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The Witcher 3 - performance tips


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#1 Andre S.

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Posted 20 May 2015 - 04:48

Some tips to optimize your framerate in The Witcher 3 on the PC, in order of importance:

  • This goes without saying, but uncap the framerate! When I installed it defaulted to 30fps cap, needless to say this led to a terrible experience.
  • Run Fullscreen instead of Borderless Windowed. On my PC this is a good 20% perf improvement and many people report the same online. The game tends to revert to Borderless Windowed when you start it, always make sure it's in this mode.
  • If you don't have a GTX 970 or 980, just disable NVIDIA HairWorks. And even if you do, it's quite a significant tradeoff.
  • Keep Foliage Visibility Range at Medium or High. Ultra has a very high cost with comparatively little visual difference.
  • Keep Grass Density Medium or Low. Again, little visual difference, but substantial perf cost.

Settings you should enable / set to Ultra without fear:

  • Light Shafts
  • Bloom
  • Blur
  • Detail Level
  • Terrain Quality (doesn't seem to do anything)
  • Texture Quality (I keep it on High, if you have more than 2GB VRAM Ultra should be good)

Settings that can be a good framerate/image quality trade-off, in order of importance:

  • SSAO/HBAO+: SSAO is much better than nothing, HBAO+ gives even more presence to everything
  • Anti-aliasing: can't live without it personally.
  • Shadow Quality (high)
  • HairWorks if you have a GTX 970, 980 or better.

Settings to disable because they're stupid in a video game (my opinion, they don't actually impact performance much):

  • Motion Blur
  • Chromatic Aberration
  • Depth of Field
  • Vignette

For more information, NVIDIA has posted a good guide here: http://www.geforce.c...-tweaking-guide

 

Oh, and my PC specs for reference:

 

i5 4670K@4Ghz

16GB DDR3-1600 RAM

2 GTX 760s in SLI, roughly as fast as a GTX Titan

Monitor: 1920x1080@120hz. Cannot run this game at 120fps though, but a solid 60fps with most settings to high/ultra is doable.




#2 trag3dy

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Posted 20 May 2015 - 04:59

From watching videos (I don't own the game yet) I would add bloom to the list of settings to disable. It looks over done like in most in video games. But I guess this might come down to personal preference.



#3 OP Andre S.

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Posted 20 May 2015 - 05:02

Bloom has negligible perf impact so as you say it's a matter of taste, but I find it well done in this game and things look a bit flat without.



#4 elenarie

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Posted 20 May 2015 - 17:35

From watching videos (I don't own the game yet) I would add bloom to the list of settings to disable. It looks over done like in most in video games. But I guess this might come down to personal preference.

 

If you don't like the bloom, at least keep the light shafts on. They really give the sun a presence.



#5 LaP

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Posted 20 May 2015 - 17:51

What exactly is vignette?



#6 e.worm jimmmy

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Posted 20 May 2015 - 18:39

What exactly is vignette?

In photography and optics, vignetting (/vɪnˈjɛtɪŋ/; French: "vignette") is a reduction of an image's brightness or saturation at the periphery compared to the image center. The word vignette, from the same root as vine, originally referred to a decorative border in a book. Later, the word came to be used for a photographic portrait which is clear in the center, and fades off at the edges. A similar effect occurs when filming projected images or movies off a projection screen. The resulting so-called "hotspot" effect defines a cheap home-movie look where no proper telecine is used.

 

 

 

 

 

  • Motion Blur
  • Chromatic Aberration
  • Depth of Field
  • Vignette

 

 

all this postprocessing effect to emulate old camera equipment, have NO PLACE in videogames.   at all.    they use your graphics power, and add nothing to the video game.

 

its not a movie, it is a damn game!



#7 +_Alexander

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Posted 20 May 2015 - 18:51

I agree with the PC gamer article.



#8 spacer

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Posted 20 May 2015 - 19:32

I agree with the PC gamer article.

I do to. I think all of those effects, with the exception of one, are used too much and in the wrong ways in most mainstream games today.

 

The exception is chromatic aberration. I know what it is, but I still don't understand why it's such a hot-button issue. It's such a subtle effect that is, quite literally, impossible to see while playing a game in a normal way. Yet people bitch and moan about it like it's an effect equivalent to a perforamnce bug that causes a game to run at 1FPS. Even in screenshots that people use as examples of what it is or why it's "bad" I have to really, really try to see it. And even then, it's barely perceptible. I don't understand it.



#9 LaP

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Posted 20 May 2015 - 19:45

As long as you can turn those post processing effects off i don't really have a problem with them.



#10 scorpian007

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Posted 20 May 2015 - 20:03

Hope this runs on my HD7970 OC. Just waiting to see prices on the new R9 390X before I upgrade.



#11 scorpian007

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Posted 21 May 2015 - 00:15

Game runs pretty well on my rig, getting 50-60fps at 1080p, AA, SSAO and most settings on High/Ultra. A little surprised to be honest. This card has served me so well and it's 3.5 years old now.



#12 Yusuf M.

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Posted 21 May 2015 - 00:24

Game runs pretty well on my rig, getting 50-60fps at 1080p, AA, SSAO and most settings on High/Ultra. A little surprised to be honest. This card has served me so well and it's 3.5 years old now.

The Witcher 3 performs nicely on AMD hardware mainly because of GCN optimizations for the consoles. I have 2x R9 280Xs (rebranded HD7970s) and I'm getting similar performance. That's without CrossFire because it doesn't work with the latest beta drivers.



#13 e.worm jimmmy

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Posted 21 May 2015 - 02:20

....tips....

i run it now on high/ultra

 

680   i7-3770k 16ram

had to switch a bunch of post processing stuff off (hairworks too, as if i care)

now i can enjoy everything else pretty solid.

 

 

looks WAY better then anything i got before, with lower settings but with "cool" effects.

 

 

 

 

i still hate the grass and trees, but hey so much good looking stuff in the game,it is livable, and new swift improments to the pc version are promised already :)   cool!



#14 Enron

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Posted 21 May 2015 - 02:29

all this postprocessing effect to emulate old camera equipment, have NO PLACE in videogames.   at all.    they use your graphics power, and add nothing to the video game.

 

its not a movie, it is a damn game!

 

You could just convert 60 screenshots a second through instagram and get the same effect.



#15 Osiris

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Posted 21 May 2015 - 02:36

Interesting, learnt what chromatic aberration is.  One of those things I've never been bothered to look up but the link was interesting.  I like how they added some exceptions or examples of where these effects are used well, at the end of it.