We’ve noticed a few times recently how the impending launch of Scorpio is making the Xbox ecosystem increasingly resemble the layered PC gaming space. A few first-party developers from Microsoft recently made that connection more explicit, telling Gamasutra that making games for the Scorpio is very similar to the multiple hardware goals seen in PC game development.
Forza developer Turn 10 got a head start in this process by developing Forza Motorsport 6 Apex, a 4K capable slice of the larger game made for the PC. Making that version of the game forced Turn 10 to “start working with all the wheels out there to scale across different PC specs,” studio software architect Chris Tector told Gamasutra.
“And that included things like revamping our writing process so that we were now able to create, build and package 4K assets and deliver them the way we wanted so we could still deliver automotive packages like we’ve always done..” said Tector. He added that the move to Direct3D 12 has greatly streamlined the company’s production pipeline and “submission efficiency” when it comes to these higher-quality art assets.
Mike Raynor, Technical Director for Weapons of War creator The Coalition, reiterated Turn 10’s focus on “ensuring your engine is scalable so you can take advantage of these different performance profiles. And write your content with native art resolution that allows you to scale and take advantage of it. So for us, we wrote all of our content in 4K from the beginning, knowing we wouldn’t be using all of that on all devices, especially not on our PC-min specs.”
For developers already targeting high-end PCs, porting those assets over to work with Scorpio sounds like an easy process. Tector said I got a 4K, 60 fps . got forza from the PC to a very janky early Scorpio dev kit took a single person just two days of development time.
The full Gamasutra piece is worth checking out to learn more about the new challenges console developers face with Xbox Scorpio and how PC development practices can inform them.