The folks over at LucasArts have finally come clean, although you PS3 owners will likely find little comfort in their words. In a recent interview with CVG, LucasArts Producer Cameron Suey made some confessions regarding the disparity between the quality of gameplay of Star Wars: The Force Unleashed on the Xbox 360 and the PlayStation 3:
"There were times, especially on the original Force Unleashed, where on the PS3, we weren't quite up to speed. But now I think [360 and PS3 are] so hand in hand that every change we make is tested on both at the same time, side-by-side throughout the whole thing."
Well PlayStation owners, your rage has been vindicated. I doubt hearing the developers confirm your suspicions will really do much to lessen the sting of being overlooked, and will definitely add to the ill will that LucasArts has received of late. After announcing that The Force Unleashed 2 was cancelled for the PSP, and that after completion of the sequel the entire development team would be let go and all sequels abandoned, it's hard to think of a time when the public image of LucasArts has been worse.
Things are looking mostly up for the sequel, although the most worrying part of Suey's statements may be the fact that less than two months before the game is released, he thinks the game's development has been side-by-side. Could be nothing, but with this studio, doubts are justified.
But they've made their own bed, and now they have to lay in it. The bigger story here is the ongoing mess that is the two console system. With every multi-console release, internet message boards and friendly conversations erupt into comparisons between fidelity on each platform, with healthy doses of outrage and pride to boot. The most recent controversy surrounded the greater than usual differences between Xbox,PS3, and PC versions of Mafia 2.
The issue here doesn't actually seem to be the processing powers of individual systems, just oversights by developers on how performance should be optimized; miscalculate what area of gameplay should receive greater power, and the fans are furious. As a gamer who purchased the much more affordable 360 at launch, and waited for the PlayStation 3 to drop in price, I spent months and months accepting that the visuals and processing power of the PS3 were giving gamers a more advanced experience than mine, and for a while now it seems like the pendulum has swung back the other way in multi-platform titles.
Regardless, issues like these shouldn't be as common as they are, and will undoubtedly continue as long as there are multi-console titles where one platform is more difficult to program for than the other. But I definitely prefer the advent of multiple consoles and competition to the alternative.
What do you Ranters think: Were your experiences with TFU as terrible as we've been told? And is this the last straw for your support of future LucasArts titles?
Star Wars: The Force Unleashed II debuts October 26, 2010 for the PlayStation 3, Xbox 360, PC, Wii and DS