Nier: Automata received a notably poor reception when it arrived on PC in 2019, due to a port with enough problems that fans stepped in to fix some themselves. A new Xbox Game Pass PC port appears to be an entirely new version, with many of those issues fixed – but fans are upset that those improvements seem to have bypassed Steam.
Nier: Automata arrived on Xbox Game Pass today, and PC fans quickly discovered that the Windows Store version of the game is an updated Become As Gods edition, rather than the ‘vanilla’ Steam release. IGN tested both versions and discovered that, unlike the Steam version, the Windows 10 edition boots to a Borderless Windowed mode, doesn’t stretch its image, and is noticeably sharper (image comparison below).
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Polish porting specialist QLOC has since revealed that it helped adjust the Xbox game for its newer PC release, and explained that it’s added a borderless video setting, FidelityFX options, HDR and 4K UI textures. The game does still cap at 60 FPS, which was a common complaint about the original Steam release, and we’ve not yet been able to test extensively to rule out any performance issues.
The question remaining is whether those that already paid for the game on Steam will see any of the same improvements – and many fans are vocally unhappy at the unexpected new release. “Soooo… they left the steam version broken and made a new port? Why?” wrote Pancracio17 on ResetEra. “RIP my Steam version,” wrote neoak. “BRB downloading Game Pass version to 100% like the XBO version.”
On QLOC’s Facebook page, others implored the port studio to improve the Steam version (although that is almost certainly out of the developer’s hands). “Will these new updates come to the Steam version too?”, wrote CJ Melendez. “Fans have had to use mods to get the PC working correctly for years. It would be unfair to fix those issues for the Windows Store version only.”
We asked publisher Square Enix about whether the new upgrades will be released for Steam players at some point, but received no comment.