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Getting the best performance (most FPS) out of Overgrowth
By kavika and 2 collaborators
How to make the game run more smoothly
Hardware specs you need to run the game
To run this game well, you do need a fairly okay gaming computer. Just because your computer has Windows 10 doesn't mean the game will run.

The bare minimum specs for Overgrowth are those that are listed on the store page:
- Passmark 500 GPU ("video card"), with OpenGL 3.2 capability
- Passmark 1000 CPU ("processor")

These are the absolute minimum to run the game. You'll probably have to turn off every setting, and even then the game probably won't run at a high frame rate, or with high visual quality.

If you don't know what the passmark rating for your GPU or CPU is, then google "<GPU manufacturer and model name> passmark", i.e. "nvidia geforce 960 passmark". If you don't know what specific model of GPU and CPU you have, check with the manufacturer of your computer, or google it.

The specs needed to run most games comfortably these days is at least 5x these Passmark ratings, and that is also true for Overgrowth. You can consider Passmark GPU of ~2000 and CPU of ~5000 as a "gamer bare minimum", as of 2017. Even then, you won't be able to play some games, and you won't be able to max out settings.

One recent, popular game that I just checked lists their minimum required specs at Passmark rating of roughly GPU ~4000, CPU ~7000

Here are some pages that I used to help me arrive at this conclusion:
- http://logicalincrements.com
- http://www.cpubenchmark.net/cpu_list.php
- http://www.videocardbenchmark.net/gpu_list.php
Setting up your system for games
The first step for maximizing performance is to make sure your system is running the best it can.
  • Restart your computer
    Some GPU drivers have bugs in them that can cause rendering to go more slowly if you have left the computer running for a while, even if you restart the game. Restarting the computer can solve this problem.

  • Stop all programs that are running in the background.
    Use task manager to do this. You'll want to shut down all other programs besides the game, including normal programs, and system monitoring software, such as antivirus, and system tweak utilities. This will reduce the chance of those programs conflicting with the game.

  • Disable all game overlay programs.
    This is covered by "stop all programs that are running in the background", but this is a special case. Some programs will show an in-game overlay - Screen recording software, game "speed booster" programs (with various names), and some game headphone/mic headsets are a few of these. Those may need to be disabled or may cause problems, including bad performance, or crashes. If you have perf problems or crashes, it may make sense to try disabling these first.

  • Turn off "Compatibility mode" (if you previously turned it on)
    Window's "Compatibility mode" setting does not make Overgrowth run any better, and it can make it run much worse. If you've never enabled it, don't touch the settings for it. If you have enabled it, then turn it off (right click the Overgrowth exe -> Properties -> Compatibility tab -> uncheck "Run this program in compatibility mode", and any other settings in this menu)

  • Update your GPU driver software.
    You can get these at either the GPU manufacturer's website (nVidia, ATI, or Intel), or the website for your computer manufacturer. This may fix some bugs, and may improve performance or compatibility.

  • Make sure you're not running low on memory or hard disk space.
    For various reasons, you will want at least 20% disk space left on all drives, or programs may start to run very slowly. This is especially true if you have an SSD, as they are particularly sensitive to having low amounts of free space. You also need plenty of RAM to run the game, and enough spare RAM for system tasks to run in the background.
Revert the game install back to "bare metal"
Computers are pretty reliable these days, but they can still mess up your data. The game's install files and temp files should be cleaned up before trying to debug any other problems, and you should get rid of any mods that might also be causing problems.

How to restore the game to "factory default":

1. Clear the game's temp files: How to clear the game's cache[wiki.wolfire.com]

2. Disable all mods: Launch the game -> Main Menu -> Mods -> click Deactivate all mods -> quit out of the game to save the setting

3. Make sure your install is not corrupt: Verify integrity of game files

Make sure you do all of these things, in this specific order.
Lowest graphics settings
If your performance is hurting, it is best to turn the graphics down to their lowest possible setting first, and only then start dialing things back up.

To do this, open the game, click on Settings on the main menu, and make sure you are on the Graphics tab. Set all these options below, and see if the game has better performance for you:

- Set the Resolution as low as it goes
(set a custom resolution, and set it to 640 x 480)
- Enable Fullscreen mode
(not "Fullscreen Borderless")
- Set Anti-aliasing to None
- Set Anisotropy to None
- Set Texture Detail to 1/8
- Set Detail Objects to Off
- Turn off VSync
- Turn on Simple Shadows
- Turn on Simple Fog
- Turn on Simple Water
- Turn off GPU Particle Field
- Turn off Enable Custom Shaders
- Turn on No reflection capture
- Turn off Depth of Field
- Turn off Motion Blur (set it to 0%)

Once you've made these changes, restart the game to make the texture detail setting take effect.

Note that "Target monitor" doesn't show up unless you have more than one monitor, so don't worry about that setting. If it shows up, just make sure you run the game on a monitor that is connected to your best GPU.
Settings to try if you are desperate
If you have a very low end computer, at the minimum requirements, or even lower, there are a few extra graphics settings you could try that might make the game run.

Be warned that turning these settings on will make the game look terrible, but they could make the game actually run on a non-gaming computer, or a very old computer.

Before bothering with any of these settings, make sure you've turned down all the normal graphics settings to their minimum as shown in the previous section.

So, for the absolutely lowest possible graphics settings, turn on these options:
  • No Lights or Decals
  • No Light/Decal system
  • Albedo Only
  • Disable detail maps

These are accessible in the debug menu, under:
Top Bar -> Settings -> Debug -> Graphics

Pro tips for measuring game performance
As said above, if you're trying to improve performance, it is best to start at a bare minimum configuration. Then slowly increase the quality, one setting at a time, until the game hits a nice level of performance that you can live with.

It is also best to measure results for each settings change, so you know which settings have the most impact. And of course, take into consideration the visual impact each setting has on the game as well.

You can get somewhat detailed measurement of the game's performance by turning on Show Frame Rate and Frame Time:

Menu -> Settings -> Game -> check Show Frame Rate and Frame Time

In this window, you see the [Minimum, Maximum], and Average ("current") performance values, for the previous second. It shows both FPS and Frame Times.

FPS (frames per second) vs Frame Times
Don't use FPS to measure performance, if you can help it. Use "frame times" instead.

You want the game to have high FPS values, but you actually want the game to have low Frame Time values.

If it makes it easier to think about, 90fps is equal to about 11ms of time per frame, and 60fps is equal to about 16ms of time per frame. You can convert from FPS to Frame Times by dividing 1000 milliseconds by the number of frames per second. This gives you the number of milliseconds it takes to render a given frame, which is what the frame time is.

The problem with FPS is that it is a relative value. 5% of 40fps is 2fps, but 5% of 120fps is 6fps. This means that you can't directly compare graphics settings to each other based on how many FPS they give you, without a lot of mathematical gymnastics.

With frame times, performance comparisons become much easier. The numbers you measure (milliseconds to draw each frame) are always absolute, and always directly comparable. You simply subtract the frame time when the setting is turned on, from the frame time when the setting is turned off. Then you find out exactly how costly that setting is. A graphics setting that takes up 4.0 ms of frame time is always 4x as slow as something that takes up 1.0 ms of frame time.

There can still be cases of graphics settings that combine to be worse when they're both enabled (they multiply instead of adding. An example would be using both higher detail objects and higher detail lighting at the same time). Using frame times will still make it easier to do the math than if using FPS.
Reporting performance problems
If you have a reasonably fast gaming computer, that has a Passmark rating of ~4000 for the GPU, and ~8000 for the CPU, then the game should run decently for you, with medium settings. You should be getting at least 40fps or higher with a computer like this, in most cases.

If you find a part of the game that is particularly slow, or find that certain effects or graphics settings throw off your performance significantly (and it isn't resolution or anti-aliasing), then you should probably report it. That way Wolfire might be able to investigate it and see if they can make a fix.

To send in a report, gather these files together:
  • The logfile.txt for the game
  • The hwreport.txt that the game makes
  • The config.txt file for the game
  • Screenshots showing the area in the game, with the FPS/Frame Time window clearly visible
  • Comparison shots when you are in other parts of the level, or are using different settings
  • Comparison shots when you have paused the game using the ` key

Here's a page describing where to find your logfile.txt and hwreport.txt. The config.txt file is in the same directory as the hwreport.txt - http://wiki.wolfire.com/index.php/How_To_Report_a_Bug_in_Overgrowth

Also, please include a description of where exactly you are in the game, in case we can't recognize it from the screenshot.

Once you've collected this info, please attach it all in an email to bugs@wolfire.com
Alternate builds
If you want to try to get a bit better performance, and don't mind having a potentially less stable game, then you can try playing on one of the pre-release game builds. Sometimes we have optimizations that aren't in the stable build yet, and you can preview them there.

To use a pre-release build of the game:
Steam -> Game Library -> Right click on Overgrowth -> Properties -> BETAS tab ->
switch from NONE to some other build.

Here are the two most relevant pre-release builds:
  • internal_testing - This branch is pushed out automatically every night. It has the most recent changes added during development. Very little testing has been done on this build, and it might crash, or have game-breaking bugs
  • advance_testing - This branch is pushed out manually. It tends to have the features we're adding into the next upcoming release. It is a bit more stable than internal_testing.
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DiegoTDarkWolf Nov 15, 2019 @ 5:24pm 
ah i know its a real too late but how can i reduce the lag in big battles 6+ NPCs i have a gaming pc with a rtx 1650 ti + ryzen 5 3.70ghz to 4.5ghz and a 16 RAM but still lagging in low graphics
FenrisKitsune Nov 22, 2017 @ 4:17pm 
I recommend downloading the Optimization mods
Wynter the Blu Foxx Jul 4, 2017 @ 4:47pm 
And Hal, I am actually planning on downloading an earlier version! ^^
Wynter the Blu Foxx Jul 4, 2017 @ 4:47pm 
Kavika, I unfortunately don't have access to the Steam version so the newest build I can play is B3.
kavika  [author] Jul 4, 2017 @ 3:38pm 
Wynter Foxx - did you read the whole guide? One section talks about using newer builds than B3
Halzoid98  [author] Jul 4, 2017 @ 1:23pm 
You can always test out the other builds, such as internal or advanced testing, or even revert to the previous alpha to see if performance improves for you.

I personally get nearly a 200 fps increase when changing from max settings to lowest settings (70fps Max graphics - 230 Lowest graphics)
Wynter the Blu Foxx Jul 4, 2017 @ 10:56am 
This makes no real difference. B3 is just badly optimised...