Killzone: Shadow Fall’s 1080p multiplayer isn’t upscaled; Guerrilla explains tech

Thursday, 6th March 2014 21:43 GMT By Brenna Hillier

Killzone: Shadow Fall outputs in native 1080p in single player, but when it comes to multiplayer things get a bit more complicated. Developer Guerrilla Games has explained how it works and why it technically isn’t “upscaling”, and promised to be more clear in future.


In an FAQ on the game’s website, Guerrilla addressed allegations that the game does not run in native 1080p; that it uses upscaling; and that the team had fibbed in the past by describing the game’s output as native 1080p with no upscaling.

“Killzone: Shadow Fall’s single and multiplayer modes both run at 1080p. In both SP and MP, Killzone: Shadow Fall outputs a full, unscaled 1080p image at up to 60 FPS. Native is often used to indicate images that are not scaled; it is native by that definition,” the developer wrote.

However, Guerrilla admitted that by other definitions, multiplayer output is not natively 1080p – it employs a technique called “temporal reprojection”, which combines pixels and motion vectors from multiple lower-resolution frames to reconstruct a full 1080p image.

“If native means that every part of the pipeline is 1080p then this technique is not native,” Guerilla said, going on to explain its use of the word “native” and apologise for the community’s confusion.

“Games often employ different resolutions in different parts of their rendering pipeline. Most games render particles and ambient occlusion at a lower resolution, while some games even do all lighting at a lower resolution. This is generally still called native 1080p. The technique used in Killzone: Shadow FallL goes further and reconstructs half of the pixels from past frames.

“We recognize the community’s degree of investment on this matter, and that the conventional terminology used before may be too vague to effectively convey what’s going on under the hood. As such we will do our best to be more precise with our language in the future.”

Click through to the full FAQ for a lengthy technical discussion ot temporal reprojection and how it differs from upscaling.

Thanks, Eurogamer.



  1. Hcw87

    It’s either 1080p or it’s not.

    >“If native means that every part of the pipeline is 1080p then this technique is not native,” Guerilla said”

    And clearly it’s not. Still looks good though, but there is no point trying to wriggle out of it.

    Both these supposed next-gen consoles have a long way to go before actually being full on next gen in my eyes. In the age of 4K, it’s laughable when this next generation can’t handle 1080p/60fps in EVERY game. It’s a letdown, but hopefully it will improve drastically over the years.

    #1 7 months ago
  2. pukem0n

    seriously, who the fuck cares about p’s and fps?

    as long as the game looks good and doesn’t stutter it’s ok with me, 1080p or 900p doesn’t matter since we are not sitting 3 inches from the TV to notice any difference

    #2 7 months ago
  3. Hcw87


    Not to sound too much like Erthazus but:

    It’s 2014, 1080p was the standard in the beginning of the LAST generation. It makes no sense that these next-gen consoles can’t handle something so simple. 1080p/60fps should be what they aimed for when they launched the consoles, and i’d rather they launched them a year or two later to make the proper adjustments to be able to do that.

    #3 7 months ago
  4. stretch215

    @2 +1. Some people will never be satisfied. Killzone looks fucking awesome. Period. Huge jump from ps3, and that’s all that really matters. No one in their right mind is comparing consoles to high end pc’s. “1080p was the standard in the beginning of LAST generation” …….not on console, which is the topic of this article.

    #4 7 months ago
  5. illuminatusv

    Please restate this on every recent article about resolution and framerates related to a game on the Xbox One. Then we can talk again about “Nobody cares”!

    #5 7 months ago
  6. stretch215

    @5 I think that people who really care about this type of shit need more social interaction. Seriously. The games on ps4/xb1 look much better than last gen, which is all that really matters regarding visuals on console.

    #6 7 months ago
  7. ij 44

    Quote: For each pixel we store its color and its motion vector – i.e. the direction of the pixel on-screen – great – except pixels don’t have motion vectors – you just made that up. To calculate or infer the motion of individual pixels from a 2d projection is impossible – because the computer doesn’t have full control over the next frame – the player does – the method is unreliable by design.

    What they are doing is “temporal upsampling” (google that), – it’s an “advanced” upsampling algorithm that infers pixels based on previous frames.

    It still is upsampling, just not the trivial upscaling we’re used to. Using an obscure name to obfuscate what they are doing doesn’t really do any favours.

    #7 7 months ago
  8. ddtd

    @stretch215 Agree.

    #8 7 months ago
  9. Djoenz

    I posted about this in the forum News section. From my understanding its 1080i.

    #9 7 months ago
  10. CPC_RedDawn


    If at ANY given time the hardware is NOT actually RENDERING each pixel for the desired resolution (in this games 1920×1080) THEN IT IS UPSCALED in some way (in game textures are another matter but full screen resolution on PC’s are still rendered at whatever you set them at! EACH pixel is rendered despite textures being low resolution that means nothing. I can play HL1 with original textures and I can still display it at 1080p and each 1920×1080 pixel that’s 2,073,600 pixels are RENDERED for EACH FRAME on their own its not using previous frames to fill in pixels!!!

    They say that the engine caches previous frames to be used to fill in the gaps of upcoming frames! WHICH MEANS THE HARDWARE IS NOT RENDERING ALL 1920X1080 pixels at that time its using cached pixels that have already been rendered!


    Seriously do they take us for idiots!???

    I read this on NeoGaf yesturday and read somewhere that its 900×1080 and the rest of the image is filled in with previous frames!


    #10 7 months ago

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