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Game Performance and PC Hardware Recommendations

Hi All,

Like we all know GW2 isn't optimized so well. When too many players around you, frame rate drops tremendously. Even when graphic options are set to low.
With already having pretty good specs (RTX 2080ti, 64Gb RAM, i7 8 Core 3.2 CPU), I wonder what else I could do to keep the game at least above 30 FPS?

My weakest component is probably the CPU and from what I've read GW2 is more CPU intensive. Does it help to upgrade to one of the new AMD Threadripper's?
Does more cores help (ie. Threadripper 3990X) or is more core speed important? (ie. i9-9900K)

Or maybe, is it just not possible to get 30FPS at all time with GW2?

Thanks!

Comments

  • Threadrippers are not really CPUs meant for gaming, they are targeted towards numbercrunching applications and heavily multithreaded applications/workloads. The absolute fastest CPUs in terms of core speed/single thread performance would be a Ryzen 5000 series processor (btw make sure not to compare clockspeed between intel and AMD, given IPC, "instructions per clock," is different and there are some pretty big architectural differences. 4Ghz on an AMD chip is not the same as 4Ghz on an intel chip). Given that the Ryzen 5000 series is difficult to obtain right now (limited stock), you can also look at something like at Ryzen 5, 7 or 9 3000 CPU's or Intels offerings being the i5 10600K or i7 10700K. You COULD get an i9 10850K but I would say it offers limited value over the i7 10700K.

    So basically:
    *Absolute best of the best would be the Ryzen 9 5900X (or the 16 core Ryzen 9 5950X)

    *More reasonable options for current gen are either the Ryzen 5 5600X or Ryzen 7 5800X, or intel's core i5 10600K and core i7 10700K.

    *For previous gen options I would look at either the intel core i9 9900K, the Ryzen 5 3600X or Ryzen 7 3700X.

    I recommend to pick one of these because as newer games release, they will be more multithreaded and I would say a 6 core CPU with multithreading is really something you want to have, as 4 core/8 threads will slowely be a bottleneck as time moves on for games. This is why I do not recommend the intel core i5 9600K or core i7 9700K, because they only have 6 and 8 threads available respectively and for some modern games is already a limiting factor. In Guild Wars 2 you could get away with it but if you're planning on playing newer games and AAA titles, I would strongly recommend the Ryzen 5/7 of either the 3000 or 5000 series, or the Core i5/i7 of the 10th gen.

    :)

    Speedylord
    (UwU OwO)

  • Infusion.7149Infusion.7149 Member ✭✭✭✭
    edited January 8, 2021

    I would advise you use d912pxy or dxvk and try to see if it's DX9 bottlenecking you or the main thread. Turn down model limit and model quality ; turn off high quality shadows (CPU bound) , turn off any reflections besides terrain + sky (if you have a older CPU then disable them entirely).

    A 8 core Intel chip is decent , I'm assuming it's 3.2GHz base clocks (i7-8700 ?) and not turbo. If something very old such as i7-960 (8 core 3.2GHz turbo) then I would get rid of it as fast as possible.

    Your best option if buying a new CPU is a $130-200 AM4 motherboard with support for PCIE 4.0 and some 3200+ MT/s RAM (the "sweet spot" for 3rd gen Ryzen was 3600C16), along with a Ryzen 5000 series chip with 6+ cores. They have the highest single threaded performance and even when Intel's 11th gen comes out it will likely remain on top. The latest leaks have the 11th gen Intel chips only ahead while at 250W TDP rather than a standard 95-140W.

  • Chrysline.2317Chrysline.2317 Member ✭✭
    edited January 8, 2021

    If you could only choose laptops, is the Ryzen 5000 series preferred? :open_mouth:

    It’s been 10 years since I last did hardcore gaming. :lol: I’m surprised at how far AMD has come now.

    Just to clarify, apps/games don’t have compatibility problems between AMD and Intel CPUs right?

  • Infusion.7149Infusion.7149 Member ✭✭✭✭
    edited January 8, 2021

    @Chrysline.2317 said:
    If you could only choose laptops, is the Ryzen 5000 series preferred? :open_mouth:

    It’s been 10 years since I last did hardcore gaming. :lol: I’m surprised at how far AMD has come now.

    Just to clarify, apps/games don’t have compatibility problems between AMD and Intel CPUs right?

    Ryzen 5000 series (Zen3) hasn't hit mobile yet, it's still on 4000 series which is most simply explained as a down-clocked mobile equivalent of the Zen 2 Ryzen 3000 desktop CPU series. The reason the 5000 series is superior to Zen 2 is the 8 core CCX structure, in which 8 cores share one core complex. Zen (14nm) , Zen+ (12nm , half node shrink), and Zen2 all had 4 core CCX ; Zen2's major instruction improvement was larger cache size and improved AVX2 to match Intel along with a 7nm process.
    It's a particularly exciting time in the laptop scene since 15W low power Ryzen chips reportedly perform as fast as desktop Intel CPUs from last gen in single threaded workloads:
    https://www.notebookcheck.net/Ryzen-7-5800U-thin-and-light-laptops-should-offer-stellar-single-core-performance-as-AMD-s-Zen-3-APU-scores-higher-than-an-Intel-Core-i9-10900K-in-CPU-Z.514047.0.html

    Just make sure it's a 7nm "Zen2" or 7nm+ "Zen3" chip. Some Intel chips run with Hyperthreading , the AMD Ryzen solution is SMT or "simultaneous multithreading". In the past the "clustered multithreading" / CMT on Bulldozer architecture (FX 8000 / 9000 series) led to issues before.
    The information is readily accessible on notebookcheck and other sites that cover the mobile PC space. See
    notebook check mobile CPU benchmark list.

    Back at launch notebookcheck actually did benchmark the GW2 core game: https://www.notebookcheck.net/Guild-Wars-2-Benchmarked.81604.0.html

    Guild Wars 2 is one of the few games where the processor can have a fairly large impact on performance. As can be seen in our chart, stronger graphics cards can be found below their weaker counterparts depending on the CPU.

    I've actually seen more fringe benchmarking sites list GW2 benchmarks but keep in mind the thermal solution affects CPU throttling and power levels in mobile situations and Intel CPUs are typically worse due to the dated 14nm process versus the 7nm process of new Ryzens:

    Ryzen 7 4800H inside Asus TUF A15 (FA506IU) , Best appearance preset FPS: min 53, average 65 (https://noteb.com/?content/review.php?/2020/05/27/asus-tuf-a15-fa506iu-review/)
    Intel Core i5-10300H inside Acer Nitro 5 (2020) , Medium settings FPS: min 38 , average 49 (https://noteb.com/?content/review.php?/2020/09/21/acer-nitro-5-2020-review-is-it-worth-the-upgrade)
    i7-10750H inside ROG Strix G15 G512LU , Best Appearance preset FPS : min 20 , average 36 (https://noteb.com/?content/review.php?/2019/03/05/hp-zbook-studio-g5/)
    ---> same computer Best Performance preset FPS : min 51, average 78
    i5-10300H inside Dell G3 15 (3500) , Medium settings FPS min 22 , average 41 (https://noteb.com/?content/review.php?/2020/08/25/dell-g3-15-3500-review/)
    i9-9880H inside Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Extreme Gen2 , Max settings FPS min 9 , average 33 (https://noteb.com/?content/review.php?/2020/02/12/lenovo-thinkpad-x1-extreme-gen2-review/)
    i7-9750H inside Acer Predator Helios 300 15 2019 (PH315-52), Max settings FPS: min 21 , average 62 (https://noteb.com/?content/review.php?/2020/03/13/acer-predator-helios-300-15-2019-ph315-52-review/)
    i7-9750H inside HP Pavilion Gaming 15 (2019) , "Ultra" settings FPS: min 9 , average 45.8 (https://noteb.com/?content/review.php?/2019/12/20/hp-pavilion-gaming-15-2019-review/)
    i7-10750H inside MSI GP65 Leopard (10SFK) , Best Appearance preset FPS : min 24 , average 50 (https://noteb.com/?content/review.php?/2020/07/20/msi-gp65-leopard-10sfk-review/)
    i7-10750H inside Lenovo Legion 5i (2020) , Best appearance preset FPS: min 12, average 27 (https://noteb.com/?content/review.php?/2020/10/13/lenovo-legion-5i-2020-review-the-jack-of-all-trades-and-master-of-them-all/)
    ---> same computer Best Performance preset FPS : min 60, average 113
    Ryzen 7 3750H which is Zen+ inside MSI Alpha 15 (A3DD), Medium settings FPS: min 23, average 49 (https://noteb.com/?content/review.php?/2020/03/31/msi-alpha-15-review-a3dd/)
    i5-10210U inside Acer Aspire 5 A515-54G (10th gen) , Medium settings FPS min 15 , average 31.8 (https://noteb.com/?content/review.php?/2019/11/12/acer-aspire-5-a515-54g-10th-gen-review/)
    ---> U donates "ultrabook" or "thin and light" 15W TDP constrained CPUs , it is not advisable

    Note that even with a new laptop , running high model limit is a strain on the CPU.

  • Chrysline.2317Chrysline.2317 Member ✭✭
    edited January 9, 2021

    @Infusion.7149 said:

    @Chrysline.2317 said:
    If you could only choose laptops, is the Ryzen 5000 series preferred? :open_mouth:

    It’s been 10 years since I last did hardcore gaming. :lol: I’m surprised at how far AMD has come now.

    Just to clarify, apps/games don’t have compatibility problems between AMD and Intel CPUs right?

    Ryzen 5000 series (Zen3) hasn't hit mobile yet, it's still on 4000 series which is most simply explained as a down-clocked mobile equivalent of the Zen 2 Ryzen 3000 desktop CPU series. The reason the 5000 series is superior to Zen 2 is the 8 core CCX structure, in which 8 cores share one core complex. Zen (14nm) , Zen+ (12nm , half node shrink), and Zen2 all had 4 core CCX ; Zen2's major instruction improvement was larger cache size and improved AVX2 to match Intel along with a 7nm process.
    It's a particularly exciting time in the laptop scene since 15W low power Ryzen chips reportedly perform as fast as desktop Intel CPUs from last gen in single threaded workloads:
    https://www.notebookcheck.net/Ryzen-7-5800U-thin-and-light-laptops-should-offer-stellar-single-core-performance-as-AMD-s-Zen-3-APU-scores-higher-than-an-Intel-Core-i9-10900K-in-CPU-Z.514047.0.html

    Just make sure it's a 7nm "Zen2" or 7nm+ "Zen3" chip. Some Intel chips run with Hyperthreading , the AMD Ryzen solution is SMT or "simultaneous multithreading". In the past the "clustered multithreading" / CMT on Bulldozer architecture (FX 8000 / 9000 series) led to issues before.
    The information is readily accessible on notebookcheck and other sites that cover the mobile PC space. See
    notebook check mobile CPU benchmark list.

    Back at launch notebookcheck actually did benchmark the GW2 core game: https://www.notebookcheck.net/Guild-Wars-2-Benchmarked.81604.0.html

    Guild Wars 2 is one of the few games where the processor can have a fairly large impact on performance. As can be seen in our chart, stronger graphics cards can be found below their weaker counterparts depending on the CPU.

    I've actually seen more fringe benchmarking sites list GW2 benchmarks but keep in mind the thermal solution affects CPU throttling and power levels in mobile situations and Intel CPUs are typically worse due to the dated 14nm process versus the 7nm process of new Ryzens:

    Ryzen 7 4800H inside Asus TUF A15 (FA506IU) , Best appearance preset FPS: min 53, average 65 (https://noteb.com/?content/review.php?/2020/05/27/asus-tuf-a15-fa506iu-review/)
    Intel Core i5-10300H inside Acer Nitro 5 (2020) , Medium settings FPS: min 38 , average 49 (https://noteb.com/?content/review.php?/2020/09/21/acer-nitro-5-2020-review-is-it-worth-the-upgrade)
    i7-10750H inside ROG Strix G15 G512LU , Best Appearance preset FPS : min 20 , average 36 (https://noteb.com/?content/review.php?/2019/03/05/hp-zbook-studio-g5/)
    ---> same computer Best Performance preset FPS : min 51, average 78
    i5-10300H inside Dell G3 15 (3500) , Medium settings FPS min 22 , average 41 (https://noteb.com/?content/review.php?/2020/08/25/dell-g3-15-3500-review/)
    i9-9880H inside Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Extreme Gen2 , Max settings FPS min 9 , average 33 (https://noteb.com/?content/review.php?/2020/02/12/lenovo-thinkpad-x1-extreme-gen2-review/)
    i7-9750H inside Acer Predator Helios 300 15 2019 (PH315-52), Max settings FPS: min 21 , average 62 (https://noteb.com/?content/review.php?/2020/03/13/acer-predator-helios-300-15-2019-ph315-52-review/)
    i7-9750H inside HP Pavilion Gaming 15 (2019) , "Ultra" settings FPS: min 9 , average 45.8 (https://noteb.com/?content/review.php?/2019/12/20/hp-pavilion-gaming-15-2019-review/)
    i7-10750H inside MSI GP65 Leopard (10SFK) , Best Appearance preset FPS : min 24 , average 50 (https://noteb.com/?content/review.php?/2020/07/20/msi-gp65-leopard-10sfk-review/)
    i7-10750H inside Lenovo Legion 5i (2020) , Best appearance preset FPS: min 12, average 27 (https://noteb.com/?content/review.php?/2020/10/13/lenovo-legion-5i-2020-review-the-jack-of-all-trades-and-master-of-them-all/)
    ---> same computer Best Performance preset FPS : min 60, average 113
    Ryzen 7 3750H which is Zen+ inside MSI Alpha 15 (A3DD), Medium settings FPS: min 23, average 49 (https://noteb.com/?content/review.php?/2020/03/31/msi-alpha-15-review-a3dd/)
    i5-10210U inside Acer Aspire 5 A515-54G (10th gen) , Medium settings FPS min 15 , average 31.8 (https://noteb.com/?content/review.php?/2019/11/12/acer-aspire-5-a515-54g-10th-gen-review/)
    ---> U donates "ultrabook" or "thin and light" 15W TDP constrained CPUs , it is not advisable

    Note that even with a new laptop , running high model limit is a strain on the CPU.

    Thank you so much, this is a big help in choosing! Thank you too for teaching us how and where to look for benchmarks. (It really isn’t clear cut with how the ASUS TUF on Ryzen 7 a year later outperforms the FPS of the ROG Strix that’s on i7-10750H).

    I see now :open_mouth: I think I’ll suffer through Bootcamp for a bit and wait for the Intel 11th gen and Ryzen 5000 to appear on laptops. :heart: This has been enlightening. (Since GW2 is discontinued on the Mac, it’s a good time to consider gaming laptops, hahaha.)

  • My current system: ASUS ROG Strix Z590-F Gaming Mainboard, AMD Ryzen 9 5900X, 64GB DDR4-3600 RAM, Nvidia RTX 3080 from Gigabyte, 2TB PCI 4.0 M.2 SSD also Gigabyte.
    Previous System was i9-9900K with a RTX 2080Ti.

    In Guild Wars however, it doesn't make much of a difference, except that I can run more instances (using Launchbuddy) of GW2 than before, and still watch a movie on another monitor.

    Internet Connection is 500MBit, loading times are still a pain in the a**, framerate is still not satisfactory, and in WvW the game still crashes when too many players fight and the graphic settings are for best quality. The game just hangs, but the rest of the machine doesn't care, everything else runs smoothly.

    It's a shame that I have to set the graphics to best performance with this kind of hardware...

    So in essence it doesn't make much of a difference to just buy new and better hardware. Without ArenaNet switching to a new DirectX (at least 11, better 12), you won't see a big improvement.

    And no, I didn't buy that hardware only for GW2 :) Mainly for MS Flight Simulator 2020. That guy knows how to use the performance available :)

  • I think game performance should be higher priority for Anet here. I have friends who quit guild wars 2 because the performance is bad. You know its sad when I am getting better frame rates in Star Citizen than guild wars 2. I love this game but man it can really suffer, even when walking around lion's arch not even fighting anything. Its really a shame. The graphics are not even that good in the game. The art style makes the game still look good but overall the graphics are quite aged and the game still runs terribly. Hopefully we will see some improvement to this with the next expansion or hopefully there is some sort of internal effort at Anet to look at this.

  • ProtoGunner.4953ProtoGunner.4953 Member ✭✭✭✭

    The game uses ancient tech, just don't bother. It seems it's the only "major" MMO not capable of going with a newer DX version than their ancient DX9. It's getting ridiculous.

  • VAHNeunzehnsechundsiebzig.3618VAHNeunzehnsechundsiebzig.3618 Member ✭✭✭✭
    edited January 15, 2021

    I switched from a 2700 to a 5600, with pretty high graphic settings (except no AA, reflections sky+terrain, low models) and had a 20% performance increase. Even in wvw 3 way blobs I dont drop below 30fps anymore. GPU is old. A 460. Ram is 3200 ECC.

  • @ProtoGunner.4953 said:
    It seems it's the only "major" MMO not capable of going with a newer DX version than their ancient DX9. It's getting ridiculous.

    I guess SWTOR doesn't count as major by this classification.

    @Biff.5312 said:
    Exercise your whimsy.

  • KrHome.1920KrHome.1920 Member ✭✭✭✭
    edited January 15, 2021

    3700X with 3600 CL16 ram,
    reflections off,
    shadows off,
    effect lod on,
    everything else maxxed out,
    no (!) d912pxy

    Basically never below 30 fps in zerg fights (~100 fps at solo roaming).

    A 5600X will be slightly faster. That's the upper end of the spectrum. You don't have to invest in a more expensive cpu as more cores won't improve anything in the game.

    The game isn't that demanding for an mmo. Which mmo with a 100+ player (at one spot!) mass combat mechanic doesn't murder CPUs? There doesn't exist one!

  • These threads keep popping up like weeds, but I'll answer here, too.

    You will only ever see (extremely) diminishing terms with newer hardware.

    It's entirely possible to see comparable performance running an old, base model GTX 660 (2GB) card on an antiquated Phenom II quad-core chip with only 8 GB of total memory. Why? Because that's still more than GW2 will ever make use of.

    There's also the fact that DirectX 9 (c, I think), the graphics API which GW2 makes use of, is singly-threaded, and moreover, single-context, meaning that only ONE thing can ever occur at a time, and that's essentially the main renderloop.

    What does this mean? That when a lot of things are happening on the screen (like an intense fight or a busy corner of LA), more and more has to happen within that one thread of execution -- the same thread as drives your rendering, texture / model IO, GPU on/offloading, and your DirectInput mouse and keyboard activity.

    This is why in really bad situations where framerate drops below about 14fps, you can start to see your keypresses fail to register. With an overhead of about 72ms per-frame at that rate, it's obvious to see why a keystroke might not get picked up by the next poll.

    A lot of people will tell you that having higher boost clocks on your CPU (or buying an Intel chip, which formerly had the best single-threaded performance) was the only way to go, thanks to very, very antiquated logic surrounding these sorts of graphics APIs. Unfortunately, that's no longer meaningful, particularly because most every modern game except GW2 has moved onto things like DX11 and DX12, if not Vulkan, which make use of asynchronous rendering and IO, entirely alleviating the problems outlined above.

    So ... no, @Valtari.9041 . Your system is already overkill for the game.

    My recommendation at this point is to use VSync and the FPS limiter. The less extra stuff your CPU and GPU is doing (read: rendering more frames than your monitor can even display), the easier both can ramp up to take on that extra workload when necessary. It isn't a perfect solution, and no, it won't prevent those kinds of horrible frame drops you see, but it'll help smooth things out a little.

    And, as @Infusion.7149 mentioned, consider using the DX12 proxy layer or dropping in DXVK into the "bin" folder of your client (these are files d3d9.dll and dxgi.dll under the x64 folder). The latter will make use of Vulkan and provide similar functionality, and is what's used by a number of linux gamers (as well as Steam, for allowing compatibility on linux systems).

  • KrHome.1920KrHome.1920 Member ✭✭✭✭
    edited January 15, 2021

    @fluffdragon.1523 said:
    And, as @Infusion.7149 mentioned, consider using the DX12 proxy layer or dropping in DXVK into the "bin" folder of your client (these are files d3d9.dll and dxgi.dll under the x64 folder). The latter will make use of Vulkan and provide similar functionality, and is what's used by a number of linux gamers (as well as Steam, for allowing compatibility on linux systems).

    It's a bit more complex than "Use d912pxy! It just works!". It depends on why your framerate tanks. There are two possible scenarios for massive cpu drops:

    1) Draw calls, like heart of the mists or lions arch, where no fighting is going on, but lots of objects (players) are rendered on the screen. Here d912pxy will massively improve fps. I see up to 100% (2x) performance increases in these scenarios on my pc with d912pxy.

    2) Then there are the heavy computation scenarios like zerg fights in wvw. You won't get one single additional fps with d912pxy in these scenarios, because this is not a draw call (=dx9 api) limitation, but a computation limitation and only a better cpu will increase your performance.

    That's basically what most people don't understand and can't separate. They run d912pxy, then go to hotm, see improvements and transfrom this to the rest of the game without actually testing it.

    Btw.: gpu bound scenarios will get a big performance hit, when using d912pxy - that's even mentioned in the documentation of it and I can confirm this. Just use the ingame supersampling or VSR/DSR in the driver to become gpu bound with a mid class gpu and you suddenly lose performance with d912pxy.

  • @KrHome.1920 I like how you essentially ignored everything I posted except for one thing, which you immediately spun into a tangent. But thank you for pointing out that supersampling is rarely a good idea and confirming pretty much everything else I'd said :+1:

  • XenoSpyro.1780XenoSpyro.1780 Member ✭✭✭
    edited January 20, 2021

    @killerkram.5129 said:
    I have friends who quit guild wars 2 because the performance is bad.

    Tell your friends to use the D3D12 wrapper, and to turn Shadows off, and player model count to medium or lower.

    @KrHome.1920 said:
    They run d912pxy, then go to hotm, see improvements and transfrom this to the rest of the game without actually testing it.

    Your average performance will still increase regardless of circumstance, with the single biggest fix being eliminating microstutters you'd get from turning left or right under D3D9 normally.