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    Video settings / FPS workaround

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    HollyHoney
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    Mood Wired Video settings / FPS workaround

    Post by HollyHoney on Wed May 28, 2008 9:06 am

    Hey gang, not sure who all has seen this post on the official forums but I thought I would share since it helped me out quite a bit. Prior to performing this workaround I was running on low settings with shader 2 and getting like 35-65 fps. Now Im getting like 35-50 fps but it looks WAY better !!!!


    Here is the jist of it.

    There is a bug that causes low settings to actually produce worse FPS than high settings. With the shadows disabled, you can actually play better on high settings than low.


    1. Press ESC to get to your video settings (duhh) Very Happy
    2. Press HIGH
    3. Go to Advanced tab and change the below settings.
    a. Turn off all shadows (set to none)
    b. Turn off water reflections (possibly, try it)
    c. Might have to change from Shader 3.0 to 2.0
    4. Press Apply then Ok
    5. Enjoy your new settings.

    *NOTE do not mess with ANY of the sliders

    For me... I have been messing with Shaders 3 and 2. Sometimes 3 lags too much so I switch to 2.0. But before when I was running on the LOW vid settings I couldnt even try shader 3 it lagged so bad.

    I think the reason this is working for some... is that like the OP said ... the default HIGH settings have some magical combination of what this game requires. Also I was reading the "shadows" is what might be causing a bunch of peoplese problems.

    The thing about the sliders is this... once you move a slider your settings become special and not default. Even tho your defaulting to HIGH, it still runs better then when on LOW for some reason.

    I played with this for a good amount of time yesterday and this morning and I really think it does help some to default to the HIGH settings then turning shader to 2 and shadows off. I was even playing with shader 3 this morning for like an hour and wow its never looked / ran so well!!!

    Hope this helps some, it's worth a try.

    Here is the link from the forums if you wanted to read up.
    http://forums.ageofconan.com/showthread.php?t=36047

    Here is what I'm runnin for comparison
    AMD Dual core 3.2 gig cpu
    XFX 7900GS oc'd with 256 ram
    2 gig DDR2
    running at 1440x900 with 30-65 fps steady
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    Cherek Stoneshoulders
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    Mood Wired Re: Video settings / FPS workaround

    Post by Cherek Stoneshoulders on Wed May 28, 2008 9:12 am

    Yeah I noticed that as well, someone in game mentioned it.

    I was set on low and then had turned up the sliders. I did basically the above and increased from 15-25 FPS to 25-40 FPS in the wildlands. and it looked better

    I sometimes still have to turn down the overall draw distance in places like Old T.

    Virgil
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    Mood Wired Re: Video settings / FPS workaround

    Post by Virgil on Wed May 28, 2008 9:13 am

    Thanks for linking that. I have been messing with my settings for a while and I deffinitly noticed that decreasing shadows greatly increased my FPS. Cant wait to get out of work and test it.

    I currently get 20-25 on high with the following rig:
    Asus Maximus Formuls x38
    Intel e8400 @ 3.8ghz
    4gig DDR2 OC for 1:1 with CPU
    Nvidia 7900 GS (going to replace with 4870 soon...)


    Last edited by Virgil on Wed May 28, 2008 9:29 am; edited 1 time in total
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    HollyHoney
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    Mood Wired Re: Video settings / FPS workaround

    Post by HollyHoney on Wed May 28, 2008 9:14 am

    Just wanted to add... I went back and read the official forums again for that link I provided and wow this trick is really working for people. Better for some then others. I really think the "key" is to not mess with the sliders after pressing HIGH button.



    Quote:

    Originally Posted by arthurb999

    Incredible.

    I'm on a old comp...

    Athlon 3000xp @ 2.1 ghz (single core)
    1.5 Gigs DDR1
    ATI 9800 Pro

    At the settings you listed the game runs at a smooth 15fps in city area... was getting 5-10 on low and was choppy. What a f/n differnece... the game looks amazing... i was missing so much. I can actually enjoy playing now.

    This is my post from above and after playing on that all night... I am happy with the game now. Even on a crappy comp... the game is enjoyable on high settings.
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    Dornie
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    Mood Wired Re: Video settings / FPS workaround

    Post by Dornie on Wed May 28, 2008 9:21 am

    In beta the word on the street was just changing Shaders from 3.0 to 2.0 made the biggest single "bang for the buck" difference. Choose High or Medium (as pointed out, Low, oddly enough, makes it worse) then choose Shaders 2.0 and click Apply.

    Be sure to NOT change any settings after Shaders because it will revert to 3.0.

    This single setting worked wonders for me. Your milage may vary, but it would be interesting to head other's experiences.

    Also, the three presets have pre-rendered graphics caches. You can actually see the files in your AoC folder, although I forget where they are. Making changes beond the three presets will cause the system to dynamically render graphics caches, lowering your FPS. Thus, it's best to stick with the presets until the dynamic cache engine is more efficient.

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    Mood Wired Re: Video settings / FPS workaround

    Post by Stigma on Wed May 28, 2008 9:54 am

    Do we know if the "not changing anything" applies to anti-aliasing? I could probably live with 2.0 shaders (I'll keep my shadows and reflections), but not having AAx4 or better would be a deal breaker for me.

    I remember in the beta that setting AA to x4 or better actually slightly improved FPS on older machines. I wonder if that's still the case in the release?

    Also, I remember that people in beta suggested that you could drop your shadows and reflections to "characters only" for a nice increase to FPS. So for people who need a little FPS boost, but don't want to turn off shadows, this might be a good middle ground.
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    HollyHoney
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    Mood Wired Re: Video settings / FPS workaround

    Post by HollyHoney on Wed May 28, 2008 10:01 am

    I would play with your settings and just see what works. I was only able to mess with it a little last night and this morning. Just wanted to get the word out asap as it seemed to be helping a lot of folks Smile
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    Mood Wired Re: Video settings / FPS workaround

    Post by Dornie on Wed May 28, 2008 10:58 am

    I don't have an authoritative answer, but it would almost make sense that settings with a checkbox (the feature is on or off) would use the same shader caches, but a setting with a slider would not.
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    Trained
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    Mood Wired Re: Video settings / FPS workaround

    Post by Trained on Wed May 28, 2008 11:11 am

    Nice info Holly, thanks a boatload, I am going to play with that when I can get in and see how it goes. Smile
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    HollyHoney
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    Mood Wired Re: Video settings / FPS workaround

    Post by HollyHoney on Wed May 28, 2008 11:17 am

    I tend to agree with Dornie. Play with the boxes and drop down menus all you want but once you hit HIGH dont touch the sliders. Rolling Eyes

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    Mood Wired Re: Video settings / FPS workaround

    Post by Stigma on Thu May 29, 2008 2:09 am

    Okay. So I played around a little with this, and found out some interesting things. First off, I should mention that I don't really have FPS issues, so I was toying with it more out of a sense of academic curiosity. All of the following tweaks came from setting everything to the default "High" setting, and working from there.

    Shader 2.0: I think this is a real "make-or-break" setting, but it cuts both ways. For older machines and graphics cards that probably don't support 3.0 shaders, setting this to 2.0 gives you a boost. But on my machine (8800GT card, DirectX 9.0c), setting to Shader 2.0 cut my FPS down ~40 FPS! (From around 60 down to 20ish.) So, take that with a grain of salt, but don't automatically set this down expecting a boost. Better to know what your machine can actually run, and set it to that.

    Anti-Aliasing: I tried this off (default), and saw a mild FPS boost, on the order of 5-10 FPS. I then cranked it up 16xQ and 16x, and saw a drop of about 15-20 FPS. I think a happy medium for those wanting smoother edges and minimum FPS hits would be AA 4x. Note that, as a rule, the larger your native screen resolution the less you'll need AA. If you run at anything above 1280x1024, using AA gives you fairly diminishing returns. Obviously, you can simply turn it on and look at something for more certainty, but I wouldn't advise anyone use this unless they can definitively see an improvement.

    Shadows/Water Reflections: With the default "high" setting, leaving them at "everything" seemed to not drop FPS much, which supports the above posted theory of cached graphics settings. However, I found that there was no functional difference (at least on my machine) between turning both settings to "from characters only" and "off", and dropping down to "characters only" boosted my FPS by about 10 points. So it's probably fairly safe to leave these at "from characters only", unless you're absolutely desperate for an extra frame or so.

    So, in support of this overall graphics "fix", I can suggest to you that the "shader" list should be set to what your card can handle, rather than arbitrarily to 2.0, 2.x or 3.0, and I'm fairly certain you can set the shadows and water to "from characters only" to preserve some game appearance without sacrificing any FPS. (Unless your computer is really hugging the edge of playability.)

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    Mood Wired Re: Video settings / FPS workaround

    Post by rhyzen on Thu May 29, 2008 4:50 am

    Running on an Radeon X1900GT and this fix helped a lot. Before, I was running on Low settings with view distance cranked all the way down. Now, I have view distance turned up and I'm still getting around 30~ FPS.

    Great info, many thanks!
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    Mood Wired Re: Video settings / FPS workaround

    Post by Cauldron on Thu May 29, 2008 5:07 am

    I got better fps when applyin higher video setings as well. with a 8600gt I get 15-20 on average and up to 45 in solo areas. However, I admit that the 15-20 drops to around 10 in some zones. I also have a p4 3.0

    What gets me is that Oblivion was supposed to be the tester for this game. If you could run it then you could do alright with AoC. Well, with my old 256mb card Oblivion ran fine, at medium. With the 8600 512 OC edition, Oblivion runs maxed out settings really well. Then when I get into AoC and see that the graphics can be scaled, excittedly I jump into the settings. Now, even with graphics set to Nintendo 64 quality the game still gets low fps. Any setting, save maxed out, gets low fps. And max gets like 5 fps. So, if you are seeing this then you are not alone. Now, I have some questions that may help.

    Will more ram help my fps? I have 2g ram now on Vista 32.

    Will an "old graphics driver cleaner outer program" help my fps? I always just throw in the new card and the cd and let it be.

    Will closing start up programs and background programs increase my fps? All of my background app's show they are using no cpu power, but do these app's still affect fps? there are about 60 shown running in task manager.

    My in game settings are as follows. (with p4 3.0 cpu, 8600 512mb OC edition gpu, 2g of ram.)

    shader 3.0
    texture res Medium
    everything else is set to LOW or Mid Low. Or disabled. Drawing distance has a major impact.
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    Mood Wired Re: Video settings / FPS workaround

    Post by Noz on Thu May 29, 2008 10:28 am

    I would just stress that for some peoples machines turning the shader from 3.0 to 2.0 can decrease your FPS instead of increasing it.. I get much better results running it on 3.0. Nice post cheers
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    Cherek Stoneshoulders
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    Mood Wired Re: Video settings / FPS workaround

    Post by Cherek Stoneshoulders on Thu May 29, 2008 11:05 am

    Yes, use a driver cleaner. And make sure you get the newest NVIDIA drivers, they help a lot.

    Also, when you hit HIGH, DO NOT CHANGE SLIDERS afterwards. Hit High, change to shader 2.0, and turn down shadows. Nothing else, and with that card and 2gb ram you should get good FPS.

    Cauldron wrote:I got better fps when applyin higher video setings as well. with a 8600gt I get 15-20 on average and up to 45 in solo areas. However, I admit that the 15-20 drops to around 10 in some zones. I also have a p4 3.0

    What gets me is that Oblivion was supposed to be the tester for this game. If you could run it then you could do alright with AoC. Well, with my old 256mb card Oblivion ran fine, at medium. With the 8600 512 OC edition, Oblivion runs maxed out settings really well. Then when I get into AoC and see that the graphics can be scaled, excittedly I jump into the settings. Now, even with graphics set to Nintendo 64 quality the game still gets low fps. Any setting, save maxed out, gets low fps. And max gets like 5 fps. So, if you are seeing this then you are not alone. Now, I have some questions that may help.

    Will more ram help my fps? I have 2g ram now on Vista 32.

    Will an "old graphics driver cleaner outer program" help my fps? I always just throw in the new card and the cd and let it be.

    Will closing start up programs and background programs increase my fps? All of my background app's show they are using no cpu power, but do these app's still affect fps? there are about 60 shown running in task manager.

    My in game settings are as follows. (with p4 3.0 cpu, 8600 512mb OC edition gpu, 2g of ram.)

    shader 3.0
    texture res Medium
    everything else is set to LOW or Mid Low. Or disabled. Drawing distance has a major impact.
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    Mood Wired Re: Video settings / FPS workaround

    Post by HollyHoney on Thu May 29, 2008 11:14 am

    Vista is a memory HOG, 2 gig is like bare minimum in my eyes. If your gonna play games on Vista I would go with 3+ gigs.

    When installing video drivers it is always recommended to uninstall your current driver, restart the pc then install your new drivers.

    As far as having open programs other then AOC... every single app you have open or running in the background is using up precious system memory. If you go into your task manager you can see how much memory each app is hogging. You can look up online what the processes go to and then decide if you want to close them or not. www.processlibrary.com is a good resource for this... Its a free site where you can enter names of processes then it will tell you what it does.

    Hope some of that helps.
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    Mood Wired Re: Video settings / FPS workaround

    Post by Louchar on Thu May 29, 2008 11:26 am

    AoC uses up to 2.8GB of memory when I'm playing. 2GB is not enough for this game.

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