EA reveals next-gen plans for Star Wars: Squadrons, Apex Legends, and more

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Electronic Arts has confirmed details on how some of its most popular titles will perform on the PlayStation 5, Xbox Series X, and Xbox Series S when the next-generation consoles launch next week. Games including FIFA 21, The Sims 4, and Apex Legends will all get varying degrees of performance boosts when running on the new hardware, either through free upgrades or simple backward compatibility.

Star Wars: Squadrons appears to be getting the most comprehensive makeover for the new Xbox consoles. There’ll be a mode that prioritizes visual quality, including better lighting and higher resolutions coming in at dynamic 4K at 60fps on the Series X and dynamic 1440p at 60fps on the Series S. Another performance-focused mode drops the new lighting model but runs at 120fps at the same dynamic resolution on both Xbox machines. There’s also an option for variable refresh rate (VRR) if you have a compatible TV.

The PS5 update to Star Wars: Squadrons, meanwhile, will run the game at the same dynamic resolution and framerate as the PS4 Pro — which is to say somewhere between 1440p and 4K at 60fps — with the improved lighting. EA hasn’t mentioned a VRR or 120fps mode for the PS5.

EA says “more formal enhancements” to Respawn’s battle royale hit Apex Legends are coming at some point next year. In the meantime, the company says you can “expect a performance boost up to 1440p,” although the game already ran at dynamic 1440p on the Xbox One X and PS4 Pro. In practice, this probably just means it will drop down to 1080p-ish much less often on next-gen machines.

The company’s current EA Sports titles — Madden NFL 21, FIFA 21, NHL 21, and UFC 4 — are all being handled in the same way. The Series X will run them like a One X, the Series S will run them like a One S, and the PS5 will run them like a PS4 Pro, all with faster loading times. On December 4th, however, anyone who owns these games will be able to upgrade to the separate next-gen versions for free. You can read a little about the new versions of FIFA and Madden here, though EA hasn’t yet given specific information on things like resolutions or frame rates.

The Sims 4 and all of its expansion packs will be playable on the next-gen consoles, and EA says it’ll run with smoother framerates and faster loading times. It’s not clear, however, whether that’s just a function of the game running on better hardware in backward-compatible mode. EA hasn’t said anything about resolution upgrades.

Finally, it sounds like Need for Speed: Hot Pursuit Remastered isn’t getting much in the way of next-gen enhancements beyond EA promising basic backward compatibility. Like the EA Sports titles, the Series X will play it like a One X, the Series S will play it like a One S, and the PS5 will run it like a PS4 Pro. That means 1080p/30fps for the Series S and a choice between 4K/30fps and 1080p/60fps for the PS5 and Series X.

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