Patch 1.17 includes a new ‘Balanced’ 40Hz mode
Guerrilla Games is still refining Horizon Forbidden West, and with the latest update, the studio has added something that’ll make a certain group of PS5 owners very happy: Variable Refresh Rate (VRR) and High Refresh Rate (HFR) support, including a “Balanced” 40Hz graphics mode. If you’ve got a supported 120Hz display, you’re in luck.
Aside from a short trailer, the developers shared the 1.17 patch notes on Reddit:
Variable Refresh Rate (VRR) and High Refresh Rate (HFR) support
VRR improves dynamic resolution scaling on 60Hz
VRR & HFR targets a refresh rate between 60Hz and 120Hz
New “Balanced” Graphics Mode introducing 40Hz for supported displays
I have to say, even though I can’t personally use these features yet, they’re great for future-proofing. Striking the right balance between graphical fidelity and performance is always on my mind, though everyone has their nitty-gritty preferences and it’s wonderful to have that choice — even several choices in some games — as a console player.
Options are a great thing, and while VRR support from day one would be ideal, having it show up at all — even if it’s several months after launch — is still appreciated.
Ratchet & Clank: Rift Apart also got a 120Hz update after release, including a 40fps Fidelity mode, and the verdict was great. With this trend, it would seem that it’s probably best to wait to play some of PS5’s big-hitters if you’re looking for the optimal experience. I mean, that’s good advice in general (what with quality-of-life updates being the norm these days), but for those of you with a nice, modern display ready to go, it feels extra true.
Other fixes in today’s update
Patch 1.17 also fixes crashes, issues with main and side quests, and other problems in Horizon Forbidden West. One of them — a lingering exclamation point “when all skills have been unlocked and skill points are available” — would’ve gotten on my nerves; it’s gone.
Is it too soon for a replay of Horizon Forbidden West for VRR’s sake? Maybe just a quick check-in? It looks like the patient gamers win again. (Those lovable scamps.)