The problem that a lot of developers face when designing a multi-platform, cross-generational game like Thief is in managing all the differences in hardware and API. The result, at times, means that there are noticeable differences between the same-generation versions. That’s why IGN found it prudent to create a graphics comparison video for Thief, highlighting said changes in appearance.
What is noticeable right away between the PS4, PC and Xbox One is that Microsoft’s console likes to use crushed blacks. It’s a technique used to hide graphical detailing and jagged edges by obscuring their appearance in black. The final outcome means that an already-dark game such as Thief will have objects, faces, buildings and highlighting appear underlit, even for a stealth game.
It may be of an accidental benefit for fans unaware of other versions that have the Xbox One version. Even though I am not a fan of the crushed black look, in a stealth game in which you hide in the shadows, it does provide a more gloomy appearance to The City and its surroundings. It may also just align with others’ tastes, as well. The best approach is for as little aliasing and most graphical detail as possible, but with the hardware differences between the Xbox One and PS4, this will be unlikely to happen throughout the generation.
Thief is out now on PS4, Xbox One, PC, PS3 and Xbox 360. Check out my review of the game here, and see the graphical differences for yourself below.
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