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Star Wars: The Old Republic

Star Wars: The Old Republic 

General Discussion  » Why the graphics engine of SWTOR is inferoir to their competitors

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82 posts found
  tiefighter25

Novice Member

Joined: 7/30/12
Posts: 949

11/17/12 3:08:37 PM#61

One of the funner aspects of the ToR engine is it stutters when displaying text on screen.

So...

No chat bubbles for you. (Which were in Beta)

I guess the FTP purchase title display unlock helps underperformance as well.

Many people are right though, this is not news. You could argue that lack of news on optimization improvement is news, but at this point why bother?

 

Dallas Dickinson a few days ago- "We have a few systems that are ridiculously heavy in terms of their performance both on the server side actually but also on the client which you guys are playing. And we are doing active optimization. We try to knock down the highest nail all the time and we’ve just run up against one of the highest nails in our game being actively worked on and it’s a significant improvement. I cannot give you a date because the work is not done and it’s very complex work..."

 

Don't hold your breath on optimization or Ilum 2 "Electric Boogaloo".

  negativf4kk

Hard Core Member

Joined: 6/25/12
Posts: 370

11/17/12 3:24:58 PM#62
Originally posted by ajax7
Originally posted by Karteli

Hi everyone, I just wanted to compile some information together, since there is some disparity about SWTOR actually having a decent game engine.

It's been talked about before, about how the game engine may or may not be OK, or just flat out SUCK.  Often times disputed by EA, and spoken to their fans, the whole idea is dumped back on the players, with reasoning that it's their customers machines, not the game.  Let's look into this.

 

Some time ago EA investigated the Hero Engine.  They loved what they saw, and, even though Hero was still in beta, they said, "we'll take it!".  Now the thing to walk away from here was that the Hero Engine was incomplete, by the very people who could have made it complete, but EA bought it "as is", saying they would fill the rest in later.  A Warrantee was void at this point.

Nowadays the Hero Engine is complete and other games are using it with full graphics capability.

 

Lets look back to what Hero said.  This response was notable only after EA said that optimization could not fully happen because of the Hero Engine limitations.  Hero has a way with words to defend their honor .. but then again I'd expect them to, since Hero is a principal to their company.

http://www.heroengine.com/2011/11/heroengine-meets-starwars/

We showed the game to our friend Gordon Walton.  We had known Gordon for many years, back in the days when he worked for Kesmai, our late great competitor.  Gordon had since been with Sony for its Star Wars Galaxies game among other places.  He knows games, especially online games.

Not only did we show him the game, but because Gordon knew us so well we showed him the development tools we had built around our special process – building the game online, in realtime, with tools for the entire team all in one package.

I need this, said Gordon.  “I am about to start a special project and these tools will let us build and prototype fast and get something running in a hurry.”  Gordon is not an excitable guy by nature but this had his adrenaline flowing.  “This is just what I need!  I want to license your engine.”

We had thought about offering our engine and tools to developers but we had expected that we would have to actually ship a game first, like Epic did with Unreal Tournament before they licensed the original Unreal Engine.

It’s not productized yet,” we told Gordon.  “There are whole sections of code that is only roughed in and not optimized for performance or security.  And there are very few comments and very little documentation.

He didn’t care.  “We are going to have tons of engineers.  We can finish it ourselves.  We’re going to want to modify your source code for our special project anyway.

Gordon Walton was General Manager of BioWare Austin, until early 2011, when he stepped down.  Perhaps to save his career after all the damage that was done?

http://massively.joystiq.com/2011/02/15/swtors-loss-is-playdoms-gain-gordon-walton/

 

Well it didn't turn out so good.  The performance of the SWTOR engine was awful.  EA's twisted version of the Hero engine is still incomplete.  SWTOR was nowhere near massively.  Multiplayer? .. ok, but with 16 players or less nearby to you.  16 players or more and the game showed it's "massively" weakness.  Hell 30+ players in Ilum turned the game into a slideshow, causing Ilum to be shutdown permamently (looking straight down didn't even help).  It wasn't because Ilum was a bad concept, it was because players went there and said, "wow this game blows" .. this was not the publicity EA wanted, so they shut Ilum down.

This ideology to sell a pile of poo with pretty wrapping doomed the game.  Who wants to play a AAA MMO that has a subscription fee, plagued by a horrible engine?

 

Well optimizations continue to happen.  I believe in 1.2 we saw a 10% performance boost.  At least that what the astroturfers on the SWTOR forums said.  I saw no increase.

EA Bioware recently came on to say (Aug 27, 2012):

Hey all, I just wanted to pop in and say we are actively working on various optimizations (both server and client) and will continue to do so. It's extremely important for us to continually make improvements to our technology so we can have users across a variety of system specs and support large living worlds for those users to craft their virtual lives.

ref: http://www.swtor.com/community/showthread.php?p=5091079#post5091079

 

So this is essentially the same message EA spread from the start, but now they are still working on it.  DarthHater has been after EA to optimize from launch, and this is the response SW fans get.  /sigh

[side reference to the original DathHater interview: http://www.darthhater.com/articles/swtor-news/19981-guild-summit-interview-with-daniel-erickson/daniel-erickson-interview-part-2, see NOTE [1] at the end of this article.]

 

From a post-launch release:

http://www.pcgamer.com/2012/01/11/bioware-claims-swtor-performance-issues-are-being-blown-out-of-proportion/

[Star Wars: The Old Republic is no Witcher 2, Skyrim, or government-created missile targeting program. It doesn’t exactly look like it should be the Death Star to your rig’s Alderaan. And yet, many players have reported framerates that can barely keep their heads above 20FPS on machines that eat the aforementioned titles/missiles for breakfast. So, what’s the deal? Well, BioWare’s not entirely convinced there is one. With a wave of the hand, game director James Ohlen told Eurogamer that these aren’t the performance issues you’re looking for.

“The thing is, for the most part, 95 per cent – oh I can’t give you the exact percentage – most of our players aren’t really having performance concerns,” he said. “However, we know that it’s important that there is a smaller group of people usually with lower end machines that are having problems in some areas. And one of the most important things for us to grow our service is to continue to bring in more players, including those players who only have low-end machines.”]

Liars from the grand opening of this game.  Great start Bioware.  They even threw in a BS statistic.

 

This is our most desperate hour. Help me, Star-Wars-MMO_03. You're my only hope.

 

It should be noted that the same machine that gave 1-10 fps in a crowded environment with SWTOR gives 60 fps in GW2 and WoW.  Or close to it, even during massive PVP.

As a saving grace, SWTOR gives 60 fps when no other players are on the same map.  The only way to play this game is single player apparently.

 

---

 

[NOTE 1] referenced earlier

Guild Summit: Interview With Daniel Erickson

From http://www.darthhater.com/articles/swtor-news/19981-guild-summit-interview-with-daniel-erickson/daniel-erickson-interview-part-2

March 14, 2012

Where are you on game engine optimizations? Because I currently get about 5 to 10 frames per second on Alderaan and about 20 in Huttball and I have a PC that can run Crysis 2 at ultra. With no real explanation on what is going on.

Wow. You should do some investigation, because that is not typical. Where we are on game optimization in general is we’ve got some crazy, crazy options that you can turn on in 1.2. I played running around on several of the planets at fully acceptable wonderful running framerates on min spec machines now, which was the thing I wanted to see.

What we got right now is a big texture package pass, and we did it in both directions. So we can say, “Hey, you can take the textures way down, run around, the game works.” We’ve also said, “Hey, you know those textures people keep saying they like so much in the promotional videos? You can turn those on too now.” Because now we figured out how to do it in a small area so it doesn’t try to do it everywhere.
The next big thing we have to hit is effects, and that’s just a standard of what games do is say, “Hey, you know all those crazy crazy effects that everybody else is drawing? Yeah, maybe I don’t want to see all of your lightning storms all at once.” We have a programming team now that literally that’s their only mandate is game run better. Long term target is you should be able to play on your laptop, you should be able to play on your second and third machine in the house. And we are fiercely dedicated to that goal.

 

editted to fix typos

SWTOR tuning your Software & Hardware for best Performance

Hard Ware

Hard drives:

  1. If your hard drive is two to three years old you should replace it, you’re a gamer and you have been beating it to death. Hard drives do age mechanically over time.
  2. Are you still using an IDE drive? Check your mother board you may have an ATA hard drive connector if you do go buy a faster hard drive and use that connector.
  3. Do you have at least 25% free space on your hard drive? If not by a larger one now.
  4. When was the last time you defragged your hard drive? If you don’t remember do it.

RAM:

  1. If you have 2gig of ram upgrade to 4gig ram is cheap. Windows XP, Windows 7 32bit, and Vista 32bit can only use 4gig of ram.
  1. If you have Windows 7 or Vista 64bit upgrade 12gig or 16gig check your mother board specs.

Windows Optimize Your Version

Windows XP:

  1. Log onto Windows XP backup your data first.
  2. Now do a clean install of Windows XP patch it up to SP3.
  3. Load Microsoft Security Essentials (Free download).
  4. Next download the latest Graphic drivers for your card, this is the perfect time to load the latest Graphics driver to have clean Graphics driver load with Windows XP.
  5. Make sure DirectX 9.0c is loaded.
  6. Install SWTOR.

Why would you do this? How does this help you? Who should do this?

Why: Windows XP sp3 will run noticeably faster after a clean install.

How: Well besides running faster any old apps you no longer use will not be on the PC, if you had any malware it will be gone. Also loading the latest graphics driver on a clean install will prevent any weird graphics issues due over lapping driver files or if you went from a NIVIDA to an ATI card.

Who: Only attempt this if you know what you’re doing and you have your restore disks or you’re PC has a restore partition on your hard drive. Otherwise you would need your mother board driver disk along with your XP disk.

Power Settings for Windows XP:

Open the “Control Panel” then click on the “Power Options Properties” under Power Schemes drop down menu and select “Always On”.

Why: You want you CPU running at full power and using all your CPU cores.

Windows 7 and Vista:

  1. Log onto Windows 7 or Vista backup your data first.
  2. Now do a clean install of Windows 7 sp1 or Vista sp2.
  3. Load Microsoft Security Essentials (Free download).
  4. Next download the latest Graphic drivers for your card, this is the perfect time to load the latest Graphics driver to have clean Graphics driver load with Windows 7 or Vista.
  5. Install SWTOR.
  6. Load Microsoft’s DirectX 9.0c otherwise DirectX 11 will run DirectX 9.0c in emulation mode.
  7. Right click on the SWTOR icon on your desktop or in Start Menu program files, select Properties. In the window that appears select the Compatibility tab. Under Compatibility Mode check Run this program in compatibility mode for: From the box below select Windows XP (Service Pack 3) and then click OK (This setting is very important when your video card has less than 1GB of dedicated VRAM.)

Why run in XP SP3 mode?

---Technical Details---

Currently the engine/game is turning off the GPU RAM virtualization features of Vista and Windows 7 which is a major feature of the WDM/WDDM technology. This technology allows Windows to manage GPU RAM, by prioritizing textures and assets as needed without saturating the video card’s onboard RAM.

Quality Gain:

Allows medium and high resolution textures, better antialiasing, and various other features to remain enabled for a higher quality image on video cards with lower amounts of RAM. It also allows the higher quality textures to be used on objects in the distance which helps with the terrain, grass, building flaws as you are moving in the game.

Performance Gain:

Increases FPS even with higher Quality settings enabled and reduces the GPU stress by not having to load in and out lower resolution textures. This will even reduce GPU temperatures, as the Memory Controller on the GPU has to do less work with constant loading, unloading, and reloading of game textures and other assets.

Note:

By setting the game to Windows XP Service Pack 3 in the compatibility tab, the game/engine doesn’t override this feature of Windows, and this lets Windows manage the GPU RAM, and even if you have 256mb or 512mb of GPU RAM, Windows will tell the game you have 1024mb or more GPU RAM based on how much system RAM you have available and Windows can allocate to the game.

Windows 7 power settings:

This is big also, in the “Control Panel” make sure under “Power Options” it is set to “High Performance”.

Why: The CPU is OBLIVIOUS to your game or application settings. All it cares about is if whatever threshold of CPU activity that has been pre-determined by the power plan is reached. If that threshold is not reached, the CPU will NOT shift up to a higher clock speed. Hopefully Microsoft will fix this issue with a patch.

 

Your Welcome Ajax!!!

This game runs better than wow does on my high end PC.

Blah blah blah. So what u saying is to run swtor i have to

  1. learn all the tech staff about computer hardware
  2. learn all the staff about software
  3. learn and be able to recognise diffrence between 32 and 64 bit OP system
  4. make changes to standard system set up.
  5. get an appointment with my psychiatrist.
and on top of that i have to pay a sub fee for single-player game?

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  Betaguy

Hard Core Member

Joined: 12/31/04
Posts: 2639

Some folks are like Slinkies, totally useless but great fun to watch when pushed down stairs

11/17/12 3:31:49 PM#63
I say this with confidence, there will never be another SW MMO again.  It is truely cursed, it's the voodoo son.

  Karteli

Apprentice Member

Joined: 7/09/12
Posts: 2704

 
OP  11/17/12 3:37:31 PM#64
Originally posted by Betaguy
I say this with confidence, there will never be another SW MMO again.  It is truely cursed, it's the voodoo son.

Ahhh .. but there will be.  Though, next time, it will be an NGE squared.  Disney owns the license when SWTOR dies, and they would love a piece of the action.  The new MMO, however, won't be the Star Wars That You Used to Know (tm).

 

Though I imagine Disney will not go with Electronic Arts.  Ever.

Want a nice understanding of life? Try Spirit Science: "The Human History"
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=U8NNHmV3QPw&feature=plcp
Recognize the voice? Yep sounds like Penny Arcade's Extra Credits.

  User Deleted
11/17/12 4:05:40 PM#65
Originally posted by Quizzical
Originally posted by mikahr
Originally posted by Quizzical

If you turn graphical settings to max and it makes your computer choke and you complain about it, that just means you're an idiot for insisting on maxing settings even though you don't have a computer that can handle it.  That says nothing about how efficient the game engine is.

My computer can handle 2007 graphics just fine and SWTOR runs like crap thank you.

When 20 people start to PvP not even fastest super-computer can run SWTOR above slide-show and you preach "its not engine its you"

ahahahhahahahahahahhahahahah

SWTOR has 2007 graphics, shadows are still jagged and still look horrible (if you know what to look for) although a bit better than at launch (which doesnt say much at all), load times are still abbysmal....and it still runs very poor compared to other similar games, not to mention some other games.

I'm not sure what you're replying to there.  But your reply isn't relevant to my post.  Try reading the second paragraph, too.  Allowing players to turn settings up to ridiculous levels does not, in itself, make a game engine inferior.  Still running poorly even with settings turned down is what makes a game engine inferior.

Meanwhile, shadows are intractible.  To really do them properly, you need ray-tracing.  But if you try that, then no one will have hardware needed to run your game properly.  There are a variety of tricks that games use for shadows, all of which involve large amounts of fakery--and all of which are wrong if you look closely.

Yah, SWTOR runs the same no matter the settings. Idiots who turn up while they cant play are idiots. People with newest hardware getting crappy FPS are not idiots but annoyed - they dont have to be tech savvy to check performace and looks of SWTOR to see something is wrong.

Shadows have their owm maps and resoution, and SWTOR is very very low in that field compared to other games (MMOs).

Thats what people mean when they say "it looks crappy and runs crappy too"

It doesnt have any of dx10 and dx11 bells and whistles, its all DX9 and 2007, it should run on any newer hardware. THATS what makes a bad engine.

Originally posted by RavingRabbid

SNOORE. Game works fine for me as I have a very high end computer. So what if the Hero engine isnt that good or not. Its been a year already! Take it or leave it! LOL

Im starting to wonder if Kartelli has a room dedicated to SWTOR with printed articles posted all over a room with red lines going from page to page like some conpiracy theorist. I also wonder if he stares deeply at them looking for something else or new to dislike. LOL!

FRAPS 20vs20 pvp outdoors with good FPS, then come back. Otherwise youre full of it.

What do you think other people have, pentiums 4 with S3 Virge?

  Quizzical

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Posts: 13474

11/17/12 7:41:12 PM#66
Originally posted by mikahr

It doesnt have any of dx10 and dx11 bells and whistles, its all DX9 and 2007, it should run on any newer hardware. THATS what makes a bad engine.

If it were DirectX 11, would that make poor performance more acceptable?  New APIs don't make any effects possible that weren't possible before.  Rather, new APIs give you more efficient ways to do things that you could have done before but with a larger performance hit.  That dosen't make new effects possible, but it does make new effects practical.  Something you could have done before at 2 frames per second, you can now do at 40 frames per second, so you can finally implement it into your game.

  Karteli

Apprentice Member

Joined: 7/09/12
Posts: 2704

 
OP  11/17/12 7:46:17 PM#67
Originally posted by Quizzical
Originally posted by mikahr

It doesnt have any of dx10 and dx11 bells and whistles, its all DX9 and 2007, it should run on any newer hardware. THATS what makes a bad engine.

If it were DirectX 11, would that make poor performance more acceptable?  New APIs don't make any effects possible that weren't possible before.  Rather, new APIs give you more efficient ways to do things that you could have done before but with a larger performance hit.  That dosen't make new effects possible, but it does make new effects practical.  Something you could have done before at 2 frames per second, you can now do at 40 frames per second, so you can finally implement it into your game.

You should write a research document and submit it to a popular programming group, or maybe even Popular Science, they handle all kinds of stuff.  Explain how to make a 2 fps computer into a 40 fps monster just by upgrading DirectX.

 

You will go down in history books, as the person who performed the impossible! .. can I have your autograph?

Want a nice understanding of life? Try Spirit Science: "The Human History"
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=U8NNHmV3QPw&feature=plcp
Recognize the voice? Yep sounds like Penny Arcade's Extra Credits.

  Quizzical

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Posts: 13474

11/17/12 7:56:31 PM#68
Originally posted by Karteli
Originally posted by Quizzical
Originally posted by mikahr

It doesnt have any of dx10 and dx11 bells and whistles, its all DX9 and 2007, it should run on any newer hardware. THATS what makes a bad engine.

If it were DirectX 11, would that make poor performance more acceptable?  New APIs don't make any effects possible that weren't possible before.  Rather, new APIs give you more efficient ways to do things that you could have done before but with a larger performance hit.  That dosen't make new effects possible, but it does make new effects practical.  Something you could have done before at 2 frames per second, you can now do at 40 frames per second, so you can finally implement it into your game.

You should write a research document and submit it to a popular programming group, or maybe even Popular Science, they handle all kinds of stuff.  Explain how to make a 2 fps computer into a 40 fps monster just by upgrading DirectX.

 

You will go down in history books, as the person who performed the impossible! .. can I have your autograph?

You don't understand what I said.  For example, DirectX 11 offers hardware tessellation.  You could use exactly the same tessellation algorithm in DirectX 9, but it won't be able to run on the video card.  Instead, you'd have to do it in software on the processor.  That makes it vastly slower, which is why games didn't do software tessellation in DirectX 9.  If you could have done something with tessellation and gotten 40 frames per second using DirectX 11, then you could have done exactly the same thing in DirectX 9, but not being able to offload the work to the video card might have meant you were stuck at 2 frames per second.  DirectX 11 didn't make tessellation possible; it made it practical, by allowing you to offload the work from the processor onto the video card, which is vastly better at it.  The same is true of any other new graphics feature that newer APIs add.

  Karteli

Apprentice Member

Joined: 7/09/12
Posts: 2704

 
OP  11/17/12 8:09:10 PM#69
Originally posted by Quizzical
Originally posted by Karteli
Originally posted by Quizzical
Originally posted by mikahr

It doesnt have any of dx10 and dx11 bells and whistles, its all DX9 and 2007, it should run on any newer hardware. THATS what makes a bad engine.

If it were DirectX 11, would that make poor performance more acceptable?  New APIs don't make any effects possible that weren't possible before.  Rather, new APIs give you more efficient ways to do things that you could have done before but with a larger performance hit.  That dosen't make new effects possible, but it does make new effects practical.  Something you could have done before at 2 frames per second, you can now do at 40 frames per second, so you can finally implement it into your game.

You should write a research document and submit it to a popular programming group, or maybe even Popular Science, they handle all kinds of stuff.  Explain how to make a 2 fps computer into a 40 fps monster just by upgrading DirectX.

 

You will go down in history books, as the person who performed the impossible! .. can I have your autograph?

You don't understand what I said.  For example, DirectX 11 offers hardware tessellation.  You could use exactly the same tessellation algorithm in DirectX 9, but it won't be able to run on the video card.  Instead, you'd have to do it in software on the processor.  That makes it vastly slower, which is why games didn't do software tessellation in DirectX 9.  If you could have done something with tessellation and gotten 40 frames per second using DirectX 11, then you could have done exactly the same thing in DirectX 9, but not being able to offload the work to the video card might have meant you were stuck at 2 frames per second.  DirectX 11 didn't make tessellation possible; it made it practical, by allowing you to offload the work from the processor onto the video card, which is vastly better at it.  The same is true of any other new graphics feature that newer APIs add.

If those features were offered by SWTOR, then EA would have done an auto update, like SOE does whenever required for optimal performance.

SWTOR doesn't offer any of the stuff you mentioned.  EA wrote their own stuff, which is likely incompatible with higher versions of DirectX.  Is that what you are getting at?  If so, my apologies.

 

My reasoning:  People with the latest, high-end graphics cards still have issues.  Even with the latest DirectX.  It's not peoples computers, but the software that is running.  There are some Youtube fraps videos of people with state of the art $5-6 k machines still running like crap.  They run fine .. until they get a popular hub like the GTN or the mailbox and the computers go sluggish on fps.

 

Want a nice understanding of life? Try Spirit Science: "The Human History"
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=U8NNHmV3QPw&feature=plcp
Recognize the voice? Yep sounds like Penny Arcade's Extra Credits.

  Quizzical

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Posts: 13474

11/17/12 8:49:35 PM#70

I haven't played SWTOR, so I really don't know how well the game engine is coded.

I also haven't tried doing animations with large numbers of characters on the screen at once, so I don't have a good feel for how hard it is to make that work.

But if that only happens in cities where performance doesn't matter much, is it really such a problem?  It's pretty easy to sort players by who is nearest to you and cap how many it draws to maintain higher frame rates.  Would it be better if they did that, rather than letting you see more players?

The clearest case of a badly-coded game engine is when you have a processor bottleneck in a game that doesn't scale to very many processor cores.  SWTOR doesn't have that.  It might still be badly-coded, but it's not an obvious case like, say, EverQuest II.

  Karteli

Apprentice Member

Joined: 7/09/12
Posts: 2704

 
OP  11/17/12 9:04:46 PM#71
Originally posted by Quizzical

I haven't played SWTOR, so I really don't know how well the game engine is coded.

I also haven't tried doing animations with large numbers of characters on the screen at once, so I don't have a good feel for how hard it is to make that work.

But if that only happens in cities where performance doesn't matter much, is it really such a problem?  It's pretty easy to sort players by who is nearest to you and cap how many it draws to maintain higher frame rates.  Would it be better if they did that, rather than letting you see more players?

The clearest case of a badly-coded game engine is when you have a processor bottleneck in a game that doesn't scale to very many processor cores.  SWTOR doesn't have that.  It might still be badly-coded, but it's not an obvious case like, say, EverQuest II.

Red:

Oh, OK, Thank you for your input.

If you never played the game, then what exactly qualifies you to compare it to anything?  You will compare it to EQ2?

 

in purple:

I'm amazed at how you know the underworkings of this game, yet you never played it.  Explain it to us.

Want a nice understanding of life? Try Spirit Science: "The Human History"
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=U8NNHmV3QPw&feature=plcp
Recognize the voice? Yep sounds like Penny Arcade's Extra Credits.

  Mardukk

Spotlight Poster

Joined: 2/05/11
Posts: 1412

11/17/12 9:37:50 PM#72

I guess I don't know how some are trying to defend this game.  I found it ok as I soloed or duoed to max on one toon.  I get the distinct feeling that people that think the game is fine are just soloing/duoing and not in areas with a high amount of people.  

 

How do you argue with the people that created the engine, how do you know more about the engine than they do?  They have said EA took a very early version of the engine and did whatever they did with it.   Players have had issues since release with  very high end systems down to very low end systems.  

 

I believe the original devs of this game were a combination of ignorant and truth twisters...hence why 90% are no longer with the company...there's really no defending it.

 

Either way the design decisions are what I really find at fault (even more than them lying about engine performance) and the reason I quit.

  Quizzical

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Posts: 13474

11/17/12 9:42:36 PM#73

Most of my statements on this thread have been general statements that would apply to any game, not specific to SWTOR.

As for SWTOR core scaling, that's easy enough to look up:

http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/star-wars-gaming-tests-review,3087-8.html

Getting substantially better performance at six cores than four is not a case where the problem is not being able to use enough processor cores.  Poor processor core scaling is far from the only thing that would qualify a game as badly-coded, but it is the easiest one to check.

  Karteli

Apprentice Member

Joined: 7/09/12
Posts: 2704

 
OP  11/17/12 9:53:20 PM#74
Originally posted by Quizzical

Most of my statements on this thread have been general statements that would apply to any game, not specific to SWTOR.

As for SWTOR core scaling, that's easy enough to look up:

http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/star-wars-gaming-tests-review,3087-8.html

Getting substantially better performance at six cores than four is not a case where the problem is not being able to use enough processor cores.  Poor processor core scaling is far from the only thing that would qualify a game as badly-coded, but it is the easiest one to check.

Red:

Posts before this have proved otherwise (within the past 10).

 

You didn't really add anything to this discussion.  Theoretical analysis is not the same as what players actually saw.  The engine sucks.  Nothing changes this.  If you would like a theoretical analysis, create a new thread.

 

It's a crappy game as a result of the graphics enigne.

Want a nice understanding of life? Try Spirit Science: "The Human History"
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=U8NNHmV3QPw&feature=plcp
Recognize the voice? Yep sounds like Penny Arcade's Extra Credits.

  bigron

Apprentice Member

Joined: 11/08/12
Posts: 43

11/18/12 5:39:46 PM#75
Originally posted by Quizzical
Originally posted by ShakyMo
Mumbo:

Gamebryo engine was good for performance.
Daoc used it.
War had good performance about 6 months in when they fixed the engine (i put the earlier bad performance down to ea rushing release, they probably did the same with swtor, I don't think hero itself is at fault)
Rift uses gamebryo also.

It's not a simple matter of, this game engine performs well and that one doesn't.  Performance of the final game depends very, very heavily on what you do with it.  More models on the screen at once, more vertices in each model, and higher resolution textures all bring a performance hit.

It's the horrible netcode. As has been discussed before, BW bought a Beta engine. IDK if Hero has bad netcode intrinsically since I can't say I've played any other Hero engine games, nor have I coded with it. Did anyone play Faxion? AFAIK that's the only other game that used it.

TOR's netcode is awful. Hence the insane lag when more than 10-15 people are in the same place.

  User Deleted
11/19/12 3:13:40 AM#76
Originally posted by Quizzical
Originally posted by mikahr

It doesnt have any of dx10 and dx11 bells and whistles, its all DX9 and 2007, it should run on any newer hardware. THATS what makes a bad engine.

If it were DirectX 11, would that make poor performance more acceptable?  New APIs don't make any effects possible that weren't possible before.  Rather, new APIs give you more efficient ways to do things that you could have done before but with a larger performance hit.  That dosen't make new effects possible, but it does make new effects practical.  Something you could have done before at 2 frames per second, you can now do at 40 frames per second, so you can finally implement it into your game.

I would BECAUSE IT WOULD AT LEAST LOOK GREAT AND RUN POOR, compared to now when it looks like crap and runs very poor.

And yes, DX9 (2007) game SHOULD RUN PERFECTLY ON ANY COMPUTER TODAY even with only integrated video card.

Did you even read and understand the thing you quoted?

  Quizzical

Guide

Joined: 12/11/08
Posts: 13474

11/19/12 2:24:41 PM#77
Originally posted by bigron
Originally posted by Quizzical
Originally posted by ShakyMo
Mumbo:

Gamebryo engine was good for performance.
Daoc used it.
War had good performance about 6 months in when they fixed the engine (i put the earlier bad performance down to ea rushing release, they probably did the same with swtor, I don't think hero itself is at fault)
Rift uses gamebryo also.

It's not a simple matter of, this game engine performs well and that one doesn't.  Performance of the final game depends very, very heavily on what you do with it.  More models on the screen at once, more vertices in each model, and higher resolution textures all bring a performance hit.

It's the horrible netcode. As has been discussed before, BW bought a Beta engine. IDK if Hero has bad netcode intrinsically since I can't say I've played any other Hero engine games, nor have I coded with it. Did anyone play Faxion? AFAIK that's the only other game that used it.

TOR's netcode is awful. Hence the insane lag when more than 10-15 people are in the same place.

It would take extraordinarily bad networking code for its effect on frame rates to amount to anything more than a rounding error.  The video card isn't aware of what is going on with networking code, or for that matter, whether there even is networking code as opposed to an offline, single-player game.

Network activity does put a slight load on the processor and system memory, but for online games, it's very slight.  It's also in its own thread(s), so other threads aren't tripping over it.  We've had gigabit ethernet since 1999, and even that offers perhaps four orders of magnitude more bandwidth than games will use during normal gameplay.  Internet bottlenecks that aren't on the client computer won't affect your frame rates.

Whether network code is good or bad is not a property of a game engine.  The game engine can have some placeholder network stuff, but the game designers will have to write their own networking code to a large extent.  Making network code efficient depends very strongly on how fast characters move and accelerate, how long of range attacks have, how many characters are in the area at once, whether the characters are NPCs or players, and especially how much can be safely computed client-side as opposed to needing to be computed on the server.

  Quizzical

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Posts: 13474

11/19/12 2:28:54 PM#78
Originally posted by mikahr
Originally posted by Quizzical
Originally posted by mikahr

It doesnt have any of dx10 and dx11 bells and whistles, its all DX9 and 2007, it should run on any newer hardware. THATS what makes a bad engine.

If it were DirectX 11, would that make poor performance more acceptable?  New APIs don't make any effects possible that weren't possible before.  Rather, new APIs give you more efficient ways to do things that you could have done before but with a larger performance hit.  That dosen't make new effects possible, but it does make new effects practical.  Something you could have done before at 2 frames per second, you can now do at 40 frames per second, so you can finally implement it into your game.

I would BECAUSE IT WOULD AT LEAST LOOK GREAT AND RUN POOR, compared to now when it looks like crap and runs very poor.

And yes, DX9 (2007) game SHOULD RUN PERFECTLY ON ANY COMPUTER TODAY even with only integrated video card.

Did you even read and understand the thing you quoted?

The API version is just a tool.  If you upgrade from a toolbox with 10 tools in it to one with 15 tools in it, but don't use any of the new tools that weren't also in the old toolbox, would you expect things you build with it to suddenly be better?  To the contrary, if you're not going to use the new tools, you might as well just stay with the old toolbox.  That also gives you broader compatibility, and no chance for new bugs to crop up in the process of trying to port things back from DirectX 11 to DirectX 9.0c.

There's nothing intrinsic to DirectX 11 that makes it look better than DirectX 9.0c.  The newer version does make some new things practical, but how good the graphics look is still up to the game developers.

  Karteli

Apprentice Member

Joined: 7/09/12
Posts: 2704

 
OP  11/19/12 10:48:33 PM#79
Originally posted by Quizzical
Originally posted by mikahr
Originally posted by Quizzical
Originally posted by mikahr

It doesnt have any of dx10 and dx11 bells and whistles, its all DX9 and 2007, it should run on any newer hardware. THATS what makes a bad engine.

If it were DirectX 11, would that make poor performance more acceptable?  New APIs don't make any effects possible that weren't possible before.  Rather, new APIs give you more efficient ways to do things that you could have done before but with a larger performance hit.  That dosen't make new effects possible, but it does make new effects practical.  Something you could have done before at 2 frames per second, you can now do at 40 frames per second, so you can finally implement it into your game.

I would BECAUSE IT WOULD AT LEAST LOOK GREAT AND RUN POOR, compared to now when it looks like crap and runs very poor.

And yes, DX9 (2007) game SHOULD RUN PERFECTLY ON ANY COMPUTER TODAY even with only integrated video card.

Did you even read and understand the thing you quoted?

The API version is just a tool.  If you upgrade from a toolbox with 10 tools in it to one with 15 tools in it, but don't use any of the new tools that weren't also in the old toolbox, would you expect things you build with it to suddenly be better?  To the contrary, if you're not going to use the new tools, you might as well just stay with the old toolbox.  That also gives you broader compatibility, and no chance for new bugs to crop up in the process of trying to port things back from DirectX 11 to DirectX 9.0c.

There's nothing intrinsic to DirectX 11 that makes it look better than DirectX 9.0c.  The newer version does make some new things practical, but how good the graphics look is still up to the game developers.

Which comes back to compatibility.  Hero does not support SWTOR's version of it's graphics engine, as part of their deal with EA, since EA bought what was available and would "fill in the rest" later (ie alpha versions of Hero).

 

I would encourage you to try out SWTOR's "F2P" Freemium model , since you are very interested in this subject.  At first it will seem very nice, or at least when nobody else is near you, but you will notice the major defects people are talking about once you get to the fleet, level 10'ish.

 

EA did do a major workaround somewhere between patch 1.1 and 1.2, called "sectioning", in which a map (specifically the fleet) is broken up into smaller regions, each instanced, or in some way separate from adjacent sections.  It isn't clear if this was done anywhere else other than the fleet.  You can see this feature if you lose connection with the server (forcibly or via game bugs).  You will be able to move around while not connected (everyone else stays still of course), and you will observe you are trapped in a square type area with invisible walls.  Another workaround EA had was to limit the players on-screen at one time, according to your graphics settings.  This is a more recent "fix".  There might be 50 people at the mailbox, but a player will see far less.

 

EA came out with these ideas to make the game more playable, but it's really just tucking all the internal graphics engine issues under the rug.  World PVP, for instance, still won't be very enjoyable (low fps) with this engine.  If EA could fix the issues, they would have.  It's likely they can't because it's way over their head, and/or the people who knew how to make miracles happen have been layed off / forced into retirement / or fired.

 

But still, if you are interested in furthering your studies and analysis, download and play it.

Want a nice understanding of life? Try Spirit Science: "The Human History"
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=U8NNHmV3QPw&feature=plcp
Recognize the voice? Yep sounds like Penny Arcade's Extra Credits.

  User Deleted
11/20/12 2:17:02 AM#80
Originally posted by Quizzical

The API version is just a tool.  If you upgrade from a toolbox with 10 tools in it to one with 15 tools in it, but don't use any of the new tools that weren't also in the old toolbox, would you expect things you build with it to suddenly be better?  To the contrary, if you're not going to use the new tools, you might as well just stay with the old toolbox.  That also gives you broader compatibility, and no chance for new bugs to crop up in the process of trying to port things back from DirectX 11 to DirectX 9.0c.

There's nothing intrinsic to DirectX 11 that makes it look better than DirectX 9.0c.  The newer version does make some new things practical, but how good the graphics look is still up to the game developers.

I give up, yeah yeah, youre right, thers absolutely no difference between dx9 and dx11, its all just fluff and some general conspiracy by MS.

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