months ago
  9. MrWaffles

    “Play our games then see for yourself” is exactly what Nintendo keeps saying.

    But playing 10 minutes at Walmart doesn’t erase hundreds of damaging Headlines for weeks prior launch.

    #9 11 months ago
  10. Erthazus

    It is just the beggining.

    when Sony, Microsoft and publishers will start making games with better graphics, that’s where things will get more interesting with “Resolution” and “Performance”.

    Oh yeah.

    500$ of a fad with “Next Generation” Name on it for PR purposes and children.

    #10 11 months ago
  11. SplatteredHouse

    This is looking like HD Capable/HD ready, part 2. Except, this time, the HD Ready sets are cheaper, and in this case those sets also don’t come with a requirement of an additional peripheral to install in order to function.

    #11 11 months ago
  12. Hcw87

    @11
    Are you still under the impression you need Kinect in order for XB1 to function?

    http://img.pandawhale.com/post-28031-what-YEAH-is-it-gif-Robin-Will-KLRC.gif

    #12 11 months ago
  13. Beta

    It might not be all about the specs. I’ve used the polished turd analogy before..

    But they bloody help. In time when developers start to get more ambitious, they’ll find themselves more and more hampered by the limitations.

    The weaker your machine, the quicker devs will feel hampered.

    #13 11 months ago
  14. Nephilimator

    Once people see that with our revolutionary hardware their games will run at half the resolution, 1/3 less detail, less AA, and only cost them $100.00 more then the competition, they will come running to Xbox One? Gotcha……

    #14 11 months ago
  15. fearmonkey

    I had a discussion with a friend of mine yesterday, who is another huge Xbox fan as I was. We both bought 3dFX cards, we both bought Dreamcasts at launch, and we both bough Xbox and Xbox 360′s at launch as well.

    We both talked about how when the 3dFX came out and there was that Quake patch, we were wowed. We talked about when the Dreamcast was released and we played Soul Calibur for the first time, we were wowed. We talked about when the Xbox was released and we played Dead or alive 3, we were wowed. Lastly we talked about when the 360 launched and we played Kameo we were wowed. I can add another to that when I got my PS and played Ridge Racer, I was wowed.

    All these generations of launch games up to this point really impressed us at the time. There was no talk then of memory limitations, GPU limitations, etc etc. Now with the Xbone, at the beginning of a new console launch, we keep hearing about limitations. It’s sad.

    It’s not about Moar graphics, it’s about the fact that one console struggles to play the same game at a much lower resolution compared to the other, so what happens when as time progresses, the games get more and more complex. IS Xbox One going to have to go sub-720 to keep up on games that PS4 will do 720 or 900p?

    On the 360, my pic as the best looking launch title was Kameo, and it ran at 720p unscaled to 1080p. 8 years later most of the new Xbox One games are 720p, the same resolution. Kameo was surpassed in graphics and many of those games had to resort to sub 720p graphics to achieve playable framerates. IS the Xbox One in the same boat again this gen?

    Also, it’s just weird to hear Xbox fans argue it’s not about the graphics. The main reason I was an Xbox gamer over a PS2 gamer was the graphic difference, same with the 360. All the people that criticized the Wii-u for not being much better in performance than a 360 and stick up for MS are kind of funny. Where the Wii-u owners were the ones saying it’s not about Moar graphics, now its also the Xbox owners. it’s like they have suddenly become enlightened.

    #15 11 months ago
  16. Hcw87

    @15
    Do you think XB1 720p titles will look the same as 720p 360 titles? I cincerely hope not.

    It’s a generation jump no matter how you look at it, even if PS4 is a little ahead.

    #16 11 months ago
  17. fearmonkey

    @16 – No they won’t look the same, but they will have the same jaggy mess that i truly feel we should be mostly past by now.

    I still disagree that the PS4 is “a little ahead”. As I said before, that is like saying the Radeon 7870 is a “little ahead” of a Radeon 7790, a difference between a $150 and a $300 video card at one time.

    #17 11 months ago
  18. TheBlackHole

    @4

    That doesn’t make any sense. First gen Xbox 360 games weren’t rendered at a higher resolution than end of gen ones. They didn’t look better either.

    #18 11 months ago
  19. Super Girevik

    In my perspective, the Resolution War is taking place within a small minority of gamers. Will an average gamer see Battlefield 4 and notice one is running at 720p vs 900p? Would you choose a console solely because it slightly outperforms the competition, even though the competition might have games you prefer?

    Think about it, when you compare the Xbox, GameCube and PS2, did we even know what resolution our games were running at? Did we know what resolution all of our Xbox 360 and Playstation 3 games actually ran at? Did that impact our choice in console?

    For me, which ever platform has the better online solution will get my vote.

    #19 11 months ago
  20. Djoenz

    @19

    The ps2 and Xbox generation brought better graphics and the DVD Medium.
    Xbox360 and PS3 finally new era of HD and BluRay medium and HD DVD.

    Next gen now almost same? ? Ofcourse emphasis and perspective has changed and also expectations.

    What defines next gen? Well certainly not the lack of native 1080p. HD ready was kinda the current gen scam. Digital future?

    I hope not digital future cause it doesnt improve anything for me personally. It has too many cons for me. But thats just me.

    #20 11 months ago
  21. ddtd

    In my opinion, the resolution gap is kind of a call back to the current generation (soon to be past gen in a week!) and the differences between PS3 and Xbox 360 multigenerational titles. The issue is with the dev kits.

    Sony definitely got a leap on MS for this upcoming generation. Their policies, machines and (most importantly) development software and kits were ready to go long before MS’s.

    In fact, I’m sure that Sony got dev kits in the hands of DICE, Infinity Ward and Ubisoft several months before MS could. This means they’ve had more time to study the hardware and dev tools and be able to better optimize for the PS4.

    If the rumors were true, and MS didn’t get final dev kits out until August (some devs saying that they still haven’t received one) then it totally makes sense that the X1 games are running less optimally. These devs and publishers have deadlines to meet. They can’t wait for MS to get their shit together and delay launches when their games are supposedly ready to go. This is the real reason why I think Titanfall isn’t a launch title. MS is pushing it hard as a system seller and they (as well as Respawn, since it’s their first game as a studio) want to make sure the devs fully understand the machine and the dev tools do they can release a game that’s up to next fen standards.

    Time will tell, but is put money on it that next years games will be native 1080p and 30-60 fps on both systems. If not, then MS truly dropped the ball.

    #21 11 months ago
  22. Super Girevik

    @20

    What about overall visuals? Lighting, shadows, shading, textures and other aspects contribute a lot to what is considered next-gen. Resolution isn’t everything. It’s the overall image our eyes perceive that excites us.

    Compare Battlefield 4 on the Xbox 360 vs the Xbox One version. The difference is salient so say the least. And mind you, we are comparing a game that was released at the end of a generation, to a game that is being released at the beginning of a new generation.

    Like I said before, for me, the bigger factor will be the online experience. I’m really hoping for a smoother online experience. In the Xbox/PS2 era we were introduced to online multi-player. The 360/PS3 era brought a much more sophisticated experience and I’m hoping this next-generation will improve on it. Think about it, if we will not tolerate last-gen graphics, why should we tolerate last-gen online play?

    Next-generation gaming isn’t just graphics, they no doubt play a significant role since it’s what our eyes first see, but it’s not everything.

    #22 11 months ago
  23. Djoenz

    @22
    Im sorry but I didnt compare a game did I?
    Well I just played some bf4 on ps3 and tbh it looks ugly. Next gen version must be better. Other reason could be my buddy’s plasma tv 2000herz has wrong settings.

    #23 11 months ago
  24. ysleiro

    LMFAO at the people in this thread saying Crytek’s comments are absurd.

    You know what’s absurd? A mere commentator pretending to be a subject matter expert in the field of video game creation and development.

    #24 11 months ago
  25. Super Girevik

    @23

    Sorry, I think you misunderstood what I was trying to say. I edited my post to make it clearer. I didn’t mean you actually compared a game. I just meant if we were to compare the two versions, we would see a big difference, implying that next-generation visuals are indeed a vast improvement over the current-generation’s offerings.

    #25 11 months ago
  26. yeoung

    We set out on a fanfare of infinite cloud power, multimedia macguffins and swipeyswipey kinect multitasking and look where we ended up;

    Just-look-at-whether-or-not-the-games-are-funsville

    Xbox One marketing department seems to have paddled full circle.

    #26 11 months ago
  27. Djoenz

    @25
    Aah ok now I know where you getting at. I agree completely. Graphics are definitely not everything.

    Dragon Age good example.

    #27 11 months ago
  28. TheWulf

    Resolutiongate? Really? That’s a thing that someone coined? Oh dear. I actually feel bad for Steph for having to type that.

    Well, I’ve always said that fidelity isn’t what video games should be about, but since this next generation is all about fidelity, I can’t help but feel that this is disingenuous. If they’d really felt this way, then they could have focused the next generation around better games rather than better graphics. They could have put their money into better core processing, memory, and so on. They could have advertised that the next generation is all about believable artificial intelligence, emergent gameplay, smartgames, and so on.

    I still can’t believe that the AI of something like, say, Ultima VII is still better than that of most games today.

    But no, the XBox One is all about more shaders, more post processing, more effects, and so on. They haven’t really announced a game yet which shows something truly next-gen in anything other than fidelity. It’s weird, honestly, that they’re working so hard to push fidelity yet they’re making excuses for the output hardware their machine is linked to.

    If they care about fidelity that much, they should just improve the TV situation.

    Honestly, I could care less. I just think Spencer is a very silly person.

    #28 11 months ago
  29. dexfx69

    Microsoft will say anything to defend their sorry asses right now. They look so pathetic and desperate!

    #29 11 months ago
  30. pukem0n

    i dont get why the fuck it cant run 1080p games

    its more powerfull than the 360 by miles, u cant argue about that.
    and the 360 runs games on 720p, so why cant the Xbox One do it?

    i really dont understand it. :(

    #30 11 months ago
  31. Gekidami

    ^ From whats being said, its not really a power issue (though there is that too), its that the ESRAM is horrible to code to.

    “ATVI was doing the CoD: Ghosts port to nextgen. It took three weeks for PS4 and came out at 90 FPS unoptimized, and four months on Xbone and came out at 15 FPS.”

    Or so the rumour goes.

    #31 11 months ago
  32. The_Red

    So it doesn’t really matter that a $500 has half the frame-rate (30 instead of 60) and much lower resolution than a $400 rival at launch!?

    Hmmmm, I wonder what people think when trying to buy a new system: $400 at 1080p or $500 at 720p. Of course, it will blow over because soon Xbox One will magically gain the ability to have 1080p games.

    It’s not like early last gen everyone was pretending that 1080p could be achieved with a few examples but soon both machines fell to 720p to 590p.

    #32 11 months ago
  33. ddtd

    Not magically gain. More like once the devs get a grasp on optimizing for the hardware and using that esram then they’ll be able to push the native resolution and up the frame rate.

    #33 11 months ago

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