One of the very coolest things about the next generation of sports titles from EA is the ignite engine, which attempts to make in-game players behave more like real-life athletes, reacting to a living world. It’s really quite impressive stuff. Unfortunately, as we’ve already told you, the PC versions of these games will not be powered by said Ignite engine, and will be relatively lifeless as a result. Why? According to EA sports head Andrew Wilson, it’s because your PC’s just aren’t powerful enough.
“Even though there were some PCs on the marketplace that could run that engine, the lion’s share of PCs on the marketplace could not,” Wilson said to Polygon. “And the majority of the gamer base that was playing the game on PC did not have a PC spec that would work with that.” It wasn’t until FIFA 11 that the PC version was brought up to the same level as consoles.
Wilson says that the majority of PC FIFA players just don’t have powerful enough machines to run it all properly – and that the Ignite engine has been built to take advantage of the next generation consoles. Which are really just PC’s. Ahh, but Wilson made a point of saying that he specifically means “how the CPU, GPU and RAM work together in concert in that type of environment.”
Could Ignite come to PC sports game in the future? Yes – but you’ll all need to upgrade your PCs first.
“Could I see the potential for EA Sports Ignite to make it to PC in the future? Yes, I think it’s possible, but a couple of things need to happen,” Wilson says. “There needs to be some adjustment in terms of how EA Sports Ignite works to facilitate the open nature of PC architecture, rather than the closed nature of console architecture.”
Honestly though this excuse – and it is an excuse – is patently ridiculous. One of the wonderful things about PC gaming is the scalability of it all – and EA could easily make its fancy Ignite work on PC’s, but lock it out for lower-end machines. Not all PC gamers, for example, are able to make use of AMD’s TressFX or Nvidia’s Physx – but the options to use them are there for those who have the hardware. On the other hand, I can’t say I know anybody who chooses to play FIFA on PC because, well…there are proper games to play.