Reggie Fils-Aime, the President of Nintendo America, claims that the Wii U is graphically superior to its competition.
The specs are quite different than the competitive systems, much more graphically intensive,” he stated. “If you do a side-by-side comparison you would see that third-party games like Call of Duty look dramatically better on our system.
Eurogamer took Reggie up on that challenge and decided to do a side-by-side comparison of the three consoles. Here is a summary of their results:
The Wii U version matches the look of the Xbox 360 game and thus gives it an edge visually over the PlayStation 3 release, but unfortunately it comes up well short in terms of performance – an aspect that is all-important to the playability of a COD title. The frame-rate variance is such that the PS3 game feels generally smoother, while the 360 release feels like an entirely different game in the more demanding levels. Bearing in mind the commonalities in hardware design between Wii U and Xbox 360, we can’t help but feel somewhat disappointed that Black Ops 2 under-performs so noticeably.
True, Treyarch have had years to optimise the COD engine for Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3 and would not have had this luxury in preparing the game for Wii U. Furthermore, on a basic level, Black Ops 2 itself would have been designed with no regard for the Nintendo hardware.
That said, we find it hard to blame the developer here – we have seen generational leaps in CPU, GPU and RAM technology since the launch of the Xbox 360 seven years ago, and for the Wii U hardware to under-perform to this extent on such a crucially important game doesn’t look good for future prospects. Bearing in mind the specific areas that are causing the most noticeable dips in performance, once again it looks like the CPU is the main bottleneck.
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