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Wow, talk about a huge letdown. Originally we all thought that maybe Titanfall would at least run 1080p at 60fps on the Xbox One given that Respawn Entertainment has been focused heavily on only working with two platforms: PC and the Xbox One. With Bluepoint Games handling the Xbox 360 version of the game, many assumed Respawn might be freed up to pull off a miracle and get Titanfall to launch at 1080p and 60fps on the Xbox One and prove the 720p rumors false... but Vince Zampella denied that the game would come anywhere close to 1080p.
Today, it has been confirmed by Digital Foundry that Titanfall is launching at 1408 x 792 progressive scan for the Xbox One. It will not be 1600 x 900p for the Xbox One, as previous reports had claimed.
Richard Leadbetter broke open the jar that contained the worms that would eat away at the dignity of the Xbox fanboys like locusts in a field. The reality hit hard and cold like a slab of concrete being dropped from a crane onto a construction site: merciless and honest, hard and unforgiving.
Leadbetter confirmed with Respawn Entertainment's lead engineer, Richard Baker, that Titanfall had to make some sacrifices to hit the stable 60fps mark on the Xbox One, stating...
"We've been experimenting with making it higher and lower. One of the big tricks is how much ESRAM we're going to use, so we're thinking of not using hardware MSAA and instead using FXAA to make it so we don't have to have this larger render target,"
In that regard, it was confirmed during the closed beta test that Titanfall on the Xbox One ran at a paltry 792p by Respawn's community manager Abbie Heppe.
It was continually discussed that the resolution would increase to 900p by launch. This did not and will not happen.
As noted by Baker, a post-launch patch may be made available to up the resolution to something more worthy of the moniker “next-gen”, but for now the Xbox One will be somewhere between a PS3 half-jerk and an eighth-gen full stroke.
As mentioned before, the Xbox One is constantly aiming to unveil that “Banana Surprise” and it's not happening.
Titanfall, since E3, has been Forzaed.
While MisterxMedia continues the rally cry for the “Banana Surprise” to make an appearance after DirectX 12 has been announced – and support for the Xbox One has been confirmed, as noted by VGN – it won't do much for games coming out this year for the Xbox One, especially titles like Titanfall.
Nevertheless, the resolution hasn't had much of an effect on the review scores for Titanfall, and the only problem the game faces at the moment is empty servers. I imagine that will all change come tomorrow.
Even still, Digital Foundry notes that even at 792p there were frame drops in Titanfall for the Xbox One, so the likelihood of a higher resolution at a stable frame-rate seemed unlikely based on that observation alone.
Baker, however, contests that they will improve performance and that the game may be better optimized post-release...
"A lot of the performance is on the GPU side. There's still room for optimisation and we're still working on it," ... "Ideally it would have been a rock-solid 60 all the time when we shipped but obviously when there's big fights going on, lots of particle effects, lots of physics objects... we're still working to condense the systems, make them more parallel so we can hit 60 all the time, ideally."
This kind of thing doesn't bode well for the Xbox One so early into its lifespan, especially considering that Titanfall is not a graphically demanding game by a long shot, as evidenced by the system requirements.
Will DirectX 12 and tiled-resources bring the “Banana Surprise” that the Xbox One so desperately needs? Or will the console continue to limp-render its way through brand exclusive releases? Time will tell.