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Flickering GW2 Textures Fix (Adaptive/Freesync Monitor)


hugeboss.5432

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[Sorry @ lengthy post, but had to describe the reason & fix because its probably labeled differently on various systems @ works with other games]

I see this issue popping up on a truckload of games, search engines & forums, most have a few plausible reasons & possible fixes u can try. None worked for me, but after experimenting for hours, I managed to find the reason & fix for the specific gw2 flickering texture issues I had.

Recently, I upgraded an aging Radeon card with an Nvidia card (LHR pricing ftw). On the Radeon, I never had any flickering textures issues (Freesync monitor). Nvidia have been super annoying providing compatibility with open standards like Freesync / Adaptive Sync in the past (due to their own products & "naughty policy"), but these days it is supposed to be generally compatible with lots of monitors. But as soon as I set the max monitor sync frequency, I started to see annoying shimmering trees & foliage when in motion, especially on snowy white backgrounds (Shiverpeaks Mountains / Alpine Borderlands).

My monitor is a Freesync version of a more expensive Gsync model (lots of those). Messing about with Nvidia control panel settings & gw2 for hours did nothing, but tuning down my monitor sync to 85hz fixed it, which is acceptable, but not the perfect solution that I'm used to. I kept on tweaking...

Then I checked my monitor HW settings, I noticed an Overdrive setting of "Extreme" that was never available when using my Radeon card at max frequency. (Perhaps intended for GSync compatibility, but not fully disabled in the monitor BIOS). Normally you would think Overdrive had something to do with latency & overclocking and go for the "Extreme" setting (but that's not actually what they've defined here).

This specific Ultrawide QuadHD monitor "overdrive" setting is about "pixel color burn/bleed effect" (iirc), which normally yields smoother color gradients. But, textures with a high contrast to neighbouring pixels at high frequency, like dark brown trees & foliage on snowy white backgrounds, typically yields a type of "shimmering flickering pixel ghost effect" - but only obvious when in motion (probably also reported as "ghosting").
[all likely related to pixel g2g latency, doesn't really matter, I'm not a monitor freak].

For most of us, it causes eye fatigue & also super annoying when things are in motion & u start noticing it.
Simply setting the monitor pixel "Overdrive" setting to either "Off" or "Normal" removed all the flickering/shimmering issues I had!
[Other brands have probably named this differently, if present]

Happy Eyes! ;)

[A bit quick on the gun, but I can see how this "hardware bug" could be an honest mistake by engineering, or if you speculate a bit, could be a way to push more GSync monitors by using a very smart intentional "bug". I really don't know, but hope the latter is not the case.]

Edited by hugeboss.5432
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