For years Toy Story, the first-ever feature-length computer animated movie, was held up as a sort of measuring stick for the gaming industry. Video game developers and publishers have been boasting we’ll soon be able to play games as good looking as Toy Story since the PS2 era! Well, this past weekend Square Enix announced a Toy Story World is coming to Kingdom Hearts III, allowing us to definitively answer the question – have video games finally broken the Toy Story barrier?
The tech heads at Eurogamer’s Digital Foundry did a comparison between the new Kingdom Hearts III trailer and the original 1995 Toy Story movie, and it turns out Square Enix’s game compares surprisingly well. You can check out the full side-by-side, above.
The Kingdom Hearts III versions of Woody, Buzz, and the gang match the original Toy Story movie models almost exactly, with certain characters, like Rex, featuring improved textures. Andy’s room also looks very comparable, with a few minor upgrades. Meanwhile, the game’s lighting effects are actually a significant improvement over the movie. The original Toy Story didn’t have an actual lighting system, shadows were just placed manually as needed, which means the movie looks rather flat and plasticky compared to Kingdom Hearts III, which has a nice soft, warm look to it.
From a technical perspective, Kingdom Hearts III one-ups the original Toy Story, but, of course, we’re not taking artistry into account. Toy Story has much livelier animation and more creatively constructed shots than Kingdom Hearts III, which uses all its fancy tech to render a bunch of basic talking head conversations. That’s all down to the skill of Pixar though, not technology.
So, we can officially say current gen video games are, technically, as good or better than the original Toy Story. I guess we’re going to need a new measuring stick. Maybe we should aim for The Incredibles now – or have games already surpassed that?
Kingdom Hearts III is scheduled to hit the Xbox One and PS4 sometime in 2018. You can check out WWG’s latest coverage of the game, right here.
[via Digital Foundry]