Callisto Protocol Performance Review PS5 vs Xbox Series X|S

The Callisto Protocol release date is finally here, with the creator of Dead Space making a brand-new game with a brand-new team in Striking Distance powered by Unreal Engine 4 with some big updates from the team. We had some time with the review code on PS5, Xbox Series X |S and PC to test out all the next generation features and horror it offers. Dual modes, 60fps, Ray Tracing and more with some suprising results. We have all the gory details inside.

00:00 What to expect
00:40 Gameplay modes, Graphics and platform comparisons
10:56 Performance comparisons
15:31 PC summary view
16:06 Game Design, sound, art and the complete package
19:57 Summary

#IGN #Gaming #TheCallistoProtocol

It's often said that in space no one can Hear you scream but as alien as that Sounds the thing is whilst playing video Games you can certainly relate to that And the feeling of impending doom you Have whilst playing between those Moments of Terror those Dead Space areas It gives you time to prepare for the Next event on the horizon The puntastic intro served a purpose yes Dad jokes aside the game is a myriad of Inspirations and references within its Design but on the technical front it is Most certainly a leader Striking Distance is also a relatively small Studio most certainly a new one and Filled with a mixture of veterans and New members which have collaborated to Create one of the most forward-looking Games this generation from a graphical Quality and image stability perspective This will take some beating with no bars Included well aside the ones they have Raised but before I get into that we Need to cover the basics on this Cross-generation title I know it may be Shocking for some but it is in this Review code we only had access to the Now generation consoles and later the PC So let's get into it and the two modes It offers The default one which you may call Quality mode or Ray tracing mode runs at 30 FPS and has a dynamic scaling

Resolution with counts ranging from 3456 By 1944 to 2304 by 1296 effectively 90 To 60 of 4K this is then improved by I Suspect unreal engines taau to up sample That back to 4K as often as possible the Image treatment here from that lower Base is staggering and I would not be Shocked to learn from the team that they Have not built or enhanced this with Their own custom AA resolve it can Easily pass as 4K aside some high Contrast areas that can be slightly Unstable from the jitted render resolve It uses to up sample this is also Enhanced by the fact that materials the Details and the assets within the title Itself have also been built around Keeping a very stable and strong image With high frequency elements kept to a Minimum where possible the game also Supports FSR 2.1 and the caveat here is That it could be using that on consoles Although the performance here is more Demanding than taau so it's likely it's Not using that and that Dynamic Resolution scaling and sharpening pass Is being employed more on the consoles Than on the base output on PC due to the Dark look gritty World Gore and violence Within this is a game that benefits Greatly from both the film grain which Can improve perceived sharpness of the Image and the superb per pixel motion Blur that assists greatly in the fully

Real-time cinematics often convincing You they are genuine offline renderers From only last generation The quality mode is where all these Features stand out the most being a Great example of how the team have Integrated the elements of the later Unreal Engine 5 into this Unreal Engine 4.2 title it supports both the X11 and The X12 to enable older gpus to run the Game but without dx12 you'll miss out on Those Ray Trace Reflections shadows and Translucent surface refractions in Isolation they may seem a small boost But due to the core cinematic and Atmospheric design the game has they are The biggest reason the game pulls off Possibly the most impressive real-time Character models in games thus far this Mode has two main boosts rate race Shadows and Reflections and the Shadows Run on both series X and PS5 they not Only dramatically increase the amount of Shadow casting light sources within a Scene or being Ray traced now which Improves materials objects and solidity They also allow smaller objects to Now Cast Shadows which do not in the other Modes the accuracy here is incredible as Light and Shadow now react more Realistically less light bleed through Geometry which they appear to have Almost fully resolved in this mode here Darker areas that now contrast better

With the Light Shadows Now cast right Off into the distance whereas in Performance mode and that shadow map Solution they can pop in close to the Camera and cast no Shadows off into the Middle and far distance the way light Casts across faces shell shadowing and It's all per pixel is so good and it is One of the main reasons that the game Has such a high quality CGI look and Feel the other big boosts are in the Gameplay as the lighting design works Much better with the sheer wealth of Shadows plus some jump scares and Tails In the game are all designed with Ray Trace Shadows so in performance mode or On the series s you will simply not see A shadow of a monster in the distance Whereas in the quality mode it's like Michael Myers popping up from behind the Sofa One big surprise for me in testing the Versions was the fact that only the PlayStation 5 currently supports race Race Reflections the review code had it Missing on the series X and I assumed The day zero patch would add these but Once patch version 1.2 and 1.3 were Dropped it still only had screen space Reflections active I assume this may be Related to the PlayStation being the Lead console format here and they got That up and running first on PS5 and are Still fine-tuning the series X for

Quality and performance I would assume That a patch will come soon to add them To the series X though this is a shame And one that does leave the Xbox console Missing out on a big visual boost of the Next Generation version and PC the only Saving grace is the quality mode on Series X does run with a higher Resolution most of the time now due to This the loss is noticeable as Reflections are another key ingredient To the horror cake screen space Reflections are still used as a boost to The local screen data on pools of water Blood and such but they draw off as SSR No longer has that information on screen But they blend here with those Ray Trace Reflections and they are always present From giant security robots to head Munching beasts everything reflects in These surfaces But they go even further by using them In planar surfaces and include Transparent Reflections which are Expensive meaning that both you and Dynamic enemies all appear far more Grounded and present in the game World These Reflections are also used on Subsurface light reflection on enemy Skin and the blood and pus-filled growth Refracted light through each of them in Real time and all of these features Increase the accuracy and quality of the Incredible physically based materials

And creatures and characters throughout The title this is a very cinematic game Throughout and the visuals add immensely To that presentation the lighting design And amount used is what really stands Out from self-shadowed hair beards Frenol lighting across many objects with An esotropic calculations and more all Of these high quality models and effects Combine to create what is a next-gen Looking game that can have the quality Of a first party title often using that Camera blur and that per object motion Blur is vital to the visual quality the Game offers and I do recommend even Those that don't like it leave it on as It adds so much to the visual Presentation you will regret turning it Off something which the motion captured Animations and performance captured Cinematics can blow your mind at times Foreign Mode is performance which makes some Visual cutbacks to the graphical Force This game is Ray traced effects are all Off the table now along with reduced Post effects in that motion blur Lighting model ambient occlusion shadows And resolution which now changes the Dynamic range to a 2560 by 1440 counted High dropping down to approximately 2112 By 1188 again 55 of 4K in some heavier Sections again with many of these Techniques it may be a base resolution

With AA up sampling that back to 1440p The results here that the deficit can be Hard to notice in many sections but the Biggest tell is on texture details Within any high frequency areas Increased dithering on Shadows that Reduce per object motion blur and a Great deal less Shadows across the board Much worse and noisier lighting passes But the payback is the game now runs at A 60 FPS Target which helps improve the Temporal stability and the controller Response it helps most in the Dodge Innovate combat mechanic which requires You to move the left stick in opposite Directions to the attack That said though the game is not a Fast-paced twitch shooter by any means Although it does have many other Doom Like qualities in fact one of the games It reminded me of was Doom 3 and that Game was pioneering stencil Shadows with The ray Trace ones here really Delivering on those same aims of Accurate light and dark it has the same Sense of atmospheric tension the Carmack Title delivered but on a whole new scale The series s Cuts back more of these Effects but resolution is the same as That performance mode on the other two But the 1440 high and dynamically Scaling down to 1080p as needed although From my count 1440p was very often However this is a single mode on the

Console and targets the same 30 FPS as The high quality mode of the other two Consoles but it misses out on many of The graphical treats that mode offers And resembles the performance mode more Just with some extra cutbacks to Aid the Performance targets and relatively High Pixel count the differences are not Stark to most I'm sure but it did stand Out to me jumping from the ray Trace Mode to the other two the cutbacks are Intelligent which can start to highlight Some of the cross-generational routes as The extra Fidelity post effects in per Object motion blur Bloom lighting Shadow Quality and essential post-process like Film rendering techniques the game has Are all cut back heavily in places and Far more frugal in others and this Leaves materials often looking flat far Less light sources Shadows and more Obvious light bleed and incorrect Lighting on faces these can still happen On the performance mode of the other two It just appears more frequently here due To the reduced Shadows over those modes And again memory allocation and space Becomes an issue with it definitely Having far lower MIP Maps often in the Game and in the cinematics where it Really stands out How the [ __ ] did you get in here you Guys got time for this [ __ ] Despite these intelligent cutbacks it

Still managed to deliver the same visual Punch character models and dramatic Action throughout of its bigger Brothers Starting with the performance mode then I'm sure many of you are most interested In pitting the PS5 against the series X In this mode the PS5 has a slightly Higher resolution often than the series X with sometimes being around 10 to 12 Percent higher in addition the Performance is slightly more stable on The PS5 but these tend to be memory or CPU like stutters that crop up on series X on occasion when entering new areas or Mid-battle as it appears to be Calculating the impact Dynamic and Dismemberment and deformation system in Real time that said most of these are Almost invisible without an FPS graph And those small stutters in saves and Loads they both perform brilliantly in All tested sections at that 60 FPS rate Never to become an issue for the Delivery time the game had and some of The bugs that did crop Up Performance is Largely a standout achievement amongst The many others the team have pulled off The patches that have come since review Code dropped has improved on all formats And the 60fps mode is now very close Between the two consoles to really call It a bit of a wash Thank you The ray Trace modes extra graphical

Enhancements and increased resolution Cost half the frame rate in this mode Which is actually more than a fair Trade-off as the increase per object Motion blur in this third person action Are not significantly hampered by the Reduced input latency and from the Tested sections and the first couple of Hours on both consoles in this mode and Much further on the PS5 it really only Skips a single frame here and there Which would never be noticed without a Frame time graph the review code was Very stable on PS5 slightly less so on Series S but the series X had some more Dips and Judas that would have caused an Issue but applying the patch 1.2 and Then 1.3 it now performs much better and Is close to a locked 30 FPS now to be in The same range as the PS5 in this mode The series X has a resolution Advantage Here though which often it hits 2880 by 1620 with the PS5 often being at 26.88 By 1512 giving a 14 resolution increase In this mode to the series X the visual Reductions do explain some of this but Like the small performance dips the Gap Here really is not that apparent as the Relatively High resolutions they both Run at means it can again become more of A wash the single frame drops that do Crop up again can be hard to spot but it Is there occasionally on all modes it's Just more often on the series X if it

Does appear Finally the series s which is very close To a lot 30 FPS now with no big issues Once those patches were applied again With or without motion blur it doesn't Really make much difference on any Console it can dip more than the quality Mode on the other two consoles but this Has been improved with those patches and It's now as close to 30 FPS as you would Probably hope for I played some sections I thought would present some dips but Alas it was all very solid in general And only a handful of dips on the odd Occasion so this still presents an Excellent version of the game that Manages to achieve the core aims of the Team the only area that all versions can Dip is there's real-time cinematics Which occasionally can suffer on the Series s slightly more when you get Heavy densed geometry Alpha effects Lighting passes and multiple characters Very close to the screen but the biggest Standout is the much lower ample does Cause those low materials and slow MIP Loading which again doesn't stand out in Gameplay but it can be obvious in those Cinematics All right Okay Grabber let's go Just quickly covering the PC version Testing this on an RTX 2070 and an

Rx6800 it definitely is a very demanding Title and currently does not have any Dynamic solution scaling options like The consoles and therefore matching Console settings can be very hard Because it doesn't perform very well Unless you're closer to 1080p than 4K Even on an RX 6800 it's similar Ray Traced options due to the lack of time To spend to look at the PC version in Depth and obviously the amount of Patches that have been dropping even Today will come back and cover the PC Version at a later date Now the best part of all of this the Game itself and how the technical Elements the art the sound the UI design And heart of the entire team which is Clearly worn on their bloody sleeve this Game is a passion project that really Targets the best mouth of sci-fi Splatter and survival horror as I noted In my preview the game draws heavy Influences from John Carpenter's seminal The thing with the same isolated Inhospitable remote location that houses An unknown threat that can come from Within the human condition played a huge Role in why that movie was so impactful And that is a central theme here more Than that it takes massive influence From Alien and the Nostromo the dark Metallic ship corridors though streaming Volumetric lights fog steam are all

Mixed with a real industrial element Such as pipes doors and chains that Keeps your suspension of disbelief Levels low and you can relate the Reality of Jacob's plight Event Horizon Blade 2 and the Reaper's designer wide Mouth those deform fleshy appearance is Another area that on some any enemies Has the same look and feel the gore Itself is clearly inspired by old zombie Movies Friday the 13th The Nightmare on Elm Street the one-upmanship of how they Will die they all had extreme kills such As the master of splatter himself Tom Savini and Dawn and Dave are dead but Also Italian Horrors from Lucio Forte Dario Argento lamberto Barber and more All of this provides that mixture of Surreal horror and one that is close Enough to reality to still threaten you The gore is a big part with it at times Heads and arms being made of paper mache They break up and tear down and Generally crumble like a cheap suit once You swing or shoot them up but you and Other characters can equally be if not More so at risk of the same impact And the final piece of the jump scare Jigsaw is the sound design mixing and Execution is exceptional everything has Been designed tested tweaked and refined From the electrical fizzle of an Earthing cable the hydraulic pressure of A door opening and hissing shut the fans

That create the Doppler effect as you Walk closer accompanied by a screen Shake and controller vibrations Foreign Even using the headset or the controller Mic from the PlayStation control it Really helps as communication sounds Great in the room in the dark the meaty Scratches heads pop limbs break and much More the use of sound and silence is Incredible as you can hear the Screech Of enemies in the distance or death Screams but sometimes The Sound of Silence scares you the most music is Blending in at times with a clear John Carpenter-like synth mix that has more Than a nod to the thing And we'll do And voice acting from all is Top Notch And although it can be cheesy and cliche At times with both character types and Jump scares it often takes twists and Turns you do not expect and he's never Holding your hand or running on for too Long I often say that sound is 50 of the Experience in games and films and here That may be understating its impact it Is an impeccable piece of work from The Sound team that complements The Talented Art Technical and animation and Storytelling teams combined Welcome to Black Iron prison I just love that last part Chills every time and in some very

Striking Distance have managed to Achieve a feat we have not seen in a Very long time blending many mediums and Archetypes into a seminal survival Horror game from a visual and audio Perspective it is their leader for the Current generation taking the Unreal Engine 4 engine and in my opinion Improving on what many saw the best so Far in the Matrix awakens ue5 demo the Character models are now at the point of Being photorealistic both in gameplay And cutscenes and you would struggle to Tell a video from the game apart at Times they really are a testament to all The effort the team have put in some Books with deaf animations clipping Through scenery bad animation cycles and Alignment cropping up pinpoint accuracy It's a little bit frustrating at times But many of these have now been fixed With the latest patches so I didn't Dwell on them in this review the team Have managed to deliver one of the most Visually striking stable impressive Games this generation I'll along with One of the shortest life cycle Developments in recent years as linear And within the lines of its own genre it May be it still offers a visual tour de Force and enough surprises to be worth Your time across all formats I just hope That the final Christmas present is that Series X gets its Ray Trace Reflections

Added before the year is out And there ends another deep dive into Pixels performance and all things video Game related if you like this horrific Dive into the Kalisto protocol then keep It IGN for much more Foreign

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