Electronic Arts will be supporting progressive scan video output with its '2003' range of sports titles (so that's Madden, NCAA and NHL) as well as the forthcoming Bond adventure Nightfire, Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets and Shox... which of course confirms, as one might have suspected, that young Mr. Shox is going to be appearing on GameCube as well as PlayStation 2, stretching yet further the industry standard definition of the word "exclusive". So, you might rightly ask, just what is progressive scan? It's an advanced display mode, of course, which the humble GameCube supports, but beyond that? Progressive scan is also known as 'non-interlaced' or 'sequential scanning' (after all, why give something one name when you can give it three?), and it's a way of drawing the image scan lines on a display, but instead of splitting the video frame into two fields - of odd and even scan lines - the frame is scanned from top to bottom in one pass. The tricky part is that, somewhat unhelpfully, people often misuse the term to describe any video system which is not interlaced, which is why it's used in connection with plasma screens, LCDs and those sorts of things. If you're wondering why you aren't using this progressive scan doobrie, then the answer is simple - you simply don't have the technology. Those expensive HDTV cables sold in the US and Japan can be used for progressive scan, but this is somewhat reliant on the Cube owner also possessing an HDTV, and they haven't exactly taken off over here. And the benefits? Less artefacts, edge distortion, aliasing, field flicker and line crawl. The good news is that given a 60Hz game - which most Cube releases now are - and an RGB cable, you'll be hard pressed to find too much fault with the output. So, don't go throwing away your TV just yet. Admittedly this is a somewhat simplified explanation - for a better and more technical overview, we recommend heading to this site. Related Feature - EA Shox world with another rally game
If you click on a link and make a purchase we may receive a small commission. Read our editorial policy.