The Medium's Core Gameplay Feature Wasn't Possible On Current-Gen
Team Bloober has revealed that the hardware limitations of the current-gen made it impossible for them to implement the core features of The Medium.
The developers of The Medium have revealed that the game's core gameplay feature was not possible on current-gen. The Medium is a forthcoming horror game for the Xbox Series X and PC and is being developed by Team Bloober, the team behind and .
One of the most interesting aspects of future-generation consoles is the presence of SSDs. While SSDs have been a part of PC gaming for quite a while, it wasn't something that was present in all PCs consistently. This hindered developers from utilizing the potential of SSDs to the fullest, since doing that would inhibit a major chunk of the PC community and the entirety of the console playerbase from experiencing that particular feature. With the introduction of SSDs in consoles, developers will be able to revolutionize gaming with a number of new features. One of them is instant transition. With super-fast SSDs and higher capacity RAMs, games can have two completely different worlds with different assets, and players can switch between them on-the-fly. That's just one of the endless possibilities the added features have to offer for the future of gaming.
In an interview with Gamespot, Wojciech Piejko, lead game designer of The Medium, revealed that the game has a unique feature that wasn't possible on current-gen. The feature, which has been patented by the developer, is something that has been on their minds since 2012, however, it could only be brought to action by the technological advancements in the next generation. While the developers mentioned the feature is a "super-secret", the patent available on Freepatentsonline shows what it is all about. The patent, entitled "Method of simultaneous playing in single-player video games," is about a method that would allow players to simultaneously control one character with several avatars in different universes. The incident in each world will have dire consequences on the other, and the character in multiple worlds will be shown together at the same time in the same viewport. A subtle hint of the feature can be seen in the clip uploaded by a Reddit user which has been trimmed from the trailer of the game:
While this might not be exactly what the developer and patent are speaking about, it does give a fair idea of what can be expected from the game. The concept of multiple realities in a horror game can contribute significantly to the overall player immersion. Without the hindrances of loading screens and with the raw power of future generation consoles, the developers aim to create an experience that has never been created before.
Parallel universes are something that has been a part of video games for quite a while. For instance, the Cause and Effect is the epitome of switching between multiple instances at the same time. However, those games don't completely switch the world, it is just intelligently switching back and forth between different assets to create a pseudo-different area, while the core assets remain the same. It will be interesting to see how The Medium is actually able to show multiple instances simultaneously without turning into a visual hindrance.
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Source: Gamespot, Reddit, Freepatentsonline