Call of Duty: Warzone is by and large one of the most popular installments of Call of Duty ever. The free-to-play battle royale made Activision’s annual shooter more accessible than ever before, and it attracted tens of millions of monthly players as a result. Developers Infinity Ward and Raven Software have provided a steady stream of patches since Warzone‘s launch that has altered the game’s map and warded off exploits. Yet many gamers are still wondering, has Warzone been optimized for the PlayStation 5 and Xbox Series S?
The Call of Duty battle royale was originally released in March 2020 before both next-gen consoles had hit shelves. The PS5 and Xbox Series X promised to reduce game load times thanks to their solid-state drives and support up to 120fps frame-rates across a wide roster of titles. Activision gave console gamers who purchased Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War on PS4 and Xbox One a free next-gen update. Did Warzone receive the same treatment? Only partially.
Warzone runs considerably better on the Series X compared to the PS5, according to a side-by-side comparison by YouTuber ElAnalistaDeBits published in November 2020. They found that the Series X can run Warzone at 120fps at a maximum resolution of 2160p, while it’s locked at 60fps at a max resolution of 1620p on the PS5. Why is that, and will the PS5 version eventually catch up with the Xbox Series X?
Sony or Activision haven’t commented on why Warzone still isn’t yet capable of running at 120fps on the PS5, but a November 2020 report by The Verge offered some clarity. Rocket League developer Psyonix told the publication optimizing games for the Xbox Series X is a much simpler process than doing so on the PS5. Sony’s console requires a “full native port” of the game to run at 120fp compared to the “minor patch” it takes on the Xbox Series X.
Seeing how Raven Software assisted in the November 2020 release of Black Ops Cold War, it’s possible that the developer didn’t have the capacity to also tackle a full port of Warzone to the PS5. The consistent updates to the base version of the game likely played a role in how slow a PS5-optimized version of Warzone has been. However, that doesn’t mean PS5 owners shouldn’t hold out hope for a Warzone update eventually.
Seeing how popular Warzone has become, it will most likely be optimized for the PS5 in the future. There’s no telling how long that could take, though, seeing as Activision is reportedly working on a new Call of Duty set to launch in 2021. Still, Activision has stated that it is committed to keeping Call of Duty: Warzone running for years to come, which pretty much guarantees that the PS5 version of the game will eventually catch up to the Xbox Series X.