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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hey guys, we now DO have the first official HDTV game for the Xbox!


Acclaim's racing game Burnout on the back of the box says HDTV support, and sure enough, according to Acclaim themselves:


"All-new high-resolution visuals, including HDTV and Progressive Scan support, delivering incredibly crisp and clear action up to 480p (GameCube(TM)) and 720p (Xbox(TM))"


I will be looking closer at the game tonight, and we'll have a review of the game up this week. But if my RCA MM52100 will run 720p (and I believe it does), then I will be in heaven.


And to boot, the PS2 version of the game I thought was great. So here it is, the first HDTV Xbox game.
 

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Wow . . . now if only I liked this game I would buy it. :-(


Definitely going to rent it though.
 

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Quote:
Originally posted by Michael Mullis
Acclaim's racing game Burnout on the back of the box says HDTV support, and sure enough, according to Acclaim themselves:

"All-new high-resolution visuals, including HDTV and Progressive Scan support, delivering incredibly crisp and clear action up to 480p (GameCube(TM)) and 720p (Xbox(TM))"
Cool . . . that is a Renderware based game I believe, so perhaps the HDTV support is provided by Criterion's Renderware. If so, more games games based on Renderware may come out with HD support. (Renderware is "middleware" that developers can use to get their games up & running quickly. Games such as Grand Theft Auto 3, The Italian Job, Tony Hawk Pro-Skater 3, Burnout, etc. all use Renderware. (Unfortunately, the best game in that list, Grand Theft Auto 3, is a PS2 exclusive so you won't be seeing that in HD anytime soon . . . but a great PC version is available.)
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Well, unfortunately I just found out my TV only supports 480p and 1080i. So the best I can get at this point is 480p.


Sigh
 

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Quote:
Originally posted by Michael Mullis
Well, unfortunately I just found out my TV only supports 480p and 1080i. So the best I can get at this point is 480p.
But doesn't your TV "cross-convert" (I'll avoid the upconvert/downconvert arguments) 720p into 1080i so you will get some resolution benefit?
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
If it does, I can't see the difference. I'm trying to get hold of my RCA rep now. And I'm actually going to call Acclaim.....


I would think so because ABC I am sure gets up-converted. Usually, when the 480P kicks in on a game, the TV makes an audible "click". This game doesn't do that when I try to force 720P, and it just doesn't look like 720P to me.


I'll be doing more comparisons tonight.
 

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Any 720p->1080i conversion is probably done by your STB/decoder, not the TV itself (unless you have a TV with built-in decoder).


But even so, I am highly skeptical that this game runs 720p. I'm pretty sure people who had 720p native displays confirmed it only did 480p. Besides, the XBox is capable of upconverting 720p to 1080i at the output level, so if the game truly supported 720p you should be able to get 1080i output.


I found the graphics in this game very disappointing. No anti-aliasing is used and everything in the distance is very pixellated, and this is one game where you really need to be able to see what's coming up in the distance. Also, this is one of those games that doesn't actually fill the screen; assuming your display doesn't have lots of overscan you'll see thin black bars on either side even in 16:9 mode.


MotoGP, on the other hand, completely fills the screen with a 16:9 image that looks much better than Burnout at 480p.
 

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Fellas, this is somewhat on topic, although maybe that's stretching it a bit, but what's better, the XBox or PS2?


I'm getting one of them for a Father's Day present (father, 32-years-old, still playing video games, sigh...) and want to know which one's best. Although it would seem XBox has the edge if it's doing HD!


Thanks for any input. If you don't want to keep this thread going in this direction, feel free to PM me.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Well, you are correct about my STB JKohn, it does the upconvert to 1080i and then sends it to the TV. I was trying to say that the TV itself doesn't support 720p.


However, I am not so sure the Xbox does that. I'm going to find out from my Microsoft rep tonight or tomorrow. He's telling me off the top of his head the Xbox does NOT upconvert, but he forwarded my email to their "hardware nerds" as he put it. The fact that it asks you if your TV supports 720p seperately leads me to believe there is no up-convert; if the TV doesn't support it, it goes to the next setting down. That is the question I posed. Unfortunately, I know the route I'm going to have to go to get that answer. As soon as I hear something, I'll post it.


As for the game itself, I am also having that checked on. The lead designer of the game got a copy of the email I sent, as well as Renderware. I'll be very dissapointed if you're right, because it's printed crystal clear right on the box "HDTV Support". My Microsoft rep DID say that Burnout officially supported HDTV as far as Microsoft was able to see.


Sorry you didn't like the game though. Granted, I thought Moto GP also looked better, Burnout doesn't look that bad. I am not finding much pixelation in the distance, but now that you mentioned it I will look for it specifically (while I'm not crashing of course). :)
 

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Well, Burnout is not true HD. See software gaming forums on HomeTheaterForum.com. Looks like the company screwed up, apparently even the website was changed to reflect this. There are threads there that imply that there may never be true HD games for the X-box.


Anyway, the X-box is great but I have nothing to compare it to. Alot of fun to be able to sit back on a couch and get 5.1 sound and a huge, jaggy-free image. Beats gaming while sitting at a desk in front of a desktop computer. Had four "old foagies" (late 30s, early 40s) yesterday having a blast playing against each other in Fusion Frenzy.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Interestingly enough, I went over to the Acclaim Burnout Website ( http://www.acclaim.com/games/burnout...res/index.html ), and lo and behold, this was the quote there:


"HDTV and Progressive Scan support - for users with high-definition display or digital TV: Burnout is crisp and interlace-free when displayed on a High-Definition TV at 480p (NTSC version only)!"


Now Microsoft and our Acclaim rep both have said they were "pretty sure" the game was 720p, but no one had a definate answer. However, the official press release has also not been changed. The press release is here BTW:

http://www.acclaim.com/company/press...ubeAndXbo.html


I am still checking with them, and I am still checking with Microsoft on the Upconvert capabilities of the Xbox. Again, rep says he didn't think so, but the "hardware nerds" would give me a definate answer.


This would mark the second time this has happened if it's true. The first was Test Drive, now this. What the heck is going on with these game companies??
 

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Quote:
However, I am not so sure the Xbox does that. I'm going to find out from my Microsoft rep tonight or tomorrow. He's telling me off the top of his head the Xbox does NOT upconvert, but he forwarded my email to their "hardware nerds" as he put it.
If the XBox doesn't support converting 720p -> 1080i that's pretty lame, because the Conexant chipset used for the output stage of the XBox can do this conversion. So it would be pretty stupid for the XBox software to not take advantage of it, especially considering that 1080i displays outnumber 720p by a very large margin.


Unfortunately trying to getting definitive information on these issues is just about impossible, because even the people who should know the answers (ie Microsoft and the game publishers) seem to be pretty damn clueless. HD/16:9 support is obviously not much of a priority for these companies based on how little they seem to know about it and the piss-poor job they're doing of communicating this information to consumers.
 

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Can someone just connect it to there projector and see what the resloution the projector says its coming out at? Unfortunately my projector doesn't have Component inputs :-(
 

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Burnout is 480p.


I believe that when the companies say "HDTV Support", they mean 16x9. They may also mean progressive scan, but I'm not too confident the marketing deptartments at these companies even know what that is...

--JD
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Quote:
Originally posted by JKohn
If the XBox doesn't support converting 720p -> 1080i that's pretty lame, because the Conexant chipset used for the output stage of the XBox can do this conversion. So it would be pretty stupid for the XBox software to not take advantage of it, especially considering that 1080i displays outnumber 720p by a very large margin.


Unfortunately trying to getting definitive information on these issues is just about impossible, because even the people who should know the answers (ie Microsoft and the game publishers) seem to be pretty damn clueless. HD/16:9 support is obviously not much of a priority for these companies based on how little they seem to know about it and the piss-poor job they're doing of communicating this information to consumers.
I did finally get that answer though from the Xbox hardware department. Our fear was confirmed, the Xbox doesn't apparently know how to upconvert, so it doesn't. If the game is 720, and the TV doesn't support it, it not send it as 1080i. Here is the exact answer I got:


"720p and 1080i require extra reprogramming to support in the Xbox games... the 480p format is supported by all of the games... because they basically get it "free" from the Xbox..."


Now, here's the other caviat. This email came in from Acclaim:


"Burnout Xbox supports 480p progressive scan on compatible digital TVs"


Which also confirms what you said earlier, that the game box and press release is indeed wrong.


I find this disturbing, not only as a game journalist, but as a gamer. This is twice now that we've been led wrong about HDTV games. It's beginning to get frustrating.



JonDax: I would agree, but when the game was released, the press release that came along with it specifically said "720p" for the Xbox. And it's the only Xbox game I have seen thus far that actually has a box for "HDTV" down where it tells you the game's features.
 

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I would be relatively stunned if anything ever comes out for the X-box in 720p or 1080i. We are such a small segment of the market. I would be pretty pleased if they would just start supporting 16x9 in all games and have 480p support.


I guess it depends on the size of your display. I've got a 42" plasma (Panasonic) and even 480p looks fantastic. I can see how larger displays would not look as good and would really be enhanced by 720p or 1080i support.
 

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Dagman,


GTA 3 can be played in HD now. It is now available for the PC, so your only limit on resolution is your Computer and TV/projector/Monitor!
 

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Two comments on this:


- Clearly, there will be few if any true HD games for Xbox. In contrast, *every single game* available for the PC is available in true HD and beyond (if you have the horsepower to drive it). Of course, you need a TV that will sync to SVGA/XGA etc.


- Even given this, I find I usually drop down to VGA or SVGA for most games. The extra resolution is usually wasted in todays games because the textures and character geometry are still such low-resolution. Full-screen Anti-Aliasing makes much more of a difference.


Andy K.
 

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Quote:
Originally posted by Michael Mullis



I did finally get that answer though from the Xbox hardware department. Our fear was confirmed, the Xbox doesn't apparently know how to upconvert, so it doesn't. If the game is 720, and the TV doesn't support it, it not send it as 1080i. Here is the exact answer I got:


"720p and 1080i require extra reprogramming to support in the Xbox games... the 480p format is supported by all of the games... because they basically get it "free" from the Xbox..."
So then why is the 007: Agent Under Fire game only 480i? It's te only one I know of that is not 480p, but it makes me nervous to buy any EA games after I heard about this one. But then again, it doesn't look like EA is really supporting the Xbox too much right now, so I guess I don't have to worry. Why are all their upcoming sports/BIG games only on PS2 and Gamecube? I won't buy them if they're not on xbox!

--JD
 
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