During an interview with Shack News, Dead Space 3 producer Steve Papoutsis expressed confusion about why PC players are disappointed at the lack of any extra frills in our version of the game. “It’s confusing to me that this question even comes up,” he says. It’s by no means any less important to us; it gets a lot of attention. The PC is a very different platform. As developers, you want to deliver an experience that’s as similar as possible on different platforms.”
In a word: Hurm…
Much as I’m sure we’d all hate to drag Visceral Games and EA away from important jobs like sabotaging their own horror game with cynical microtransactions, this is staggeringly short-sighted thinking. Surely in this market, with so many titles fighting for attention, every grabbed edge is worth risking the initial pain and slightly bloodied hands.
To be fair, it makes good sense for the Xbox 360 and PS3 versions to be as close as possible. Whoever doesn’t have the better version will see what they do have as the lesser – games like Bayonetta have shown this pretty well in the past. The PC though is a different matter. It’s not seen as a direct competitor to either system, and anyone who argues that it’s not a good couple of generations ahead at this point can be shut down with one word – “antialiasing”.
This means that a rock-solid PC version is more than just harmless to console zealots. It’s a chance for developers to show off, to hint at what’s coming on the next generation of boxes, and most importantly, to convey their vision with the fewest technological limitations. It’s about being able to use those high-resolution assets instead of crunching them down, to play with that lighting for the ultimate creep-out factor, and to make a name for themselves on a platform that’s only becoming more powerful and more relevant across the industry.
There are reasons not to take advantage of all of this, absolutely – budgets, resources, expertise. There are none to not want to. To act confused over the issue, or PC owners being suspicious of ports after so many shockingly bad ones, is simply bizarre. There’s simply no arguing that a Dead Space 3 port with no further graphical enhancements above and beyond those seen on the PS3 or Xbox 360 is anything but a disappointment to an audience that knows exactly how much more their system is capable of handling.
Still, at least we can be grateful it’s not being hobbled by the Wii U, right?