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RPGWatch Forums » Games » Piranha Bytes » Gothic 3 » Microstutter

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June 23rd, 2017, 17:44
Yeah, their Genome Engine is actually really impressive to me.

Hey, quick question. Content/Quest Mods. Should I add them? And can they be added a few hours into a playthrough without issue? I was curious because I wanted to know if the game remained tough and balanced on Hard/AAI/AB + quest packs. Seems the extra XP and gold could make things much easier?

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June 23rd, 2017, 21:38
Wait, you're playing insane difficulty but modding the game into more XP and more money?
That's a contradiction. Mod it into less XP and less $.
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June 23rd, 2017, 22:43
Originally Posted by joxer View Post
Wait, you're playing insane difficulty but modding the game into more XP and more money?
That's a contradiction. Mod it into less XP and less $.
Huh?

I'm not modding anything now. Just playing vanilla with the community patch, a SweetFX profile and all graphical stuff turned on in Nvidia Control Panel. Unfortunately, while the Genome Engine is DOPE, it doesn't scale the text at higher res in this game. Wish I could fix that as 1080p even has small text, and 4K is unplayable. All good, though.

As for the Quest Pack, I did hear from someone on the Steam forums that the added content actually makes the game harder, due to things like higher reputation required for certain armors, etc.. I don't want to restart now as I'm several hours in, so I'll save that content for some future playthrough. It's my first ever playthrough, having fun. Good stuff.

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June 23rd, 2017, 23:26
So reading this made me decide to give it a go again. I have it at medium difficulty and alternative ai on and I couldn't kill the orcs in the first town. I think I need a combat refresher, every time an orc would go to hit me I would hit space bar to roll or dodge. Of course there isn't a roll or dodge and space sheathes your weapon. Needless to say that's bad. too much witcher and dark souls.

I have small stutters at what I assume are loading transitions but it's not nearly as bad as I remember. Overall good times.
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June 24th, 2017, 10:17
Originally Posted by sakichop View Post
So reading this made me decide to give it a go again. I have it at medium difficulty and alternative ai on and I couldn't kill the orcs in the first town. I think I need a combat refresher, every time an orc would go to hit me I would hit space bar to roll or dodge. Of course there isn't a roll or dodge and space sheathes your weapon. Needless to say that's bad. too much witcher and dark souls.

I have small stutters at what I assume are loading transitions but it's not nearly as bad as I remember. Overall good times.
The first orc battle is rough. Very rough. What I did was basically hit and run until they were all dead. Run around, find an opportunity to get some swings in against an orc that's fighting someone else, if any orcs go after you - run. Try and lose them a bit outside of the gate, run back in slicing and hitting anything you can get a few shots in on. After awhile we won.

Battle tips. RMB is block/parry, but on the settings I'm playing it works a bit differently, as in I *think* it only blocks for a second or two, even if you hold the button. So timing is key. It works very well with a staff weapon.

I'm also using a spear/halberd. Love the dang thing, because Range is a stat in the game, so you can time an enemy as they start to come in to attack with a RMB attack or two, back up a bit and keep them at a distance. You have to carefully watch enemies, even bloodflies, wolves, etc., for the perfect time to attack. I'm also playing in first-person mode, and still learning where the good opportunities are to strike.

Also, use a bow when you can, if not to just get a few shots in before the battle. Actually, shooting and moving backwards is almost *too* good of a strategy for early enemies. Although I still died about 95 times so far.

I used whatever scrolls I got when I got them. Fireball/Ice Lance is helpful. I have to check if there is a LMB hold "power attack" move. I really like the RMB "quick hit" type attack to fend off enemies with the spear. Also, there is a jedi-style technique when surrounded, and that is, if you attack while pressing the direction of the enemy, you will spin to attack them and so on. I say jedi-like because even though I suck at the combat so far, I had some downright amazing moments at times, spinning around like a jedi with the spear lightsaber thing against bandits. Was pretty neat.

And as always, gear is going to make a big difference. The smith at the first town when it repopulates will have a Spear you can buy that doesn't have any requirements to use. I also bought the armor + helmet from the first camp, which helps.

Hope that helps.

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June 25th, 2017, 03:47
So, other than the occasional weird stuttering, the game runs pretty well overall. I can't complain much. Getting 45-ish FPS in a few towns, though. Might need to tweak a setting or two to get that to 60, as there is a bit more lag/noticeable choppiness in those spots.

That said, PB are geniuses. Their Genome Engine is very impressive to me. I can't believe simple things, like how much grass covers the ground at one time. 2006, Oblivion had grass that basically grew in front of your eyes, 20 feet around you as you walk. In Gothic III, you can look over a huge field and see it completely, I mean completely covered in grass, swaying in the breeze and even unique spots that look like wheat fields and so on. And STILL the FPS is close to 95-100! Crazy stuff.

I did edit some .ini settings to increase overall draw distance, but even enemies pop-in at ridiculously far distances. You can stand on a mountain cliff, look over a valley and see tiny little ant-sized enemies moving way in the distance. I couldn't believe how far the view distance was for that as well. And the settlements, which I've found 2 of so far, feel huge and large-scale. Much larger than most other games this size. And these 2 settlements are so close together on this GIANT map, wow. The game/engine somehow pulls this all off and stays fairly stable other than the weird stutter issue.

And to top it off, every game they've made has been in this same engine?! Wow. ELEX included in that. I don't know how they managed to do all of this but whatever it is, it's impressive. I always liked their stuff but never realized just how talented the folks there really are/were.

As for the game, enjoying it a lot after 10 hours or so, which is finally when I started to learn combat. Melee is very rewarding as you have to time attacks and react properly. The backing up while shooting arrows is a bit weird, though. I take it that early/low level enemies can be handled that way, but tougher enemies will catch you and you can't outrun them. I end up fighting like Legolas or something, run away, jump on a rock and shoot an orc between the eyes. Rinse and repeat.

I do wish they'd patch the engine or something to scale text at high resolution. That and the occasional stutter are the two main issues, but the game is still very playable.

Good stuff. Just wanted to share my thoughts on the engine and a bit more of the game. It's cool so far.

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June 27th, 2017, 12:26
Glad to see you have gotten around to playing this fluent. I have said it many times but I have an irrational love for this game that completely ignores it's flaws. I really enjoy the combat. When fighting humanoids the stab is your friend. It staggers them so you can easily follow up with a heavy blow afterwards and this is helpful in the opening battle too. With most animals its all about getting into a rhythm of continually hitting and stepping back. Minecrawlers, as a specific example, are borked and can be beaten at almost any level by using the quick slashing move (RMB), stopping when they block and continuing when they drop their guard again. I'm in the middle of my annual G1-G3 play through (just at chapter 4 of G2) and will be jumping back into Myrtana again soon. Can't wait. Don't forget to turn up one of the best soundtracks ever written.

Still though controller and first person. Just no
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June 27th, 2017, 13:10
Hey Brian. Thanks for the comment! I'm greatly enjoying it as well. I like the combat, too, especially melee as you have to time it perfectly and pay attention to what the enemy is doing.

I just finished G2 a couple weeks back or so. Loved it. I'd like to head to Risen after G3 and then back to G1. I'd like to finish the journey with that G2 mod expansion thing, Tale of a Warrior.

The first-person view is great so far. I just wish there was more of a graphical indication as to whether your weapon is drawn or not. Sometimes I end up thinking it is drawn only to swing and nothing happens.

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June 27th, 2017, 13:14
So, it seems there may be a fix to the stutter after all. This brilliant guy in my YouTube comments offered some suggestions that I tried. Amazingly, the microstutter is gone! However, my FPS has dipped slightly, so I'm hoping to figure out how to fix that while keeping the stutter gone.

Walking through Ardea/Cape Dun and there wasn't even a hint of a stutter. That's remarkable considering those areas were a bit choppy especially.

Originally Posted by Hannibal Zee
Fluent, I'm just starting a first playthrough of G3 as well. I gotta say though, you should be able to do so much better than the visuals you're getting now. Did you use the G3SI tool that's linked in the Reddit guide? It's much more than an INI tweaker. The shader changes alone nearly doubled my frame rate. I have my distance maxed and it looks so much better. Also key to improving the visuals is deleting and rebuilding the shader.cache in your documents/gothic3 folder.
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I can see all that when I'm just standing outside the gates of the starting town.

One more thing, change the Entity.ROI in the INI (or if you use the G3SI tool, the Radius of Influence slider.) so objects appear farther out. I have mine set to 12500 which seems like a good distance that looks natural. This one can be a framerate killer so keep that in mind.

Last thing to try. If you get a lot of stuttering or freezes go into the ge3.ini and change Render.PrefetchGridCellSize to 90% of the value of DistanceHigh.fFarClippingPlane_High (your max high res distance) and Render.PrefetchGridCellSizeLowPoly to 90% of DistanceLow.fFarClippingPlaneLowPolyMesh_High (your max low res distance). For example my DistanceHigh is 50,000 so my PrefetchGridCellSize is 45,000. DistanceLow is 300,000 and my Prefetch…LowPoly is 270,000. I don't know if that's optimal but it made a huge difference in my game. Before, the game would freeze completely when I went near Ortega's cave (straight up the road out of the starting town and a bit to the right). Now it barely hiccups.

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June 27th, 2017, 13:49
I'll be using that info. fluent thanks but that Entity.ROI seems wrong. It defaults to 4 in the ini file from what I remember. I had it set to 8 the last few times I played. Maybe the 12500 is the scale used in the tool. There can be audio issues when the Entity.ROI is very high, mainly near the sea where the sound of the waves cut in and out but its probably worth it.
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June 27th, 2017, 14:14
Originally Posted by BrianOConnell View Post
I'll be using that info. fluent thanks but that Entity.ROI seems wrong. It defaults to 4 in the ini file from what I remember. I had it set to 8 the last few times I played. Maybe the 12500 is the scale used in the tool. There can be audio issues when the Entity.ROI is very high, mainly near the sea where the sound of the waves cut in and out but its probably worth it.
Yep, I noticed the audio issues. I'm playing around with settings right now. The G3SI tool is a godsend, and already greatly increased the look of the game and performance to boot.

I'll update with a video soon on the new settings I settle on.

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June 27th, 2017, 14:41
Hey Brian, or anyone else for that matter. Ever hear of an issue where you load a saved game and all the terrain has disappeared? I'm standing in a white limbo with NPCs + items in the world, but no walls or ground. Seems an issue around Montera, because previous saves are fine, but if I teleport to Montera I get a crash, some debug/fatal error. If I load in Montera, the white limbo.

Any ideas?

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June 27th, 2017, 15:05
Never had that before. My guess would be something to do with the prefetch settings you changed. Maybe settle on something lower than your youtube commenter recommended.

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June 27th, 2017, 15:11
I think the prefetch settings he suggested there are more for performance, though. Those high settings reduced stuttering a lot for me.

It is cool seeing long distances, too. But I'll play with those and see if it helps it.

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June 27th, 2017, 16:45
I'm assuming the pre-fetch is about pre-loading assets to reduce the amount that needs to be streamed (as it seems the streaming tech. is what causes the stuttering) and if its very high I imagine the engine, being as dodgy as it is, might choke and you end up with whatever weird effect you are getting. I'm certainly keen to try upping my settings for pre-fetch as I also had the stuttering issue but maybe not as high as suggested. I would also be guessing that the farclippingplane stuff is more about the view distance than the pre-fetch but I'm no expert by any means.
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June 27th, 2017, 16:58
Originally Posted by BrianOConnell View Post
I'm assuming the pre-fetch is about pre-loading assets to reduce the amount that needs to be streamed (as it seems the streaming tech. is what causes the stuttering) and if its very high I imagine the engine, being as dodgy as it is, might choke and you end up with whatever weird effect you are getting. I'm certainly keen to try upping my settings for pre-fetch as I also had the stuttering issue but maybe not as high as suggested. I would also be guessing that the farclippingplane stuff is more about the view distance than the pre-fetch but I'm no expert by any means.
I think you're right.

Setting it back to lower numbers did the trick. I want to experiment with the prefetch and raise it a little bit more. In areas like Ardea/Cape Dun, there was no stutter with the high prefetch setting, but if you travel to Montera the game just crashes.

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June 27th, 2017, 17:01
Prefetch cell size = 30000
low poly = 40000

Seems to work so far. No weird limbo issue and a quick sprint through Montera didn't have any stuttering. Needs more tests but I think I'm going to resume my playthrough with these settings and see how it goes.

Biggest FPS impact is Radius of Influence, aka ROI. I set it to 4000 (default) and the game runs smooth enough with all the other settings maxed, and

Render.PrefetchGridCellSize=24500
Render.PrefetchGridCellSizeLowPoly=53000

Mostly 60 FPS, less in towns (30 absolute lowest, usually 35-45). Runs nice enough.
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