Sonic & All-Stars Racing Transformed Collection

Sonic & All-Stars Racing Transformed Collection

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Fix for FPS drops on capable hardware running Windows 10
By Rucola-Joe
If you are experiencing frame rate drops on Windows 10 even though your hardware should be more than capable of running this game, this guide provides a solution – it's a bit time-consuming, but it works.
This guide is for you if...
...all of these conditions apply:
  • Your computer is running Windows 10
  • Your hardware meets or exceeds the game's recommended specs
  • The game generally runs at 60 fps but you experience heavy drops esp. on Samba Studios

Note: This method should also help make the game run better on slower computers even if you are not targeting 60 fps and maxed-out settings.
The problem
As far as I can tell, "Sonic & All-Stars Racing Transformed" has some kind of issue with Windows 10. I remember playing this game with a locked 60 fps on my laptop – prior to upgrading from Windows 8.1 to Windows 10. After upgrading, the game ran significantly worse than I remembered, especially on demanding tracks like Burning Depths and Samba Studios. Even on a fresh install of Windows 10 on a way more powerful computer than my laptop I still got some drops in the infamous most taxing areas of the game.

In short: Windows 10 is the problem. "Sonic & All-Stars Racing Transformed" generally runs way better on Windows 8 than on Windows 10.
The solution
Knowing that Windows 10 is the culprit here, the solution is obvious: Run the game on a preceding version of Windows. But you wouldn't want to go back to Windows 8.1 just for one game, would you? But if you, like me, still desperately want to play the game with buttery smooth 60 fps, here's the solution: Install Windows 8.1 to an external storage device.

The benefits:
  • This will not mess with your install of Windows 10 or your boot sequence
  • You can simply unplug the storage device and there'll be no traces of Windows 8.1 left
  • You'll be able to run "Sonic & All-Stars Racing Transformed" at a locked 60 fps*

The downsides:
  • It takes about 2 hours to set up
  • You'll have to boot to Windows 8.1 every time you want to play the game
  • If there's no Windows 8.1 licence linked to your Microsoft account you'll have to buy one**

*provided that your hardware is powerful enough
**do a price check via google – they come way cheaper than you might expect
Making this work is not very difficult but requires advanced computer skills – if terms like "partitioning", "boot sequence", "UEFI" and "BIOS" do not ring any bells, either get help from someone who is more tech-savvy or be aware that you might have to do some research and extra reading.
Making it happen
I'm only gonna give you brief instructions here. I might cover this in more detail at a later point in time, but for the time being, this will have to suffice.

  • Get a suitable USB drive: Either an external hard drive or a USB flash drive with at least 32 GB of memory

  • Download a Windows 8.1 ISO file using the Microsoft Media Creation Tool for Windows 8.1[]

  • Using that tool, make sure you select the right edition (8.1, 8.1 Pro etc.) fitting the licence you own and the architecture (32-Bit or 64-Bit) matching your system (most likely 64-Bit)

  • Select downloading the ISO file; do not choose to save the file to a USB drive

  • After downloading the ISO file, install Windows 8.1 to a USB drive using WinToUSB[], as explained in this guide[]

  • You can now boot from this USB drive, which will start the installation process for Windows 8.1

  • Make sure you pick the USB drive as the target location for your Windows 8.1 install

  • When the install process is complete, booting to this USB drive will boot directly to Windows 8.1 from now on

  • Update Windows 8.1, install all necessary drivers

  • Download and install Steam

  • Download "Sonic & All-Stars Racing Transformed" and enjoy it the way it's meant to run on your hardware!
The results
For me, this method worked perfectly. On Windows 10 I experienced drops to 50 fps or lower on Samba Studios – even with water and model detail set to medium. Now I can play the game maxed out at a locked 60 fps, even in split screen mode.

Please feel free to share your experience in the comments below!