1080p/30 or 720p/60: What If It Was An Optional Setting?

1080p/30 or 720p/60: What If It Was An Optional Setting?

Resolutiongate, they call it. Sorry, #resolutiongate. Nothing means anything around here anymore unless you have a the word “gate” in it, as well as the little symbol in front that, now that we think about, sort of looks like a gate too.

Week after week we see news roll in that this game is only 900p while that one is 1080p. This game is running at 60 frames per second while that one is only running at 30. Does it make that much of a difference? Does anyone really even care when they are actually sitting down to play the game?

So then, a simple question… why not give console gamers the option?

I think it would be foolish to claim that it makes no difference, as certain games clearly benefit from higher frame rates or sharper graphics, while with others it doesn’t really matter so much. A quick example? Fast paced shooters can benefit a heck of a lot more from a higher frame rate than say, a turn based strategy game. This issue mostly applies to consoles of course, as their hardware is fixed and so too are the games created for them. It comes right out of the box, crafted as a certain experience and that’s what you are gonna get, unlike PCs that allow you to tinker and play until you are happy with the balance.

So then, a simple question… why not give console gamers the option? Not a thousand graphics options, just one. Lower resolution, better overall visuals (as is usually the case with many 30fps games), or if it’s your bag, the option to run the game at 60fps with a knock to the visuals.

There’s quite a few different aspects and issues to think about, so tell us, what do you think of the idea of having optional resolutions in console gaming?

Like the article? While you’re at it, check out our fresh review of Sunset Overdrive.


  1. Guest October 28, 2014

    Framerate over resolution anyday. PC gamers that have been gaming since forever can tell you that. But once developers go down this path, the consoles might as well cease to exist and become PCs, that would be a win for all real gamers.

    • Nick de Bruyne October 29, 2014

      I don’t know so much, many people still enjoyed the bundled/packaged nature of a console, with little extra to think about aside from put in and play. That’s why something like this would really need to become a very standardised but limited option set of this or that.

  2. starscream1180 October 28, 2014


  3. Jay October 28, 2014

    how about just making a system powerful enough to do both? its about to be 2015 for Gods sakes. 1080p at 60fps should be easily achieved by now. but since I have to make choice I’ll take graphics. I can get used to a solid 30fps. but I cant get used to low res textures and bad AA. I feel good graphics pulls you further in the game by allowing you to play in a believable world.

    • Nick de Bruyne October 29, 2014

      Making a system that’s powerful enough to do both is really easy. Making one that’s powerful enough to do both but it still at an acceptable price point for a living room system and also small and quiet enough to work in that sort of environment is a different story. The design of a console is quite a difficult task if you think about those aspects of its requirements.

      • Uberutang October 29, 2014

        Very true, only now are we seeing systems with low power requirements for massive performance (new intel and nvidia systems). Still pricey, but that will change (esp if mass produced).

        Imagine a xbox powered by an 8 core i7 and a GTX970….

  4. Matt October 28, 2014

    I think it’s just up to the developer. War Thunder on the PS4 has a fair amount of graphics options (unusual for a console game), though probably not resolution/framerate changes.

  5. Uberutang October 29, 2014

    It would be fantastic if they offered options like that Nick.
    You can even have a middle ground for 900p/60fps option where some shadows are less deep, some cloth is less dynamic but not disabled as per 1080/60 would be (for example).

    It would mean additional cost and time to the devs though. For them it is simply easier and cheaper to go: lock at x and y. (or my favourite new term ‘aim’ for 30).

    From experience if you can get 30 rock solid (zero dips) it would still be better than where 30 is the ceiling but the game runs between 16 and 30 at times. Same goes for 60 fps. If you can get it solid then go for it, but dont let it drop below 45. EVER.

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