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Vincent Pontbriand, the producer of Assassin’s Creed Unity, sparked an internet firestorm when he defended Ubisoft’s decision to lock the Xbox One and Playstation 4 versions of the game at the same resolution of 900p/30 frames per second. This exact controversy happened last year when Assassin’s Creed IV Black Flag on the PS4 could run at 1080p via a patch while the Xbox One remained at 900p. At the time of this article, the original reporting website, Videogamer.com, is unavailable, but, thankfully, Eurogamer provides an accurate mirror of Pontbriand’s exact statements.

 

Technically we’re CPU-bound. The GPUs are really powerful, obviously the graphics look pretty good, but it’s the CPU [that] has to process the AI, the number of NPCs we have on screen, all these systems running in parallel.

 

 

We were quickly bottlenecked by that and it was a bit frustrating because we thought that this was going to be a tenfold improvement over everything AI-wise, and we realised it was going to be pretty hard. It’s not the number of polygons that affect the framerate. We could be running at 100fps if it was just graphics, but because of AI, we’re still limited to 30 frames per second.

 

Suffice to say, there has been quite a strong backlash from Assassins Creed fans and general gamers alike against Ubisoft. This isn’t even the first resolution controversy for the company of this year since Watch_Dogs had wildly inconsistent resolutions between the various home consoles. The official response to the Parity controversy has been that the producer was ‘misinterpreted’ and that they needed to build a new engine from the ground up. The official stance from Ubisoft now is that neither the final technical details for the Playstation 4 and the Xbox One version are ‘locked down’ yet. Only time and content patches will reveal the truth about Assassin Creed Unity’s resolution and the quality of its AI on the consoles.

Interesting enough, this is the first holiday season ever with a Microsoft platform as the ‘lead platform’ for an Assassin’s Creed title as seen in this tweet during E3 2014. This tweet from E3 2014 leads some to wonder if there is more at play than just CPU limitations.

 

Assassin Creed Unity article tweet image


Matt M

I'm a contributor to the tech and gaming sections here on TechRaptor. I hold a B.A in English from University of California at Davis. It took me this long to realize just how much of a buzzkill my 'bio' makes me come across as. My hobbies include accumulating more games on Steam than I'll ever have time to play and discussing everything apart from video games on video game forums. Feel free to add other things expected in a corporate news letter blurb. I like long walks on the beach to escape from my video game backlog.



  • Daniel Pina

    What a terrible statement..
    At this point in the new-gen console development cycle, I doubt there’s anything CPU-bound. More likely, there are lots of developers who don’t know how to take advantage of the new architecture.

    Besides, being “CPU-bound” may have some influence on the amount of active NPCs being brought into the world, but it wouldn’t make much of a difference for rendering resolutions.
    In the Xbox One vs. PS4 debacle, they could be CPU-bound in both consoles and still increase the rendering resolution on the PS4 without any relevant performance hit (which is what all other developers are doing for multiplatform games).

  • Durka Durka

    “More likely, there are lots of developers who don’t know how to take advantage of the new architecture.’

    They must a crapton of them because more and more games keep coming out dumbed down.

    If a game runs bad on a pc due to weak cpu. What you do? You reduce settings to take off the load resolution is the biggest factor.