Resident Evil: Revelations - performance analysis
Compared to the recent HD Resident Evil games with their more complex environments and the sheer number of enemies on-screen, the smaller and more restrictive locations on offer in Revelations should allow for Capcom to better maintain a smoother frame-rate when the engine is under stress compared to today's graphically more demanding titles.
On the whole that is certainly the case in the HD edition of the game. For the most part we see a steady 30FPS across the 360 and PS3, with frame-rates only briefly dropping down to the mid-twenties during large boss battles that feature a larger number of enemies in screen. We see some small dips down to the high twenties on the PS3 from time to time, but this never stands out to us outside of like-for-like comparisons.
On the other hand, the Wii U version appears to be visibly less refined in this area, with small but frequent fluctuations in smoothness adding some noticeable stutter to the experience. Furthermore, frame-rates are hit harder when the engine is under load and this has a larger impact on the controls compared to on the 360 and PS3. Aiming and moving around in general feels heavier and less responsive in the Wii U - there appears to a much larger dead-zone that creates a delay between moving the analogue sticks and the action appearing on screen. Comparatively, we had no issues with button presses, so the way the controls have been programmed to the sticks seems to the the issue.
"Wii U is visibly less refined than Xbox 360 or PS3, with small but frequent fluctuations in smoothness adding some noticeable stutter to the overall experience."
Xbox 360, PlayStation 3 and Wii U versions of Resident Evil: Revelations put through Digital Foundry's performance analysis tools - we see a close match between the Microsoft and Sony consoles, but Wii U is a disappointment.
This is in stark comparison to the PC, where we had no trouble running the game at 1080p60 on our Lynnfield Core i5 750 and Radeon 7870 set-up, giving this version a distinct edge over the consoles, transforming the gameplay experience with smoother frame-rates and noticeably more responsive controls. Interestingly, all versions suffer from frequent split-second pauses when loading in new areas or saving during gameplay, but these pauses have a far bigger impact in the PC game, causing frame-rates to drop noticeably for a few seconds (between 10-15FPS) - something that doesn't happen on the other versions. Your mileage may vary here, depending on hardware.
As you might expect, 3DS performance isn't quite as smooth as 360 or PS3 when the engine is under heavy load, but otherwise we are looking at a smooth 30FPS update that is hardly compromised at all outside of combat. Big boss battles cause sustained drops down to 20FPS, though, while smaller exclusions with fewer enemies see frame-rates hover around the mid-twenties.
Similarly, the use of dynamic lighting and a greater number of fixed-function effects also causes the initially solid 30FPS update to become compromised during more intense combat scenes. However, outside of these situations, the 3DS version offers up a more fluid gameplay experience than the Wii U version - a state of affairs that defies belief.
"3DS performance isn't quite as smooth as 360 or PS3 when the engine is under heavy load, but otherwise we are looking at a smooth 30FPS update that is hardly compromised at all outside of combat."
Performance analysis of the 3DS version of Resident Evil: Revelations. Intense combat clearly causes issues, but elsewhere the experience feels smoother than the Wii U game.
Resident Evil: Revelations - the Digital Foundry verdict
Although it's 'only' a port of a technically impressive portable game, Resident Evil: Revelations never just feels like an up-rezzed 3DS title for current-gen systems. The translation from handheld to consoles is generally excellent, with the use of higher-quality assets and the implementation of more refined visual effects allowing the game to shape up quite nicely on the home systems compare to the significantly weaker 3DS hardware. As a result, the combination of claustrophobic level design, lighting model and atmosphere all come together to form quite an engrossing experience which delivers more scares and tense scenes than other recent instalments in the series.
Overall, Resident Evil: Revelations comes highly recommended for fans of the series wanting a more traditional take on the franchise. The 360 and PS3 versions are worth equal consideration, while the PC game, despite a few hiccups, provides the most fluid and responsive experience available due to running at much higher frame-rates and without needing powerful hardware to do so. Revelations is still well worth buying on the Wii U if you don't own the other current-gen consoles - it's still the same excellent game. But the more erratic performance means and less precise controls mean that it isn't quite as fun to play.