When For Honor’s Marching Fire expansion comes out this week, it’ll bring with it a major graphics overhaul for the game. Ubisoft showed off the upgrade in a pre-launch livestream event this week, and the results are striking – all the game’s textures have been reworked, and the For Honor team has done a major upgrade to the lighting system.
For Honor was never a bad-looking game, but when since it shipped, it’s had a pretty grim, muddy aesthetic that ends up masking some of the more fanciful design elements of its environments. Marching Fire’s graphics overhaul aims to correct that by providing better global illumination and brighter textures throughout the game.
For Honor art director Christian Diaz talked through some before and after shots comparing scenes in some of the game’s maps with and without the overhaul applied. The after shots are noticeably different, with more realistic sunlight playing off textures and better occlusion in shadowed areas. Textures have more colors, with pink cherry petals popping out on the pathways of Temple Garden, for example, and torchlight travels more convincingly across nearby surfaces.
Solid state drive users can take heart, too – the overhaul manages to reduce, rather than increase, For Honor’s footprint on your drive.
“The engine team worked very hard to not only remaster the thing, but to also reduce the size of the game on disk,” Diaz said.
Here’s the VOD of the livestream. The segment on the graphics overhaul begins around 1:38:30.
In addition to the reworked textures and upgraded illumination system, Diaz said the game’s skyboxes have been redone.
“Now it’s more physically correct, so the gradients are more comparable to what you see in reality,” he said. “It’s very important, because when you set up the sky dome, you set up the ambient lighting for the whole environment.”
Here’s a static before and after comparison – the after shot is noticeably brighter, and you can see the reworked textures on the two statues in front of the tower. In the foreground, the vegetation now looks much more natural.
Marching Fire comes out October 16, and when it does, the overhaul will be applied to all elements of the game, including the single-player campaign. The expansion brings with it new Wu Lin heroes: Tiandi, Jiang Jun, Nuxia, and Shaolin. All players will also be able to play the new Breach mode.