First it was 4:3. And then gaming moved to a widescreen world, where 16:9 monitors and resoultions become the norm. And the next thing on the horizon is ultrawide monitors – screens with a 21:9 aspect ratio – and they’re sick.
But the question for gamers has always been: why make the jump to a 21:9 world? But with more games supporting ultrawide resolutions, and more advanced monitors like LG’s 34UC79G-B, there’s never been a better time to make the switch. Here’s 7 games that are infinitely better on an ultrawide monitor.
One of the long running staples for ultrawide screen advocates has been the Battlefield series, and with good reason. With the massive maps and the chaos created by 64 players jumping in tanks, airplanes, motorbikes, horses, and all the snipers in between, a regular 1080p screen was never enough real estate to keep track of all the bullets flying your way.
The main bugbear with adopting an ultrawide screen monitor, however, has been the sacrifices you’ve had to make. But monitors have come a long way, like the 37UC79G-B which has a 144hz refresh rate and an IPS panel. The latter’s particularly important since you’ll be relying on your peripheral vision to spot targets as early as possible, and the last thing you want is to miss a potential headshot because of a crappy viewing angle.
League of Legends
In the hyper-competitive League of Legends world, field of vision is king. Seeing an enemy creep up behind you a fraction of a second earlier can literally be the difference between winning or losing a key team fight, which could ultimately decide the game.
Because of League’s nature, you often see people playing on low-end computers, with laptops and similarly low-end screens. That’s entirely fine, but given that you get to see way more of the battlefield on an ultrawide monitor you’d be insane not to take advantage. There’s also the unspoken benefit of 21:9 – the extra horizontal space means UI elements and chat boxes are pushed away from the center of your screen, letting you concentrate on those important skill shots.
With a game so reliant on prediction and perception as the remote car-controlled mania that is Rocket League, having that extra coverage of the playing area basically gives you an immediate advantage over the competition.
The vibrancy of Rocket League’s stadiums and environments is also just a treat to enjoy, particularly if you’ve got a screen capable of reproducing the game in all of its vivid glory.
A standard 1080p screen really doesn’t cut it for a game like Titanfall 2, where you spend as much time running along walls (and consequently looking at them) as you do shooting your enemies.
It’s a perfect example of how that extra bit of horizontal vision really benefits, since you’ll be able to run along walls while keeping the main action – like where enemy Titans are, and who’s killing who – in your periphery.
It goes without saying, but this wouldn’t have worked anywhere near as well when ultrawide screen monitors were only running at 60hz. But technology has come a long way, and with features like Motion Blur Reduction and Dynamic Action Sync modes that improve image transitions and stop pesky pilots from appearing like blurs in darker indoor areas, you’ll at least be able to fight with the same wide field of vision that your Titan has.
Indie fans also have a lot to gain from an ultrawide.
Farm sim Stardew Valley is a great example — not only does it look stunning at a larger ratio, the extra on screen real estate enables you to keep an eye on a larger portion of your farm at once.
This is particularly handy if you have trouble keeping your cheeky ducks in check.
Let’s face it – if you’re going to invest into the gargantuan space epic that Chris Roberts and co. are building, you’re going to be upgrading your PC as well. And if you’re going to upgrade anything, you might as well also put some money into the screen you’ll be sitting in front of.
Being a cockpit-based game, having more screen space is absolutely vital. If you break down the math between 1920×1080 and 3440×1440, you’re getting an additional 1520 pixels from side to side.
That absolutely has an impact on your gameplay, especially when you find yourself stuck in a massive crossfire with capital ships, dogfighters, frigates, carriers and everything else. Apart from being able to gauge the space around you and what targets to prioritise, it also helps capture the breathtaking beauty of space, which a large reason why people fall in love with space games to begin with.
Space also features a lot of darks and blacks, and without a decent enough panel it can be difficult to properly identify all your targets until it’s too late. So while investing in an ultrawide monitor is an absolute nobrainer for Star Citizen – and any other game that places the player in a cockpit, like iRacing or F1 2016 – you’d be doing yourself a disservice if you didn’t grab something with a high refresh rate and a miniscule input latency. There’s a great video here from someone in the “Verse” who upgraded from 16:9 to 21:9, and the impact it had on the experience.
The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt
Over a year since its release, The Witcher 3 is still one of the most beautiful games on the market. The stunning environment alone is perfect for ultrawide.
Add in the hundreds of hours of content, lore-rich world and lovingly crafted storyline and you have a more immersive Witcher than ever.
Euro Truck Simulator 2
Euro Truck Simulator is one of those franchises that you can’t quite believe has such a huge underground following, but you love that it does.
It’s all in the name really — you drive your truck around Europe and hopefully build up an entire fleet of money making metal steeds.
A wide field of view is an absolute must for games like this. You want to be able to see what the open road has to throw at you, which is where models like the LG 37UC79G-B, which offer dynamic action sync, is even more helpful — because the action occurs in real time and you have the chance to react immediately.