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Frames Per Second, AA, Tearing etc...


The Mighty Ash
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I think it's one of those things you can happily never notice, but once you have seen it then it's hard to unsee.

The first time I really noticed it was back in the day on the original Xbox, when I first got it all I did was play driving game. I went from several months of PGR2 (30fps) to a few weeks of Burnout 3 (60fps) and the difference was huge. Burnout just looked so much more fluid to me. Going back to a 30fps game from a 60fps game is even more noticeable. When we went back to PGR2 it just looked so sluggish.

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I only found out what tearing was a few years ago. I've noticed it in one or two games since. Before that, I only knew of slowdown (which I kinda like, actually) and jaggies. Neither of which I really notice.

The first few times I saw slowdown, I thought it was some kind of cool special effect they had deliberately put into the game. :facepalm: I remember playing the final boss of Shadowman on the N64 and (I realise now) it slowed to about 1 frame every 2 seconds. In amongst all the pyrotechnics and mayhem, it produced this really slow strobe effect which was weird and dramatic. :lol:

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I know, but I mean that I don't 'feel' that Halo 3 has lag issues or something. If I press the trigger in Modern Warfare, it shoots bullets. If I press the trigger in Halo 3, it shoots bullets. I can't say one feels more responsive than the other, although Modern Warfare does look smoother when things speeds up.

That doesn't even make any sense.

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I know, but I mean that I don't 'feel' that Halo 3 has lag issues or something. If I press the trigger in Modern Warfare, it shoots bullets. If I press the trigger in Halo 3, it shoots bullets. I can't say one feels more responsive than the other, although Modern Warfare does look smoother when things speeds up.

It's not about how quick the bullets fire, it's about the density of frames rendered across the entire scene. You can see the difference simply by spinning around on the spot, though your mileage may vary. Whichever you're playing, you get used to it quite quickly, but side by side 30fps vs 60fps is definitely noticeable. Even by you, Napoleon! A lower framerate doesn't make for a 'laggy' feeling necessarily, but a higher framerate looks a lot smoother and feels more responsive. We've gotten framerate and input lag a little confused now.

Compare these three, Nap

Or better, download this from my dropbox:

http://dl.dropbox.com/u/1169933/60vs24.avi

If nothing else, follow the ball with your eyes at the beginning. But can you see the silkiness of the Unreal footage in 60fps, versus 24fps? That's why I play multiformat stuff on PC - all my games look that smooth and silky and responsive, vs the more juddery nature of the 24/30fps footage. It's not like the 30fps stuff is unplayable or anything (as with Halo you get used to it) it's just not as silky smooth. I'm really sensitive to it though, I think.

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It's not about how quick the bullets fire, it's about the density of frames rendered across the entire scene. You can see the difference simply by spinning around on the spot, though your mileage may vary. Whichever you're playing, you get used to it quite quickly, but side by side 30fps vs 60fps is definitely noticeable. Even by you, Napoleon! A lower framerate doesn't make for a 'laggy' feeling necessarily, but a higher framerate looks a lot smoother and feels more responsive. We've gotten framerate and input lag a little confused now.

Compare these three, Nap

Nice little comparison thing in the link. But the quote from a guy named 'Naim Sutherland' is magnificent pretentious bullshit of the highest order. Fuck-fuck-fuck, fuck-fuck-fuck-fuck. If he was into video games, he would no doubt be part of the '15fps for Shadow of the Colossus' brigade.

Here it is in all it's glory:

"No way should films and TV be shot at 30fps. Unless you want No Country for Old Men to look like Days of Our Lives.

The goal of motion pictures is not to recreate reality, it's not even to show reality. I want to create a little psychic link between you and my pictures. I want to suck you into the world of the story, suspend your disbelief and make you forget about yourself and your life and just be in the moment of the film.

By not showing enough visual information, we force the brain into filling in the gaps... it draws you in even more. It's part of how you let go to the point where you can laugh or cry or feel tense or afraid or elated."

"It's part of how you let go to the point where you can laugh or cry or feel tense or afraid or elated." < This line right here makes me want to kill.

Fucking 24fps was because of technical limitations and money. 24fps was the bare minimum for acceptable viewing. And now it's become the gospel of movie truth that all real, true film shall always be displayed at 24fps. Fuck that. It's retarded. And the only reason is because it's what wankers like Naim are used to. If it had been 30fps or 60fps from the beginning the idiots wouldn't all of a sudden go 'Hey! My epic masterpiece will only come to it's full right when filmed at the magic frame rate of 24!! - otherwise it will not be a true piece of art'. Stupid dumb fucks.

Can't remember if it was here or on AV-Forums I saw it. But the BBC did a research paper in 2008 looking into frame rates and HD TV's. Very interesting. Here's the linky:

http://www.bbc.co.uk/rd/pubs/whp/whp-pdf-files/WHP169.pdf

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No, he's completely right. Film is 100% a different thing entirely. Film itself provides a motion blur of sorts, anyhow. 24fps is perfect for film, if you've seen stuff shot on digital at a higher framerate, you'll see why. It all looks like documentary footage or daytime TV. My DSL shoots at 24/30/60 frames per second, and you can't imagine how long I've spent trying to get the settings right for the filmic look in 24fps :) It's not like you can't shoot in a higher framerate, but it ends up looking cheap. Have you seen Inland Empire? :D

It's also a tiny bit annoying though, as action scenes often look like very fast slideshows to me, especially in the cinema (especially when a character moves from one side of the screen to the other, for example).

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I get that film is different to video. But my point is that it's because we are used to 24fps for movies that we tend to think that anything else looks wrong or cheap.

Anyway, I just needed a good rant. Hopefully in 30-50 years time things will have changed a bit.

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That doesn't even make any sense.

It's not about how quick the bullets fire, it's about the density of frames rendered across the entire scene. You can see the difference simply by spinning around on the spot, though your mileage may vary. Whichever you're playing, you get used to it quite quickly, but side by side 30fps vs 60fps is definitely noticeable. Even by you, Napoleon! A lower framerate doesn't make for a 'laggy' feeling necessarily, but a higher framerate looks a lot smoother and feels more responsive. We've gotten framerate and input lag a little confused now.

Compare these three, Nap

Or better, download this from my dropbox:

http://dl.dropbox.com/u/1169933/60vs24.avi

If nothing else, follow the ball with your eyes at the beginning. But can you see the silkiness of the Unreal footage in 60fps, versus 24fps? That's why I play multiformat stuff on PC - all my games look that smooth and silky and responsive, vs the more juddery nature of the 24/30fps footage. It's not like the 30fps stuff is unplayable or anything (as with Halo you get used to it) it's just not as silky smooth. I'm really sensitive to it though, I think.

What I meant to say is: I can see the difference between 30fps and 60fps, but I don't really feel a difference between the two when playing. The only difference for me is that the 60fps game looks a bit smoother but I don't feel the difference when it comes reaction times or perceived agility in a game. I don't feel crippled or half as competent a killing machine in Halo 3 compared to Modern Warfare even though the latter has twice the framerate and half the input lag.

I know the difference, believe me. It's just something I don't particularly care about, especially in the heat of battle.

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Yeah, I don't think there's any difference in gameplay at different framerates past about 30 (it's what me and whatsisname were arguing about earlier), it's a visual thing, 30 looks really juddery and creaky to me, 60 makes my balls tickle.

I get that film is different to video. But my point is that it's because we are used to 24fps for movies that we tend to think that anything else looks wrong or cheap.

Anyway, I just needed a good rant. Hopefully in 30-50 years time things will have changed a bit.

It does look cheap though. Have a look at some 24 vs 30 vs 60 DSLR footage and you'll see what I mean.

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Yeah, I don't think there's any difference in gameplay at different framerates past about 30 (it's what me and whatsisname were arguing about earlier), it's a visual thing, 30 looks really juddery and creaky to me, 60 makes my balls tickle.

I find 30fps competent enough, but 60fps does look smoother and is more comfortable. I've been playing a lot of Modern Warfare and Modern Warfare 2 campaign the last few days and it is indeed silky smooth. I fucking love Call of Duty games :wub:

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I find 30fps competent enough, but 60fps does look smoother and is more comfortable. I've been playing a lot of Modern Warfare and Modern Warfare 2 campaign the last few days and it is indeed silky smooth. I fucking love Call of Duty games :wub:

Me too, I never understand the hate towards them, but I don't take it that seriously. Multiplayer is like a really awesome Quake 2 mod. Can't wait to see what Respawn enterainment come up with. Sci-fi would be nice.

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People had better get used to low FPS and no AA and tearing in the future, as it's only going to become more common on PS3 and 360 if developers continue to push for better graphics. Something has to give.

I made the mistake of posting in the Halo Reach thread that I thought the frame rate is poor precisely for that reason. Angel seems to have taken it as if I have claimed Wayne Rooney tapped his Nan.

Frame rate has always been an issue for me. I'd much rather have simpler looking games that are smooth. I'll probably be called a heretic for this, but I never really bothered with Goldeneye on the N64 due to the poor frame rate (and hence never even bought Perfect Dark), so this is something that I've had an issue with for over a decade. A game simply has to be smooth.

Maybe it is the type of game that makes it so important. I mean, my first games were on an Acorn Electron and I *know* that Elite never even got close to 25fps but I still loved it. I can happily play WoW with a lower frame rate as well, but first person shooters suffer tremendously as soon as they start dropping frames. And racing games. Maybe it is the oft-called "twitch" aspect, if you can call a first person shooter or racer a twitch game?

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Once you've had the good stuff, it's fucking hard to put up with anything else. You know when you've played COD for ages and then you play some Halo and it's all "zomg, my eyes, the frame rate is giving me a headache"? It's like that.

Lol, you fucking Halo fanboys. Come on, saying it runs at half the frame rate of COD isn't exactly bashing it when it's FACTUALLY TRUE, is it. :facepalm:

Wow. The next post down could have been written by me. I even said in the Halo Reach thread that I had come straight from playing COD4 and it was terrible in comparison.

o/\o

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I always liked the Call of Duty series, although not all of them have been great (especially CoD3 sucked a bit). Huge fights, meaty weapons and lots of setpieces and big ass explosions. Yes please. I tend to treat them like pretty shooting galleries rather than war simulators though.

Deffo, is war was anything like Cod, well, it doesn't bear thinking about :lol:

Morrius, I sorted that thingy with that D3DOverrider thing - just needed to set the 'application detection' thing to highest! :D Now I have super responsive vsynced amazing gaming ACTIVATED. 8)

ULTRA! I forgot to say that bit too. I honestly haven't looked at the software since I installed it. :D

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Going from Sonic Heroes (60fps) back to Sonic Adventure DC (30fps) was very noticeable, and made the latter look horrible for about ten minutes until I got used to it, which was mildly annoying because it's a much better game.

Although didn't the Gamecube version of Sonic Adventure run in 60Hz, but fudged up the speed in the process or something? I remember reading complaints about it at the time.

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IMO there's no point in a developer making a game look pretty if it just can't run. They really have to work within the parameters available, and put their effort into optimising the graphics and engine rather than just setting it up around a benchmark which the console can't handle. Frame rate drops and other graphical errors, in most cases, don't make a huge difference to the gameplay but it really affects the whole experience, just throwing something off in terms of immersion and enjoyment.

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I wonder if all this "game advantage" FPS/mice/etc. stuff isn't a bit like the mega-expensive cables that some audiophiles claim make their stereos sound loads better, but which haven't demonstrated any difference over reasonably-prices quality cables in double-blind tests. AKA The Emperor's New Clothes.

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I wonder if all this "game advantage" FPS/mice/etc. stuff isn't a bit like the mega-expensive cables that some audiophiles claim make their stereos sound loads better, but which haven't demonstrated any difference over reasonably-prices quality cables in double-blind tests. AKA The Emperor's New Clothes.

Well, in terms of 60FPS, it's not. Anything above what a TV/monitor can actually display, though, is pointless.

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Well, in terms of 60FPS, it's not. Anything above what a TV/monitor can actually display, though, is pointless.

That's what I meant, really with my analogy. Really cheap audio cables are crap, more expensive ones improve the sound, but only up to a point: paying £1000 per metre, or whatever, is pointless. Similarly, over a certain threshold, I doubt FPS or special mice can make that much/any difference.

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I wonder if all this "game advantage" FPS/mice/etc. stuff isn't a bit like the mega-expensive cables that some audiophiles claim make their stereos sound loads better, but which haven't demonstrated any difference over reasonably-prices quality cables in double-blind tests. AKA The Emperor's New Clothes.

Hmm, sort of. As with all things in PC gaming, like I said earlier, you hit a brick wall of diminishing returns before long. For example, a decent gaming mouse (say, a £30 jobby) is going to be leagues better than a Tesco value £2 thing. But, is a £100 gaming mouse really going to be that much better than a £30 one? I think not.

With FPS, I think that's exactly the case - anything over 30 plays fine, though 60 looks a lot nicer. Anything over 60 has a completely negligible advantage to both visual quality and gameplay, though that won't stop the real hardcore PC people from madly debating the benefits of one pointlessly high framerate over another.

Edit - What Rudi said basically. And your reply. We're all in agreement! Shut down rllmuk.

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RE: Frame update rates and FPS games.

Some people actually did some scientific research into this back in 2006, shame they only tested upto 60fps, but the conclusion was:

The rate at which frames are rendered in a computer game directly impact player performance, influencing both the playability and enjoyability. However, despite the importance of frame rate and the wide-spread popularity of computer games, to the best of our knowledge, there is little quantitative understanding of the effects of frame rate on the player performance in computer games. This paper provides a unique classification of actions in First Person Shooter (FPS) games based on interaction requirements that provide a means to qualitatively assess the impact of frame rates on player performance.

This qualitative assessment is supported by quantitative analysis from two large user studies that measure the effects of frame rate on the fundamental player actions in a First Person Shooter game. Nearly 100 users participated in the two user study experiments, providing performance and perception data over a range of frame rates commonly studied for video streaming and inclusive of frame rates found in many computer game platforms.

In general, the analysis shows that actions that require precise, rapid response, such as shooting, are greatly impacted by degradations in frame rates, while actions with lower precision and response requirements, such as moving, are more tolerant of low frame rates. These insights into the effects of frame rates on player performance can guide players in their choice for game settings and new hardware purchases, and inform system designers in their development of new hardware.

http://web.cs.wpi.edu/~claypool/papers/fr/

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  • 1 month later...

This came to mind recently when digging through my pile of shame...I finally got around to playing God of War 2 on the PS2. Beautiful game. Except when the screen tears and there's always at least on example of this happening every hour. Al least one large expansive area where I would have preferred a camera change, slower scrolling or even flick scrolling compared the the screen tears.

For me...doesn't matter how pretty the game, screen tearing just takes me right out of the game.

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Fluctuating frame-rate is by biggest pet peeve. It's what I really dislike about PC gaming: how you might hit that magic 60fps most of the time, but occasionally something over-complicated will happen, which will cause it to plummet. Triple-buffering is useful but when using a mouse to play it can still feel like wading through treacle. On the PC, I'd rather games provided a frame limiting option - like in Just Cause 2 - as I'd choose a consistent 30fps over an unguaranteed 60 any day.

This is one reason why I love consoles. At least there's a consistency there. Also, a gamepad being less accurate appears to gloss over any framerate drops.

+ 1 for more AA.

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