Jedi Academy, Morrowind

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Jedi Academy, Morrowind

NVIDIA GeForceFX 5700 Ultra Review - Graphics Cards  71 Star Wars: Jedi Knight: Jedi Academy

Jedi Academy is something new I just started playing recently and having collected the old Star Wars comics from Dark Horse, the events following the war intrigues me (if anyone has read the “Dark Empire” series would understand). So far it looks interesting and I can’t wait to get into the meat of the game. This particular test occurs at the very beginning of the game where the character fights some “rats” (typical starter-level creatures) along a pixel-shaded waterfall and the fallen shuttle craft. I noticed this section of the game performed very poorly, so it makes for a good test. I will refine my testing of this game as I play more.

Game Configuration
Screen Resolution 1024×768 and 1600×1200
Geometric Detail High
Texture Detail High
Texture Quality 32 bit
Texture Filter Trilinear
Detailed Shaders ON
Shadows Volumetric
Dynamic Lights ON
Dynamic Glow ON
Light Flares ON
Wall marks ON

NVIDIA GeForceFX 5700 Ultra Review - Graphics Cards  72

Here we see something we haven’t before… the FX5700 Ultra beating the softmod Radeon 9500. NVIDIA has always excelled at OpenGL performance, especially in games that are based off the Quake 3 engine, and Jedi Academy is no exception. Before you conclude that this game runs too slow for your liking, this test was meant to see how bad the game and hardware can get. Be sure to test your settings and turn off the detailed shaders if things are going too slow.

NVIDIA GeForceFX 5700 Ultra Review - Graphics Cards  73 The Elder Scrolls III: Morrowind

The 3rd installment to the Elder Scrolls franchise is proving to be very successful. Once again, I am using Balmora as the “benchmark” town because of its large number of NPCs and buildings (great for back-face culling testing), and a large pixel-shaded river running through it.

Game Configuration
View Distance 50%
Pixel-shading Enabled
Real-time shadows Disabled

NVIDIA GeForceFX 5700 Ultra Review - Graphics Cards  74

NVIDIA GeForceFX 5700 Ultra Review - Graphics Cards  75

Min and Max Frame Rates
FX5700U
FX5600U
Softmod R9500
R9500
Min
Max
Min
Max
Min
Max
Min
Max
1024×768

0x0

26
56
21
63
43
66
45
64
0x8
16
55
19
53
38
64
42
61
2×0
19
52
17
57
43
64
46
63
2×8
22
56
23
52
39
61
41
59
4×0
5
11
3
10
35
65
39
62

4×8

6
10
4
11
37
62
37
60
1600×1200

0x0

26
61
19
44
42
64
38
56
0x8
21
55
17
36
39
62
41
56
2×0
24
55
2
44
40
61
44
57
2×8
15
25
7
10
37
63
39
59
4×0
6
11
5
10
38
63
37
55

4×8

5
10
4
8
40
58
36
57

Looking at the results, we see that the FX series takes a steep dive in performance when 4x anti-aliasing is enabled. This is similar to the behaviour seen in the Age of Mythology tests we showed earlier. It would appear that there is a compatibility bug with certain games with anti-aliasing. Just to make sure that this data is correct, I redid these tests and both the FX5600U and FX5700U came up with similar results.

Overlooking this unusual behaviour, we see that the FX5700 Ultra lags behind both the Radeon 9500 and the softmodded Radeon 9500. However, it does produce playable frame rates from 0x0 to 2×8 on both resolution settings. I did experience some unusual lag when I turned the character more than 45 degrees left or right. The game would pause or stutter for a split second and then continue on working as usual. At these points, the frame rate dropped 50% as recorded in the min/max frame rate chart above. The Radeon cards on the other hand did not experience such stutters or lag and ran very smoothly.

If you’re planning on playing and exploring Morrowind for a while longer, the choice is obvious that you should get a Radeon 9500 or higher. The FX5700 Ultra currently lacks the muscle to produce the same smooth user experience.

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