Doom 3 VR: Will it be enhanced for PS4 Pro?

Doom 3 VR is now only a few weeks away, and like many of you, the team at Stealth Optional can’t wait to get stuck in. 

As with any PSVR release, the topic of PS4 Pro enhancements is bound to pop up. Numerous games in the past have taken advantage of the PS4 Pro’s additional power to produce crisper images and smoother frame rates. So it’s likely we can expect to see the same in Doom 3 VR.

Developer ArchiactVR confirmed on Twitter over the weekend that Doom 3 VR would indeed run on PS4 Pro, but didn’t provide any details on potential enhancements. 

Tweet aside, it’s likely the Doom 3 VR port will at least run a little better on PS4 Pro, but we can probably expect some form of enhancements. 

What will those enhancements be though? 

Performance & Visuals

Doom 3 VR may not be out for a few more weeks, but we can already measure what the visual differences are likely to be by looking at Doom VFR. The VR port of Doom 2016 released on PS4 and PS4 Pro in 2017. 

The two ports look very similar at first glance, but the PS4 Pro version is definitely far sharper. You can see the difference between the two in this screenshot below, taken by YouTuber Pařanský ráj.

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The easiest place to spot the visual enhancements is by looking at the guns. Both of the guns are visually much sharper, and less fuzzy around the edges. The PS4 Pro achieves this in one of two ways. Firstly, the internal resolution of each asset is higher on PS4 Pro, as it has the additional firepower needed to render it.

The other way it does this is by using the PS4 Pro’s additional power to apply anti-aliasing. This visual technique involves smoothing jagged edges by averaging the colours of the pixels at the boundary, creating smoother lines and edges. 

The base PS4 simply doesn’t have the power needed to run games in VR and fully apply visual techniques like anti-aliasing. This is why it looks fuzzy compared to the PS4 Pro. 

Doom (2016)

The 2016 reboot of Doom took the world by surprise, modernising the series with brutal, fast-paced combat and stunning visuals. Looking at the PS4 Pro enhancements might provide some clue as to what we can expect to see from Doom 3 VR. 

Doom’s PS4 Pro enhanced edition runs at 1440p, but employs a technique known as dynamic resolution. This means the resolution is scaled during gameplay, changing the resolution and quality of assets on the fly to maintain performance levels. 

What this could mean for the PS4 Pro is that Doom 3 VR scales depending on the action happening on screen. Where the PS4 version has a constant base level of performance, the Pro may incorporate a similar scaling feature. Numerous VR games have incorporated dynamic resolution scaling as a way of achieving higher FPS performance. 

Dynamic resolution scaling would allow Doom 3 VR to run at a native 120fps, as opposed to the standard 90fps for many VR games. This would make the overall experience much smoother, and less likely to cause any kind of motion sickness.

Doom 3 VR

We can’t know for sure how the port will look visually until it's available on both consoles. But based on what we’ve already discussed, we’ve created a very basic mockup of how the two games might look on PS4 and PS4 Pro. This is of course pure speculation and in no way indicative of the final product.

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As you can see above, it’s likely the PS4 version of Doom 3 VR might be a little fuzzier than the PS4 Pro version.

Whatever the performance differences are, we’re sure fans are going to have a great time blasting their way to hell when Doom 3 VR launches later this month. 

Read More: Classic FPS VR ports we’d love to see

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