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synthtel2
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The meaning of "poorly optimized"

Mon Dec 05, 2016 11:26 pm

I can accept that in these parts it means anything that takes a beefy computer, but I think it is still useful to distinguish between "heavy because it's doing lots of legitimate work" (DX:MD when not using MSAA, often Frostbite stuff, many strategy games, Crysis 1 on medium/high settings, etc) and "heavy due to poor engineering / wasted work / low HW utilization" (AC: Unity, Arkham Knight at release, Hairworks, Gamebryo/Creation, DX:MD's MSAA, etc). Obviously there's plenty of grey area, but plenty of things are clearly one or the other. Do gerbils think this is a useful distinction? If so, what terminology would you use for it?
 
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Re: The meaning of "poorly optimized"

Mon Dec 05, 2016 11:39 pm

The term gets thrown around a lot these days, but I definitely think it still has a legitimate use.  I wouldn't call Crysis 1 particularly poorly optimized like many people said.  It was just way ahead of its time, graphically.  Crysis: Warhead did receive a number of optimizations to make it run more smoothly on lower end hardware, but some of those optimizations included things like pretty bad texture pop-in (with no way to change the setting in the graphics menu.

A good example of a poorly optimized game is Fallout 4.  It has fairly steep hardware requirements, yet it really doesn't look all that great anyway.  Minimum specs on the AMD side are a 7870, which I happen to have.  Yet, when I tried to run the game, even on the bare minimum of graphics settings it was nearly unplayable.  I found and installed a number of graphics optimization mods that really didn't change the look of the game very much at all and was able to achieve a playable framerate with only occasional periods of low framerates.

It's tricky to call something like Hairworks "poorly optimized."  On one hand, it's doing some pretty hefty calculations to achieve a real effect.  On the other, it's a minor graphical change to the game that's by no means necessary.  I think you have to weigh the cost/benefit and factor in whether or not it's possible to achieve a similar outcome with a less hardware-dependent method.  I found AMD's similar Tressfx to have a far more reasonable performance cost for the hair effects in the 2013 Tomb Raider game.
 
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Re: The meaning of "poorly optimized"

Mon Dec 05, 2016 11:48 pm

When I put Hairworks on that list, I was mainly thinking of how they tune it to spawn so many more triangles than it actually needs to and go overkill on the MSAA. There's nothing quite like that to make rasterization hardware hurt, and it hardly looks worse when turned down to half the triangles and half the samples relative to their typical settings.
 
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Re: The meaning of "poorly optimized"

Tue Dec 06, 2016 4:48 am

Yes it's a useful distinction, and it's relative.

An application is "well optimized" if it is capable of achieving a desired result on lower-spec hardware (or with more headroom remaining on higher-spec hardware) than other comparable applications. "Poorly optimized" is the opposite of this.

Optimization can also involve compromises. For example, there may be cases where a developer can trade off CPU utilization against RAM usage. Choosing algorithm A over algorithm B may mean that the application can perform acceptably on slower CPUs, but RAM usage goes up by 50%; whether that's poorly optimized or well optimized depends on whether you're the user with the 5 year old CPU, or the one with only 4GB of RAM. As another example, an application that relies heavily on (say) AVX instructions to improve performance, with a non-AVX code path provided as an afterthought, could be considered very well optimized if you have an AVX-capable CPU, but poorly optimized otherwise!
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Re: The meaning of "poorly optimized"

Tue Dec 06, 2016 7:01 am

While I dont code for video games I am speaking with a developers hat on. Sometimes we code just to see what works. Proof of concept type of stuff. For instance Witcher 3's Hairworks. Its fantastic when it works, meaning you have the correct hardware to push it. But even if you don't it was coded in a way that its an on/off toggle. Which when doing these types of things it should always be. Poorly Optimized would come into play if they forced it on for everyone. Thats my 2 cents.
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Re: The meaning of "poorly optimized"

Tue Dec 06, 2016 7:52 am

I remember this from not long ago and it seems relevant.

http://www.pcgamer.com/what-optimizatio ... -in-games/
 
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Re: The meaning of "poorly optimized"

Tue Dec 06, 2016 9:48 am

I have always looked at it from a standpoint of unnecessary work.

Say you are performing a calculation to predict how metal warps on impact (FEA).

Do you require 1,000,000 calculations to reach the desired result or a 100,000,000?

Say you find out that by accident you are recalculating the mass of the metal piece in question every frame instead of determining the mass once and then using the result of that calculation for all of the subsequent calculations needed. Determining the mass requires 50 calculations. Spread out over 1000 frames that is an additional 49,999 unneeded calculations.

Sure modern processors would churn through that in a tiny slice of time, but it is still a tiny slice of wasted time.

Optimization is a DESIGN issue not a speed issue.
Is the computer doing unnecessary calculations not how fast is the computer doing those calculations.

Similar is when you display a 3-d landscape can you see the city behind the mountain? No? Then don't spend any time calculating or displaying it till it is visible.
There was a batman game I think that had the ocean waves visible under the ground across the entire city.
A better optimization would be to only have the ocean waves visible under the beach only and out into the distance.
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Re: The meaning of "poorly optimized"

Tue Dec 06, 2016 10:24 am

But two people do not necessarily code the same way. Yes they follow a set of rules and/or guidelines. But that is it!

You give two coders that very same scenario and they will arrive at the "answer" very differently. Add in a third, fourth, etc. and it exponentially grows.

This is why we have code/peer reviews. It's a check and balance. But even then.....sometimes it becomes a box check. Why? Sometimes time is against you.

At work I open up some things that people coded a long time ago and I am constantly flabbergasted at the work done. Its often that I find what took someone 100 lines of code to do I can do in 20. And sometimes my peers can do it in 10 or 5.
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Re: The meaning of "poorly optimized"

Tue Dec 06, 2016 10:47 am

tanker27 wrote:
Its often that I find what took someone 100 lines of code to do I can do in 20. And sometimes my peers can do it in 10 or 5.

And sometimes the shorter code runs slower because the compiler can optimize the other implementation better.

I've seen that once or twice. And it can take a really good asm programmer to figure out WTF is going on.
 
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Re: The meaning of "poorly optimized"

Tue Dec 06, 2016 11:04 am

True. Shorter doesn't always mean better or even more efficient. But as time goes on new ways on how to code are being introduced. For instance HTML and HTML5, just as one example, In HTML browser cache is used as temporary storage. In HTML5, application cache, web SQL database, and web storage is used. Which makes HTML5 much more optimized and efficient.
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Re: The meaning of "poorly optimized"

Tue Dec 06, 2016 11:08 am

Yup, it can take less code for an inefficient "brute force" solution, as opposed to a more elegant, efficient solution. The simplest example of this is probably a linear vs. binary (bisection) search, when looking for an item in a sorted array.
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Re: The meaning of "poorly optimized"

Tue Dec 06, 2016 11:28 am

Crysis 1 was poorly optimized, and I defend that POV to this day. Yes, it was ahead of its time graphically and that has a cost. But it also scaled like crap running uphill as you added more hardware.

Fallout 4: don't agree. The engine itself runs stupid fast even on older hardware (esp. because it's 2011 Skyrim's engine with a few extra touches). What happens is that in certain specific spots, there are sharp performance dips for no apparent reason.

Basically, I call a game "poorly optimized" when the resulting graphics don't match the hardware powering it, when compared to other past and current titles. However, we also need to take care in considering reasonable graphics settings, because pretty much every game in the past few years has had a particular performance-murdering setting that one is wise to leave off.

DX:MD, for example, is actually pretty darn good. Its graphics are absolutely stunning, and it runs pretty well. What it has is 3-4 advanced settings that will melt your graphics card for only a little image quality increase. See also Witcher 3.
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Re: The meaning of "poorly optimized"

Tue Dec 06, 2016 11:32 am

morphine wrote:
Fallout 4: don't agree. The engine itself runs stupid fast even on older hardware (esp. because it's 2011 Skyrim's engine with a few extra touches). What happens is that in certain specific spots, there are sharp performance dips for no apparent reason.


I second this. Outside of the inexplicable and occasional performance spikes, it actually runs fine on hardware below the minimum specified. I know someone with a hundred plus hours into it with underspecified CPU/GPU, no complaints.

And, the reason I say fine despite the spikes is that hardware above those specifications still has them, so whatever that is about it's not all that different.
 
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Re: The meaning of "poorly optimized"

Tue Dec 06, 2016 9:31 pm

I am a game dev, y'all don't have to lecture me on the general technical stuff. :wink: Picking apart specific cases is fun though.

tanker27 wrote:
While I dont code for video games I am speaking with a developers hat on. Sometimes we code just to see what works. Proof of concept type of stuff. For instance Witcher 3's Hairworks. Its fantastic when it works, meaning you have the correct hardware to push it. But even if you don't it was coded in a way that its an on/off toggle. Which when doing these types of things it should always be. Poorly Optimized would come into play if they forced it on for everyone. Thats my 2 cents.

As a developer, I love that kind of experimentation, but the result of it still has to be tuned and presented to the user in a way that makes sense. I wouldn't be complaining about it if they had made it an off/low/high or off/normal/ultra toggle rather than just off/on - it isn't the algo itself that's poorly optimized, it's the only setting they make available for it that is. IIRC the more detailed options are right there in an .ini file anyway, so it's not like it would be tough to do better.

Aranarth wrote:
Optimization is a DESIGN issue not a speed issue.
Is the computer doing unnecessary calculations not how fast is the computer doing those calculations.

That's the view I generally take on it, and the first thing that pops into my head when someone talks about optimization (though it's complementary to morphine's view - anything that makes a game fall behind typical in the ratio of looks to hardware required could be considered a design issue). It doesn't seem to match with a lot of gamers' perceptions of things, though, which is the real reason for this thread.

morphine wrote:
Crysis 1 was poorly optimized, and I defend that POV to this day. Yes, it was ahead of its time graphically and that has a cost. But it also scaled like crap running uphill as you added more hardware.

Fallout 4: don't agree. The engine itself runs stupid fast even on older hardware (esp. because it's 2011 Skyrim's engine with a few extra touches). What happens is that in certain specific spots, there are sharp performance dips for no apparent reason.

Basically, I call a game "poorly optimized" when the resulting graphics don't match the hardware powering it, when compared to other past and current titles. However, we also need to take care in considering reasonable graphics settings, because pretty much every game in the past few years has had a particular performance-murdering setting that one is wise to leave off.

DX:MD, for example, is actually pretty darn good. Its graphics are absolutely stunning, and it runs pretty well. What it has is 3-4 advanced settings that will melt your graphics card for only a little image quality increase. See also Witcher 3.

There are a lot of aspects of Crysis' tech that I'm not familiar with (yet), but my understanding of it is that on medium-high settings it was very heavy, but looked appropriately great (if not better - many aspects of it look excellent even by today's standards). I'd call that good optimization, but many wouldn't. At max settings, it took stupid amounts of computation for not so much gain, and I think we can all agree that part is bad optimization. We can't really say how it would have been received if it were released 3-5 years later, because it had so much influence on game tech, but I think it would have impressed even then.

FO4 kind of has the opposite problem in my book. It's fast, but it looks meh, and that engine throws away a lot of CPU time (including in bursty ways that make frametimes less consistent than they might be). They're pretty sharply limited on how much non-render logic they can put in a game, and the more foundational parts of the renderer don't look to have advanced much since Skyrim (i.e. it's light on GPUs but doesn't look good). They did a fair job of covering it up with various tack-on shiny stuff, due to the lightness of the essential parts there was plenty of GPU time in which to do that, and the creative side of their art team is pretty great, but the result is still notably behind what other games can pull off. I don't think Skyrim's looks are that great either when accounting for how beefy a CPU it likes.

DX:MD is generally awesome except for MSAA's huge cost. They're just illustrating why nobody does deferred + MSAA though; if there's no special sauce and the renderer is at all typical, that feature is terribly heavy per its returns, as in poorly optimized.

Some of it is always going to come down to personal opinions on how good a game actually is. I'm sure some people think FO4's graphics are better than I do, and some think Crysis' are worse.
 
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Re: The meaning of "poorly optimized"

Tue Dec 06, 2016 9:54 pm

Heh. The thing with Crysis is what someone else was saying earlier. As somebody with game creation experience, optimization isn't just the technical side, it's also the design side. Crysis' design not only included incredibly high fidelity environments but they were absolutely sprawling. The levels were massive for its time. Crytek didn't do much (or enough, anyway) in the way of LOD scaling, so as you raised settings (i.e. added detail) the game's demands on your hardware scaled in a seemingly-nonlinear fashion. Or as morphine said, scaled like crap rolling uphill.

Crysis 2 was developed first as a console game and consoles simply aren't going to put up with that junk. As a result, Crysis 2 ended up being a much more traditional type of corridor shooter. The open-ended exploration and vehicles of the first game were completely absent in favor of a strictly linear "corridor shooter" type of game design. I think Crysis 2 was a decent and even underappreciated game, but it certainly wasn't an apt sequel to Crysis.

Fallout 4, on the other hand, is a bit of an anomaly among modern games because it's EXTREMELY sensitive to single-threaded CPU performance. It scales out to multiple cores and that will help with the worst-case frametimes, but it reeeeally wants that single-threaded CPU performance first and foremost. The graphics requirements aren't even that high; I have a friend playing it happily on a (formerly one of my) 3GB GTX 580. It looks nice and runs well thanks to his Haswell i5.

As to the OP, I would simply use the established terminology. A game in the former case ("heavy because it's doing lots of work") is demanding, and a game in the latter case ("heavy due to poor engineering/wasted work/low HW utilization") is poorly-optimized. Personally I think the latter category deserves a few different splits: one for "unusually demanding" (titles which have unusual hardware demands, like Fallout 4), one for "poor scaling" (titles which don't scale down well to lower-end hardware, but do run well on good rigs, like Metro 2033), and one for legitimately poor optimization. That final category can be either in terms of engine efficiency or in terms of game design, too, as I mentioned earlier with Crysis. Frankly, I don't think most games that are based on an existing engine (whether it be Unreal, Cryengine, Id Tech, or Unity) really belong in the "poor engine optimization" category, but there's no reason someone can't take an Unreal Engine game and shove Gameworks in it and then tessellate every single hair primitive 64 times before applying 32 MSAA samples.
 
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Re: The meaning of "poorly optimized"

Tue Dec 06, 2016 11:29 pm

Lack of scaling to bigger and better worlds with more mechanics (as in the opposite of rails shooters) is actually my biggest complaint about most engines out there. Unity, Unreal, and Cryengine can all be coaxed into it, but they all make it abundantly clear they're not happy about it. Even Creation with its impressive reputation is pushed to its limits by everything Bethesda does (as modders regularly find out). I don't want advancements in gaming to just be about better graphics, I want them to be about moving beyond the era of the rails shooter, being able to build whatever from a mechanics and worldbuilding perspective and not having to worry about whether the engine can handle it. Obviously there are limits to this, but CPUs can handle a whole lot more than we're usually getting out of them at the moment.

Good starts on that are doing multithreading right, not wasting CPU time on things that should be happening on the GPU anyway, and not spending too much CPU time slowly interpreting scripts. This may explain my annoyance with Bethesda. :wink:
 
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Re: The meaning of "poorly optimized"

Wed Dec 07, 2016 12:03 am

All this talk about Fallout 4... did I miss the part where it's slow? o_O

Maybe I missed something, but the game runs pretty darn fast, and speed has never really been much of a complaint. Heck, even back then I had to cap Skyrim at 60FPS because of the physics engine snafu.
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Re: The meaning of "poorly optimized"

Wed Dec 07, 2016 2:40 am

The same game built on a more typical modern engine would be a lot lighter on CPUs (no 4C 2.8 GHz Sandy as the min spec), wouldn't have so much performance inconsistency, and would be less fragile / glitch-prone, at the expense of moddability and probably a slightly higher GPU requirement. It's pretty light and fast as is, but it's not exactly the most advanced game around, and it could be a lot lighter and faster.

Moddability is the reason I usually give Bethesda a free pass. A lot of the reasons they're known for certain kinds of sloppy work are the exact same reasons modding is so easy.
 
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Re: The meaning of "poorly optimized"

Wed Dec 07, 2016 6:43 am

Ok first of all i've been lurking around these forums for a long time, but i registered just now in order to reply to this thread.
So...Hi everybody!! :D

In my mind, not optimized is any software that doesn't take advantage of all available resources in the most efficient way depending on the hardware that is available.
Poorly optimized is software that might run everywhere but only takes advantage of basic hardware functions.

With CPU code for example, a game that uses a lot of x87 instructions instead of just combining them into one big SSE or AVX instruction.(Skyrim is said to be like this)
A good argument might be for keeping compatibility with older hardware, but...come on, you can always make your program to query available hardware and choose a code path accordingly if a modern cpu is available.

My best example of how optimization is done for CPUs, would be Piledriver vs Ivy-Bridge.
They both support AVX, but using it on BD is bad from a performance standpoint.
It is horribly slow, in fact it's slower than SSE.

The guy who made y-cruncher decided to test this, so he wrote his own assembly code.
You'll say, come on how much slower/faster can it be, no matter what you'll do it won't match Ivy-Bridge.
Look at this image below and decide for yourself:
i67.tinypic.com/2wdc801.png


This is from y-cruncher's website on the "Processor-Specific Optimizations" page.
(Sorry i have no privileges to post a link or image, if a mod could help, it would be great)


Does it run the same code on every CPU? Does it fallback to legacy code?
Well, it has a launcher that queries your hardware/processor and then chooses the fastest exe for it.

The only problem, is that this procedure needs a lot of time in order to make sure that the different code paths will produce the same results, which costs big money for gaming companies and delays the release of all these broken ports!

Same thing applies to modern GPUs, nvidia and amd handle graphics and compute in different ways, GCN and Pascal-Maxwell need specific but different ways to be fed in order to achieve max performance without penalties,
The only game that we currently know that achieves this is is Doom where if you rank graphics card by their theoretical performance in tflops and then by their gaming performance you will get the same order.(You will need 4GB for it, though)
 
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Re: The meaning of "poorly optimized"

Wed Dec 07, 2016 9:01 am

Welcome!

I can see that point, as that definition is the inverse of "well-optimized" being software which fully utilises features and capabilities of the underlying hardware to best effect, either to do faster or more work

... but I don't think that means that any "software that doesn't take advantage of all available resources in the most efficient way depending on the hardware that is available" is by definition poorly-optimized.

For me, synthtel2's distinction between "heavy because it's doing lots of legitimate work" and "heavy due to poor engineering / wasted work / low HW utilization" is a good starting point, but I'd argue that:

1) Too heavy because its doing more work than the average (target) PC can cope with is a case of poorly-optimized software, in general.

2) Low hardware utilization is not on its own an indication of poor optimization.

(1) stems from the idea that the optimization work should start with optimizing Task 0, making money, by including in the design brief that the product should be mass-market and viable; it's from this that the optimization in the tasks of writing algorithms and code that perform acceptably should flow, IMO.
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Re: The meaning of "poorly optimized"

Wed Dec 07, 2016 9:46 am

IANAGD (I am not a game developer), but I'm a software architect with many years in business including a lot of optimization work.  When I hear "optimize" my reaction is "optimize with respect to what?"

It includes using all resources as evenly as possible.  Frequently there are tradeoffs between time and space and the different types of resources.  That's been mentioned already with examples like slow CPU and lots of memory vs. fast CPU and less memory.  If an algorithm can do both well, it's not only optimized, it's adaptive.

But there are always other constraints.  I don't think many gamers would want to pay twice as much for a game so that it runs well on other people's hardware.  That's a form of optimization, but it might be a poor use of development time.

Personally I enjoyed the Bethesda Elder Scrolls series because the appearance and performance was good enough, but I favor open worlds.  That's an example of optimizing between the story and modding capabilities vs. cpu/gpu time or testing for stability.

And there's frequently no single answer to a problem.  If a game seems to load slowly, maybe the answer is more load and initialization threads... or maybe the answer is to get to an initial screen quickly while loading and initializing the game engine.  (Which I assume is frequently done anyway...)

In the end it comes down to what the user wants.  Some people are cpu bound, some are gpu bound... some are wallet bound and would prefer a $10 game with fewer visual effects but a strong story than a $60 game with more visual effects.  (If you ask me, my son is time-bound based on doing his school work first... but he's likely to have a different answer!)

From that point of view, poorly optimized means not giving the user what he or she wants.

(Thanks for the interesting topic)
 
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Re: The meaning of "poorly optimized"

Thu Dec 08, 2016 12:43 pm

synthtel2 wrote:
The same game built on a more typical modern engine would be a lot lighter on CPUs (no 4C 2.8 GHz Sandy as the min spec), wouldn't have so much performance inconsistency, and would be less fragile / glitch-prone, at the expense of moddability and probably a slightly higher GPU requirement. It's pretty light and fast as is, but it's not exactly the most advanced game around, and it could be a lot lighter and faster.

Moddability is the reason I usually give Bethesda a free pass. A lot of the reasons they're known for certain kinds of sloppy work are the exact same reasons modding is so easy.

So what you mean is "it runs pretty well all things considered, but Bethesda could have done an even better job?" :)
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Re: The meaning of "poorly optimized"

Thu Dec 08, 2016 1:15 pm

morphine wrote:
All this talk about Fallout 4... did I miss the part where it's slow? o_O

Maybe I missed something, but the game runs pretty darn fast, and speed has never really been much of a complaint. Heck, even back then I had to cap Skyrim at 60FPS because of the physics engine snafu.

It's terribly slow for bad-IPC CPUs. I used to play Creation Engine games regularly on a below-4-GHz Richland CPU, and while the framerate *average* was fine, the choppiness was insane. 

Downgraded to a POS Celeron I had lying around and *BAM*, instant smoothness. It's likely that the GCN 1.0 AMD card wasn't helping, they were/are notorious for being CPU hogs.
 
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Re: The meaning of "poorly optimized"

Thu Dec 08, 2016 1:18 pm

morphine wrote:
synthtel2 wrote:
The same game built on a more typical modern engine would be a lot lighter on CPUs (no 4C 2.8 GHz Sandy as the min spec), wouldn't have so much performance inconsistency, and would be less fragile / glitch-prone, at the expense of moddability and probably a slightly higher GPU requirement. It's pretty light and fast as is, but it's not exactly the most advanced game around, and it could be a lot lighter and faster.

Moddability is the reason I usually give Bethesda a free pass. A lot of the reasons they're known for certain kinds of sloppy work are the exact same reasons modding is so easy.

So what you mean is "it runs pretty well all things considered, but Bethesda could have done an even better job?" :)

The graphics aren't really a problem with Bethsoft games. Sure, it's not cutting-edge, but they are serviceable and don't get in the way of the experience.

The main problem with Creation Engine is the horrible prioritizing (handling?) of even moderately complicated scripts. Add a few of the wrong mods that check various states too often and you can bring a Broadwell-E CPU to its knees. I've seen this. 

Alternatively, with some careful .INI meddling you can get FO4 to run at ~35FPS on a Intel 5500 iGPU... so that part seems well-optimized!
 
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Re: The meaning of "poorly optimized"

Thu Dec 08, 2016 1:48 pm

I can agree with that point. I don't necessarily agree with the one about CPUs with bad IPC. Bad CPU is bad CPU, after all :D
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Re: The meaning of "poorly optimized"

Thu Dec 08, 2016 2:16 pm

I would also point out that a lot of games are so heavily 'optimized' for a specific configuration, or limited pallet of configurations that they run horribly outside that very narrow window. *cough*bad-console-ports*cough*
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Re: The meaning of "poorly optimized"

Thu Dec 08, 2016 2:27 pm

morphine wrote:
So what you mean is "it runs pretty well all things considered, but Bethesda could have done an even better job?" :)

Yes and yes, but that neglects the ratio of running well to results. Take Skyrim as an example again - it's from 2011, it looks appropriate for that era, and not knowing anything about the tech, you'd expect it to run flawlessly on more modern hardware. Instead, it's still merely alright on laptop CPUs, and it takes a beastly CPU if you want it to actually approach flawless (meaning getting rid of those hiccups). If it were released today, people would be wondering why in blue blazes a game that looks that bad doesn't run perfectly on anything you'd think to run it on. If you squint, FO4 looks like it might be from 2015, but it isn't going to age well. I'm sure in 2020 everything I just said about Skyrim will apply to it, maybe even moreso.

I hear sometimes that Creation is light and fast because its GPU requirements are so low. The CPU requirements are more concerning, though, doubly so because of the death of Moore's law and triply so because throwing more cores at Creation doesn't solve anything. If a game is heavy on GPUs, at least we've still got another couple nodes worth of scaling in that space (though I'm sure we'll see the exact same problem there once GPU progression starts looking like that of post-Sandy CPUs).

To be clear, I'm not saying graphics are so important as all that. It just annoys me when they and/or other parts of a game aren't as good as the game's performance indicates they should be.
 
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Re: The meaning of "poorly optimized"

Fri Dec 09, 2016 4:58 am

synthtel2 wrote:
The CPU requirements are more concerning, though, doubly so because of the death of Moore's law and triply so because throwing more cores at Creation doesn't solve anything. If a game is heavy on GPUs, at least we've still got another couple nodes worth of scaling in that space (though I'm sure we'll see the exact same problem there once GPU progression starts looking like that of post-Sandy CPUs).

To be clear, I'm not saying graphics are so important as all that. It just annoys me when they and/or other parts of a game aren't as good as the game's performance indicates they should be.

This is kinda an important point here, Moore's Law is certainly not dead -- it's just that one thing people took from it wasn't really true: the belief was that the exponential growth would be in free performance gains, when it's actually in the density of transistors on a standard size chip.

Turned out the gainz weren't free, devs couldn't effectively use those extra transistors, then CPU designers started spending their transistor budgets on iGPUs, iMC, &c.

I don't think that applies to GPUs, because the work is parallelizable with much less effort.
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Re: The meaning of "poorly optimized"

Fri Dec 09, 2016 5:43 am

Moore's observation was never a law.  It died even before Gordon Moore retired.  It's been a long time since CPU transistor counts or performance have doubled annually.
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Re: The meaning of "poorly optimized"

Fri Dec 09, 2016 6:55 am

Really?? Everyone calls it Moore's Law, including Intel. Sure, it's an observation that's called a law as shorthand, does it matter when everyone knows what it means?

And Moore himself revised the 1 year period to 2 in the mid 70's, and that held until pretty recently and IIRC it's not like Intel's too far outside it now.
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