Which platforms runs Star Wars Battlefront the best?

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Battlefront Performance tests 1

Well apparently none of them, because right now you’d need something just shy of a miracle to even connect to a game. Wrap it up, we’re done here.

Star Wars Battlefront is out today and when it does work, it’s pretty damn gorgeous. We knew as much from the beta, which also revealed the resolutions that both PS4 and Xbox One would run the game at. It’s a tale of stories told, with the PS4 only managing 1600×900, while the Xbox One is subjected to 1280×720. But according to the more nit picky minds at Digital Foundry, DICE manages to make sure that image quality isn’t compromised.

In simple terms, Battlefront uses an advanced method of anti-aliasing to smooth the image out and retain some of its most crisp elements –so much so that it almost negates the resolution not being native. Almost.

In both cases, improved anti-aliasing does a better job of masking upscaling artefacts resulting in a soft, yet cleaner overall look. On PS4, the 900p resolution combined with the excellent anti-aliasing solution results in something that manages to look surprisingly clean for a sub-native game.

Battlefront Performance tests 2

Part of the reason why the framerate was scaled back was because Battlefront is shooting for the divine 60FPS – a must have for an online shooter of this kind. The beta showed that for the most part, both consoles flirted fairly closely to that number, but took sharp dives downwards when too much was happening on the screen. Reflection heavy scenes also burned the framerate, with the hanger on Hoth dipping the Xbox One into the 40s. That’s had a hell of an improvement in the final build.

With the Xbox One running with a full 40 players, there were some notable improvements.

Areas that gave both consoles issues in the beta, such as the hangar bay on Hoth, continue to challenge Xbox One with dips into the mid-50s. However, there’s still a positive to take from this – looking back at our footage from the beta, the minimum recorded frame-rate was in the 40s – something that we never ran into in the final game, no matter how much we tried to stress it.

Their PS4 tests were a little compromised due to the fact that the review event only allowed 30 out of the 40 player cap, but the PS4 still came out on top with regards to an overall higher framerate.

Regardless, the results in this situation are promising: looking through all of our captured footage, we have just a small number of dropped frames in total – Star Wars: Battlefront manages to deliver a very steady 60 frames per second for the vast majority of the duration. Even when particle effects are filling the viewport, the game just doesn’t slow down. It’s a level of performance on par with the likes of Halo 5 and Metal Gear Solid 5 – no mean feat.

Battlefront Performance tests 3

Of course Battlefront also suffers most of the same issues that Metal Gear Solid V and Halo 5 both had to maintain this high framerate, some of which can be extremely jarring when viewing long distances.

Battlefront aggressively culls objects and crumbs from view while level geometry is dynamically adjusted based on proximity – a situation that applies to both console versions of the game. It can appear distracting at times, particularly with a higher vantage point, but it’s the kind of trade-off necessary in order to hit the target frame-rate.

Still, it seems both consoles do an admirable job of running the game better than the recent beta, and looking as sharp as all those gameplay videos suggest. It seems for now the PS4 is a clear winner, but a more in-depth analysis of the game in a more public environment will confirm that later this week.

Last Updated: November 17, 2015

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