After reporting on the native rendering resolution of the Haze demo, some questioned my reasoning that the final game would sport the same resolution. This is despite there seldom being an example of a game’s resolution differing from its demo. In visiting Free Radical’s studio near Nottingham, creative lead Derek Littlewood confirmed our suspicions.
When I mentioned our story, Derek told me that the final game does indeed render at 1024by576, contrary to what is said by Ubisoft on the Playstation Blog; “From some other comments I read, I wanted to clarify that the game runs at 720p resolution.” Of course, Haze will output at 720p since the Playstation 3 can upscale, but this is not reflective of the game’s native resolution. Derek exclusively told us why they made the decision to render at a lower than HD resolution:
We prioritise a nice smooth framerate over a different res. Personally, I don’t really buy the whole thing. People did the same with Call of Duty, they did the same with Halo, and they say with those games ‘It’s not running at true HD!’ And it’s like, I don’t care. If the game looks good and it runs smoothly, those are the important things to me.
In asking whether the resolution was decided towards the end of development, Derek replied:
Yes. Well, as you develop an engine you’re aiming for a certain thing, but as all the pieces slot into place, you end up realising what sort of resolution you can run it at and that’s where we ended up with for Haze.
If you were to move forward with our next games, then as we optimise the engine we might be going, ‘Oh yeah, we’ll step things up and change things.’ But then different games we work on might have different requirements, so things may change there again. It’s all about how you use the resources you’ve got. But I don’t understand why people care whether there’s 20 pixels, 50 pixels, or 100 pixels more…
Naturally, I said that it’s not only a 100 pixel difference. 720p is over 300,000 pixels more than 576p:
Well, I always say, judge it [Haze] by the whole experience. Sit down with it and enjoy it. If people come away from that saying ‘Yeah, the resolution was a bit lower than I was expecting’ then I hope people wouldn’t, because it has other things it does really well.
For even more Haze goodness, our friends at PS3Attitude are holding a Haze week, starting tomorrow.