Tag Archives: RPG

Dragon Age Inquisition: The Highs and Lows of AMD’s Mantle

The latest game in the Dragon Age series launched last year to critical and popular acclaim. Dragon Age Inquisition from developers BioWare and published by Electronic Arts won plenty of awards for 2014, even though it came out towards the end of November, and it is undoubtedly one of the best RPGs of recent history. With a current Metacritic rating of 85%, it's by no means perfect, but if you're a fan of the genre or series picking the latest release up is a no-brainer.
Except you might be wondering if you actually have enough graphics power to handle the game in all its glory. BioWare also updated the engine from their own Lycium/Eclipse engine used in the earlier titles to DICE's FrostBite 3 engine, of Battlefield 4 fame. Besides supporting advanced rendering features, FrostBite 3 is one of the few engines to fully support AMD's Mantle API, and that means most games that use the engine will by default support Mantle. So how much does Mantle help with performance, and what sort of hardware do you need to run Dragon Age Inquisition? The answers end up being a bit more complex than you might suspect.
Continue reading Dragon Age Inquisition: The Highs and Lows of AMD’s Mantle

Elder Scrolls Skyrim Performance: a Flawed Benchmark

The Elder Scrolls is a long-running series, with five major titles along with a variety of expansion packs and DLC. Elder Scrolls Skyrim is the latest release, and it's hard to believe that it came out three years ago. It's still a great RPG, but as a benchmark... well, most of the Elder Scrolls games have been flawed benchmarks at best. I suppose some of that depends on your perspective, though, so it might be better to state that the Elder Scrolls games have traditionally been very heavy on the CPU requirements, while graphics requirements have not scaled quite as fast.
Continue reading Elder Scrolls Skyrim Performance: a Flawed Benchmark

Wasteland 2 Performance

Kickstarter... it's an amazing little phenomenon, and among other uses it has now become a platform for funding and launching video games. While Wasteland 2 is by no means the first game to get funding on Kickstarter, and it's also not the first Kickstarter game to see the light of day, it does hold a soft place in my heart. After all, I backed the game within hours of the Kickstarter launch, and what's more the guys behind Wasteland 2 (Brian Fargo specifically) are some of the heroes of my youth. I remember playing the original Wasteland on a Commodore 64 ages ago, and while some things were a bit of a pain -- including the requirement that you make a copy of one disk as the game would update the state of the world as you played (remember: the 64 was for 64K of RAM, so you couldn't keep track of a lot of things!) -- overall Wasteland is perhaps one of the greatest games of the early PC.
Continue reading Wasteland 2 Performance