We're currently in the process of GPU benchmarking Lords of the Fallen, a game that our own Nick Pinkerton previewed back at PAX Prime 2013. The game hosts impressive graphics technology in partial thanks to partnership with nVidia, who offer their GameWorks graphics SDK freely to game developers.
Developers CI Games and Deck13 utilized GameWorks (detailed here) to introduce physics-responsive particle effects, soft body (cloth, fabric) physical effects, volumetric lighting that responds to transparency and surface opacity / reflectivity, and destructible environment effects.
There's been a lot of discussion about Titanfall's performance lately. Our most recent Titanfall GPU performance benchmark showed that the game still exhibits serious issues on certain devices; nVidia cards showed severe stuttering, SLI has micro-stuttering and works better disabled, and the game is simply needlessly large. All these taken into account, the performance issues feel almost unjustified for the visuals -- the game looks fine, sure, but it's not melt-your-GPU level of graphics and certainly isn't spectacular to look at. It's another Source Engine game with adequate graphics. And I'm not saying that's a bad thing, so please don't get me wrong -- just that the performance isn't perfectly-tuned, at least, not yet. More drivers and patches will smooth that out.
I don't want to come off as too harsh, though. The mechanics are enjoyable for certain types of players and the game overall seems 'good,' it's just experiencing some (now-standard) launch issues with PC optimization. All is survivable, though.
In a recent blog post by nVidia's Tony Tamasi and video blog by Assassin's Creed 4 Associate Producer Sylvain Trottier, we've been given deeper technical insight into AC4's driving technologies. From a hardware enthusiast perspective, such videos help us understand and visualize the many acronyms that plague PC graphics, "putting a face to the names," as it were.
In this detailed post, we'll explore the actual real-world meaning of Volumetric FX (fog, smoke), horizon-based ambient occlusion (HBAO), Percentage-Closer Soft Shadows (PCSS), new dynamic lighting FX, and graphics tech in AC4. First, let's start with the new AC4 video that showcases these technologies in action: