Guerrilla Games is seeking to justify why Horizon Forbidden West DLC Burning Shores has completely dropped support for PS4, instead only putting out a version on PS5. One of those justifications? Clouds. The developer has taken to the PlayStation Blog to detail how its upgraded clouds system actually introduces new content to the expansion and has evolved in the time since Forbidden West's launch.
Senior community manager Narae Lee reveals you'll be able to find tunnels, caves, and "other surprises" up in the clouds as you explore them on a mount. "The best part is that depending on when you try any of these features, the experience will be different," she said. "As the day progresses, the quality and direction of light change, hiding and revealing some of these features and changing the feel of each journey." You should probably expect to be gathering collectibles and completing side quests up in the clouds of the Burning Shores DLC as a result.
As for how the Dutch studio has worked on its cloud tech with its Atmospherics team, you can read a full breakdown over on the PlayStation Blog. Essentially, though, the extra power of the PS5 has allowed clouds to become a character of their own in the open world via the use of voxel technology and other means.
"The cloud systems that we developed for Horizon Zero Dawn and Horizon Forbidden West were fast because they didn’t store clouds as 3D objects, but rather instructions on creating 3D clouds from limited 2D information," Lee said. "The PlayStation 5 can handle larger datasets. So, after Forbidden West wrapped, we set to work writing a voxel cloud renderer prototype that could live up to our standards for quality, and actually allow the player to fly through highly detailed cloud formations." Dubbed Frankencloudscapes by principal FX artist Andrew Schneider, the team was able to create a full cloudscape through "hard work, as well as the increased power of the PlayStation 5".
You can read much more about the work that went into this feature on the PlayStation Blog. What do you expect to find up in the clouds of Horizon Forbidden West's Burning Shores DLC? Let us know in the comments below.