FIFA 22 is set to launch this Friday, but some players have got early access thanks to the EA Play trial and the release of the game’s Ultimate Edition. While players on PS5 and Xbox Series X have been enjoying the new features like the Hypermotion animation system, soccer fans on Xbox Series S aren’t quite so pleased.
Various threads on the EA Forums and Reddit are filled with Xbox Series S players reporting that the game is extremely blurry on the less powerful next-gen Xbox. It’s believed that this is down to a lack of anti-aliasing. This is causing such unfocused images that some players cannot even read the name and number on the back of a player's shirt during a match.
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The problems get even worse. FIFA 22 on Xbox Series S reportedly renders at just 720p resolution, compared to 1080p like in FIFA 21. Some Xbox Series S players are so fed up they’ve resorted to playing the Xbox One version of the game instead despite the last-gen port lacking several new features including the aforementioned Hypermontion technology.
Other reported issues include menus running at 30fps, compared to 60fps on Xbox Series X, frequent lag during online play and input delay that is causing players to scuff easy-to-score chances in game. It’s no wonder that Xbox Series S owners aren’t happy about the situation.
Similar issues were reported shortly after the launch of the next-gen version of FIFA 21 in December 2020. There are threads on the EA Forums and Reddit from last year filled with users complaining of the same problems like blurriness and a low resolution on Xbox Series S. It seems that EA has been unable to fix these problems for FIFA 22.
EA responded to player feedback on its forums, saying that the development team is investigating the issues and will provide players with an update in due course. You can stay up to date with any updates by following the EASF tracker.
Is the Xbox Series S already struggling?
The big question this issue raises is the viability of the Xbox Series S in the long term. When Microsoft announced its entry-level next-gen console there were concerns raised about its reduced power and inability to target 4K visuals compared to its more powerful sibling, the Xbox Series X.
The Xbox Series S isn’t even a year old at this point but it seems that it’s already struggling to keep pace with the PS5 and Xbox Series X. FIFA 22 is not the first game to suffer from subpar performance on the console. Resident Evil: Village, F1 2021, and Control have all had varying degrees of performance woes on the console.
The Xbox Series is designed to primarily target a 1440p resolution at 60 fps, but the console seems to frequently miss these targets and the resolution in particular has taken a significant hit in FIFA 22.
Developers themselves have shared concerns with id Software suggesting that the console's low amount of RAM will be a “major issue” and a developer at Remedy claiming that optimizing games for the Xbox Series S wasn’t an easy process. 4A Games, the developer of Metro Exodus, also expressed concerns about the console’s weaker GPU.
Such regular performance issues would suggest that the Xbox Series S may not have a long-term future, as games are only going to get more graphically demanding as we get further into this generation of consoles. Perhaps Microsoft will have to refresh the machine, or exclusively focus on its flagship Xbox Series X console.
Although, for now at least, the Xbox Series S remains a very compelling machine. Its $299 price point makes it comfortably the cheapest next-gen console on the market, and it’s a great way to get access to Microsoft’s excellent Xbox Game Pass service. Just don't expect next-gen performance levels.
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