Games from the past-generation of consoles frequently were brought over to the PS4 and Xbox One. That trend has gradually died down, but a new one seems to be emerging. PC games that turn out to be popular on the platform are now making their way over to console more and more regularly.
LawBreakers is a game that originally started as a PC-only title, but it is now coming to PS4 at launch. There is also the likelihood that the game will launch on Xbox One at some point. Boss Key believes they have a product that will appeal to a massive audience across all platforms.
With so many developers bringing PC games over to console, studios have to be getting very good at the transfer process. Whether it is through a port or a slightly different version of a game, this is not a new occurrence. Dan Hanni, who is a lead designer at Boss Key Productions, spoke with We Write Things about bringing LawBreakers to PS4.
“Obviously, there are always technological challenges when trying to get something to work on a different platform. The big thing is can we get the game to play the right way? Luckily, we had just enough buttons on the [DualShock 4] to cover every function we had in the game. It was finding the right way to use the control pad.
“What we did is we had to come up with a bunch of different control schemes because there isn’t just one way to play. Blind-fire in a high level game is completely necessary. If you’re not blind-firing, you are not traversing the map like you need to be. We had to figure out which button to use for Blind-fire,” Nanni said.
Boss Key admits there are just enough buttons on console to support a version of LawBreakers. Other factors come into play when bringing a game to console that you might not think about. Nanni talked about a few other obstacles the studio had to overcome.
“Also on console, there’s aim assist. We can’t say a controller is going to be as pinpoint accurate as a mouse and keyboard, so we had to add a little bit of aim assist. It can’t win the game though. Also it can’t be a detriment to your ability to play the game. You don’t want to be hauling ass and then suddenly have your camera ripped around to focus on somebody. That would be a horrible experience, and it would not only make you sick but frustrated too.
“We had to find the right balance of aim assist working to not win the game, but it still gives you just enough of that edge on the control pad to be a viable combatant. But we don’t want it to be a reason why a player loses. It’s all balance and iteration after iteration after iteration,” Nanni said.
Betas have been a major asset for LawBreakers over the past few years. The studio has implemented testing for the console version of the game and this surely helped smooth out some gameplay edges. Latency is always a topic of discussion, but Nanni is very confident in how that is shaping up on PS4.
“Awesome. We’re performance and frame rate junkies across the board. It’s not going to be anything less than 60 frames per second on the PS4. The more milliseconds we can rip out of latency with the controller and the game, the better. We’re going to keep on optimizing, but its pretty solid right now,” Nanni said.
Boss Key Productions is working on the PS4 Pro to help bring a better version of LawBreakers to life. The studio isn’t specifying quite yet what the major differences will be, but some are predictable. Things like resolution and even frame rate should receive a boost from PS4 Pro, but what else will?
“4K. We’re not skimping on the base version of the game. We want it to run at 60 frames per second. We’re definitely going to support 4K resolution at 60 frames per second as well. We just want to take advantage of everything the PS4 has given us from the base and from Pro. We can’t say that because of the different platform you have you’re going to have a worse experience. In the end, it’s about competition and every piece of frame rate and performance matters,” Nanni said.
Gamers will have the chance to see just what LawBreakers looks like on PS4 this coming Aug. 8. The game will debut on PS4, PS4 Pro and PC. Many expect an Xbox One version of the shooter to come along sometime post-launch. Stick around here at We Write Things for more on LawBreakers.