We have been waiting for Batman: Arkham City for quite some time on the PC, and after weeks of delays, the game was finally released this week, to quite a bit of fanfare. NVIDIA has been touting the game as the poster child for several technology features like DX11, 3D Vision, PhysX, etc. It appears that the developers have had some issues though with the release – DX11 features are causing significant stuttering even with high end hardware.
Batman doesn’t like it when his games are late…and broken.
I put together a quick video comparing the gameplay experience with and without DX11 enabled; you can see it below. The system specifications for our test bed for this video were:
- Intel Core i7-965
- Intel X58 motherboard
- 6GB DDR3-1600 memory
- GeForce GTX 580 1.5GB graphics card
- Driver version: 285.79
- Windows 7 SP1 x64
The DX11 settings that are causing the issues are tessellation, ambient occlusion and a new type of soft shadow rendering. When these features are enabled the game experiences noticeable, repeatable and quite annoying stutters both in the actual gameplay and during the integrated benchmark.
In our video below you can clearly the see the phenomenon in action.
On the official Batman: Arkham City forums, the publisher gave the following statement, confirming the broken DX11 implementation.
PC DirectX 11 Issues Please Read
We have received reports of performance issues from players of Batman: Arkham City on PC. After researching the matter, we found that running the game with DX 11 is causing the performance issues. We’re working on a title update to address this matter and expect to make it available in the near future.
In the meantime, a workaround for this issue is to run the game with DX 9 instead of DX 11. Instructions on how to turn off DX 11 are listed below.
We sincerely apologize for any inconvenience with your gameplay experience and thank you all for your patience as we work to resolve this issue.
While we love to see new technologies implemented in games that improve our gameplay experience, we HATE it when it delays games or causes issues like this when released. Here is hoping that the developer, publisher and driver teams from AMD and NVIDIA can fix this quickly.