he In many respects, the current console generation, which began with the PS5 and Xbox Series X launches in 2020, has been a catastrophe. Because of the rising expenses of game production, few publishers have been ready to go all-in on exclusive releases for the consoles themselves. As a result, Sony is left with blockbuster titles like Horizon Forbidden West, which will be released simultaneously on the PS4 and PS5. In other cases, like the disastrous cross-generational launch of Cyberpunk 2077, this works out brilliantly. However, this is not the case with the newest Horizon, which runs flawlessly on any PlayStation.
To test this, I went through the first several hours of the game on both PS5 and PS4 systems. When it comes to sheer visuals, there’s no difference. The PS5’s textures are smoother, some areas have greater detail, and the overall image is crisper with significantly better lighting. Although there is some visible pop-in on the PS4, these flaws are most noticeable when you’re riding one of the game’s rides at high speeds and the world is flying by. The PS5 version of Aloy’s hair seems more lifelike, especially when she’s jumping, in my opinion. Because of this, it might be difficult to determine the difference between the two photos.
Here are some comparisons of the game’s first five hours, without giving anything away:
Forbidden West on the PS4 looks and plays a lot like the original. Because the first Horizon was gorgeous, and its sequel has more robots to combat and settings to explore, it’s not necessarily a negative thing. Forbidden West and its predecessor were created using the same engine, which was previously used in games like Death Stranding.
The PS5’s visual quality isn’t the only reason to play on it. Horizon Forbidden West, like many other games on the system, has two different graphic settings: one that prioritises resolution, the other that prioritises frame rate. Horizon, like other action games, truly benefits from the smoother gameplay that comes with support for higher frame rates. During a frantic battle, where numerous foes are attacking and firing projectiles at the same time, your character’s arrows are very obvious. Even if the PS4 version of Forbidden West doesn’t run very well, the enhanced frame rate is a great addition to the gameplay. Although it is probable that some late-game situations are radically different across the platforms, the PS4 holds its own remarkably well in the early stages.
You can see the PS4 version in action in the gameplay trailer below:
In other areas, the improvements are less obvious. The PS5’s DualSense controller provides some great feel when launching an arrow, but it’s nothing compared to Astro’s Playroom’s genuine rumble and tension. In addition, there was no discernible difference in the amount of time it took for the two games to load.
Sony launched the Uncharted: Legacy of Thieves Collection last month, which included the outstanding Uncharted 4 and the even better offshoot The Lost Legacy for the PS4. If you’re upgrading from the PS4 to the PS5 with Forbidden West, you can anticipate comparable changes to the Uncharted collection. The games look better and run smoother, but they’re practically identical.