Next Generation of consoles will probably be announced this year and will be released in next. By the time, even we don't have any official announcement, we can guess that the next generation consoles coming with much more powerful hardware than the present ones. In 2016, Sony released a new console without jumping a generation for the first time in its history. PlayStation 4 Pro has announced with 4K gaming capabilities thanks to its 4 TFLOPs GPU and upgraded CPU clock speeds. But a short time after its release, it turned out their 4K claim was not actually accurate, because the console was just upscaling to images to 4K resolution with checkerboarding technic.
After Sony, this time Microsoft announced a new middle gen console named Xbox One X. And just like Sony, Microsoft also claims that the Xbox One X will capable of giving real 4K resolution in games. But just like Sony, Xbox One X turned out using the same technic in most of the games. But still, Xbox One X was capable of giving real 4K resolution in almost all first party games and in some 3rd party like Red Dead Redemption 2.
So in 2020, both Sony and Microsoft most probably will release their next-generation consoles. But what will they bring to gamers graphically speaking? What kind of effects will receive huge updates? Will we see a real generational leap? Let's find out what we are going to see in next Xbox and PlayStation 5.
1- Higher Resolution
We already talked about the 4K gaming for Xbox One X and PlayStation 4. But we also see that their claim for real 4K wasn't delivered truly. In next-generation consoles, we will see almost all titles coming with real 4K resolution. But the question is, what if we don't have a 4K screen? The most likely, players who don't have a 4K screens will able to play all games in higher FPS counts.
2- Higher FPS
30 FPS is mostly standard experience for more than 2 decades. Even the some titles come with 60 FPS option, it was rare and mostly used in sports games. But with next-generation consoles, we will be going to see much more titles supporting 60 FPS, especially in 1080P resolutions. The higher FPS will deliver a much smoother experience and redound our fun in games.
3- Higher draw distances
Draw distance is one of the most important things in open world games. It means, how many things can be rendered from far. We already see massive improvements in draw distances in current generation consoles, some of the games like Red Dead Redemption 2, Just Cause 4 and Assassin's Creed: Odyssey and Origins can almost draw and render the whole map in real time. But with next generation consoles, we will see much more detail at far away. That means the lights at far will be dynamic, we will able to see NPC at really far and shadows will be rendered accurate.
4- Less pop-in
One of the most important flaws of the open world design is pop in issue. The pop-in means when you get closer to an object or NPC or anything, you are able to see more detail in it. But in most cases, the pop-in issue is destroying immersion of the visuals. You can see that issue in Assassin's Creed: Odyssey, even few meters away, you can't see the full detail of the rendered objects and shadows become rendered only when you get real close. Of course, there are some titles who is really good at hiding this problem, like Red Dead Redemption 2. But with next generation of consoles, the developers will able to use much less LOD stages thanks to higher memory size and bandwidth of the PS5 and next Xbox.
5- Real-Time Global Illumination
The best way to show the graphical capabilities of a game is increasing the lighting quality of the product. If you want to increase the lighting quality, there some ways to do it. For example, using indirect lighting, aka Global Illumination. Don't get me wrong, almost all games using indirect lighting these days, but they are all baked, which means not dynamic. There is lots of limitation using baked global illumination. For example, if you put something to the front of a light source, the reflection of lighting will not change. Using a real-time solution can fix these problems, but with a very huge performance cost. With next-generation consoles, GPU's that used in them will be capable of these kinds of advancements in lighting. Developers will able to use real-time global illumination effects to improve our immersion in games. The real-time global illumination will also much more easy solution than a baked one. This kind of technology also decreases development time because the artists will not try to bake all indirect lightings from thousands of places.
6- Volumetric Effects
Volumetric lighting, clouds, fog or smoke. When you give a volume to a transparent thing, it can interact with surround lighting. For example, this effect was widely used in The Division and Red Dead Redemption 2. Do you remember the street lights in Red Dead Redemption 2 while foggy weather? Or blizzards in The Division when night falls? Volumetric effects can really make a game look gorgeous. With increased GPU capabilities of next-generation consoles, we will see them much more in next-gen games.