Destiny Dev: Gameplay Is What Matters, Not Necessarily 1080p

Production director Jonty Barnes says platform holders like Microsoft and Sony are "magnifying" the importance of graphical benchmarks.

Destiny production director Jonty Barnes is more interested in achieving great gameplay than hitting benchmarks like 1080p or 60fps. In a new interview with The Sixth Axis, Barnes says although platform holders like Microsoft and Sony like to make a big deal about which console is more powerful, gamers overall are caring less and less about statistics.

"I feel like as an industry, people are caring less and less about numbers, which is great," Barnes said. "It always used to be about graphics, and though 1080p and 60Hz are still out there, and as platform providers get competitive around those things it seems to magnify the importance of it."

"But it isn't about that," he adds. "It's actually what is an awesome gameplay experience for the player and anything that gets in the way of the best player experience is baggage. I'm quoting directly from [Bungie co-founder Jason Jones] there. And, you know, as we've seen over the last few years, computer games are so much better, they're so much higher quality, and it's much more about the experience and less about those statistics."

Barnes' comments came in the context of a response regarding criticisms about Destiny's world being too small. Like he said in a previous interview, Jones explained that Destiny's four main planets--the Moon, Venus, Mars, and Earth--are incredibly deep worlds with many places to explore and activities to do.

"I mean, when people think of it as being four things, it's really hard for them to understand the real estate that is there and the complexity of all the different spaces that you can visit," Jones said. "Then, when you add it to another layer, which is that you may be going back to places that are familiar to you, but there's going to be completely different activities for you to participate in. So you'll be getting a very different experience even though you get some familiarity. We actually like that property, because we want people to be able to navigate and go through things."

Destiny launches September 9 for Xbox 360, Xbox One, PlayStation 3, and PlayStation 4. For more, check out GameSpot's previous coverage.

Eddie Makuch is a news editor at GameSpot, and you can follow him on Twitter @EddieMakuch

For all of GameSpot's news coverage, check out our hub. Got a news tip or want to contact us directly? Email news@gamespot.com

Written By

Eddie Makuch is a news editor at GameSpot, and would like to see the Whalers return to Hartford.

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1311 comments
KealGSeo
KealGSeo

Gameplay is important but so are graphics. Super Mario Bros were all great games but you don't see me going back to play them again. FFVII had an amazing story and gameplay but if you released a game today with those graphics I wouldn't touch it. Then on top of that most of us who grew up playing games are in our late 20's to mid 40's and don't play on our "kid's room TV" anymore. We have 50"+ TVs that 720 and lower are a little blurry on.

Given last gen was capable, this gen it should be standard with 4k being available in the future after learning learning some optimization.

Gankstar_VX84
Gankstar_VX84

1080p/60 was achieveable last gen therefore it should be a standard this gen, the fact it's not just means devs trying to push graphical quality first. I don't see the point in nice graphics if playing the game feels like im looking at the telly through a magnifying glass, 1080/60 should be standard, build graphics around that. if a game doesn't have good gameplay then it sucks regardless of res or frame rate.

shawnanthonee
shawnanthonee

yea i dont need 1080p/60fps, cause i am on a PC i get 2160p/60fps!!!!! YEABOI! ... que the haters:

themc_7
themc_7

I agree. I'm all about the gameplay. If it's fun, I don't need 1080/60fps. Yeah sure it's nice to have both, but a great graphical presentation can't save a bad game. For all the complaining that goes on about visual quality, there should be more complaining about gameplay quality. Crysis 3 was a beautiful game, but was it a good game? meh, not really.


Put fun first.

ProMethUse
ProMethUse

Develop an engaging gameplay first before even thinking of starting with graphics. What's the point of a game if it's just all flash and sparkles but nothing much else.

Warlord_Irochi
Warlord_Irochi

This is exactly how it's done; you make both on the same graphical quality, making it fair for both XO and PS4 users and THEN you talk about the low importance of graphics over gameplay so it would not seem as you are using it as a cheap excuse.
Respect.

Rikaelus
Rikaelus

It's really kind of sad that they're talking about 1080p and 60FPS when PC has had games performing at that quality for upwards of a decade. Sure, maybe you need sprites instead of actual water physics and you may have to simulate a few other things to cut down on resource use, but it should NOT be hard to reach that resolution and performance with pretty decent features.


In fact, I'm surprised consoles haven't been forced to go ahead of PCs, given a person's television is often much larger than their monitor. The bigger the screen, the more you need that resolution to avoid pixelization.

dangeyea
dangeyea

yes thank you. just make sure the game play is good, dont give a fuck about 60fps or 1080p. dont fuck up bungie.....

twisted_outlaw
twisted_outlaw

it's funny. Guys, it's not a magical selector switch. Running games at 60 fps, and 1080p takes computing power. 60 FPS is twice as many frames as 30 FPS, that means an image has to be rendered twice as much, which is going to suck up twice as much power. Same goes for resolution, 1080p is 1.5 times that of 720p. That's a lot more pixels being generated for an image. This all will come at a cost, such as having fewer enemies on screen, less detail in the environment, shallower draw distances, etc. It's not as simple as some of you think. That said, you will obviously get more power from a gaming PC, but you will also pay for it. PC gaming is a gamers dream, minus the only con of not getting console exclusives.

twisted_outlaw
twisted_outlaw

The resolution will decrease as the generation goes on. It's going to have to, in order for the other visuals to improve. If you want to control your resolution, get into PC gaming. After the announcement that the witcher 3 is going to be really subpar on consoles, I'm going to be building a Maxwell PC early next year. YAY PC!!!

makro_47
makro_47

The ps4 has the 1080p capabilities, so why not use it in the upcoming Destiny. We don't necessarily need 60fps but like 45 or something. I personally as a gamer care for gameplay just a little higher over graphics because in this day in age we should have the technology to achieve all these things.

Greyfox-101
Greyfox-101

I'll always take 60fps over 1080p, although in 2014 it shouldn't be one or the other with most games as it is on consoles. 


Whereas fps difference actually changes how the game plays, 900p vs 1080p is something that doesn't have any impact on the core game. 


If there are struggles getting games at a solid 60fps with 1080p, why don't devs lock a game at 48fps or something in between. Is there a technical reason it is either 30fps or 60fps? 

CombatIT
CombatIT

How about achieving great gameplay WITH 1080p or 60 fps? It's not about one being more important than the other.

obsoleteone
obsoleteone

So... What will Destiny run at? Don't really care about the resolution, just the frames. 60 makes the most sense and feels the best for first person shooters.

PSYCHOV3N0M
PSYCHOV3N0M

Ummm 60 frames per second ADDS to great gameplay. I'm not a PC gamer and even I know this FACT.....

Fitcherman
Fitcherman

I agree.  My favorite game ever was Halo 2 and that was before all this HD stuff.  Gameplay is king.

Stepn2myworld
Stepn2myworld

While 1080p is not the most important thing gaming, a steady frame rate, preferably 60 FPS is essential to a quality game experience at this point. 

I

Swinny14
Swinny14

I expect 1080p and a steady frame rate, 30 or 60 will do, as long as its consistent. Half of these people complaining when games aren't 60fps, you can almost guarantee that if you asked them what their 10 favourite games of all time were 8 of them would be 30fps games. Insomniac(the studio) once said, a stable frame rate is a sign of a professionally made product, and I wholeheartedly agree.

As for resolution, it is my opinion that consoles and developers should strive to keep up with the resolution of your standard TV-Set, 1080p is that standard now, and in 5+ years when the standard is 4K, I expect them to keep up with that.

I HATE upscaled resolution, its quite unpleasant. 

Hobbes444
Hobbes444

Ubisoft: "F*** graphics, gameplay, or storylines, we just want people to buy our games so they have to use the s*** we call uPlay."

sfageas77
sfageas77

Ah 1080p the eternal problem!You know how many got rid their potatoes(ps3/360) for a new(next) generation?Cause they want ultraduppasuperquality graphs and res.Well give them what they want and if you cant just lower the quality.WHAT?Lower the quality for 1080p?Yes its that simple!But i dont want that!I want the promise they made for nextgen consoles.NOPE we just cant do it!Take it or leave it!But But


And the show just keep going and going.Well mr/mrs buyer you know what you buying and be happy with it.They are consoles not magical things

Dredcrumb9
Dredcrumb9

This looks so boring. They should add blood and gore for each hit instead of seeing numbers popping out of every enemy with a lame X hit marker. I will def not pick this up. Another user friendly, dumbed down shooter for madden fans and casual gamers.

locsphere
locsphere

These Next gen systems (PS4 and Xbox One.)should be re-dubbed. PlayStation 3.5 and Xbox 360.5

locsphere
locsphere

Last time I buy into "next gen" Having this kind of trouble out of the gate of a system and 1080p being a technology that has been around for how long? A decade now? Gameplay matters, story matter, and graphics matter. 

Yes, I might not be able to really tll the difference. But I paid for that difference when buying my television and consoles. So give me what I paid for. Next gen? I don't think so...


ebookerd1
ebookerd1

Shinny poop is not what you want people. 1080P Minecraft. Gameplay is essential. Graphics are second.

seanwil545
seanwil545

It doesn't matter she's 6ft tall, 95lbs...its what's in her heart that counts!

deathblow3
deathblow3

@ProMethUse funny one of the best selling games out there looks like crap (minecraft) so its not always about how pretty it looks.

Warlord_Irochi
Warlord_Irochi

@Rikaelus "I'm surprised consoles haven't been forced to go ahead of PCs"

That would make them more expensive that a PC, thus completely pointless. If consoles are not more powerful than a PC is because companies deliberately make them weaker. You only have to see the technology on tablets and laptops; its a matter of pure choice.

Not o mention how console will be able to run a game that will come out in 5 years with less than half the power of what by then will be the average PC :)

twisted_outlaw
twisted_outlaw

@Rikaelus You can use a PC with a large TV. I will probably do that, once mine is built. My AV receiver output to two different sources.

makro_47
makro_47

@twisted_outlaw I agree to your "Yay PC," I am personally a PC gamer myself. Good luck with you Maxwell PC.

Master_Of_Fools
Master_Of_Fools

@makro_47 Bungie is a 3rd party, they don't just work exclusivly on the PS4, so they don't have enough time to master a console, only 1st and 2nd party devs learn how to max out a console. Hence Nintendo with the Zelda Wii U and Platinum Games with Bayonetta 2, 343i with Halo 5, and Naughty Dog with Uncharted 4.

Master_Of_Fools
Master_Of_Fools

@Swinny14 5 years from now the 8th gen will still be going on, and they would have to upscale to 4K. And frankly 4K is pointless why keep going for higher resolutions past 1080p eventually we would have 1,000,000p and would we need that no...4K looks no different then 1080p anyway, the human eye doesnt see past it. All that will do is continue to raise the price of games being made. Honestly games should still be 480p and I would be fine with it. And 4K standard in 5 years? maybe with PC monitors, but TV's that are 4K are like $25K.

Master_Of_Fools
Master_Of_Fools

@sfageas77 The thing is "Next Gen" never had anything to do with Power. "Next Gen" simply means the next console to come out.

customx5
customx5

@Dredcrumb9 Let me guess, you're the 'hardcore' virgin gamer who hates everything

Master_Of_Fools
Master_Of_Fools

@locsphere "Next Gen" has never been about power, yes each console gets stronger then the last, but "Next Gen" simply means the next console to come out.

Swinny14
Swinny14

@locsphere That's not the whole story though, is it? Ps4 is capable of 4K gaming, Trine 2 is proof of this. 

The PS3 was also capable of 1080p 60fps, Wipeout HD and Gran Turismo 5 are proof of this.

The content, scope and ambition of a game is what decides the resolution, I don't know why so many people have so much trouble understanding this. An actual developers in-house technology can dictate this also, but that's a whole other kettle of fish entirely so we won't get into that, but its worth noting.

These systems could be capable of outputting resolutions of 1000,000,000K but game developers ambitions could be so large that they have to knock it all the way down to 1080p... Now that's an extreme example I know, but I'm just trying to make sure I'm communicating clearly.

makro_47
makro_47

@Master_Of_Fools @makro_47 I understand what you're saying i really don't believe it would be much more of a hassle. I guess im not a game designer or a programmer whatever so i wouldn't know, but im used to 1080p with 60+fps as i am mainly a pc gamer.

NeoBillbine
NeoBillbine

@Master_Of_Fools @Swinny14 You have absolutely no idea what you are talking about. 4k looks substantially better than 1080p how could it not with a much higher pixel density. Geez, even a 1440p display looks like night and day when you compare it to a 1080p display. 

Greyfox-101
Greyfox-101

@Swinny14 I read a nice article by some developer (can't remember who atm), but they basically explained the whole conundrum between new hardware and resolution and fps from their view. 


Essentially what he said was that everyone gets excited with new hardware, and for developers it opens up a whole bunch of doors as to what they can include in the game as far as scope and gameplay. However, there becomes this rift where you have to balance adding all of these new things and maintaining performance. 


He continued to say something about how people think because it is 2014 games should easily reach 1080p, if not 4K resolutions, however the same people don't factor in a lot of the other things being added into the games, and that if the developers wanted they could create a game at 4K resolution running at 30fps, but there would be little content and little going on at all.


Or we could have tons of gameplay and content and nice additions but stay limited at 1080p or even 900p as is the case now. 

pseudopsiakite
pseudopsiakite

@Swinny14 Trine 2 is a side scrolling game with not many things going on the screen so the stress on the GPU is very little.  If 4k was the minimum resolution allowed on the PS4 then there will be very few types of games.


Developers are trying to push realism to a new level, however the console hardware isn't capable of doing this at 1080p/60fps.

seanwil545
seanwil545

@Hobbes444 @seanwil545 

My point exactly...the title reads as if it were describing some less than desirable partner...yet were being asked to look past their flaw. 

Master_Of_Fools
Master_Of_Fools

@NeoBillbine You need to have the right size screen to notice the difference, and maybe it's just my eyes then, cause to me, there is no difference between a DVD and Blu-Ray.

adnaan
adnaan

@Greyfox-101 @Swinny14 


I think you have a point. Developers invariably will target more complexity/scope in gameplay/visual fidelity for their IP's, and in doing so will this will not always mean a 1080px60fps output. I guess if the gameplay/visual ambitions remained the same as last gen, then these current gen consoles would be able to output those games at 1080px60fps easily. TLOU re-mastered is a good example of this.

lozandier
lozandier

@Master_Of_Fools @NeoBillbine It's not about just the screen but the content to make most of such a resolution. Upscaled content will actually look worse on a 4K screen. 


That in mind, it does make a difference, but the new consoles released too soon to even consider 4K content at a viable price range for mainstream consumers. 


That in mind, they both could've been a less conservative towards 1080p and 60FPS being more viable, especially the Xbox One. 


If you care about both these things at a high quality level, you probably would've saved towards a quality gaming PC ($1,200 max to guarantee that for most upcoming games, much more to be future-proofing your rig to do so for 4-5 years before considering *maybe* updating again).