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abidubi

1.29 Sun and Grass FPS bug

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I made another short video to show the sun and grass FPS bug I am experiencing. I know for a fact that the sun bug also occurred on my G5.

The problem is looking into the sky I get 200+ FPS. Looking around the horizon I get 77-125 FPS. Looking at the sun I get 20-24 FPS. WTF is up with that? I have tried numerous settings and there is no effect except 1... lower resolution. Why would a lower resolution decrease the FPS hit by a light source? At 1280X960 the hit is instead 40FPS (still dropping from much higher FPS).

Now for the freaking weird part, if the sun sets while you look at it, this FPS continues no matter where you look. Once the sun rises, the FPS pop back to normal. If the sun sets while you are looking away, the FPS are great in all directions until it rises again. That has got to be the weirdest thing of all. I know the code for the game was kinda just slapped together and has made for a very difficult time modernizing it... but wow.

The grass bug is more normal, in that if you have a lot of tall grass in view, the FPS drops dramatically. If there is a lot of tall grass around a town (as is the case) then looking at the town will greatly drop your FPS from what is should be. I should be getting about 40 FPS in most cases looking at a town, but when the grass is in view it drops to 15-20. Considering I get 50-70 FPS looking at about 80+ tall trees offline (next to the tank range), why would just a couple of these grass fields cause such a dramatic hit on a 4870 graphics card?

On the plus side, stutters have vanished. I can go back to buzzing towns under heavy attack at 300MPH. I think it is related to the super fast memory on the nehalem chips.

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I should just add that I've noticed this lately, too, as I mentioned in the other thread on the mouse/infantry issue.

I can't say for sure that it's something that's only started happening recently, but it was never apparent to me as a problem until literally a few days ago -- before I saw Abidubi's comments, but after the mouse/inf problem arose. It could have been this way forever for all I know, but I imagine I might have noticed it earlier as I'm constantly trying to maintain decent FPS.

For me, I will tend to go from 40-50+ down to the 15-25 range when I look in the direct of a setting sun. This is in the air, where that 40-50+ FPS isn't too uncommon in open areas outside large battles. On the ground the effect is proportionately the same, I believe (from maybe 20-30s to 10-20s?).

I haven't tested this nearly as elaborately as Abidubi, but it's definitely an issue.

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Oh no, I noticed this problem about a year ago, so it's not a new thing.

Difference between you and me in the air is I drop from 120FPS where as you drop from 50 :P

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"Most" stutters are caused by memory management, especially virtual memory getting touched. Constant slow FPS (as in more than a few frames worth) is often a sign of video bus, cpu or video card issues.

You can see this over towns as when you fly over, a ton of inf become visible, massive amounts of memory is allocated for all those arms and legs etc, all at once. If your mac is fast enough it all happens between frames without slowing any down. If it takes longer than a frame then nothing is drawn until they are all allocated.

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"Most" stutters are caused by memory management, especially virtual memory getting touched. Constant slow FPS (as in more than a few frames worth) is often a sign of video bus, cpu or video card issues.

You can see this over towns as when you fly over, a ton of inf become visible, massive amounts of memory is allocated for all those arms and legs etc, all at once. If your mac is fast enough it all happens between frames without slowing any down. If it takes longer than a frame then nothing is drawn until they are all allocated.

Yes, but there is no video card or bus issues here, that was only the inf loading problem. What could possibly be coming from virtual memory when looking at the sun or grass? I have 3GB of memory and not much more than 2 is used. As for the video card, there aren't any more than 512MB of textures on screen at once, thats for sure. Hopefully, unity 2 will fix this problem by making the engine more efficient.

If the loading of 128 infantry all at once was fixed with the new system, I can't imagine why the sun or grass would still be a problem. I spent a good 45 minutes bombing and especially strafing over Remis a little while ago and had almost no stutters. And the stutters I got were of less than a 1/4 second in duration and maybe happened twice. All this while going up to 3km then diving down at 600kph then pulling up and flying through buildings. Never would have been able to do that on my G5.

you guys have Vsync on or off?

I keep it off. I don't think it really helps much at all (I don't ever see screen tearing) and I'm strongly of the belief that yes, at 60 FPS it looks pretty smooth to your eye, but I think you need at least 100 or more for your brain to really believe it and for it to really seem smooth.

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THe sun issue has been around for a long time, but isn't obvious why. Since the game uses 8 bit textures video memory is not an issue unless you only have 64MB. It's possible the objects that create the sun effect have a degenerate polygon of some kind that causes the video card to suck lemons. If you remember the bug that was there a few versions ago where walking into a building turned your fps to 1.0 - that was the reason.

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I keep it off. I don't think it really helps much at all (I don't ever see screen tearing) and I'm strongly of the belief that yes' date=' at 60 FPS it looks pretty smooth to your eye, but I think you need at least 100 or more for your brain to really believe it and for it to really seem smooth.[/quote']

Was thinking that if it was on it was preventing some kind of tearing with the grass at night to the point of FPS dropping. But that is not the case as you have it off.

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I made another short video to show the sun and grass FPS bug I am experiencing. I know for a fact that the sun bug also occurred on my G5.

The problem is looking into the sky I get 200+ FPS. Looking around the horizon I get 77-125 FPS. Looking at the sun I get 20-24 FPS. WTF is up with that? I have tried numerous settings and there is no effect except 1... lower resolution. Why would a lower resolution decrease the FPS hit by a light source? At 1280X960 the hit is instead 40FPS (still dropping from much higher FPS).

Less pixels to process. (

The sun is rendering a double pass render through alpha channel (if I understand this mojo correctly),

Now for the freaking weird part, if the sun sets while you look at it, this FPS continues no matter where you look. Once the sun rises, the FPS pop back to normal. If the sun sets while you are looking away, the FPS are great in all directions until it rises again. That has got to be the weirdest thing of all. I know the code for the game was kinda just slapped together and has made for a difficult time modernizing it... but wow.

Odd indeed. I have a lot of thoughts... What is the state of the moon? There are only 2 light sources... Hmm... have to think about this. Given the changes for 1.31 I would not investigate this until that beta.

The grass bug is more normal, in that if you have a lot of tall grass in view, the FPS drops dramatically. If there is a lot of tall grass around a town (as is the case) then looking at the town will greatly drop your FPS from what is should be. I should be getting about 40 FPS in most cases looking at a town, but when the grass is in view it drops to 15-20. Considering I get 50-70 FPS looking at about 80+ tall trees offline (next to the tank range), why would just a couple of these grass fields cause such a dramatic hit on a 4870 graphics card?

I'll be honest. I don't know. Shouldn't.

On the plus side, stutters have vanished. I can go back to buzzing towns under heavy attack at 300MPH. I think it is related to the super fast memory on the nehalem chips.

i

Well there's something!

I notice you said "have". What's the change? Hardware? Used to be that I had ins with the Apple boys. Now I universally reccommend boot camp. Sorry, that's honest.

I think it is likely related to graphic card. Give me some system info. We don't support G5 [G4 actually] anymore though the truth is it shipped with a better upgrade option that the current Nahlems ship with.

Your description sounds like an alpha channel issue. I'll be honest, I don't know what I can do. But, I will investigate as much as I can.

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First off, it's cool that you're looking into it. And yah, I'd wait to see what happens with the updated engine before really putting resources into it.

Less pixels to process. (

The sun is rendering a double pass render through alpha channel (if I understand this mojo correctly),

I have no clue at all what that is... but it sounds complicated enough to drop FPS. lol

Odd indeed. I have a lot of thoughts... What is the state of the moon? There are only 2 light sources... Hmm... have to think about this. Given the changes for 1.31 I would not investigate this until that beta.

Looking at the moon doesn't seem to effect anything. But iirc you guys have a mac in the office, and if it did it on my 5 year old computer as much as on the brand new one, your iMac should be just as affected.

I notice you said "have". What's the change? Hardware? Used to be that I had ins with the Apple boys. Now I universally reccommend boot camp. Sorry' date=' that's honest.[/quote']

I said "have" because I used to play on a 2004 G5. With the new system I barely get them. If I didn't get them before, I probably wouldn't even notice the occational stutter now.

I think it is likely related to graphic card. Give me some system info. We don't support G5 anymore though the truth is it shipped with a better upgrade option that the current Nahlems ship with.

Could be, but I really thought it was due to memory. The my G5 had 667Mhz DDR (I think) dual channel RAM with a slow 900Mhz front side bus. My new Mac pro has 1066Mhz DD3 triple channel RAM, and the front side bus has been replaced with a "quick path interlink" that I think runs at 4.8Ghz. Changing graphics settings had almost no effect on the FPS, not even halving the resolution. I remember trying 800X600 vs 1920X1200, and the only thing affected was looking at lots of bushes and trees. Stutters showed no change at all.

I think it was too much information when flying at 300MPH to pull out of RAM, process and send to the graphics card considering a slowish bus and slowish RAM by today's standards. But it wasn't like that in 1.23, and maybe 1.24. You must remember the 10000 threads about stutters right after 1 christmas patch? I think it was 1.25. OMG it was horrible! After that point it was never the same. I used to strafe FBs and ABs all the time, but from that day on I never did again and lived. Subsequent patches improved FPS, eventually bringing flying FPS from 20 to 50, but the stutters never left.

The processor was surely one of the biggest bottlenecks. I lost 1 of the 2 during the summer and I lost a couple FPS for that. Processor usage was about 110% with 2 processors, but only 86% with 1.

Complete system specs:

Before (2005-2008):

Powermac G5, dual 1.8Ghz, 900Mhz FSB, 3GB 667Mhz DDR RAM, AGP 8X ATI X800XT 256MB. Always the lastest OS.

Now:

MacPro quad core 2.93Ghz Nehalem Xeon, 4.80 GT/Sec QPI, 3GB 1067Mhz DDR3 RAM, PCIe 16X ATI 4870 512MB. Latest OS.

After spending so much on it I'm too cheap to use bootcamp for windows... considering the ridiculous $300 for a retail copy! That and before I do that I want to get 2 more HDs to use in raid 0, use the stock HD for backup and my 300GB HD I took from my G5 for a full windows HD.

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Gophur he has the 1/2 hottest machine in the world right now :-)

The game on multi processors will use about 1.10 of them (the .10 is the sound thread). No more.

As I said, stutters == memory allocation. It's possible the sun trick is poorly optimized for some types of video cards. It doesn't happen to me on my x800.

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I just booted up my G5 to test real quick. The sun bug happens but... lol I get about 5-10 MORE fps on the G5 than the monster machine when looking at the sun but it still drops. Though when I look away... well there is no comparison (67 vs 250).

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So I'm running the BETA with Windows 7 right now. Works just fine. I thought to set compatibility to vista SP3 before I launched it from what I saw in the bug reporting forum (otherwise mouse is stuck in center).

The sun and grass FPS hits do happen on the windows client too... but much less severely. Looking at the sun where it would drop from 200 to 30 on the OSX client, it drop from 205 to 170 (much much less severe).

For the tall grass it is also still there an similarly not as big a hit on the windows client, but still there. Where on the mac it might drop from 80 to 25, on windows it drops from 100 to 60.

Otherwise... no sound bugs, no mouse stuttering. Feels the same besides that.

EDIT: oh and radial clutter actually works... lol

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Well it is mostly the exact same code. It's those tiny difference in the platform that can be most irritating. I've always turned off radial clutter since it looked cheesy to me. I thought it still worked though.

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The drop in frames looking at the grass is each tuft of grass is about 8 polygons, times the whole field, so you'll see a lot more slowdown in those fields of grass then say not looking at the field of grass.

Also look at the same spot in the current game version, the tall grass is probably the issue and is similar on the current live server.

I get the same fps in the current spot testing offline in montfaucon looking and running through the tall grass as I do on the current version testing in offline mode.

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