The Ascent launched on Xbox Game Pass today, and it's clear from looking at screenshots it's a visual treat. The cyberpunk aesthetic glistens from the screen in every frame with an impressive amount of detail. Additionally, a recent analysis from Digital Foundry has discovered some fantastic results under the hood.
There appears to be a huge leap in both loading times and performance when it comes to the Xbox Series X and Series S versions. While Digital Foundry has identified the Xbox One version as being stable, its next-gen counterparts are where the game really shines, albeit not without a few hiccups.
"It's loading times and performance that truly separate the generations. When it was first shown, the original trailer didn't exactly run well, so I was pleasantly surprised to see that The Ascent delivers 60 frames per second on both Xbox Series X and Series S and while there are some camera glitching issues that look like slowdown (which I hope will be fixed), the game really is very solid indeed on both Series consoles."
In regards to loading times, they're only "OK" on even the next-gen systems, but boast up to a 600% improvement on Xbox Series X and Xbox Series S compared to the three whole minutes on Xbox One.
"Loading times? They're OK on Series consoles but not exactly fast - but Xbox One consoles take close to three minutes to load, and so we find a 600 percent improvement comparing One to Series consoles!"
The differences between the Xbox Series X and Series S themselves appear to be minimal, with only the resolution proving a major change between the two. Xbox Series X hits a native 4K, whilst the Series S tops out at 1440p. Outside of this, everything else seems to be fairly similar.
"Both Series S and X deliver a fantastic experience with this game and here at least, it's only resolution that divides them. Still, by and large, I do feel the developers did a good job with all versions of the game. The loading times are the only serious flaw on the last-gen systems but all users can enjoy a solid experience - and as for the game itself? I had a lot of fun with it and highly recommend checking it out - something that's very easy to do as it's a day one launch game on Xbox Game Pass."
Overall, it sounds as though the developers at Neon Giant have done a fantastic job in regards to The Ascent's technical performance. Whilst the loading times seem to be a bit of an issue, this is something that hopefully can be ironed out in future updates.
It does seem next-gen owners will get the best possible experience. As for the game itself, we've been playing it this week and have found it to be a pretty great experience, and another win for the Xbox Game Pass library.
How have you found the performance of The Ascent for Xbox so far? Let us know below.