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Overwatch Gets Next-Gen Enhancements on Xbox Series X|S, Nothing for PS5 Yet

An update this week brought next-gen enhancements to Overwatch, but only for players on Xbox Series X|S. So far, the PlayStation 5 hasn’t seen any improvements. The Overwatch next-gen enhancement isn’t a whole new next-gen version of the game, but optimizes the previous-gen version to run better on the new Xbox consoles. Unfortunately, if you’re playing Overwatch on a PS5, this new update doesn’t bring any changes.

The March 9th, 2021 Overwatch update patch notes, which also introduced the new Pachimari Challenge, reserve a section for the “optimized for Xbox Series X|S enhancements.”

Optimized for Xbox Series X|S Enhancements

Added “Preferred Mode” graphics option which allows switching between three different presets: “Resolution”, “Balanced”, “Framerate”. These modes adjust video settings to bias towards image quality, resolution, and framerate.

  • “Resolution” : This mode prefers higher-resolution output at the cost of some image-quality (Series X: 4K @ 60Hz, Series S: 1440p @ 60Hz)
  • “Balanced” : This mode prefers image-quality at the cost of resolution (Series X: 1440p @ 60Hz, Series S: 1080p @ 60Hz)
  • “Framerate” : This mode prefers higher frame-rate at 120 frames-per-second at the cost of both image-quality and resolution (Series X: 1440p @ 120Hz, Series S: 1080p @ 120Hz)
    NOTE: Not you must have a TV that supports 120Hz or VRR (Variable-Refresh-Rate) to fully take advantage of the “Framerate” mode

The next-gen Xbox optimizations add three modes—Resolution, Balanced, and Framerate. Resolution and Balanced trade off image quality and resolution respectively, with both outputting at 60 fps. Framerate, meanwhile, prefers 120 fps output at the cost of both image quality and resolution. These options provide a wide range of visual capabilities depending on what kind of display you have and what it is capable of.

Unfortunately, there’s nothing here in the way of PS5 enhancements or optimizations. VGC reports that the cause may be limitations on Sony’s end, which allegedly requires a whole new PS5 version of a game to be made in order to support 120 fps. It can’t be applied to PS4 games played via backwards compatibility. Whether or not Blizzard is working on a PS5 optimization for the PS4 version or even an entirely new PS5 version of Overwatch is unknown. While the PS5 does naturally offer some performance enhancements to the PS4 version, it’d be nice to get a dedicated PS5 optimization.

We do know that the team is hard at work on Overwatch 2, which is not scheduled to come out this year. Overwatch 2 will blend and overlap with the first game, acting in part as a sequel and in part as an add-on in a unique new way of launching a game and keeping the community together. Overwatch 2 is still early enough in development that Blizzard hasn’t made any concrete decisions about alphas or betas, but they’ve said we can expect more development updates throughout the year.

[Source: Blizzard; Via: VGC]

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