Among my non-PC gamer friends, the one thing I hear most often regarding why they stick to console gaming is they enjoy being able to pick up and play a game with no extra steps. PC gaming is all about experimentation and optimization; you fine-tune graphics settings to run to the unique capabilities of your system, which requires some extra work beyond starting up a game and playing. It's not something everyone enjoys, and given a few years it might be completely unnecessary.
Turn 10 Studios debuted Forza Motorsport 6: Apex on Windows 10 yesterday, and so far the reception has been overwhelmingly positive. Thousands of PC gamers have been posting screenshots of the beautiful game and enjoying what is certainly a cut above the platform's competition when it comes to presentation and breadth of content.
Where it has particularly earned praise is with its "Dynamic Optimization" feature. What this does is alter graphics settings automatically as the game is being processed. If the processor, GPU, and/or memory are stressed, the software will change the settings on the fly to reduce load. Once there's room for more demand, the software increases the graphics settings.
In theory it's a remarkably ambitious idea, and to the surprise of many it has been executed brilliantly. Most players haven't even noticed the feature as the game has been carefully built to not only change the settings while a player is racing, but do so without any visible hiccups; it knows when to alter the settings and do it in the smoothest way possible.
The implications of this is something that more than just PC racing games can benefit from. Think about it: if you're playing a graphically remarkable game, you want to be able to enjoy the best visuals that it has to offer during slow moments, while playing at the best performance when the action gets heavy. Not having to compromise by committing to either graphics or performance is something that all platforms can benefit from, resulting in more spectacular experiences.
It doesn't surprise me that Turn 10 Studios is the first to deliver such a system. It really is one of the most accomplished and technically-proficient development studios in modern gaming development, after all. I still have no idea how it was able to make Forza Motorsport 6 run as well as it does on the Xbox One.
Instead of hearing me talk about it, you can download Forza Motorsport 6: Apex for free on the Windows 10 Store and experience the Dynamic Optimization for yourself. Really, if you're a car enthusiast and/or racing fan, this is a game that you simply can't miss.