Halo 5 Uses a Dynamic Resolution to Stay Locked at 60FPS

It'll run at 1080p at times, but not always.


As suspected, Halo 5: Guardians' resolution will be dynamic--at least in campaign mode--allowing it to scale up and down as needed in order to keep its framerate locked at 60 frames per second.

This is according to a new blog post on the Xbox Wire, which describes 343 Industries' solution as a "new progressive resolution system." It allows the game to run at 1080p when possible; at other times, the resolution can decrease "based on the needs of the scene," Microsoft explained. "This enables us to deploy resources where they have most impact across a diverse series of experiences throughout the game while delivering the most visually stunning Halo game ever."

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Back in July, 343 said Halo 5's resolution had not yet been finalized. Previously, it had only said that it would not run at 720p, as last year's multiplayer beta did. It's unclear if this new dynamic resolution will also be used in multiplayer, as today's announcement (and the new video above) was devoted to talking about the campaign mode.

"In much of the campaign you may be playing at 1080p, but when we want to get really crazy with vehicles, visual effects and combat we can trade some of the resolution in order to maintain the crucial 60fps," explained campaign environment art lead Justin Dinges.

"Without this system, we would need to either reduce the scale of our most intense combat encounters or lower the quality of content across the game in order to stay at 60fps at all times. With progressive resolution, we get the best of both worlds: epic scale experiences that look incredible while running at a consistent 60fps."

Previous Halo 5 demos appeared to use a dynamic resolution. Digital Foundry found one was used in the game's Gamescom demo in both single- and multiplayer, saying that it "works well enough, and we'd be happy to see it in the final shipping game."

We'll likely be hearing plenty more about Halo 5 with the game's launch now just over a month away, on October 27. Unlike previous Halo games, it doesn't feature any kind of split-screen support, but does introduce new squad-based gameplay, with the entire campaign built to be played cooperatively (either with other players or AI).

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