Next-gen consoles will offer unprecedented gameplay, says EA

FIFA publisher's chief technology officer says new consoles are 8-10x more powerful than current-gen, run on PC-based architecture.


Electronic Arts believes the arrival of next-generation consoles will be a watershed moment for the gaming industry. Speaking today during the Morgan Stanley Technology, Media, and Telecom Conference, EA chief technology officer Rajat Taneja said the new wave of consoles will usher in a new era of gaming.

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"The console technology itself is a gigantic leap for our industry," Taneja said. "Any which way you look at the specifications, it is step function over what exists today. The new consoles are between 8 and 10 times the power of the current generation."

Taneja said EA is well-positioned to succeed when the PlayStation 4--and the rumored Xbox 720--arrive for three reasons. The first of which is that gamers simply will not be able to stay away, due in part to the advanced capabilities of these new machines.

"First, we no longer have to constrain our games or ration graphics or memory or bandwidth. We can let the games really flourish. 1080p, 60 frames per second, character physics on a much broader canvas, color saturation, lighting, particle effects; it will be a level of gameplay experience that is unprecedented, not been imagined before," he said. "It's going to create playing conditions for our gamers that are just going to be phenomenal."

"We no longer have to constrain our games or ration graphics or memory or bandwidth. We can let the games really flourish."

The second reason Taneja said he believes EA will succeed on future-generation platforms is due to the company's existing technology smoothly scaling to the new systems.

"The architecture of the consoles is based on standard PC components and technology. So our own investment in our backend engine…and our libraries, our tools, will very smoothly run on these and make it easier for us to innovate to the new console technologies themselves," he said. "What used to take months in the past, will now take days."

Lastly, Taneja said the fact that next-generation platforms have been built with social features and components in mind align with EA's existing ambitions in this space.

"The connected and sharing capabilities of the new consoles actually fits very directly with our strategy…of multiplayer gaming, connected gaming, social gaming," Taneja said, adding that it "helps us accelerates those features into our games."

Outside of the Wii U, Sony's PS4 is the only announced next-generation platform thus far. Microsoft is heavily rumored to be developing an Xbox 360 successor, which could be unveiled as early as next month. Both the PS4 and Xbox 720 are expected to launch this holiday.

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