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access_time October 6, 2014 at 4:05 PM in Features by Tyler Colp

Ubisoft’s biggest mistake with Assassin’s Creed: Unity’s PS4/Xbox resolution parity


The PlayStation 4 and Xbox One versions of Assassin’s Creed: Unity will both run at 1600 x 900 pixels of resolution.

The news was a bit of a surprise.

Since both consoles launched last year, it’s been expected to see the PlayStation 4 versions run at a higher resolution than the Xbox One versions. For example: the previous Assassin’s Creed, Black Flag, ran at 900p on Xbox One and 1080p on PlayStation 4, with both at 30 frames-per-second.

It’s hard to explain the hardware differences between the Xbox One and PlayStation 4 without the kind of knowledge someone actually working on the consoles would have. A few developers have come out to say that Sony’s newest console is, in some way, more powerful than Microsoft’s, though, and the games have, so far, shown it.

But it wasn’t the numbers that angered the gaming audience, or that started the #PS4noparity hashtag. No, it was the game’s senior producer Vincent Pontbriand’s statement to VideoGamer alongside the news.

Pontbriand told the site, “We decided to lock them at the same specs to avoid all the debates and stuff.”

The debates, Pontbriand lightly refers to, are the ongoing discussions, arguments, and crusades about the resolution games run at on both Xbox One and PlayStation 4. His quote suggests that Ubisoft would like to sidestep the issue completely, but that’s not what happened.

The real problem is not that the games are the same it’s that Ubisoft took the safe route. Taking the option that least offends is common for blockbuster games. Many of them have mechanics, story, and art that hopes not to badly offend anyone so that the broadest audience has the potential to buy it. Now, it seems, the resolution shouldn’t hurt anyone feelings either.

Ubisoft wants there to be no obvious difference between the two versions so that nobody thinks about cancelling their pre-order. It misread the situation and has now dug itself in a hole of a controversy. It also misread its audience.

The gaming audience has paid close attention to resolution from the start of the new consoles. For some, it helped them choose which to buy. Now we see company’s announcing resolution like a new multiplayer mode. It’s part of the marketing now. It’s important, and not something that should be given little thought.

The game comes out early next month. It’s probably too late for Ubisoft to do anything about the resolution. The question isn’t will Ubisoft change it, it’s will Ubisoft learn anything from this?


  • Guest October 7, 2014 at 2:47 PM

    This is disgusting. Micro$oft paying developers to nerf the PS4 versions of their games because the last – gen Trash Box can’t compete with it’s peasant hardware. Microsuck and all their delusional, uneducated fanboys want gaming held back a generation because they sided with a trashy, sub – HD console not fit for real games or real resolutions.

    Why do PS4 gamers have to have their games held back just because the Trash Box isn’t capable of doing a 1080p resolution? Anyone who got suckered into buying a Trash Box because of Micro$ofts lies, overhype and underdeliver deserves a second – rate gaming experience.

    Ubisoft are idiots for doing this, deliberately making the PS4 version of their game worse because they don’t want to expose the Trash Box’s inferior, last – gen hardware, I hope this bites them in the ass.

    • PB October 11, 2014 at 5:23 AM

      Yeah Ubisoft have shot themselves in the foot, why do they do it ? they did the same with Drive club… should have been 1080p 60 fps but no, they nerfed it to 30 fps just so the xbots could ……..oh hang on…… that was a Sony exclusive….. ah, urm, ok, well they still Nerfed it so it wouldnt show up Forza Horizon 2 !!! there, take that xbots !

  • Mike October 7, 2014 at 3:15 PM

    Ubisoft really messed up,i am guessing they forgot that the Ps4 has over twice the install base over Xone.This will hurt sells in the long run,they better patch the 1080p in.Also for all the Xbots the issue with Ps4 isn’t 1080p it’s 60fps.Sony made sure 1080p is a done deal for most games.You have twice the RoP’s and more flexable bandwidth.Also none of these 3rd party developers are using the the Gpu/Cpu bypass or GPGPU.This is the reason why Ps4 exclusives will be ahead of all 3rd party titles in their genre.

  • Herbspeidel October 7, 2014 at 4:06 PM

    Seriously?! What a stupid thing to make a HUGE deal over. Myself, and no one else would be able to play a game at 900p and notice that it wasn’t 1080p. Anyone who says they can is a liar. I’m a PS4 owner because of the exclusives that Sony is bringing us, I couldn’t are less over what a multi-platform game’s resolution is in comparison to Xboxone. EVEN IF Assassin’s Creed were to be 1080p on ps4, the Xboxone version would not be any less fun being 900p. The only thing PS4 “fangirls” would gain is a reason the be smug and say “my console is better than yours”.

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