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James discusses HD gaming and the future
By James Stevenson
February 11, 2005
Screenshot from GRAN TURISMO 4.
With high-definition TV really starting to take off now, it's interesting to see how some of the current games look on the best possible TV sets. I was shocked at how my HDTV picked out the graphical flaws and aliasing in NEED FOR SPEED UNDERGROUND 2 and how it was almost preferable to play it on a regular TV.
It's pretty amazing that the best games on the market don't necessarily look good on the best TV sets. Obviously it's better to make the games for the mass market, but one wonders if the Xbox Next (codename: Xenon), PlayStation 3 and Nintendo Revolution will all take advantage of the growing popularity of high-definition television.
If what I've heard is any indicator, the answer is a resounding yes.
We're already seeing game companies attempt to satisfy those of us who own HD TVs with progressive scan support and even some games in 720p or 1080i. Sony is producing the first truly high-def PS2 game later this month in the form of GRAN TURISMO 4, and let me tell you, the thought of the game in high-def is enough to make my knees weak.
In the future, there will undoubtedly be much more emphasis on developing games for HD. I've heard from sources that Microsoft is requiring that all Xenon games being shown at E3 be shown in 720p. I expect Sony and Nintendo may also have similar requirements.
All in all, I look forward to seeing games designed for HD. For a long time PC gamers have held resolution as one big reason that gaming on the PC is better than on consoles, and this may go a bit of the way to alleviate those concerns. At the same time, anything that will make games look better is a good thing. All in all, more widescreen HD games will only be more likely to get my gaming time than non-HD titles.Tidbits
Ion Storm, the infamous studio behind DAIKATANA has closed its doors... Nintendo is apparently preparing METROID PINBALL DS... Nintendo has filed patents for V-POCKET which is speculated to be Nintendo's MP3/MPEG4 adapter for the Game Boy Advance and Nintendo DS, there was also a trademark filed on PCGP which may have something to do with a new POKEMON title... Sony has announced five PlayStation Portable games will be online playable at launch, either ad hoc or over wireless hotspots. The games include MLB, GRETZKY HOCKEY, NBA, TWISTED METAL: HEAD-ON and ATV OFFROAD FURY: BLAZIN' TRAIL...On Shelves
This next week should be a lot of fun with the newest STAR FOX game, STAR FOX: ASSAULT returning the series to its shooter roots after the disaster that was ADVENTURE. Stealth ninja fans will love the way the new TENCHU game has gone, and DEADLY SHADOWS doesn't disappoint. WARIOWARE: TOUCHED! Is going to finally give Nintendo DS owners another game to smile about, though initial reports are somewhat mixed for a WARIOWARE game. RPG fanatics can finally enjoy installment two of XENOSAGA and there is also a game based on CONSTANTINE coming out as well.