I was reading another forum about FC2"s relatively modest system specs and contrary to what they listed one guy posted he thought you would need higher stuff to play it smoothly. It got me thinking you never see a resolution listed along with the specs. It got me thinking it would be nice to have a flat out minimum spec and a “recommended spec @ this res” listing. Think companies would ever consider doing this. I assume they play the game on a box with the recommended specs to determine what that is-maybe that’s naive, maybe they just pull it out of the air. But if they do determine it on a dev box, just list what res they used.
The problem there is that it’s still going to vary a lot depending on what video card you have, so the specs would have to get very precise as to what specific models of cards you’d need, and then that might just confuse things for people who don’t have that specific card. And most people will be interested in how the game works with their existing hardware than in what new hardware would be “recommended.”
Some games are getting better at autodetecting decent settings for the hardware you have, but it’s still difficult to come up with a simple metric.
Using the Windows Experience Index will make things easier as Vista is adopted by more users. Instead of printing a huge detailed list of crap on the box side you can just put a “6.5” number with subtext “WEI Min”.
I’ve always assumed that the minimum and recommended specs refer to the common resolutions at the time, such as 1280x1024 right now. However, it would be nice if they indicated fully what they were testing on.
Except that they list a specific card in the specs. So you can gauge where you are at by the card and the res. With no res at all it’s really kinda hard to tell what the specs mean.