The Division 2’s next-gen upgrade is impressive

The Division 2's next-gen upgrade is impressive

At first glance, The Division 2’s upgrade for next-gen consoles should be pretty straightforward to describe, with fully predictable results. Similar to titles like God of War and Days Gone, the latest generation codebase is updated with the game aware that it runs on new hardware, which unlocks the frame rate in the process. The end result should be a 30fps capped experience now running at 60fps – or close to it – with little or nothing else changed in the process. This is effectively what you get on Xbox Series X, but something really is wrong with the PS5 version, which lacks significant graphics effects – visual features that are not only present on Xbox consoles, but also on Xbox consoles. PS4 Pro.

But all the same, the headline is that all versions now run at 60 fps, which raises the 30 fps cap of the last-gen experience. Of course, it feels a lot smoother, transformative for a third-person shooter, and there are improvements to load times as well – as well as improved texture filtering on Xbox Series consoles. In terms of resolutions, The Division 2 retains the game’s impressive temporal reconstruction technique, which means we had to jump through hoops a bit to discern the actual number of native pixels. Dynamic resolution is in play on all systems, which means 60fps action comes with a resolution range of 900p to 1080p on the Xbox Series S, dropping to a range of 1800p-2160p on the X series. 1080p is apparently the lowest recorded resolution, reaching a maximum of 1890p.

Graphics settings on Xbox consoles seem to closely match those of the last generation Xbox One X, but the move to SSD storage and upgraded processors increases the efficiency of background streaming systems, with texture and geometry. downplayed to some extent – good stuff! This is because the Xbox series consoles essentially get the revolutionary frame rate boost coupled with additional visual enhancements primarily provided by the system-level backward compatibility feature set and raw power. new material.

The Division 2 next-gen upgrade is the latest title tested by the team at Digital Foundry.

It is when we look more specifically at PlayStation 5 that the situation takes a turn abroad. Whether there are issues in the cross-platform SDK or just bugs that made it through QA, it’s clear that this interpretation of the game isn’t quite where it should be. Simply put, we are seeing a regression in visual features found on Xbox consoles – and most importantly, those visual effects are even still present on PS4 Pro, which runs on the same code base. The most dramatic change is the complete omission of volumetric lighting and atmospheric rendering: the fog effect from lamps is removed on PS5, which the Snowdrop engine is famous for its presentation. Smoke haze is missing. In addition, the interiors lose their volumetric lighting. The PS5 is now a 60 fps game but you lose a lot of the atmosphere and it’s hard to believe it’s an intentional effect.

Not as important in presentation, but still remarkable, is the fact that screen space reflections are also absent on PlayStation 5. Again, they are present on PlayStation 4 Pro and other systems. Instead, you’ll only see simple, static cube-map effects – usually just a fallback for reflections when screen space data isn’t available. The final mystery is about loading times – we get a dramatic improvement on the Xbox series consoles over the Xbox One X, but oddly enough, the PS5 lags other new gen machines by a few seconds when loading. of the same content. It’s a bit of a mystery because generally the Sony console is on par or at least faster.

The good news is that the 60fps update is busy on all systems and perhaps due to its slightly lower resolution and reduced effects, the PlayStation 5 is staying true to its performance target of 60. ips. Meanwhile, Xbox Series X and Series S consoles seem to suppress some images when there is a lot of transparency effects on the screen. The junior S series has one-third of the overall computing power, responsible for just one-quarter of the target resolution of the X-series, meaning the lower spec box can deliver a more consistent overall performance level than his big brother, but there isn’t much in it really.

All in all, the experience at 60 fps is great and in common with similar next-gen updates it’s hard to go back. It’s an easy way to harness the power of the new machines, but it’s also the most powerful upgrade Ubisoft could have offered. If you’ve upgraded to newer consoles and own the game, we highly recommend checking it out – but hopefully Ubisoft can take a look at the PS5 issues and restore the full range of game effects.

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