One of the latest games that Digital Foundry has set foot in this week is The Witcher 3 next generation for Xbox Series X and PlayStation 5, and analysis reveals some interesting differences between the two at launch.
First, on the 30fps quality mode, DF notes that it looks great on the two current-gen consoles, and the Xbox Series X version often runs at a higher pixel rate on average than the PS5, though “there are very distinct differences in The space between the foliage and the shade” is where Sony’s console benefits the most.
However, the Series X version tends to lock at 30fps for the most part, which is an improvement over the PlayStation 5 for “almost every situation”. The exception to this rule is the city of Novigrad, which can occasionally see the Series X drop the frame rate as high as 23fps. Regardless, DF advises that quality mode is not the ideal option on either console as both suffer from severe input lag.
The Xbox Series X can have higher dynamic resolution and performance advantages than the PS5, but it has a notable level of detail disadvantage versus the competing console.
“You get better foliage and shadow on the PS5, but worse performance in its RT mode – and to be clear, neither console in RT mode feels great due to higher input latency.”
As for Performance mode, the Xbox Series X and PS5 generally remain locked at 60fps, apart from the likes of Novigrad where again both devices suffer from disadvantages. DF says the Series X has a slight advantage here:
“In performance mode, the Series X has the frame rate advantage — albeit with a more limited draw versus the PS5.”
There are some improvements that CD Projekt Red could target in patches for The Witcher 3, then, and the outlet notes that stability was also an issue – something we found when experiencing some crashes during our review period.
All in all, though, you can still have a great time with The Witcher 3 Next-Gen if you decide to get it over the holiday period (it’s discounted in the Xbox countdown sale), and don’t forget it’s free if you already own the Xbox One version. !
Here’s the final verdict from the Digital Foundry staff as of now:
Overall, The Witcher 3 Complete Edition is an ambitious next-gen release, and it’s great that CD Projekt RED is giving away an update for free when it does so much more than many remastered releases. Spare the criticism.
The main issues with it at the moment are related to stability – it crashes on PS5 and Series X – and also performance struggles to hit a locked 30fps in RT mode, particularly on the PS5. Feature-wise, it’s also odd that the Series X isn’t as detail-dense as the PS5, which should be a huge advantage over the last-gen version. “
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