Gamers can be fickle. For the most part, it’s very important to members of the gaming community that certain objects are rendered in just the right way. Fail to deliver any of those minimum requirements and developers risk running into fiascos like Spider-Man’s new PuddleGate situation. But what happens when developers intentionally limit a game’s visuals so that performance is equal between two platforms, which may be the case with The Division if a new report is to be believed.
The accusation comes from an anonymous source close to Ubisoft who claims that the developer had cut a deal with Microsoft to ensure the PlayStation version didn’t look sharper or perform better than it did on the Xbox One.
“On The Division, Xbox had a deal with Ubisoft, and part of that deal was to ensure that the PS4 version did not look better than it. The resolution, frame rates, and density of assets could have been higher on PS4, but this was vetoed to prevent issues with Microsoft.”
The Division was somewhat infamous upon its initial release for graphical downgrades, with many gamers upset that it didn’t look as sharp as it did during the first E3 demo. This is simply salt in the wound for gamers that were disappointed by The Division’s visuals, especially considering the fact that the assets for the E3 effects and environmental details were later found in the PC version’s files, which was also the case with Watch Dogs, another Ubisoft game.
It does, however, make sense that Ubisoft would want both the Xbox One and PlayStation versions to be equal in quality. Were they to favor one platform to0 heavily, they would risk not only alienating one of the major market leaders, Microsoft, but also upsetting Xbox users that had paid the same amount for an inferior version of the game.
On the other hand, it’s almost equally unfair to limit one version of the game for the benefit of the other. Gamers with powerful PCs regularly get superior performance and visuals due to their beefier parts, so it makes sense that a more powerful console would have the same advantages over their competitors. Either way, hopefully, this won’t be the case with Ubisoft’s upcoming sequel to The Division.
The Division is available now on PC, PS4, and Xbox One