The numbers don't lie. Electronic Arts and BioWare have come forward to announce the official specs for Dragon Age: Inquisition on both the Xbox One and the PlayStation 4 and they're exactly what you would expect from a proper multi-platform release: The Xbox One is 900p and the PS4 is 1080p.
The news comes courtesy of a tweet that Electronic Arts allowed the official Dragon Age account to send out, almost as a direct jab at Ubisoft's recently blog post trying to decry the uproar over the spec parity between the Xbox One and PS4.
I'm not going to paraphrase, reprint or retype what they said, I'll let the embedded tweet below speak up on behalf of what's what.
Now will you look at that... they “maximized the current potential of each platform”.
To break that down even further: the current tools available for both the PS4 and the Xbox One allow for optimizations to hit certain standards in spec performance for today's crop of games. Even with these tools – optimized as they may be – the Xbox One is still a hardware leap behind the PS4. As it was mentioned in the previous article, there are obvious hardware differences that change the potentiality of what both consoles are capable of. More specifically, the hardware differences give the PS4 an obvious advantage over its direct competitors.
What the tweet is saying is that native 1920 x 1080 resolution on the PS4 is easier to hit than the Xbox One, whether it's due to the Xbox One's eSRAM inhibitions, or due to the fact that the PS4 has a higher grade of graphics processing capabilities, the difference between the performance of the hardware is irrefutable, and thus, translates to the way software performance is handled.
If AMD or Nvidia tried pulling the same sort of stunt Ubisoft did, they would be fighting off GPU fanboys from now until eternity. You can't try to squelch hard data to suit a PR narrative.
The only thing that makes this more odd is the fact that Electronic Arts is coming to the aid of truth and factual representation of real world data. I must admit, I'm having a hard time wrapping my head around this one.
Nevertheless, I'm not sure if Ubisoft signed a deal with Microsoft, if they just have a team that doesn't know how to optimize for the PlayStation 4 (which seems odd given that they didn't have any problems with Watch Dogs or Assassin's Creed IV running at a higher resolution on the PS4) or if they're just blowing smoke, but trying to forcibly tell the gaming audience one thing while all the facts and indisputable benchmark evidence says otherwise, comes across as insulting.
Even still, I suspect we'll learn a lot about Assassin's Creed Unity on the performance front when Digital Foundry gets their hands on the game. If the PS4 version spikes above the FPS test while locked at 30fps, and the Xbox One dips below 30fps, that alone will be telling as to whether or not there was room for improvement. Of course, we'll just have to wait and see how the benchmarks turn out post-release.