The 8 Most Improved Ports for Next-Gen Consoles

January 7, 2021

Sony and Microsoft both released next-gen consoles in November. But while the PlayStation 5 and Xbox Series X have a distinct lack of quality new releases, they do have some great ports. The upgraded hardware available in the consoles has allowed developers to optimize ports for them.

While some of the remasters and upgrades are not all that impressive, others feel like completely new games. The very best include enhancements to graphics, gameplay, and even features such as crossplay. Fortunately, there has been a good selection of impressive ports for next-gen consoles so far. Here are the most improved ports for the PlayStation 5 and Xbox Series X.

Fortnite

Fortnite remains one of the most popular games in the world. So, a port for next-gen consoles was almost a certainty. Epic Games has not changed the fundamentals too much. That was to be expected to ensure that the game remains as stable as possible across platforms and still works in crossplay.

However, there have been a number of graphical improvements. There is a more consistent higher frame rate and better textures, making Fortnite look and play smoother. Yet, this is far from the most exciting next-gen port that is currently available even with those improvements.

Ori and the Will of the Wisps

Unlike many other optimized titles, Ori and the Will of the Wisps might not seem like a vastly improved release. After all, it already had relatively fast load times and featured a visual style that might not take advantage of better resolutions.

However, the advanced hardware available in the Xbox Series X allows for a high frame rate of 120 FPS. That is a game-changer for a fast-paced platformer like this, allowing lightning-quick response times. The HDR support also gives the visuals an even more impressive appearance.

No Man’s Sky

Despite a huge amount of anticipation, No Man’s Sky was a game that proved to be a huge disappointment. Over the course of the last few years, the developer has attempted to address many of the main issues. This has led to a gradual improvement.

But with the release of the next-gen systems, No Man’s Sky has been given an upgraded port. This not only includes better frame rates and textures but also support for 32 players in online multiplayer. 

Destiny 2

One of the first games that was announced to be getting a specialized next-gen edition was Destiny 2. Bungie has made some comprehensive additions to the shooter-looter to take advantage of the extra power available.

The most notable improvement comes in the higher frame rates. The game now runs at 60 FPS in the campaign and up to 120 FPS in the multiplayer Crucible.  The developer has also vastly reduced the load times, making switching between locations and modes much quicker. Ultimately, Destiny 2 looks better and plays smoother than ever before.

Gears 5

Microsoft released an extensive update for the Xbox Series X version of Gears 5. Not only did this include a new content pack with extra story missions but also a raft of technical improvements. The game can now be played at 120 FPS in multiplayer and has support for variable refresh rates in the campaign.

Textures have been swapped for an Ultra-HD pack and 4K resolution is available to use. Finally, the developer has utilized Screen Space Global Illumination and Contract Shadow provides a vastly enhanced visual presentation.

FIFA 21

FIFA 21 on PlayStation 4 and Xbox One was something of a disappointment. The lack of innovation led many to believe that EA was concentrating on the next-gen version. That does seem to have been the case, with the PS5 and Xbox Series X version of FIFA 21 being much improved.

There are obvious enhancements in terms of the hair physics and character models. Other areas have also been upgraded, with gameplay feeling more dynamic and realistic than before. It is a definite improvement over the previous release of the game.

Halo: The Master Chief Collection

Halo: The Master Chief Collection is one game that Microsoft has been steadily improving for years. With Halo: Infinite delayed to Fall 2021, fans of the series have this remastered bundle to tide them over.

The port for the Xbox Series X contains support for 4K resolutions, frame rates of 120 FPS, and faster load times. The developers have also added support for better draw distances and a FOV slider, alongside support for HDR lighting. All of that makes this one of the most improved titles for next-gen systems.

Observer: System Redux

Observer gained a lot of praise when it first released, but also had a number of problems. The developer has taken the opportunity of releasing a remastered version to fix many of them. Along with the standard improvements you’d expect — like 4K resolution, HDR lighting, and ray tracing support — there are other changes.

Bloober Team has changed certain gameplay elements to make them more accessible and enjoyable. Hacking has been made less complex while interrogations are not as awkward as they once were. This makes Observer: System Redux a better overall game in practically every way.

What is the most-improved port you’ve played on next-gen consoles? Tell us in the comments below!

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