GTA 4 on Xbox One backwards compatibility is quite a peculiar thing.
As is usually the case with backwards compatible games, the transition doesn’t always result in a performance improvements. Thanks to outlets like Digital Foundry, though, we get to actually find out if Xbox One is the best way to play the game.
The case of GTA 4 is complicated, as the site’s recent analysis revealed. According to Digital Foundry, though raw frame-rate has improved, this may not be such a good thing.
You can expect up to a 5fps increase in some spots, but it’s the frame-pacing issue that sours the experience. Xbox One delivers new frames at a rate very different from the Xbox 360 version’s, and much later than the standard 16ms and 33ms intervals.
“It feels choppier and more uneven, while controller latency – hardly one of the game’s strongest points on original hardware – sometimes feels significantly laggier on Xbox One. In certain areas, frame-pacing seems to normalise but by and large, in-game performance seems less stable,” the site noted in the analysis.
Although these observations only apply to the main GTA 4 campaign for now, not including the Ballad of Gay Tony and The Lost and Damned, something doesn’t feel quite right.
“As things stand, GTA4 is one of a small number of back-compat titles that we’d prefer to play on Xbox 360 instead, and we hope that the back-compat team goes back to take a closer look at the frame-pacing issues here,” the site concludes.
The DLC add-ons will be tested later, but for now, things don’t look promising.