Zombi PC, PS4 And XOne Tech Analysis: 30FPS Cap With V-Sync Is A Letdown, Offers Cleaner Image Than Wii Unity
With Zombi out for a couple of days, it has been possible for Digital Foundry to check the game and understand whether or not it's a huge step forward when it comes to graphics in comparison with the Wii U version. According to the Eurogamer tech team, the game offers now a "a cleaner image with superior post-process anti-aliasing", even though the chromatic aberration filter prevents the Straight Right port to be as beautiful as it could potentially be.
Field of View has also been increased to 10 points whereas on Wii U it was fixed at -5. Luckily enough, if you still want a proper survival horror experience, without being able to clearly see from which directions the enemies are coming, you can change that parameter in the settings.
"In terms of the basic rendering setup, both Xbox One and PS4 now push a native 1920x1080 while the original Wii U version's 1280x720 holds up surprisingly well upscaled in our comparison shots, largely due to the grim, dark London setting. It's fair to say that with a 2.25x boost to native resolution, PS4 and Xbox One offer a cleaner image with superior post-process anti-aliasing - but unfortunately, the chromatic aberration filter (used on all platforms) cuts a lot of the clarity we'd expect from a full 1080p title. The result is a superior presentation overall, but with such heavy filtering, the gains aren't as great as we'd usually expect from the divide.
On close inspection, PS4, Xbox One and PC all share the same assets, and in many cases deliver superior textures to Wii U - though in some cases, artwork remains unchanged. Certain walls simply show the same graffiti or stonework design lifted from the Nintendo release, while others bring about a huge leap - notably door signs where text is now actually legible. Pop-in is also less of an issue on the newer platforms, especially once loading a new area, where Wii U is still prone to streaming in textures late. Likewise, loading times are reduced, and doors open up immediately on PS4 and Xbox One - whereas Wii U waits at closed doors with a 'loading' prompt on occasion as it buffers the next area.
Besides this, everything else is exactly as presented on Wii U. The world, the lighting and even effects show little or no improvement from the 2012 release. However, there's one curious omission in the form of Zombi's 'dirty lens' filter - a screen-space effect that's cut from PS4 and Xbox One. On Wii U this obscures a player's view around brightly lit areas, and even PC fails to offer any option to enable it. Only resolution and v-sync toggles are given in its graphics menu, which makes this a very barebones effort on this platform.
Just as surprising are changes to the field of view (FOV) setting. PS4 and Xbox One run with a wider overview during gameplay (but not cut-scenes), whereas Wii U deliberately forces a narrow cone of vision. In many ways this affects the way the game's played; the new release makes it much easier to survey the area and spot enemies - and some might say it becomes too easy. For those wanting to revert back to the original style on Wii U, it's possible to tweak this in the options menu. By default, PS4, Xbox One and PC run at a 10 ten per cent FOV setting, whereas Wii U is a practical match for -5 per cent.
And how about performance? A 30fps cap with v-sync is a bit of a letdown on PS4 and Xbox One, especially given the meagre upgrades over Wii U's visuals. To add insult to injury, rain-soaked areas like Buckingham Palace cause stutters and dips below this 30fps target. Just as with Wii U this is a real problem area on PS4 and Xbox One, and lightning strikes bring about drops to the mid-20s on each. This is more consistently the case on Sony's console, which matches Wii U's lurches to 20fps as we approach the palace - whereas Xbox One surprisingly shows fewer issues."
Finally, new controls are as good as you would imagine, even though the original ZombiU was one of the few games that made an original use of Wii U GamePad's second screen.
"All in all, PS4 and Xbox One's control systems mark the biggest change overall, with surprisingly little lost by moving away from Wii U's touchscreen. Inventory control is trickier to handle, but accounted for in a small way with d-pad shortcuts - though otherwise scanning and gun reloads are just as accessible as before. On the whole, Zombi may have dropped the U affix, but the essentials make it to new platforms without losing the central hook.
The Wii U version is still worth experiencing for its unique take on the experience of course. The controls are among the best uses of its largely neglected second screen, while its multiplayer mode remains an exclusive feature. PS4 and Xbox One do improve performance though, and despite drops below 30fps around Buckingham Palace, each offers a smoother ride overall. From a purely technical standpoint PC is an easy recommendation for pushing past this 30fps barrier."
Do you agree with this analysis? Are you playing the game and think it's better on PC, PS4 and Xbox One rather than the original Wii U release? Let us know in the comments.