Monster Hunter World's resolution and frame-rate can vary depending on your console of choice, but none of the four consoles offers a perfect experience.
Monster Hunter World may be enjoyed by many, but on the technical side of things, it's all over the place.
Judging two base consoles and two upgraded ones, which have three graphical modes, is not easy, but according to a new Digital Foundry report, Monster Hunter World doesn't quite deliver satisfactory results on any of them.
To start with, Monster Hunter World's engine uses a method of temporal reconstruction on all consoles. The standard PS4 runs at 1080p vs 864p on Xbox One. Both shoot for around 30fps, but drops are very common. On PS4, the frame-rate hovers around 26-30fps, whereas on Xbox One, you're looking at 24-26fps. In some rare cases, PS4 can go slightly above 30fps, but Xbox One cannot.
On PS4, and Xbox One X, the game features three modes, one prioritises resolution, another graphics, and the third shoots for best performance. When prioritising resolution, PS4 Pro runs at 1800p using checkerboard rendering, compared to a native 1720p on Xbox One X. Because of World's reconstruction method, the Xbox One X version ends up looking sharper in motion.
Performance and graphics modes on both consoles drop the resolution to 1080p. The graphics mode ups the detail visible on screen, both up close and in the distance. On PS4 Pro, the frame-rate is about the same as in the resolution mode. On Xbox One X, frame-rate is a lot higher compared to Pro, at 42fps+, very close to PS4 Pro's prioritise performance mode.
Using performance mode on PS4, you get around 40fps, jumping up and down depending on what's happening on screen. Xbox One X sits in the higher end of 40fps, but still suffers from the same drops and spikes seen on PS4 Pro. In some rare cases Xbox One X can reach near 60fps, but this doesn't happen in combat.
Across all versions, Monster Hunter World doesn't offer an option to lock the frame-rate, meaning you're going to get a wildly different experience depending on your console and mode of choice. Frame times are inconsistent across the board, which creates a feeling of judder and jerky movement.
Curiously, in all three modes, PS4 Pro appears to have more details in the distance, which doesn't make sense in many cases.
Overall, the report praises most of the presentation as far textures, animations, and shadows. Everything looks good up close, and the only nitpick it had was the lack of proper lipsync in cut-scenes. Motion blur was another sticking point, though it's there, it's not applied per-object and ends up looking outdated.
Monster Hunter World supports HDR, but even with it on, the image appears flat. The HDR effect itself is muted, and doesn't look that different from SDR, which is a shame. Enemies in the distance render at a lower frame-rate, a trick used by many games to optimise performance. It doesn't look great, but you may not notice it most of the time.
Until the PC version releases sometime this fall, these versions will have to do. But, if you're not going to wait until then, head on over to our Monster Hunter World guide for all your tips, monster hunting tactics, and breakdowns of many of the game's unexplained systems.