Hi-Rez has done the unthinkable, and beaten Activision Blizzard to the punch. Paladins has landed on Nintendo Switch, and is filling the Overwatch void in a way that no one thought possible. Indeed, many players are starting to discover that the rumor of Paladins being an Overwatch clone is unmerited, and this game has many interesting loadout features and heroes that set it far apart, and sometimes above, the competition. But how does the Nintendo Switch version compare to other consoles?
In the video above, that's exactly what our friends at Digital Foundry will be exploring. These folks have produced an in-depth analysis comparing Paladins' visuals and performance (docked and in handheld mode) on the Switch, compared to the most powerful console in the world: the Xbox One X. How does it fare?
It actually fares extremely well. As noted in the video, the frame-rate when playing Paladins both docked and in handheld mode stabilizes at an impressive 60 fps. There are very slight dips or jutters here and there that are likely due to some network code processing, but they're no where near bad enough to impact gameplay.
The Xbox One X boasts a high-end 6 TFLOP GPU capable of pushing out native 4K resolutions in many games, and the Nintendo Switch has a very modest, downclocked mobile GPU meant to preserve battery life and run cool on the go. When it comes to frame-rate and playability, though, the Switch is able to hang with the One X. It's truly impressive.
This is especially encouraging in light of the downgrade we've seen with Fortnite, which targets a 30 fps cap at all times. That's half the refresh rate that players are enjoying on Xbox One, and since the game is cross-play with Xbox One, that can introduce some competitive inequality. The developers at Hi-Rez care very deeply about competitive play (this is the SMITE developer, after all), and so equal frame-rates across the board was an absolute priority.
Of course, there are obvious compromises in terms of resolution. While playing docked, Paladins will shoot for a 900p resolution, but it is dynamic and wavering. Likewise, while playing in handheld mode, 720p is the target resolution, but is also the best-case scenario. Resolution will often dip below that, at times even going south of 480p. It's not ideal, but it's all in service of that wonderful, stable frame-rate.
What do you guys think of Paladins on Nintendo Switch? We think it's a phenomenal game, and a really impressive version considering the hardware. If you've been playing, let us know what you think in the comments below!