Last generation dogs were happy enough to amble along at 30 frames per second at 720p, with few complaints from punters, but all of a sudden everyone wants their dogs moving at 60 frames per second in native 1080p. Anything less these days and a dog is good for nothing but taxidermy and bomb disposal.
With this in mind, let’s compare two current gen dogs that are going head to head this Christmas, namely the noble Bichon Frise, and the more muscular Pug. Whatever happens in this savage canine clash, it’s pretty much a guarantee they’re both better than Watch_Dogs.
No complaints with the Bichon Frise here, the little fella runs along at a silky-smooth 60 frames per second with hardly any tearing or visual hiccups. In fact, if you stick an upgraded graphics card up him, he goes like the clappers, steaming along at an incredible 240 frames per second.
The Pug performs respectably too. To the untrained eye, he too flies along at a silky smooth 60 frames per second. However, we hooked him up to our frame measuring device (a sentient death machine buried two miles under the desert) and found out that he skips a frame every 59 frames, so it’s only 59 frames per second, which is… well, it’s bloody ruined everything, hasn’t it? How are we supposed to enjoy a pug that goes 59 frames per second? Honestly, this isn’t 1998 anymore, where we had to put up with sheepdogs that suffered from terrible slowdown, screen tearing and relentless house pooping. This is the 21st century, where anything below 60 frames per second is for dead people and the poor. Disappointing.
No issues with the Bichon Frise. You can enjoy his hateful smuggery at 1080p. Give him a bath and you can fire him up to 1440p.
Once again the Pug underperforms. You can display him up to 1080p, but it’s actually upscaled from 720p. He’s always got a tagnut hanging out too, which drops it into sub-HD standard. His owner needs to grit his teeth, think of England and get that out of there. This isn’t 1999 anymore, we won’t tolerate sub-HD dogs with poopy bums.
This should come as no surprise, but the Bichon Frise is strong in the Force. It’s even less of a surprise that it’s the dark side. The little wanker killed three of our researchers with Force Lightning, choked a man just as he was about to eat his first Christmas sandwich of the year, then used the Force to raise Mandy from HR’s skirt. Having said that though, it’s hard to argue with his performance and framerate, so we say it’s still worth the risk.
The Pug gains some ground here as he’s much less evil. He’s still evil, but he hasn’t killed anyone, he just uses the dark side to throw scotch eggs at people. Little chance of death here, unless you’re fatally allergic to scotch eggs, in which case you'd probably welcome it.
This is where the tables turn. The Bichon Frise lacks charisma, relies on a few poorly-executed power moves and gets gassed in a few minutes. He might have ‘the look’ but unless he bucks his ideas up and improves his attitude backstage, he’ll be jobbing in TNA before long. His finisher’s a rather perfunctory powerbomb which would struggle to make a poodle wince.
The Pug really brings the fight here. He’s worked the indie circuit, and won the CZW Tournament of Death in 2004, even after being hurled off the roof of a nearby truck onto light tubes and thumbtacks. He’s wrestled physically demanding matches in New Japan Pro Wrestling too, even carrying Jumbo Tsuruta and a 70 year old Antonio Inoki to a good match. His finisher is a modified blue thunder bomb (christened the Pug Destroyer by fans) which he’s capable of transitioning into a flawless Mutah lock. He’ll be looked down upon by management, but he’s got the fans backing him.
The Bichon Frise is an embarrassment here. After a few pints with some Japanese businessmen, he’s convinced he has the voice of an angel, but he’s been known to clear out bars throughout the land with hellish renditions of ‘What’s New Pussycat?’ by Tom Jones, ‘Delaney’s Donkey’ by Val Doonican’ and ‘One Last Bitch’ by NWA. All the good work with the framerate and screen resolution? Down the pisser.
The Pug triumphs yet again. He’s not exactly Jeff Buckley, but he can often be found hitting the student café circuit, an acoustic guitar in his paws and melancholy in his soul. The fact he only goes at 59 frames per second can’t ruin his masterful acoustic rendition of ‘Black Star’ by Radiohead. When he gets a few lattes down him he busts out a merry version of ‘Where The Wild Roses Grow’ by Nick Cave. He gets a mate to do the Kylie part.
Don’t let the issues with either keep you away from adopting one of these most excellent dogs. Whichever one you choose, they’re bound to be better than a cat. Cats are bloody useless.
A Scotsman living in England, Dan has been rating dogs since the early '90s. His obsession with high frame-rates, Westies and whispering naughty words into dogs’ ears have earned him the nickname ‘The Scottish Dog Whisperer.’ Find him on twitter at @dpmcairns