Final Fantasy XV: Windows Edition was arguably among the biggest announcements at Gamescom 2017. Due for release in early 2018, the game looked stunning and will feature several visual enhancements over the console release, including 4K resolution textures and several NVIDIA GameWorks effects (HFTS, VXAO, Turf, Flow, and HairWorks).
As expected, enabling all of these improvements comes at a significant performance cost. Speaking with PC Gamer, Game Director Hajime Tabata confirmed that not even NVIDIA’s mighty GeForce GTX 1080 Ti will be able to render Final Fantasy XV: Windows Edition at native 4K and 60 frames per second.
Supporting 60fps will be possible, but considering the spec you’d need to get that level—with native 4K, HDR, and a good 60fps—the machine we’ve got here couldn’t do that at the moment. That’s a GTX 1080 Ti, and even with that 60 frames is not possible.
In case you’re already thinking to solve this issue by adding a second GTX 1080 Ti, Tabata explained that might not solve the problem either.
So, multiple cards, there’s the loading of the previous frame and you have that little bit of delay. It doesn’t allow for that proper 60 frames. In order to get that really smooth 60 frames, you need a higher capacity base in order to do that. All the physics simulations as well need to be refreshed in every frame—if you have two cards running in tandem there’s that little bit of delay between the sending of data between the two cards and that’s what makes it impossible.
The only solution, then, will be to drop at least a few settings if you want to play at 60 frames per second and native 4K resolution. Of course, future GPUs might very well be able to render Final Fantasy XV: Windows Edition (which will also support Dolby Atmos and a brand new first-person view mode) in all of its glory without any compromises.
On the upside, Tabata also hinted that this particular PC port could pave the way for more timely Final Fantasy PC releases in the future.
If my team were going to be in charge of the next Final Fantasy game, we probably would set up the basis of development on that high-level PC architecture—I think that’s something that we’d do. But looking into the future, you have to consider cloud-based games—the answer might be different depending on how far down the line we’re talking about.
I think this is for us a great opportunity in getting the game out to the PC market that the latest Final Fantasy game is serious about the PC market and its players. We’re taking on that challenge with everything we’ve got and it’d just be great to get some kind of feedback on that, players’ reactions and understand what people are expecting towards our game.