Marvel’s Guardians of the Galaxy (GotG) has received a patch that improves LOD and thus item burst. This costs performance on all graphics cards, as the test shows. Benchmarks in Full HD, WQHD and Ultra HD show how many FPS are lost.
Patch addresses aggressive LOD
Guardians of the Galaxy (Tech Test) is currently one of the most visually stunning games ever. The overall quality of the graphics, the ray tracing reflections and much more ensure a truly impressive look that gives an absolutely round picture. For perfection, better smoothing and a less aggressive LOD, also called “Level of Detail”, are missing. LOD is now addressed in the current patch.
Generally speaking, the LOD is responsible for ensuring that objects that are farther away display less detail than at close range to increase performance. Almost all modern games use a LOD system. But as criticized in the tech test, Guardians of the Galaxy has worked very aggressively to date. As a result, even objects that are only a few meters in front of the player visibly change the level of detail and sometimes even appear out of nowhere. Worse yet, the LOD is incredibly sensitive to resolution. In Full HD, the mechanism works much more aggressively than in WQHD and the LOD is already annoying in Ultra HD.
Apparently, the developer Eidos Montreal not only acknowledged the problem, but also almost completely removed it with the latest patch “2983462”. No, the LOD still doesn’t work perfectly, but the new implementation is much better than the old one and now on par with other games as well. In fact, it’s now a pretty solid implementation, because the LOD doesn’t work as well in many other titles.
Although some objects still visibly change the level of detail when they are moved, this is not only significantly less, but also much less noticeable. Also, items no longer appear out of nowhere right in front of the player. And on top of that, resolution sensitivity has been reduced. Even at Full HD, the new LOD is significantly better than the old LOD at Ultra HD. This is how it should be from day one.
But the best graphics don’t come for free.
There is a catch though, because the old LOD wasn’t there for a reason: it was good for performance. Objects that don’t need to be rendered at all or need to be rendered with little detail naturally increase the frame rate. Consequently, the new LOD is much better, but Guardians of the Galaxy also runs slower. Now the question is how big is the impact of the new LOD system on performance. ComputerBase will clear it up in this article.
AMD FSR is now on board too
However, before we start with the benchmarks, it should also be mentioned that the new patch also adds AMD FidelityFX Super Resolution enhancement technology. Previously, the game only supported Nvidia’s DLSS.
Performance impact in detail
Even if the performance has gotten a bit worse with the update (more details on that below), for 60 FPS at full HD with maximum details without ray tracing, you need a reasonably fast graphics card, but by no means high-end. From a GeForce GTX 1080, GeForce RTX 2060, GeForce RTX 3060, Radeon RX 5600 XT or Radeon RX 6600 the goal is achieved. The old mid-range models, Radeon GeForce GTX 1060 and Radeon RX 580, on the other hand, do not reach playable rates, so the graphic details have to be reduced. It was a little better before the patch, but it wasn’t ideal with the previous version either.
60 FPS at 2560×1440 is also relatively tame: Good gameplay is offered from the GeForce RTX 2070 Super, GeForce RTX 3060, Radeon RX 5700 XT and Radeon RX 6600 XT. However, for 3,840 × 2,160 a faster model is needed, although it does not have to be the flagship. With so many pixels, the FPS target is reached from a GeForce RTX 3080 or Radeon RX 6800, although the GeForce RTX 3070 in particular still achieves decent values as well.
New is slower than old
AMD and Nvidia graphics cards don’t respond exactly the same to the prettiest LOD. Nvidia’s GPUs like lower resolutions a little better, although the differences are small to minimal. But the GeForce RTX 3080 runs 7% slower after the patch at Full HD, while the Radeon RX 6800 XT runs 10% faster. In WQHD, the ratio is only 8 to 7 percent and in Ultra HD 6 to 4 percent. Radeon RX 5700 XT and GeForce RTX 2070 Super have absolutely equal performance, while the Radeon RX 580 loses the most with a 13% lower frame rate. With the GeForce GTX 1060, the performance drops by just 8 percent. This means that Marvel’s Guardians of the Galaxy loses between 5 and 10 percent frames per second on most graphics cards as a result of the patch, depending on the resolution.
AMD’s FPS percentile improves significantly
But there is also good news in terms of performance, because the developers have apparently been able to improve the frame times of AMD GPUs a lot with the update. This has been a weakness of the Radeons in the superhero game so far, which have been competitive in average FPS but lag far behind in the FPS percentile. This is still the case, although significantly less so than before.
The GeForce RTX 3080 loses 8 percent FPS percentile speed with the update in Full HD, and 3 percent in Ultra HD. The Radeon RX 6800 XT, on the other hand, is 4 percent faster at 1,920 × 1,080, and performance is unchanged at 3,840 × 2,160. The AMD GPU thus reduces the gap to the GeForce RTX 3080 from 30 or 13 percent to 20 or 11 percent.
Ray tracing behaves the same
If ray tracing is on, Marvel’s Guardians of the Galaxy behaves much the same as it does with ray off. Both AMD and Nvidia GPUs throttle on average FPS. For GeForces, this also applies to FPS percentile, while Radeons hold steady there. On the other hand, it is different that AMD and Nvidia GPUs act in parallel even at low resolutions. There is no longer a difference in performance here.
The requirements for high ray tracing details remain frugal in GotG. 60 FPS is already achieved on average in Full HD with a GeForce RTX 2070, GeForce RTX 3060 or Radeon RX 6700 XT. At 2,560×1,440 the requirements go up a bit, then it should be at least a GeForce 2080 Super, GeForce RTX 3060 Ti, or Radeon RX 6800. Meanwhile, the GPU can’t be fast enough for 3840×2160, only the GeForce RTX 3080 Ti and the GeForce RTX 3090 still hit the mark. But even with a Radeon RX 6800 XT or GeForce RTX 3070, playable frame rates can still be achieved if you give up around 10 percent resolution. Visually, this doesn’t come close to Ultra HD, but the quality loss is limited.
Even if Guardians of the Galaxy lost up to 10 percent speed with the latest patch, the update did the game a lot of good visually. Because it didn’t matter how good it looked in the original version: the details that appeared didn’t fit the rest of the image. This blemish has now all but disappeared with the update, allowing GotG to further cement its role as arguably the current graphics flagship.
Even if all graphics cards in the action game now run a bit slower, GotG is still pretty frugal in terms of requirements. Only in Ultra HD should there be a really fast GPU in the computer and even with ray tracing turned on the performance is still good as long as you don’t go overboard with the RT modes. It is also worth mentioning that the developers have improved the output of images on Radeons with the patch. GeForce GPUs still show a better FPS percentile, but the gap has narrowed.
Was this article interesting, useful, or both? Publishers are happy with any ComputerBase Pro support and ad blockers disabled. More information about ads on ComputerBase.
Introvert. Beer guru. Communicator. Travel fanatic. Web advocate. Certified alcohol geek. Tv buff. Subtly charming internet aficionado.