Judge For Yourself If The Last Of Us: Remastered's HQ Shadows Are Worth 30FPS

It came as no surprise to anyone that the PS4 version of Naughty Dog's The Last Of Us has better visuals than its older PS3 sibling. But how about the PS4 version compared to itself? Well, the 30fps and 60fps modes to be exact. Turns out the "higher quality shadows" promised in the "post" day-one patch are indeed higher quality... but are they worth losing 30fps for?

Of course, that call is entirely up to you. Much like the struggle PC gamers face switching shadow quality from "Ultra" to "High" (or even "Medium") in order to instantly gain 467fps, players of Remastered will have a similar quandary to contemplate, once it's released at the end of the month.

Not that 30fps is unplayable — far from it — but for some, anything less than 60fps is unacceptable. Different strokes and all that.

To give you some food for thought, NeoGAF user "MrPink93485" posted the following comparison screenshots showing the game running at 30fps with the better shadows and 60fps with regular shadows (click for full-size images).

There's a clear increase in shadow quality, but obviously still shots can't convey the change in frame rate. If you can't decide, well, as a few users posted in the NeoGAF thread, a good compromise is to activate the high-quality shadows for Photo Mode and switch back while playing. Or using 60fps for multiplayer and 30fps for singleplayer.

Decisions, decisions...

The Last of Us: Remastered |OT| Game of the Years [NeoGAF]

Images: MrPink93485


    I can't believe how much this 30v60 debate has escalated, it's so stupid.

    I actually feel sorry for the 60ers, as from what I've gathered the people who prefer 60 went out of their way to notice the difference and can't unlearn it anymore.

      There is no going out of the way to notice the difference between 30 and 60 fps, you can tell the difference in less then a few seconds. And from what you have gathered is completely wrong. As soon as Youtube starts 60fps videos constantly you will notice how much more fluid the games play and look.

      As soon as you give people a number they'll argue about it, you can pretty much declare that a rule of the internet. If I was developing something I'd just lie about the framerate each time I was asked, one time it'd be 200fps, next time it'd be -7fps, the next it'd be 10754fps, just to obviously take the piss.

      I can see the difference if I'm sitting close or in things with a particularly high level of action but on an average game on a TV it makes little difference to me. Stability is infinitely more important than actual number of frames.

      From what I can gather, stability is one of the things that matter to people who are sensitive to motion, I occasionally get a teeny bit queasy with some PC games when the framerate stutters and my brain tries to focus on both where things should be based on their previous motion and where they are on screen and it's just enough to throw me off (it's gotten a little worse now I have glasses, wonder if that's a coincidence or related). It's a good indication I need to turn the settings down a tad and put up with things being a bit less shiny to get them moving a bit more predictably.

        It makes little difference to you because your TV is crushing it to 30FPS regardless of the source frequency.

      You either have to be a) blind b) retarded or c) never experienced 60fps to not notice the difference in 3 seconds. Its makes a massive difference on graphics and is extremely smooth. It makes it a completely different game. Yes i will take low quality shadows for 60 fps anyday. Who in the world in their right minds wouldnt???

      Last edited 27/07/14 7:20 pm

        People who find no value in things that are noticable but have no value.

          Lol right... Its like saying you choose to drive a fiat punto instead of ferrari fxx :) whatever floats your boat though...

            No, it's the choice between a Ferrari and a Mercedes-Benz.

            Neither is good at all the things that the other is good at. Some people will prefer one, other people will prefer the other.

            Or heck, picking between a Ferrari and a Torago. Nobody would claim a Torago is as fast or luxurious, but just try cramming a 4+ member family into a Ferrari.

            Personally, having experienced 3D during the 80s when Flight Simulator was regarded as having excellent graphics but rarely cracked 10fps, I suspect my eyes were trained early to not particularly care. I see this as a good thing, since whatever FPS I see I don't really notice aesthetically but still get any actual benefits. :-)

            [Edit] BTW I think I actually prefer the supposedly inferior 60fps shadows here. Shadows in real life are a bit blurry, and this is reflected better in the supposedly poorer image.

            Last edited 28/07/14 2:41 am

              Nooo that doesnt make sense. If you are used to lower frame rates higher rates will immidiately be obvious to you. I was like you before thinking i know 60fps until one day i moved on to high end pc. When you have this game you will understand more. Switch between 30 fps to 60 often and see. Two different worlds. I got a feeling after this game most ps4 gamers will want nothing less than 60fps.

                Have switched between 30 and 60 numerous times myself and barely notice it to be honest. Probably because I'm to busy playing and enjoying a game as opposed to worrying about it's framerates or what a shadow looks like. Guess I come from a different gaming generation.. To each their own I guess!


              I'm waiting for someone to point out that the 30fps/better shadows IS the one with the blurry diffused shadow. Believe it or not, it takes extra rendering cycles to diffuse casted shadows in realtime.

          High frame rates have value, it's directly relative to how responsive a game is to input. It's what gives Street Fighter, Call of Duty and Burnout their secret sauce.

          Game play above all else.

            Yes thats right although everyone seems to be more focused about the responsiveness. I love it because of the looks of it, it changes the graphics dramatically. Objects in motion move extremely smooth making it look much more realistic. Not just a racing or shooter game though, any game look better at 60+ framerates. People who played the last gen tomb raider and played the new gen one at 60fps will know this. I dont know, i just cant game below 60fps. I love it lol

              I didn't notice to much about the Tomb Raider to be honest..

              Last edited 28/07/14 3:20 pm

                You sure the tv you are playing on is 60hz? Everybody can notice the difference, it is black and white. Even 30 to 40 is a big difference and we are talking about 2x the frame rate here.

            Street fighter was 30fps If we're talking the original.

    This is why I game on PC, this is one of those things players should choose not the developers. Resolution, model detail etc could be left out of settings on a console but things like AA and shadows make such a huge difference they should be included.

      Except this is a choice for the consumers, they are giving the option to turn it on or off.

        Good to hear, if this was something forced onto consumers riots would ensue..

      Exactly same here. I got the ps4 for exclusives and loving this 60fps option. In all honesty i wouldnt buy it if it wasnt 60fps.

        Considering how similar they look, resolution aside, if it wasn't 60fps I don't know what the reason would be to get it at this point. Out of all the cross gen games, IMHO this one looks the most similar between PS3 and PS4. I'm a little disappointed TBH.

          "Hi res shadows worth 30fps" the most absurd title in gaming history. You prefer hi res shadows over smooth 60fps? You are not normal...

            It's not high res shadows at 30 fps. It's diffused softer shadows at 30 fps. The high res shadows occur at 60 fps.

          True, but I think it's more of a testament to how damn good it looked on ps3.

            It did look good. But I hated how inconsistent it was if I'm honest. Some of it was the best I'd seen, other things were really bad. But I think that just shows how hard they were pushing the machine. On ps4 I just wish they added some ssao and softer shadows, maybe some Aa, especially in the 30fps mode. The game looks a little.. Flat and square.

            Cant deny that it looked gorgeous. I played it at one of my friends house but the frame rate really bothered me being used playing everything at 60fps. Now it can be my game of the year.

    Is not liking either an option? I don't like the jaggies on the low setting and the high seems way too sharp in comparison

      /holds gun to @piat 's head

      Agreed. Halving the FPS to show too-sharp shadow which are unrealistic is pretty poor form.

        The too-sharp shadows you refer to are from the 60 fps version. Light and shadow diffusion require extra rendering cycles, which 30 fps locked opens up. This whole thread reeks of miseducation.

    So this is actually an option? Or does the patch make it high quality shadows?

    The sharper one looks totally unrealistic. At least the blurry one sort of looks like a real shadow.

      Real shadows diffuse as they approach the edges, so yeah the blurrier ones look way more realistic. Once the game is in motion, the jaggies will easily look like blur.

      It looks like someone cut a hole in the wall and put a shadow puppet screen there.

      The difference in lighting in that scene looks ridiculous.

      Last edited 27/07/14 3:12 pm

    The more I see the more I am a little disappointed. I's Naughty Dog and yet this game looks the most like an HD PS3 game instead of a remastering.

    Tomb Raider was better remastered, which is saying something because I think TLoU was a better PS3 game.

    I think my point becomes evident when the only major differences is the texture clarity and shadows so sharp the look like PS2 style ray traced shadows instead of real time shadows.

    I just don't know if thats enough to warrant a re-buy.

    I'm trying to reserve judgement until I see the game in motion, but I am less & less impressed by the so called overhaul this game has received every time I see it. None the less, a smoother framerate and higher image quality never hurt anybody.

    How exactly are the new shadows dragging the framerate down that hard? They're nicer but don't strike me as half the frame rate nicer... not unless they also switched them to a PCSS shadowing model or something.

    In either case i'll opt for 60 frames any day of the week, it improves the games responsiveness significantly.

    60 Frames is better, but really doesn't matter with this game because your only doing stuff against AI.

    i would take NO tree shadows than 30fps. as they say in the industry "30 is a fail". its 60 or bust.

    SIGH...this again...

    There's no substitute for 60fps which it comes to twitchy, reactive experiences such as fighting games, where every frame is another chance to react, or precise platforming in something like Super Meat Boy.

    But for narrative driven games that are attempting to be cinematic, 30fps is IDEAL, as it's closer to the "film look" of 24fps (which is synonymous with cinema) without being a shitty gameplay experience. People who want all 60 all the time obviously don't care about the feel that is obtained through the lower frame rate's aesthetic, or don't have that frame of reference.

    Last edited 28/07/14 12:11 pm

      Oh god. "filmic look" or "cinematic look" is a term used by dodgy developers who takes all gamers as idiots that knows nothing, another way of saying "weak consoles cannot perform at 60fps without comprimising so much from the game". I play EVERYTHING at 60fps and it looks more cinematic than anything at 30fps. Just because films are at 27 to 30fps doesnt mean anything higher is not cinematic. Hobbit was shot at 48fps. Next avatar will be at 60fps and youtube is slowly only just started to suppprt 60fps so thank god people can finally learn what is what. As a pc gamer i look at comments like this and get very annoyed. Console gamers need to demand more so we can all move forward.

        The Hobbit was hardly a measure of success for 48fps, as a good chunk of people who saw it at that frame rate said it evoked the feel of a TV soap opera and took them out of the film. Just look at the divide between people who like using the "smooth motion" effect on their TVs and those who don't. The aesthetic argument is a valid one.

        I guess we have to agree to disagree, because as a film lover and lifelong gamer I look at comments like yours and also get very annoyed :P

          Recently played bioshock infinite and on benchmarking fps went from around 120 down to 40 but in game could not notice it.

        This is very ignorant of you, voidwalker. Most cinema films fantasy, action and other titles at 24-30 fps. 50-60 fps is most commonly found in home video recorders, thus giving movies the ability to appear cinematic, or appear like a home video. Yes. FPS has long existed in cinema long before even games were invented. And based on the content of the film, it's always adjusted to achieve a certain feel.

        I'm playing TLoU at 30 fps for the extra shadow quality. It's a cinematic game, not a freakin' call of duty clone that needs twitch reflexes to pwn fools.

        Shindlers list would have been so much better at 60fps and 3d.
        Techniques don't always lend themselves to every application.

      A good point, well made.

      Completely agree. More is not always better, depends the application.

    As someone that doesn't have a very beefy PC I have gotten used to playing at 30ish FPS for most games. But when I can play certain games at 60+FPS. It makes a huge difference. For example. I play ArmA 2 a lot. Depending on the mission I play determines my FPS as some missions are much larger. The missions that I can play at 60+FPS at are much easier for me. I don't know how to explain it, but, I am certainly more accurate when its up.

    http://30vs60.com If you still don't notice the difference, goto this website. If you look at the gifs and say to me that they are not any different then you are lying. There is an obvious difference.

    I wanted to also add, it is stupid that we argue over this still. 60+FPS is better for gaming and I personally think that devs should aim to give the 60+FPS experience, unless. Once YouTube fully implements that ability to upload 60FPS I imagine that most will upload in 60 if they can. (I know TB will be happy)

    Last edited 29/07/14 4:18 am

    Is it just me or do the smoothed 60fps shadows look more natural?

    The 30fps shadows are too sharp.. I'd rather the slightly blurred ones. I guess for me the 60fps mode ticks all the boxes.

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