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Digital Foundry tested Skull and Bones: technical experts crushed the AAAA game from Ubisoft

Experts from Digital Foundry conducted a technical analysis of the game Skull and Bones. Experts were dissatisfied with the game, criticizing both many technical and gaming aspects of the project from Ubisoft .



Digital Foundry tested the available game modes on consoles: in quality mode, surprisingly, the game runs in honest 4K resolution. However, according to them, most players on the current generation prefer to play in performance mode and here it is simply terrible: when it is turned on, the base resolution on PS5 and Xbox Series X drops to 720p, and on Series S it is completely 540p, while the game is still and upscales the image using FSR2 to 1440p (PS5/XSX) and 1080p (XSS), which leads to numerous artifacts, while not saving the game from a soapy picture. According to DF, this is the first time in their memory with such a large difference in image quality between modes.


Unlike the console versions, Digital Foundry noted that the PC version of the game turned out to be quite good – at least it is free of stutters, which are often seen in games lately.



Digital Foundry criticized the water reflections in the game: the SSR resolution in the game is very low, which is why the reflections do not look convincing – and this is a big problem for a game where the player spends almost all of the time in water. However, they noted a good imitation of waves.


The publication did not like the facial animations of the characters: according to them, Assassin’s Creed IV: Black Flaghas more convincing facial animations than the 2024 project, which was over 10 years in development. The developers poorly implemented the transitions between different emotional states of the character, which is very noticeable. In addition, the characters have strange unnatural facial expressions, which in some places looks creepy.


The game has a strangely low quality of a number of textures, as well as bad LODs – often locations are loaded right before the player’s eyes. The lighting was also criticized – many objects lack self-shading, which makes the picture feel flat.


But most of all, Digital Foundry went over the design and bugs of this “AAAA game”: according to them, it is something incomprehensible. Quests are boring wandering from one NPC to another for dubious rewards, which in the game are only necessary for the player to do the same boring actions over and over again. The structure of the game reminded them of donation mobile games with artificially inflating gameplay time to pump money out of the player.


But the main problem of the game, in their opinion, is that the player does not feel like a pirate – the game does not allow him to do many pirate things, even a banal swim in the water, walk around the ship or go ashore. Instead, the player feels more like a ship, forced to sail between locations for boring tasks.


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