With supply issues still making it difficult for the average consumer to buy a PlayStation 5 or Xbox Series X/S at retail, the cross-gen era has stuck around. With even major first-party studios such as Sony Santa Monica embracing cross-gen development well into 2022, users have been hoping for more forward-looking titles. As it turns out, the team behind the upcoming The Quarry may be among the first studios to fully embrace current-gen hardware.
Supermassive Games shared a job listing today on Twitter for a VFX Artist position. At face value, there’s nothing unusual about this. Studios typically have future games in mind during the creation of existing projects, therefore they are constantly hiring even if development is going smoothly on publicly announced games.
However, on the job listing itself, Supermassive Games writes “you will be pushing forward the boundaries of what is possible on next-gen platforms and high-end PC GPUs.” This push toward next-gen platforms and high-end PC GPUs is also mentioned in the studio’s tweet.
This phrasing suggests that the team’s next publicly announced game will be current-gen only. Most tellingly, the mention of high-end PC GPUs teases that we might be seeing a much heavier utilization of ray tracing technology, which currently exists in a limited capacity in House of Ashes. As of the time of writing, both The Quarry and The Dark Pictures: The Devil in Me are still slated as cross-gen titles.
This news may remind users of Gotham Knights. It was originally announced two years ago for current-gen and last-gen systems. As of three days ago, however, Warner Bros. Montreal announced the cancellation of the PS4 and Xbox One versions to ensure the best possible experience for players. This has led to one camp championing the decision, with another group bemoaning the lack of last-gen support.
While this is surely disappointing to an audience of gamers, it isn’t the worst thing to happen. Modern hardware can’t be pushed forward if resources have to be taken away to ensure a game can fit within the capabilities of nearly decade-old hardware. Scalability can only go so far before a game’s visual fidelity or design has to be reigned in to fit within the scope of real-world game development and hardware constraints. In Gotham Knights’ case, even if it doesn’t scream current-gen, perhaps performance simply wasn’t cutting it on last-gen consoles.