Tuesday 22 October 2019

Keywords eager for next Xbox, Sony consoles

 

Stock photo
Stock photo

Shawn Pogatchnik

Keywords Studios, the Irish outsourcing specialist for the video games industry, says it can't wait for Microsoft and Sony to launch their next generation gaming consoles.

That's because the successors to the PlayStation 4 and XBox One will feature massively upgraded graphics rendered in 8K fidelity. Neither console is expected in stores until late 2020 - but for Keywords, they are already a daily reality of work.

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"A lot of our development folks are working on projects for the new consoles, which will have more processing power and beautiful shading and lighting possibilities. The graphic content is going to be fabulous," Keywords CEO Andrew Day told the Irish Independent. "Each time they upgrade the capabilities of the machines, the creatives fill that capability with better-looking stuff. That costs more to build and maintain - and is great for our business."

However, he said many game developers were caught in a planning bind in the short term: should they build their next games to work specifically on the as-yet-unnamed next consoles, dubbed XBox Scarlett and PS5, or ship games more quickly to market, with designs suited to the existing top platforms, including Nintendo Switch?

"There's a couple hundred million of existing consoles out in the marketplace, and none of the new ones. So clients have decisions to make. Those decisions cause a delay in the process - not for everything, but enough that you feel it," Mr Day said.

Keywords employs 6,500 worldwide and is investing aggressively in studios and staff. Its site lists 400 openings in 20 countries, including 41 at its Leopardstown HQ.

Irish Independent

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