News Article

Digital Foundry Pins Down Mario Kart 8's Resolution and Framerate

Posted by Thomas Whitehead

No, not actually native 1080p

After a lengthy build-up, Mario Kart 8 is almost here, the latest entry in the hugely popular franchise. It's been critically acclaimed on multiple fronts, with plenty also lavishing praise on the visuals and performance of the title; in our review we said that visually "MK8 is a stunner, and joins titles such as Super Mario 3D World in demonstrating Nintendo’s increasing confidence and prowess with its HD system". Of course, that's the impression from our humble eyes and from the experience of playing the game, but Eurogamer's Digital Foundry has done its thing to drive down into the technicalities of the title's performance.

For one thing, and to end debates and inaccurate rumours, it's confirmed that the title runs at a native 720p, as is typically expected on Wii U. Of course you can display in 1080p if your TV allows, but this confirms the reality of the situation. While some technical shortcomings are also highlighted with the engine and visuals, DF is quite clear in emphasizing that the tricks Nintendo does employ deliver an attractive overall result.

This is all enhanced by a convincing combination of real-time and pre-baked shadows that even take occluded edges into account. Complimenting this is a vast array of dynamic light sources, such as headlights, item boxes, and special effects, made possible by what we suspect is a shift to a deferred rendering solution. Even in four-player split-screen we see dynamic lighting play a large role in defining the visual design while simultaneously highlighting detail in the texture work. It's really quite a treat for the eyes.

Now to the framerate. We've been referring to single and two-player splitscreen as 60 frames-per-second (fps) and further splits as running at 30fps. This is certainly true in terms of what most will perceive, but as is its way Digital Founding has discovered a hidden detail that drops a frame when CPU opponents are in action.

When it comes to performance, Nintendo has always aimed to deliver a rock-solid 60 frames per second with each home console Mario Kart and, aside from Mario Kart 64, it has always managed to achieve just that. There was never any doubt that Mario Kart 8 would fall right in line with the rest of the series but upon seeing it for ourselves we immediately noticed that something was amiss. During gameplay we experienced the regular appearance of duplicate frames manifesting as a constant but subtle stuttering effect. Upon analysis we determined that the game suffers from extended clusters in which a duplicate frame is displayed every 64 frames. What this ultimately means is that, during normal gameplay, Mario Kart 8 continually drops down to 59fps. This may not seem like a big deal - most will probably not notice it at all, and it has zero affect on playability - but it has a noticeable impact on image fluidity that mars what would otherwise be a perfectly consistent frame-rate. And for us at least, once it is seen, it can't really be unseen.

We're not sure a drop to 59fps will be noticed by any but the very pickiest of players, as the article states, while it's suggested that the issue could potentially be resolved in a patch. For our money, at least, this issue is an irrelevance.

It's always intriguing to see the technical details behind a game, however, and Digital Foundry does conclude with a positive assessment.

By most standards, Mario Kart 8 is an incredibly polished game with beautiful visuals, a high frame-rate, magical playability and an excellent menu system. By Nintendo's stratospheric standards, however, we dare say that it falls just a bit short. When a Nintendo game goes gold you better believe the final product will be complete and polished to perfection. In the case of Mario Kart 8, the issues we encountered with performance and image quality do detract just a little from an otherwise totally solid experience - and bearing in mind its previous, relentless push for gaming perfection, it leaves us wondering just how the stutter in particular managed to slip past Nintendo QA. Thankfully, the issue should only really stick out to those most sensitive to frame-rate and shouldn't impact the experience for most people, while the sheer fun and imagination injected into this title clearly trump the technical limitations in the image make-up.

With that in mind, don't let these minor polish issues keep you away from the game - this is Mario Kart at its best and brightest. Racing has been refined to near perfection and its visuals are among the best on the platform. While we were a tad disappointed in the lack of a more robust single-player mode, the overall experience we had with the game was excellent. Old-school fans and newcomers alike will find a lot to love here. Now, if you'll excuse us, we have some races to win...

We suggest checking out the full article if these details fascinate you, and it could be a mini-game in itself actually trying to spot these issues yourself, as a drop to 59fps isn't easily perceived. Ultimately, the overall assessment is another positive one for the upcoming Wii U blockbuster.


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User Comments (260)



MAB said:

You've gotta expect this sort of framerate drop stuff when dealing with a physical copy nowadays



6ch6ris6 said:

how can any human being see the difference between 60fps and 59 fps without any digital help?
you can't.



19Robb92 said:

So the game is neither 1080p nor 60fps.

Not that it matters, but still. Kind of funny.



KodyDawg said:

Geez, can't anyone just BACK OFF and let Nintendo stay awesome?! They're already struggling enough as it is, and websites such as Digital Foundry just HAVE to make pointless articles on all the flaws of Ninty's IP's...



erv said:

We all know 1080p makes or breaks a game. As does a jump button, the fps effect... What about ragdoll physics? And hyper realistic shaders. And killcams. And can I assign ten points to different killstreaks? This is a missing feature! And why can't I choose a different weapon class?! And of course more brown and green. Where's the brown and green nintendo? Huh?! WHERE IS IT?!



Dr_Corndog said:

I can only roll my eyes at the bickering that goes on over consoles' power. Certain XBox and Playstation fans make me think of a guy boasting about how much more powerful his V6 sedan is than all the 4-cylinders on the road; then a dude in a Lamborghini drives by and blows his doors off. If you care about power, get a PC.



gatorboi352 said:

I'm sorry, when was there ever confusion about the game being native 1080p? Xbox One can't hardly pull off that, why would Wii U?



Kaze_Memaryu said:

Welp, that's a disappointment.
While resolution isn't really an issue for me, it's still is worrying to see that even Nintendo can't push 1080p on a WiiU. Makes me wonder how anyone will be able to...



Jazzer94 said:

I'm still as hyped as ever to play this anyway I don't even think I could notice an irrelevant drop of 60 to 59 fps, correct me if I'm wrong but didn't Nintendo themselves say this would be 1080p native and how can so many reviewers miss that.



gatorboi352 said:

Also, LOL @ all the heads in the sand whining about DF. This is what they do. With every game.



hiptanaka said:

@6ch6ris6 If all the frames were displayed for an equal amount of time, no. But in this case, every 64th frame is displayed twice as long as the others, which could be perceivable as a small stutter once a second.



gatorboi352 said:

@Kaze_Memaryu uh, if that's worrying to you then I don't know what to tell you. There's certain games PS4 can't even do 1080p with. To think Wii Us mediocre spec'd console could is just wishful thinking.

Even Child of Light is only native 720 on Wii U.



Silent said:

I couldn't really care less. These guys can be picky and be like ''OH DIS GAME DIS GAME IS BAD CUZ ITS 59 FPS'' all they want but it's still a great game.

Yes, I have played the game.



19Robb92 said:

Isn't Child of Light a poor example since it runs in the UbiArt engine that was used for Rayman Legends, which does run in 1080p on the WiiU?



ThomasBW84 said:

To be fair to DF, all they're doing, as always, is looking at this technical stuff for those interested. The article's very positive about Mario Kart 8, so it's really just for those that are intrigued. I'm always curious to read these things, but as I wrote in our piece, the 59fps thing is interesting but irrelevant for 99.9% of gamers.

On the 1080p thing, there are people that keep saying Wii U games run natively at that resolution. Again, doesn't matter for most, but being clear on these things is just for the hell of it. Knowledge is nice, right?



JosieC84 said:

I still would chose this game over a ultra-realistic 1080p driving simulator. In fact, most of the games I play are in 720p. Some how when I play 1080p games for more that 2 hours, my eyes get a bit sore.



MikeLove said:


Since they will never do it themselves, I will apologize on behalf of all of those people on here who argued with you the past month swearing up and down that MK8 was 1080p and that not even the lowly PS4 could pull that technical feat off.


I don't care either way honestly, it still looks good, but lot of people now have egg on their face.



0utburst said:

Don't hate Digital Foundry. They're just doing the FPS/res test just like they do on other games if I'm not mistaken. But this would be something to joke or laugh about on ps4one articles and would be sensationalized by some gaming sites.

I guess that's why we didn't get a second screen multiplayer on the gamepad. The hardware were pushed to it's limits. Maybe it's still possible but in lower resolution or frame rate. And Nintendo decided not to do it to give us the best experience possible.



PJR0cks said:

I hope now that I have read about the stutter, it doesn't effect my gaming, I know I wouldn't have realized something like that before knowing this, but now I will probably consciously pay more attention, I hope what DF did, just hasn't ruined this experience for me. as for the native 720p, well I definitely enjoyed SM3DW and so I will have no problem with this.



bouncer0304 said:


Seriously though, doesn't bother me too much. Really looking forward to it now- Nintendo took money from my account earlier so i'm expecting an email soon from them. Friday can't come soon enough!



PAppleyard said:

OK I'm selling my Wii U, cancelling plans to get a 3DS and removing Nintendo Life from my bookmarks. I had no idea Nintendo would pull this 59fps stuff on me!!!!!!'!



originaljohn said:

Digital Foundry is hands down the best thing on the Eurogamer website. They look at the very technical side of games. Taking mario kart 8 for instance, its very interesting to see Nintendo run the 4 player split screen mode at 60FPS but alternating the frames depending on which quarter of the screen your racing on. Stuff like this is a very interesting design choice in a technical level.
Also it was Eurogamer themselves that announced MK8 was 1080p @60FPS so its a sort of egg on their own face situation haha



Auracle said:

Fascinating stuff. These tidbits certainly won't affect my play experience, but it's still rather interesting. Cool article, @ThomasBW84.



RickyWill said:

Still looks and plays amazingly, though.

This is pretty much a "Blast Processing" argument, if you catch my drift.



aaronsullivan said:

The reason people don't notice 720 is because of the consistent 60 fps.

When you get to around 30 fps you start noticing the individual images a bit better and when it dips below occasionally to 20 fps or so you REALLY notice the individual frames. On a large television or projector screen the difference between 720 and 1080 become much easier to discern.

What's happening is your brain interpolates between frames at the higher frame rate creating the illusion of a higher resolution. Putting it simply, until things go still the pixels all smudge together in your brain.

There's a point to this:
A good visual design in a game looks at the whole and focuses on what will make a particular game feel and look great. Judging by reviews and impressions which almost always mention how beautiful the game is, Nintendo came up with a great balance to the visual design that only breaks down with 3 or 4 players. The details don't really matter. Only the experience matters.

My only regret is that Nintendo didn't/couldn't pull off two independent screens for two player racing. I know they must have tried it and judged it poor, but I really wish that option would arrive even at 30 fps. :/



mystman12 said:

@PJR0cks Same here... It's not like like Digital Foundry did anything wrong by making this article, but I'm afraid now that I'm conscious of this stutter, I'll start noticing it... Maybe. I'll be able to forget about it before the game comes out.



aaronsullivan said:

@Fireninjastar @JosieC84
Sounds like an issue with your television or you are actually talking about 1080i. You may be sensitive to alternating lines of resolution showing between frames or however the TV is pulling off 1080p. Either that, or lower frame rates in certain types of games with a lot of motion can frustrate your eyes when they try to interpolate motion between images and 720p games happen to also have higher frame rates.

All other things equal, higher resolution should not cause eye strain. For instance, the world around you is in much higher "resolution" than any screen.



RickyWill said:

When I played the demo at Gamestop, I didn't notice any framerate drop. Let alone ONE frame.



kensredemption said:

What a bunch of picky, pretentious, pompous people. The backhanded-ness of their assessment makes me irritated.



MrGawain said:

If we didn't have graphics fidelity to talk about, a lot of these sites would be out of business. I remember a time kids would argue who would win in a fight between Superman and the Hulk, now they spend playtime arguing which version of Assassin's Creed runs at a greater resolution.

Life is SOOO much better now....



AyeHaley said:

What if Nintendo is releasing a day 1 patch to fix this? They still have time to do so. Not that I mind though!



MikeLove said:


"The Wii U's going to be the definitive edition of Watch_Dogs. I won't settle for this sub-par, pseudo-innovative "next-gen" experience on other platforms."

What a picky, pretentious, pompous statement!



MajinSoul said:

Well, I wouldn't notice the difference between 59 and 60 fps anyway. And yes, it's a quite unfortunate that it's only 720p but the game looks beautiful nontheless.



Jazzer94 said:

@memoryman3 @KennyPowers I was wrong about the 1080p native though I only said what I'm sure Nintendo said it would run at, I have no problem admitting that still can't wait to play the game regardless.



SakuraHaruka said:

Well, another "attempt" to want to show the "big" difference between 720p and 1080p, as if the main reason of a video game is not showing the "sawtooth"...
Oh well, Anyway, in the end who decides if I buy the game is I.



aaronsullivan said:

@Unca_Lz Honestly, because it happens once per second, I have a feeling I'll notice it. If it was 59 fps vs. 60 fps who cares, but it's a once per second stutter that is slight and I do notice stuff like that. Will I care? I'm going to find out.



cookiex said:

Sounds like something that can be easily fixed in a patch if it ends up bothering people (which 99% of the time it won't).

And I'll happily take 59 FPS over 30 FPS in a racing game any day (looking at you Driveclub/The Crew).



wario007 said:

LMFAO at DF……sad that Mario Kart 8 has been OBLITERATING Watchdogs pre orders all over the world, and also sad that Watchdogs is 900p and 30fps and not 1080p 60fps like Ubisoft promised their team now release this?LMFAO!!
Never seen so much sadness in gaming!!
Just as Watchdogs graphics are way reduced that what was promised DF try and destroy Mario Kart 8?
The comments on other sites about DF are hilarious!!
Tone it back, please, you're taking things a bit far — TBD



Jazzer94 said:

@wario007 I don't think Digital Foundry care at all about how well Watchdogs performs salewise why would you even think that?



rjejr said:

@ThomasBW84 - "While we were a tad disappointed in the lack of a more robust single-player mode"

Can you elaborate on this part, sounds more than just technical stuff. Is there no "mirror mode" at the end or is it a lack of challenges that Sonic Transformed had? W/ all the TV stuff and # of tracks and cups it seems like a typical MK game to me. I can't figure out what's missing. Hopefully he's just complaining that it isn't as hard as ModNation Racers on PS3 or a lack of an editor that nobody realistically expected. .



SkywardLink98 said:

@KodyDawg It's not Digital Foundry's fault that the game isn't 1080p. Of the articles on their front page, only one is about a Nintendo console. (Child of Light is there too, so I guess 2.)



Azooooz said:

There differences between 720p and 1080p aren't noticeable if you have 32" TV or smaller. If you have 40" TV and higher, you may see the differences like more image colors and lines.

Also, framerates-per-second, in my opinion, only matters in fighting games where punching and kicking timings are very depending on the framerates.

Finally, will the one fps drop make a huge difference in a game like Mario Kart 8? No, not to the average person, but only with a person who has the eyesight of 12/6.

My advice: stop following the "technicalities" and enjoy the game.



90sRetroGaming said:

Doesn't matter to me. I'm rocking a 32" Sharp 1080p HDTV, so I doubt I would notice the difference between 720p and 1080p anyway. I guess once you hit over the 40" mark then you may notice the difference.

And it's not like the game (in 1-2 player mode) is 30fps. I'm not going to care if it drops to 59fps, lol. Doubt I would notice it. Now if it were 30fps in 1-2 mode... yeah...

720p... It's still HD... I'll take that over SD any day. 59fps... still beats 30fps any day as well =)



memoryman3 said:

@rjejr No World Tour in single player, but........

Single player VS. mode is present. In fact, frantic mode is back and now you can choose your item sets. BOB OMB RACES HERE I COME!



memoryman3 said:

@90sRetroGaming Well I can tell the difference on my 22 inch monitor and so can you. When I turn down the res of the menu screen, pictures look at lot more jagged and blurry. And this game has no AA at all. So expect jaggies everywhere!



memoryman3 said:

@faint Mario Kart at least has COMPLEX driving mechanics unlike a certain customisable racer. Such as drifting, slipstreaming, stunts, spin turbo, boost pads, gliding, and coins and.....




90sRetroGaming said:

@memoryman3 I have a decent amount of 720p games between my WIi U and PS3 and they all look stunning.

Granted I sit around 6-8 feet away from my HDTV but, I still don't notice any difference, if at all, tbh.

Now.. when I'm like two or three inches away from the screen I start noticing some jaggies.. in both 720p AND 1080p.. not one or the other.



UnseatingKDawg said:

Oh my God, it's not native 1080p, it runs at ONE FRAME LOWER THAN EXPECTED.

Jeez, just play the game and have fun...



MadAdam81 said:

@erv I was wanting to come up with a witty response but now I don't have to.
Won't somebody think of the Green and Brown?



rjejr said:

@memoryman3 - "No World Tour in single player"

Thanks. I have no idea what that is so maybe I won't miss it. Do you know if they have mentioned bi-weekly DL challenges like the Wii version had? Those were fun.



BinaryFragger said:

Is it really that surprising? Even the PS4 and Xbox One struggle to push 1080p at 60FPS. Buy a gaming PC if resolution means so much to you.

For the people complaining that Digital Foundry is picking on Nintendo, they do this sort of technical breakdown for Xbox and PlayStation games as well.



MadAdam81 said:

Don't you love the placebo effect with resolution and frame rate? If you tell them Mario Kart 8 is 1080p and 60 fps, they will believe it upon seeing. When informed its 720p and only 59 fps, they will notice the extra jagginess and stutter.



electrolite77 said:


People have always argued about which is the best version, all the way back to the C64/Spectrum days and the Megadrive/SNES days. It's not a new thing.



electrolite77 said:

Why are so many people complaining? This is what DF does with lots of games on lots of formats. They do it for those who aren't interested. They're not saying anyone should cancel the pre-order and nor are they saying it's anything other than a great game.

Good grief.



electrolite77 said:


Of course, but that wasn't much use to anyone who wasn't an arcade version, hence the debates about games on home computers/consoles (it included non-Arcade conversions too)



wario007 said:

This rant has been removed due to excessive use of insults for others as well as profanity. If you'd like to share your thoughts here, we ask that you be civil about it. If you have any questions, please feel free to get in touch. Thanks! — TBD



BinaryFragger said:


What I find funny is Digital Foundry actually praises the game a lot in the article yet people are still complaining because they dared to mention some minor flaws.

They ended the article by saying "don't let these minor polish issues keep you away from the game - this is Mario Kart at its best and brightest."
Yet people are saying Digital Foundry is anti-Nintendo... my goodness.



Thaswizz said:

The game is close, and i cant wait to have blast with it. To care about such trival things would be stupid. Got enough real problems, game runs great which is all i care about



Jayvir said:

The way I see it, I don't think either PS4 or X1 have had a major release that's hit 1080p/60fps any way. Like mentioned in the article, people can't tell the difference between 59 and 60 fps any way and a LOT of people can't tell the difference between 720p and 1080p or else we wouldn't be having this discussion to begin with. Therefore this whole topic is irrelevant.



Thaswizz said:

I agree jayvir, and that is true both have had AAA titles not up to full 1080, doesnt mean game isnt quality.



aaronsullivan said:

@MadAdam81 Like the article said, once you see it you can't un-see it and now we know what to look for. No where NEAR a million people have played it before the recent GameStop promotion and you can't just assume no one noticed because you haven't seen people posting about it on the internet... and I'm sure more than one person noticed once someone discovered it at DF.

Whether anyone should care is another matter entirely. It's not likely to be distracting for most people even if you do point it out. I just happen to be sensitive to that sort of thing.



unrandomsam said:

@Jayvir Yeah but un-antialiased 720p upscaled to 1080p is not the same. I wish they included more about the test setup. (If it is to do with Mario Kart TV they should be willing to offer an option to disable it). They also didn't mention whether it is no longer a problem just using off-tv.



aaronsullivan said:

Mostly agree with you, but timing and a smooth frame rate is incredibly important in a racing game and easily just as important as timing in a fighting game. In both cases it's more important if you are serious about competing, but going back to low-frame-rate racing games is a frustrating experience as split-second timing is always needed.

I don't think the once-a-second stutter thing talked about in the article is going to be significant, though.



Einherjar said:

59FPS ? No native 1080p resolution ?
Cancelled my preorder, sold my WiiU, gave up gaming !
Thats it, ive had it with these stupid nintendo games always falling behind with their missing frames and their lack of pixels !

Remeber the times when games were judged by how fun they are to play ?
And all the talk about "its important for competetive play" Sure, that 1/50 of a second can really cost you a nano second of your time, thats just messed up !
Better scratch multiplayer in general, since its unplayable like that !



Jazzer94 said:

@wario007 I think you need to take your medication dude because you sound nuts.

Edit: Also the article by DF was praising the game further showing the laziness of people who are bashing them and haven't actually read the full thing.



faint said:

@memoryman3 I agree but it is a party kart racer. I think if they made it totally free roaming it would have to be something else. Heck it's to the point where ninty has to get outside developers to shake up the formula as a spinoff because if they didn't people would get p@@@ed gamers are hypocrites and it sucks



DerpSandwich said:

@Azooooz I don't know why everyone keeps saying this. I have a 32" 1080p and the difference between 720 and 1080 is extremely noticeable. It's the difference between straight lines and jaggy ones. Some people are less nitpicky than me, and that's fine, but too many people are under the impression that it actually makes no difference.



Jayvir said:

@unrandomsam The point remains that NO ONE would have seen this otherwise if they hadn't pointed it out. When literally every other news outlet is talking about how amazing this game looks and absolutely no mention of things like this, it's a good indication that this doesn't matter. People can't tell this stuff with their own eyes... or else places like DF wouldn't exist.



aaronsullivan said:

Now this is just getting argumentative, but I'll say this: How do you know nobody noticed? Just because word of it doesn't reach you doesn't mean nobody noticed.

Not much to say on it. It's not a big deal. Most people won't care whether they notice or not.



Discostew said:

Something tells me that 59fps is not the game itself but their recording equipment. It's not been the first time their equipment caused problems. I'm fine with 720p after experiencing the game at Gamestop prior to pre-ordering. The game still looks absolutely gorgeous.



wario007 said:

@Jazzer94 how can any human being see the difference between 60fps and 59 fps without any digital help? Digital Foundry's seen the difference, WTF ...



Artwark said:

@KodyDawg Its not just Digital Foundary, Its everyone's response to Nintendo. Ever since Wii had been there, a lot of people have complained that Nintendo games are kiddie based and the fact that they aren't bringing back Star Fox, F-Zero or Metroid. People fail to understand that every Nintendo game is completely different in its own.

Mario fans like me can easily tell the differences between the Super Mario Land series and the rest of the 2D Super Mario games. Its just that majority of these gamers can't tell the differences from the games that Nintendo makes.

If its economy problems, people point out at Nintendo when clearly other companies are also suffering at a loss like Capcom.



Andross said:

The big let down is the lack of anti aliasing, MK8 will look very pixelated on a bigger screen



IronMan28 said:

Time for me to cancel my preorder, which doesn't exist because I only buy from eShop...



Cathousemaster said:

As stated in other articles, I'm very happy to report that FLOWERWORKS does run at native 1080p 60fps on the WiiU. And it uses a fraction of the consoles power... and is totally un-optimised. So its, very, VERY possible to do so on the console. 1080p does suck LOTS more RAM, and doubles the pixel fill-rate though.



unrandomsam said:

@Discostew That pointless Mario Kart TV feature could be the problem. (Dunno why they would add something like that before some anti aliasing). What was the TV size like at Gamestop ?



cookiex said:

I did some research and a guy on NeoGaf claims that this little hiccup seems to be caused by a fault with computer A.I, and wouldn't happen in time trial mode or 12-player online races. And since the 'duplicate frame' happens in a repeated pattern it's pretty much a bug and not performance-based (whether or not to patch it is up to Nintendo).



3Daniel said:

i tried the demo at gamestop and the game was weird. it reminded me of super circuit in terms of the characters placement on the screen. the way the camera placement was was a little off putting. i also didnt care for the way the gamepad felt while playing but it was locked in a horizontal position where i tend to play games with the controller in a vertical position. i think im going to hav to pick up a wii u pro for this since smash is out in winter.



Nintenjoe64 said:

People should chill out. They're not even close to saying it looks bad or affects the game in any way. I doubt DF's analysis of WatchDogs frame rate is going to be so kind.

I would like to know if they used a disc or digital...



Blueberry said:

It's quite sad to me that NintendoLife is filled with all these aggressively defensive people that don't read the article first. Personally I think it's good that DF are doing objective assesments of the graphics and especially if it is someting Nintendo can patch away.
Looking at it this way, Nintendo only needs to make the game run 2% faster and the game won't have this mini stutter every second. It does seem like that optimization would be worth it, especially for players who have sensitive eyes. As DF says, Nintendo usually doesn't skimp on the graphics front and I hope they will continue with that high pedigree in the future.



kereke12 said:

Why does everyone care about this stuff? This is why I say Gaming keeps slowly dying. That's the way I feel about it.



pukka-pie said:

Why oh why has this framerate fad burst onto the scene over the past year... I am sick as hell of people banging on about framerates... it makes virtually zero difference to the playability of a game. So sick of it right now.



Psyclone said:

@ThomasBW84 "it's confirmed that the title runs at a native 720p, as is typically expected on Wii U."
How pathetic of NintendoLife, they did not prove anything, anybody that can type into a keyboard could of said what DF said in the article, they did not prove or disprove that it runs at 720p or 1080p, I honestly could care less about it but the fact that you guys buy into this is funny as hell.



absuplendous said:

@Psyclone Why do you seemingly suspect that they're simply lying? Do you approach every article with the mindset that "anyone could just type anything, why believe anything?" Skepticism is healthy to a point, but DF has quite a history at analyzing these things, and doesn't seem to have an agenda to attribute to lying about a video game's resolution.

I'm sadly growing used to fans becoming ultra-defensive and hostile when encountering what they consider to be an attack, but this particular brand of cynicism puzzles me.

On the general topic, I played the demo and didn't have any issues with the video quality, though the anti-aliasing was noticeable.



Psyclone said:

@absuplendous I clearly said they didn't prove anything, all they said was:

"We can finally put that rumour to rest right here and confirm that Mario Kart 8 instead operates at what is effectively the console's standard 1280x720."

The Wii U has plenty of games running at 1080p who's to say what is the consoles standard? like I said anybody with a keyboard can type that up, how about some in depth analysis about the resolution before making a statement like that? that's all I'm saying. I have more than a valid point and if you take that as defending or attacking, then you should take a second look at yourself, cynicism. HA



Megumi said:

Mario Kart 8 is doomed, DOOOOOOOMED!...
Didn't Nintendo said their games would all be 720p? Though I'll admit I kinda figured they just meant their launch window games. :c



Hy8ogen said:

Fanboys should calm the F down. DF did not claim in anyway that this is a bad game...They praised it for gods sake.

Furthermore these specs doesn't bother me a single bit. Cuz I don't have a 80" TV....



sasoriobi said:

i remember when they were braging how wii u has more 1080p/60fps games than xbox one and ps4. lol digital foundary pretty much confirmed wii u is last gen. even i own a wii u, i'll not even buy mario kart 8 because its a generic rehash as mario kart 7 and wii. its funny how ubisoft was able to make rayman legends run 1080p/60fps but nintendo cant even run their on 2d platformers and other games 1080p. it pretty shows nintendo lazy efforts in games. other reason why am skipping the game is just the pathetic character rosterm, water down battle mode, lame online multiplayer that can even run voice chat and graphics.



Psyclone said:

@Hy8ogen I game on the PC so resolution is the last thing I need to worry about and not a fanboy, not even close.. I think it is a beautiful game regardless of what articles say, I can say the same for those sites that say it runs at 1080p, they haven't proven anything neither.



Yoshis_VGM said:

There really isn't that much of a difference between 720p and 1080p. Really, there isn't. It's HD, and it still looks beautiful. And who cares if the game is 60fps or 59fps? Nintendo is the only company that consistently hits the 60fps mark, which is quite an accomplishment.



absuplendous said:

@Psyclone By asserting that "anyone with a keyboard can type that up," you are insinuating that what they have to say is baseless, i.e., they're making things up. What sort of in depth analysis are you looking for? What would prove it for you, and what would you prevent you from asserting "anyone could type/photoshop that?"

Again, this isn't some random blog; in depth analysis is what DF is known for. Accusing them of making unsubstantiated claims is like claiming The Weather Channel is mainly just guessing at forecasts.

As for questioning the console's de facto standard resolution, there's the fact that most titles games are in 720p. I'd cite sources, but anyone with a keyboard could type those, too.



noctowl said:

Lol at people saying they are going to notice. "You can't unsee it once you see it" big freaking deal because you won't see it anyway. But keep pretending, it amuses me.



Psyclone said:

@absuplendous so in other words you believe anything they say? what I would want is actual confirmation from the creators (Nintendo), luckily they don't worry about that and instead worry about making fun games, like those other sites that say it runs at 1080p they don't have prove neither.



Fearsome said:

Just because digital foundry came to this conclusion does not make it so. I would be interested in seeing the methodology they use to reach this conclusion and if their results can be duplicated. I know this is just a gaming site and most people rarely question what their told, but it would have been helpful if they provide a link that would provide this information. Nullis In Verb, words to live by.



Ernest_The_Crab said:

@Azooooz It'll probably be noticeable for anyone that decides to post videos (and their viewers). Slow motion effects generally need a higher frame rate to support.

Probably won't affect gameplay in any manner though, however it might feel a little off once you switch to 3+ players from 1 or 2 players.



Kaze_Memaryu said:

@gatorboi352 It's definitely worrying since Nintendo was outlining 1080p power for WiiU, while Sony talked about 4k video streaming (according to someone in a discussion) alongside 1080p gaming, and Microsoft even boasted with 4k gaming. And now, one console after another fails to meet its own outlines.
The fact that even Nintendo can't make a game with 1080p resolution either means it would've taken too long (which is unlikely), or that the WiiU simply can't do it at all.



SomeBitTripFan said:

Seriously, all DF is doing is pointing out some flaws. They could say the game was 1080p and 60 FPS (to which a number of you would now be praising them), but they're giving an honest report. If you're really trying to argue that the Wii U is a powerhouse, then just enjoy your own delusion and leave the sensible people to enjoy their games.



absuplendous said:

@Psyclone Given DF's history, I have no reason to automatically question the veracity of their claims. If they made an outlandish claim, I might have something to question, but noting that a game's resolution is the same as those of most other games from the same publisher doesn't make my spider sense tingle.

Nintendo of Japan typically publishes resolution on the back of their game boxes, so you should have actual official confirmation of the detail you don't care about soon.



cookiex said:


Wii U can do native 1080p, Wind Waker HD & Rayman Legends are examples of that. Nintendo probably had a 1080p target for MK8 but wouldn't sacrifice the game's high visual fidelity nor it's frame-rate (the latter more so) to achieve that goal with the hardware at hand.

Microsoft would've never been able to do proper 4K gaming with XBO since that would require far more expensive graphics components than what the market would allow.



123akis said:

you stated it's 720p but you said you can display in 1080p?? and why didn't Nintendo make it in 1080p? but Mario Kart 8



bassoongoon said:

"...during normal gameplay, Mario Kart 8 continually drops down to 59fps."

Well: I just can't buy this game now. It drops to 59fps during normal gameplay? That is just unacceptably bad. I mean come on Nintendo, get it together!




electrolite77 said:


So the independent website is making it up, but you unquestioningly think the manufacturers of the game who've got a vested interest in selling it would be telling the truth? Ohhhh kayyyy.

Would you like to buy some magic beans? Reasonable price.



CaPPa said:

If people don't notice other games dropping from 60fps down to 30fps I doubt that they'll notice 60fps dropping to 59fps.



Kaze_Memaryu said:

@CaPPa I definitely notice the difference, and it really angers me since it, technically speaking, diminishes the amount of control you have over the game.



rbmoura85 said:

@Kaze_Memaryu as a matter of fact, nintendo has said prior to wii u release that most of its games would be 720p, specially the ones developed by nintendo themselves



Varoennauraa said:

Seeing people make a such big deal about this 1 frame, the smallest deal in the world, makes me sick. It's still as beautiful game and still as loving smooth as it was yesterday.

It's far, far, in the smoother side of games and I wish even half of the games were this smooth.
Please watch the profanity — TBD



BoobooMama said:

59 fps/720p - this is the biggest blow to gaming since the crash of 1983. I hope we can recover sooner than later.




59-60 lmfao thats actually funny that they would even think anyone would care, and I will play this in 1080 on my 60 inch sharp so bring on the mariocart because these games are insanely fun and thats all that matters!



Action51 said:

Here's the funny thing about all this:

The only people who truly cared about the exact resolution and frame rate were the people who troll and hate all day on Nintendo forums anyway...

So while they are dancing about and gloating, the rest of us are...dancing about and gloating because...less then a week to go till we can all have fun playing Mario kart 8!!!

You know @memoryman3 @KennyPowers and @Superiospider... you can always buy it, have fun like everyone else, and we can all forget the hand wringing, whining, and doom and gloom.

I'd really hate for you all to feel like you have to miss out on the fun!



Monkeh said:

It all depends for me really. If I can notice a stutter every second, it'll be quite annoying. If this isn't the case, I couldn't care less! We'll see in less than a week.



SanderEvers said:

59 FPS is like a frame every 16,9 millisecond. A normal movie runs at 24 ms which is a normal refresh rate used in TVs so even if a game runs at 1080p/60FPS it will still be only 24ms per frame that's actually shown on the panel.



Action51 said:

@BoobooMama - copies of MK8 will turn up 25 years later in an underground pit in the middle of the desert because it's 59fps.

By the way, NTSC...the American television standard that we've used since the 1950s for framerate transmission is 29.97 interlaced or "drop frame" which means essentially that Americans are used to seeing this doubling frame effect on just about every broadcast television show ever broadcast from the time we are born until now.

  • this also includes all NTSC regional DVD, VHS, and Betacam machines
  • Japan also uses NTSC television standard

Any other Americans or Canadians here notice that drop frame when you watch TV...nope. Don't say that you do, because you don't.

In Europe where PAL is the standard, you are used to seeing only 25 FPS on all broadcasts. Traditional film is 24 FPS but not limited by any resolution because it's strictly analog. Digital film formats are a whole other animal.



Action51 said:

And finally...just to clarify everything:

  • Would I have preferred it runs natively in 1080p?
    Yes, of course.
  • Can you tell the difference between 1080p vs 720p on an HDTV?
    Yes, most people can.
  • Would I prefer reducing visual effects to achieve a true 1080p resolution?
  • Will I play the hell out of this game starting May 30?
    You better believe it!


FriedSquid said:

I really shouldn't be surprised by the amount of people in this comment section who are overreacting without even reading the whole article, but I am.



ledreppe said:

Doesn't bother me, I've never been able to discern frame rate drops before, and I'm not about to start. Come May 30th, I'll be doing nothing else but playing the damn thing.



MussakkuLaden said:

@Psyclone You do know that native resolution is something that can be measured if you have the right hard- and software, do you? And not just the difference between 1080 and 720, but exactly, with one line precision. So there is no reason to suspect that Digital Foundry, commonly a reliable source on such matters, is making anything up without prove. It's a comparatively simple matter, so they hardly need to explain how they determined to resolution.
Secondly, no, there are not "plenty" of games running in 1080p on the WiiU. Only a very few (which is not surprising, could not be expected otherwise, and certainly no problem). Plus, if MK8 ran on 1080 natively, Nintendo would surely highlight that, as they did with other 1080 native titles in the past.



Action51 said:

@ledreppe - It depends.

I have Batman: Arkham Origins for Wii U. While it looks great for the most part, there are some frame rate stutter and drops when gliding around the open city at high speeds. These are pretty glaring and we're talking about dropping from 30fps to probably around 15 or so in those moments...that's significant. That's bad porting.

This 59fps drop? Makes me wonder specifically if this isn't some artifact of displaying or not displaying on an NTSC vs PAL mode monitor or will be imperceivable.



ACK said:

My thoughts are that this info is probably not worth knowing. Good night and good karting to all.



memoryman3 said:

@Action51 Arkham City drops from 60fps in interiors to an inconsistent 20fps in free roam. Especially in the last mission which is pushing the Wii U's limits (looks stunning but is a slideshow)



Action51 said:

@memoryman3 Are you sure it's 60fps inside buildings? It didn't seem that fluid to me.

Don't get me wrong, I actually enjoyed the game overall despite the sloppy porting a few annoying bugs (like destroyed comm stations not being removed from the map display and enemies getting stuck in walls), but when you are flying around the city from building to building it really dips and even freezes from time to time.



Cia said:

the 1080/ 720p debate gotta be the most ridiculous thing in the history of video games.



Cathousemaster said:

Mario Kart does NOT run at 59fps. Saying it does is totally incorrect.
As DF explicitly said, every second one of the frames is duplicated (i.e. frames 59 and 60 are identical). This is most likely because of additional processing that is done regularly once a second (music, AI or other) on this frame, meaning the next frame is not ready for display within the required time.

As mentioned by a poster above, its also likely to relative to a game mode, specific settings, etc.

As long as there is no visual stutter, this is totally irrelevant to the game.

This is also typical behaviour of "most" 60fps games, unless they run at 60fps ALWAYS (i.e. fps never dips).

This could quite possibly be fixed in a patch, or even a OS update. Or running the game digitally, or from a hard disk rather than disc.



ACK said:

OK, so I blazed through the comment section and I REALLY hate that I'm doing this, but I feel compelled to clarify the technicalities of the "59fps" claim.

What DF specifically claims is that 1 frame out of every 64 is duplicated, not lost (meaning this is unlikely performance related, in the typical sense). So, in effect, there is a straight string of 60 frames displayed consecutively without a hitch, only the 64th frame is duplicated for some reason. It's not clear whether this is a bug or some sort of trickery on Nintendo's part. It's also unknown how the engine processes this duplication in regards to lag. The lack of screen tearing at least suggests there is no issue with syncing. Again, this is not a normal performance bottleneck since it occurs in an exact cycle with a predictable result and no apparent mechanical (gameplay-related) issues.

Realistically this is something you don't need to know (nor want to, honestly) when your goal is to simply enjoy playing games. MK8 is grand fun and you would have to be out of your mind to let this sort of detail detract from your enjoyment in any way.

That said, the main relevance is as a technical peculiarity, especially considering Nintendo's unique development ethos.



retro_player_22 said:

Not really 1080p, only 720p yadiyadayada? Who cares, the game looks great no matter the resolution, just enjoy the game for what it is.



LookAtMahFace said:

If most people here had actually read the whole article, they would know that DF isn't saying that you shouldn't play the game because it don't runs at 1080p 60fps. They are just showing the facts, and they're actually praising the game, so there's really no need to hating on them.



Funny_Moblin said:

@MAB Are you joking or being serious? Do physical games actually affect the frame rate? From what I've heard of some games, the only difference is loading times, but frames per second? Actually?



SDDMN said:

I knew 720P 60 FPS (mostly...heh >_>) was going to be the resolution for 8, so the revelation about it being that doesn't hit me at all. Either way, the game looks great, looks like it'll play great, and it looks like a game I'll be playing for years. Bring on the 30th!



ikki5 said:

" Mario Kart 8 continually drops down to 59fps. This may not seem like a big deal - most will probably not notice it at all, and it has zero affect on playability - but it has a noticeable impact on image fluidity that mars what would otherwise be a perfectly consistent frame-rate. "

I call BS on that. a change of 1 FPS when the FPS is already that high, NO ONE will notice. Unless you are a common house fly, the human eye will not notice that much. The human eye already has enough trouble noticing changes of FPS after 50 or so. Most people probably can't even see the full 60 FPS. If people claim they can see a difference from 59 to 60, then it is all in their head and it's psychology working on them.



MAB said:

@Funny_Moblin Yeah, if you compare physical & digital versions of 3rd party titles like Batman, Assassins Creed & Splinter Cell there is a massive difference with framerates and performance because the disc drive doesn't run as fast as the HDD... I got the physical versions of Assassins Creed 3 & ZombiU at launch and found them riddled with FR drops/bugs/freezing but after purchasing the D4L ones when they were on sale I played through both games without any issues at all



kensredemption said:

@KennyPowers It's not picky, pretentious or pompous if it's true. With the PS34X361 experience of Watch_Dogs the gameplay will be no different next-gen as it was last-gen. Standard gamepad + companion app experience has already been done with Call of Duty, Assassin's Creed, Ground Zeroes and Battlefield. If useless gimmicks like that along with the superficiality of "superior graphics" defines the "next-generation", I'd rather back the Wii U all through the next decade. Oh, and by the way, this isn't IGN. If you want to troll, just go wade through that cesspool of pseudo-journalism for a few hours.



Gabjazz said:

Wow how nice comments community !! I'm really amazed nobody got dissapointed since I went to other sites and I saw it full of trolls celebrating as it was new year jajajaja no trolls here that's very good !! I'll stick to this site more often see you all in the race !!!! I'm glad l will be playing Mario Kart 8 next week with all of you guys !!!!!



KryptoKrunch said:

Man, Mario Kart 8 has a few people already salty and it isn't even out yet. Gonna have extra fun with this one.



kevkeepsplaying said:

@Silent They DIDN'T say it was a bad game, though. I don't see where everyone is getting this from. This is Digital Foundry, they are supposed to properly analyze the graphical workings of a game. The fact that they stated that it drops to 59 fps isn't a stab at Nintendo, it's their job. You guys are ridiculous.



TwilightAngel said:

Oh god its 59fps i hate this game now im going to gamestop to cancel my order. Wow this article mind blowing i dont care im going to get this game neitherless.



TwilightAngel said:

@Superiorspider Cause its 59fps!? I feel you man this game garbage now because of that and not cause its a great game and the may be the best in the series not for that, nope cause its 59fps thats why.I feel you from the bottom of my heart.



MikeLove said:


And digital foundry posting the technical breakdowns of video games across all consoles is neither "picky, pretentious or pompous" either, since the results are true too.

Don't be a hypocrite.



GreatPlayer said:

I don't see how the framerate matters that such. Sonic Transformed on Wii has 30ftp but the same game on the computer version has 60ftp. They both look good to me.



faint said:

@memoryman3 actualy i think that was shoddy porting. the wonderful 101 never does this and is just as demanding by the end as arkam city



Funny_Moblin said:

@MAB Wow. Since you mention this happens with third party games, hopefully this doesn't mean the same thing happens with first part games (Nintendo does know their hardware better than anybody else after all. And even if there is a difference, I hope it's very little. Luckily, I haven't heard anybody bring this up for Mario Kart 8 (besides you), so I think there will be no difference. Thanks for the response.



Senario said:

Even as a PC gamer a gripe over 1 fps from 60 to 59 is really not important. And if you care about resolution that is ok but eeeeeh. Art style is way more important than resolution. For a console I think mario kart 8 looks great and is a good addition to its library.



andrea987 said:

Knowing Nintendo, they'll probably release a patch for that 'lost fps' not long from release.
Usually, as in this case, DF use a different (higher) standard to judge N games, and that can be seen in two completely different ways: 1) flattering, because they held N programming and producing skills in such high regard, or 2) unjust and prejudicial. I lean more on the first stance, but I understand why some will see it differently.
On the game, it looks and play fantastic, I'm sure, and I can't wait to get my hands on it, but as most people here, I'd have loved the 2 players full screen tv/gamepad, ala Sonic Racing.



Action51 said:

@faint - The problems with Arkham Origins had nothing to do with the Wii U's "limitations" as @memoryman3 so desperately wishes...

The game itself shipped riddled with bugs and ran poorly even on high end PCs where a glitch in the first battle with Killer Croc would render the game unplayable for many. The Xbox 360 and PS3 versions were notorious for lock-ups, crashes, and screen tearing.

I know this because I pre-ordered to get the bonus content...and remember seeing all the Xbox 360 and PS3 people complaining about frequent crashes.

The Wii U version actually ran the best of all versions on shipping, but suffered from frame rate issues in exterior areas due to sloppy porting. They made some patches that improved the overall stability of the game, but it's still got some bugs and issues.



Beechbone said:

I was wondering why Nintendo was showing this aliased 720p screenshots all the time and here's the answer. 720p with no AA. I couldn't care less about resolutiongate so it doesn't affect my thoughts on the game. Still getting it on day one. And kudos to Nintendo that they didn't lie with promotional screenshots like almost everybody else does.



Ultrasyd said:

Digital Foundry says nothing bad there. They are into tech stuff, that's all. 59 fps doesn't change anything, they just mesured this fact.
The game being 720p isn't a big deal. The thing is that all the people who usually "don't care about graphics" were so excited because it was supposed to be 1080p, saying that Nintendo confirmed that. But Nintendo confirmed nothing, Eurogamer, in their review, just thought it was 1080p, without in depth analysis.
To me, it was clear that 1080p was quite unrealistic or an amazing performance, as all the games released before like 3D World or Donkey Kong are 720p too. And all the screenshots were 720 ...
This is an interesting piece of information though (not the framerate, but the resolution) in my opinion. 1st because it's just a fact, while there were so many rumors about 1080p, at some point we have to know what is true. And 2nd because many say that devs don't know how to handle the Wii U correctly, and hence deliver "bad port" with low framerate, etc. It's cool to see what Nintendo is able to do with their own hardware.
Gameplay is the most important, but I recognise that I do care about resolution and technical stuff, because I've always been fond of the machines themselves and what they have inside. It was more interesting in the past though (80's & 90's). Now it's all about pixels and fps,but if you remember, in the past we had the number of colors displayed, the resolution, the number of sound channels, with FM and samples playback or not, the size of the sprites, etc.
If you don't care about resolution and didn't celebrate because it was 1080p (whooop, champagne !!), then you have no reason to be disapointed or hate on DF.

And don't forget that the Wii U is the most power efficient

So looking forward to this game ! Only 5 days to go



MAB said:

@Funny_Moblin No probs mate, MK8 is Nintendo's first fast paced game on Wii U that has alot of action going on in the background as well as on the track, so we will see how it goes... I will be Digital 4 Lyfe anyway



rastamadeus said:

If you can actually notice it running at 59fps rather than 60fps then you might as well just admit defeat, accept your life has been pointless and realise your dreams of ever touching a woman (or man, depending on preference) just will not happen - without paying for it.



SilentHunter382 said:

@pukka-pie Oh you are so wrong. FPS can affect the game. Try playing a fighting game, If it doesn't have a consent FPS it can break the game.

People really need to remember that FPS is more important then Resolution. While I am disappointing that its not native 1080p I rather have a game at 720p and have a 60fps then a game at 1080p and have a 30fps.

If the game can run at 1080p @ 60fps then do it but if its going to have a lot of FPS drops running at that resolution then I rather them drop the resolution till they get a steady fps.

@rastamadeus Facepalm



Kifa said:

Sad to see so many people talking trash on the "60 vs 59 fps difference". I, for one, easily spotted that thing in Trine 2 on my PC, where I had to lock the game to 59 fps to prevent horrible timing problems (long story short - a not all that well matched hardware), but then, after a set period of time a "skip" would occur, where game would pause for a frame to re-sync to a 60hz monitor.

What I'm trying to tell is that this kind of stutter is very annoying. You don't see it as much as you feel it, and it's a shame that it got in the game despite the fact that every other MK game except M64 was at solid, v-synced 60 fps. Also as @SilentHunter382 said - frames per second are more important than resolution, all the time. And there is a CHASM between 30 and 60 fps, and anyone saying that human eye can't spot the difference simply has no knowledge on how our eyesight works. Or is just in denial/delusional phase, but I digress.

I don't really think this has to do with physical vs digital copies. Internal NAND of Wii U is very slow, just as is any HDD connected to it via USB (because of the interface), and both are a match performance-wise for Wii U digital drive. The thing that might be causing the stutter is saving the replay data to the internal flash - as I've said incredibly slow, especially at writing - so I'm curious to see if using external HDD for saves will improve things. I guess I'll find out soon enough (preorder still standing)...

But hey, at least Nintendo didn't lie in their screenshots, and that's a good thing. We're getting far too many "target renders" of games recently...



Morph said:

I find it hard to believe anyone can see the difference between 60fps and 59fps. I also find the idea that Nintendo would release a patch to 'fix' it a bit strange, if it was fixable wouldn't they have already resolved it during development?



Action51 said:


Where did that hidden frame go? A new expose reveals what Nintendo is hiding from us!

Frame 62:
Frame 63:
Frame 64:
Frame 65:

59fpsGate - Exposed!



Peach64 said:

Cringing at the comments here again. Eurogamer loved MK8. Digital Foundry is not criticising the game. This is what they do, insane level of technical analysis. Some people love this. It's not nit-picking or being negative.

Seriously guys, it's getting embarrassing, whenever an article is posted, most of the comments just turn into 'Oh, who cares about THAT anyway?'. The world is not out to get you.



andrea987 said:

@Kifa NL (and other reviewers , naturally) has been playing it for the last couple of weeks. I'm pretty sure someone would have spotted it, if it was a visible stutter. DF noticed it thanks to their gizmos, not because they have special eye-sight...



moroboshi said:

@6ch6ris6 Very easily actually. TVs update at 60 frames per second, so 60fps game will give a flawlessly smooth update. At 59fps, you will get a very regular skip or judder in the motion on screen. It will be especially noticeable on something that is cleanly scrolling horizontally or vertically.

Erratic frame rates are less bothersome as they tend to go through longer patches of even frame rates, be that 30 or 60fps, with occasional bout of slowdown. The regular frame skipping in MarioKart will be worse.



moroboshi said:

@FineLerv If you have no interest in the tech behind games, then don't read Digital Foundry. If you like knowing how the sausages are made, then it's an excellent resource.



FineLerv said:

@moroboshi "If you have no interest in the tech behind games, then don't read Digital Foundry. If you like knowing how the sausages are made, then it's an excellent resource."

Thanks for the guide on how to use the Internet. :/

If only it were that simple. The problem arises when this sort of over-analytical "number porn" influences the conversations we have about the quality of a game. When this occurs, it devalues gaming as both an art and as a form of entertainment and does nothing but fuel baseless playground bickering while continuously obstructing bonafide discourse.



moroboshi said:

@ikki5 You be more wrong. Frame skipping is highly noticeable, as the missing frame is a clear pause is an otherwise smooth sequence of images.



moroboshi said:

@FineLerv The purpose of Digital Foundry is to analyse game tech. They're not there to evaluate how good a game is, merely to discuss its implementation of screen space ambient occlusion, it's temporal anti aliasing, deferred rending, etc, and of course, how stable the frame rate is, and the size of the render buffer.

Digital Foundry articles are exclusively targeted at industry insiders and those with a keen interest inengine tech. You have completely misunderstood why the site exists. You should ignore it and stick to metacritic.



FineLerv said:

@Peach64 "Seriously guys, it's getting embarrassing, whenever an article is posted, most of the comments just turn into 'Oh, who cares about THAT anyway?'."

The only thing embarrassing around here is your constant attempts to pass yourself off as an intellectual. How about for once you actually contribute to the conversation instead of just telling everyone else why their opinions are wrong?



FineLerv said:

@moroboshi "Digital Foundry articles are exclusively targeted at industry insiders and those with a keen interest inengine tech. You have completely misunderstood why the site exists. You should ignore it and stick to metacritic."

And you have completely misunderstood how the Internet works if you haven't realised the ways in which people use it to form their opinions. Maybe you should ignore it and stick to magazines?



moroboshi said:

@FineLerv I have no idea what point you're trying to make.

Do you want Digital Foundry to close down? If so, I think you're wrong. Personally I'm interested in game tech, and am intelligent enough to know that engine performance and game design are two separate things.



FineLerv said:

@moroboshi "Do you want Digital Foundry to close down? If so, I think you're wrong. Personally I'm interested in game tech, and am intelligent enough to know that engine performance and game design are two separate things."

Alright, let's start again then. offers olive branch

What I want is for the conversation to only matter to people who are "industry insiders and those with a keen interest inengine tech". And I want everybody else to be able to say "none of this matters at all" so that we can start talking about what is actually important in games (without somebody else telling them they should just stick to Metacritic). Instead we have the "Great XBoxOne 1080p War of 2014" because people DO actually use Digital Foundry for all the wrong reasons. Until we can acknowledge that performance specs are almost completely irrelevant to the kinds of discussions we should normally be having about gaming 40 years after Pong, we can't hope to move the discussion forward.



TurretGunZ said:

I cant stand that in this new generation of gaming all everyone is caring about now is that every game just HAS to be in 60fps, 1080p HD. Its like we are now back to caring only about graphics and little about gameplay.



moroboshi said:

@FineLerv To me, technical performance DOES matter. An unstable frame rate can seriously hinder gameplay (see SkyRim on PS3). If such things don't bother you, that's great, I'm happy for you.

Mostly though I find Digital Foundry interesting because I like learning about rendering techniques.

As for the 1080p thing, again, if you don't think it matters, then just ignore it. Same goes for everything on the internet, you cherry pick the things you like and ignore the rest.



MadAdam81 said:

@moroboshi except it is at 60 fps, just one in.every 64 gets repeated in.AI races. Considering that's the only type of race in the demo and either nobody noticed it until the report or everyone who noticed it kept it secret until after the report.
It also won't affect gameplay, as games usually take input at a much higher rate than 60 ps.
As for NTSC v PAL, I believe that is only SD, and HD is different, and TV's with an HDMI cable can display at 60fps. Considering MK is 60 fps with an occasional repeated frame, nothing will be affected, and there will be no stutter to notice unless you have a computer eye and brain.



Yorumi said:

A lot of the responses here are quite frankly embarrassing. It does nintendo no good to offer blind worship and go on the attack against anyone who just simply states facts. It's just plain pathetic that a site says good things about a game and people go on the attack and make all kinds of stupidly sarcastic and childish comments because the site dared not declare nintendo god incarnate.

It's an interesting read. Would we really be so bad off is nintendo tries even harder and makes even better games in order to ensure DF has nothing negative to say? Or would you prefer nintendo starts saying "eh they're probably not going to notice you can cut some corners"?

No one is perfect and without criticism they won't know how to improve. Criticism makes people better.



Shy_Guy said:

I can't tell the difference between 720p and 1080p. This doesn't bother me,I'm still getting it on day 1!



Action51 said:

@Yorumi - Here's the problem.

Yes...there are a few who attack Digital Foundry with blanket attacks, and that's unproductive.

The real problem lies within the greater gaming culture who are so eager to abuse and misinterpret these highly technical findings to further their childish "console war" agendas...and that's creating this backlash, unfortunately.

Take my example earlier in the thread: Batman Arkham Origins. Or the much criticized Battlefield 4. Here you have games that clearly suffer from serious performance problems, porting issues, and bugs to a degree that any lay person will notice immediately and it may actually effect a player's enjoyment of the game.

In the case of Mario Kart 8, we have a game that amazed everyone with it's beautiful design and smooth gameplay...until Digital Foundry gave the internet a reason to feel otherwise. Suddenly the ONLY thing people see is the missing 64th frame (hint: it's aliens) and now the gorgeous visuals that impressed everyone yesterday are "last gen" and cruddy today. I know it's not Digital Foundries fault, but the amount of weight and importance that formerly imperceptible performance data is given shows the gaming media and internet community have a achieved a level of self-defeating obsessiveness that borders on psychotic and cult-like.

So I think maybe the people lashing out at Digital Foundry are reacting to the absurd over-reaction and abuse of these actual findings out of pure frustration and aggravation at the greater gaming community and gaming media that suddenly can't "unsee" the 59fps that they would have never noticed in a hundred years if they were being honest with themselves.

It doesn't make it right to blame Digital Foundry, but cut them some slack...We're all going to be hearing about that missing 64th frame until Mario Kart 9 is released. Let them vent a little.



LookAtMahFace said:

@FineLerv I agree with your point, but the problem here is that some people are bashing Digital Foundry and being overly defensive without reason. It's not their fault if people uses their analyses for bad purposes, they are just showing the specs for the ones who likes to know.

I think it's okay to people express their opinion, but there's no need to attack people that are actually praising the game.



Action51 said:

@Yorumi - Not to beat the point to death, because I ultimately agree with your premise, but I wandered around the web after the announcement to see what level of insanity this had reached.

Already people had created .gif and video files taking Mario Kart 8 footage and doctoring them to create a noticeable frame "judder" and pauses up to a half a second and then claimed in all seriousness that these were legit and "proved" how poorly the game ran.

There were also the standard blanket attacks of Nintendo being trash, Mario Kart 8 being trash, the Wii U being trash, and all the rest of the standard trolling amped up to new levels.

So really, I totally agree that Digital Foundry is not to blame for running highly technical performance tests and publishing the results...but my god...what is wrong with the gaming community to abuse the findings and use them to create so much non-troversy?

It borders on cult-like.



pukka-pie said:

@SilentHunter382 Yes, framerate can affect a game, and if it does then it's fine to mention it. It's when it makes no difference to the game, but people keep banging on about it, that I get irritated.



Yorumi said:

@Action51 the problem is the people attacking DF are basically just taking part in the stupid console wars. They're even to a large extent making it worse. Acting in a completely irrational manner just adds more fuel to the fire. When someone acts all defensive like this it's honestly a pretty logical conclusion to say "look it's just a bunch of stupid fanboys who refuse to see anything wrong." On the other hand showing maturity and offering rational reactions would take away all those weapons.

When people actually act the way other people expect it just makes things worse. And we're talking about a few isolated cases here, it's half the comment section, of an article that's mostly praising the game nonetheless. It's also not the first time this has happened, even just for this game alone.

Ultimately, and I know it's a cliche, but people are either part of the problem or part of the solution. Responding in just as cult-like a manner as the rest of internet just perpetuates the cycle. And the thing is other places do take notice. There are articles out there about how bad sony fans are with their death threats. Imagine how petty, immature, and idiotic the cult-like follows would look in face of a generally mature and rational fanbase.

If we're going to criticize another fanbase we need to hold ourselves to a higher standard. I can't do anything about what other fanbases do, but what I can do is hold my own to a better standard and encourage them to set an example with their actions.



LookAtMahFace said:

@Action51 I think that if that kind of news make people act like this, NL should just stop posting them. But yeah, i know this will never happen, they need the clicks.



Action51 said:

@Yorumi - Point well taken...but I hope you can cut some people a little slack and give them a chance to catch their breath and realize where the real problem lies.(hint: it's not aliens)

The only thing I disagree with is that I don't want to criticize another fanbase...I like video games as a hobby and as entertainment regardless of what corporation slaps their name on the devices that we play them on. I'm a gamer who happens to have a long history loving Nintendo games and platforms. I don't want to be part of a fanbase other then a fan of video games.

I could care less if that PS4 games run at 30fps or 60fps or the XboxOne port runs at 900p compared to 1080p...none of that matters, but we've become obsessed with finding the flaws and ignoring the most important aspect of gaming: the fun.



Yorumi said:

@Action51 my point with criticizing fanbases is that shame is one of the most powerful weapons anyone has on the internet. When people want to start these stupid wars you don't really have any grounds to criticize when you're doing the same thing. We're never going to get to the point where there arn't console wars and trolling and all that if we're engaging in the same things.

All the fanbases are leading by example right now. Unfortunately if a lot of the comments here are indication, the nintendo fanbase is saying loud and clear "yes we want all the petty, immature, childish, trolling, and irrational console wars."



Action51 said:

@Yorumi - I might have worded my response improperly or misunderstood your definition of a fan base initially.

*edit: for example to call the entire Sony fanbase out for how the vocal minority online Sony fanboy cult act.

I think we actually have more common ground then disagreement, so I'll leave it there and say that yes: I agree the anger at Digital Foundry is misplaced.

...and I hope that after the initial madness has passed we can all move on as gamers and enjoy some Mario Kart 8 on May 30th!



BoltedArc said:

Now a days ppl place to much importance on resolution, I think what digital foundry is saying MK8 natively is 720p but up scales to 1080p, I think this is just attention seeking also if you need a computer to tell you its running at 59 frames at certain point my guess is it runs at 60 frames constantly until you do something to to break the frame rate, I believe they were reaching on this one!



xerneas said:

oh my god, I can't believe it. framerate of 59 sucks, I can't play ANYTHING WITH LESS THAN 60 GOD DAMMIT NINTENDO YOU RUINED THIS GAME!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!1111111111111111



ProudasaPeacock said:

Well I personally don't mind at all, I don't really care if a game is 720p or 1080p as long as the game is good, and the frame rate difference seems a bit ridiculous to be annoyed by if you ask me. Anyway, as many people are saying, Nintendo can probably just fix it with a patch if it bugs too many people, although I don't think many will notice it.



element187 said:

@Kaze_Memaryu anyone can push 1080p, just not on a console very well.

All 3 console makers chose underpowered GPU's. This is the results. If you want 1080p/60fps gaming, it's probably time for a midrange PC.



MrGuinea said:

Nintendo has always delivered grade A games without having them being 1080p nor 60fps. Many of which are better than the competition's HD graphics games. You know why? Because Nintendo puts the majority of the focus on the actual components of the games and the gameplay.



Kaze_Memaryu said:

Man, the discussion here is really taking a turn for the worse. Can't say DF said anything inherently bad, though.

I just think it's minorly disappointing when Nintendo themselves don't push their hardware to its limits - though from what I read here, it's possible that the framerate would be terrible at native 1080p, so I guess that's actually one hell of a limit.

@cookiex Okay, I completely forgot about Wind Waker for a moment here. But Rayman Legends has 1080p? I didn't even know!

@rbmoura85 Hm, that's good to know.

@element187 Well, I'm in no need for actual 1080p in any way - I still have a SDTV. ^_^
And a PC upgrade isn't worth it to me.



kensredemption said:

@KennyPowers Doesn't change the fact that they used their findings to propagandize animosity towards Nintendo further than it's already come. Oh, and the pot shouldn't call the kettle black.



electrolite77 said:

@kensredemption "propagandise animosity"?! What the f...?

They analysed the game for people that are interested. Those that aren't interested will ignore it. Some of those who should ignore it will cry about it on here.

If they'd lied about their findings that would be propaganda.



kensredemption said:

@electrolite77 It may just be because of how I was raised, but I don't see any of your beeswax here. The conversation didn't even pertain to anyone other than myself and what's-his-trollface. Also,

Propaganda, noun.
1. information, ideas, or rumors deliberately spread widely to help or harm a person, group, movement, institution, nation, etc.
2. the deliberate spreading of such information, rumors, etc.
3. the particular doctrines or principles propagated by an organization or movement.

To scrutinize so heavily on the shortcomings of resolution and framerate on the Wii U compared to its "next-gen" brethren when it's virtually indistinguishable by many and give the exasperaters the likes of Ponys and Xbots another trivial reason to steer people away from Nintendo seems like propaganda to me.



MikeLove said:


I hope you feel it's propaganda when they criticize Sony and Microsoft games too!

p.s. defending Nintendo while referring to the other guys as 'ponys' and 'xbots' only shows your bias on this matter, so it's not surprising you are upset over digital foundry's findings.



Action51 said:

I think the problem here lies in the sudden hyped up interest, and the whole saga behind the release of these Digital Foundry findings.

First, we get a series of foggy and conflicting reports about what the actual resolution and farmerate of Mario Kart 8 were going to be. Eurogamer and several other online publications reported incorrect information that had the effect of generating false hype and creating expectations.

  • Wether intentional, or just sloppy journalism, that's what happened and that's the effect it had.

Then when the Digital Foundry results are released, it's a disappointment ...but primarily because their own parent site created a false buzz. Kinda unprofessional, and yet look at the buzz they've created for themselves. Nice how that works, huh?

I highly doubt this was some intentional attack on Nintendo or it's fans orchestrated by undercover operatives hellbent on fulfilling some evil agenda - However this just another example of how the video games media manipulate their audience and push misinformation that may have real world consequences for the sake of clicks and ad revenue.

  • 720p and 60fps is kinda normal for a console game this gen...well, in the case of Sony, 1080p and 30fps, or XboxOne at 900p and 30fps...

This brings up my second point...Everyone thought the game looked great, played well, and ran smooth before this "nontroversy" arose. Now we have self proclaimed experts claiming they can pick out those missing frames (hint: there's aliens in them) and making ridiculous phony .gif files and passing them off as legitimate vidcaps.

In other words, the video games media and the "fans" have gone completely insane, and lost all touch with proportion and dignity.



electrolite77 said:


You really need to familiarise yourself with that website. Is it also propaganda when they minutely dissect games on other formats, which they do all the time?

Don't worry though every deranged fanboy thinks Digital Foundry is biased against their chosen format. Oh and 'pony?' 'Xbot?' Really?



Captain_Toad said:

Well ya know what they say. Give em a inch and they'll go a mile. and if I'm talking inches i mean frames. And by a mile i mean... well it's your interpretation lol.

..............And I've just played the game. Unless you're the Eye of sauron it's barely noticeable anyway. but that's just me.

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