Fractal Space

Fractal Space

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By Haze Games
This guide is the official guide to help you change / tweak the Graphics options of the game to improve performance, and help you have a good experience if you're having a low framerate.

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Default Preset
FPS Counter: While playing, you can press SHIFT + F to toggle FPS display ON / OFF. This provokes a small freeze - don't be afraid ;)

In order to make sure the game runs smoothly at start without any change from the player, we have setup a default configuration that enables the most important post-process effects, and disables the optional ones.

Here is the default configuration:

This configuration should run nicely on most computers. If you have a low framerate by default, please read the next section.
Low Framerate?
If your framerate isn't great, or if you have an integrated graphics card, here's quick list of what you should try and do first:
  • Decrease Resolution to something like 1280x720 or similar
  • Disable Motion Blur
  • Disable Antialiasing
  • Make sure Reflections are set to Medium or Low; Dynamic is very resource demanding
Then, if you still don't have great performance after the steps above, you should try:
  • Disable Ambient Occlusion
  • Set Dynamic Lighting to Medium
  • Set Shadows to Medium Resolution
If you still have low performance, or wish to know more about the options, you can read the next sections, ordered by importance for the game's immersion and quality.

The idea is that you should try first to lower / disable all settings that are marked as [Optional] below, and only change the [Important] settings if you still have a low framerate after that.
[Important] Bloom
Important for Immersion / Performance Impact: Low

The Bloom Post-Process effect creates an exaggeration on intense lighting sources and reflections, in order to provide realistic lighting, and more "metallic" feel of surfaces. This effect is not very expensive, so it's the last one you want to disable, as it does contribute greatly to the realistic feeling of the game. I recommend you try keep this enabled.

[Important] Ambient Occlusion
Important for Immersion / Performance Impact: High

Ambient Occlusion simulates the fact that light cannot reach some tight areas, meaning that it creates small black areas in holes and at edges of objects / walls / grounds. This effect is expensive, but it does make the general image more realistic and smooths out rough edges.

If you are having performance issues, I would recommend trying to keep this effect enabled, along with Bloom; only disable Ambient Occlusion if you're still having a low framerate after decreasing resolution and disabling all other Post-Process Effects (except for Bloom as it is important).

[Important] Resolution
Important for Immersion / Performance Impact: High

Resolution is the screen resolution used to render the game - by default, it's the native screen size. This has a big performance impact.

It also has a big impact on visual quality - so I would recommend decreasing resolution only if you still don't have great performance after disabling Motion Blur, Antialiasing, and Ambient Occlusion.

if your graphics card is low / mid end, or if you have an integrated graphics card, there is a big chance reducing to half the native size value will greatly improve performance.

NOTE: If you have a low-end graphics card, it might be a good idea to directly try reducing resolution if you want to keep some of the nice Post-Process effects marked as [Important].
[Important] Reflections
Important for Immersion / Performance Impact: Low to High

Reflections are important in the visual style of Fractal Space. Static reflections are precomputed and greatly optimized, so it should be fine keep Reflections to Medium or Low even with an integrated graphics card.

However, the Dynamic reflections level uses Screen Space Reflections, and is very resource demanding, and should be used only if you already have a good framerate. It usually drastically drop the FPS down if you are running on an integrated graphics card.

If you are on integrated graphics instead and not a dedicated GPU, you should keep Reflections to Medium or Low level.

[Important] Dynamic Lighting
Important for Immersion / Performance Impact: High

Dynamic Lighting option allows to adjust the maximum number of simultaneous dynamic lights in a given scene. Default settings is Maximum.

I recommend to keep this to Maximum, and first try to disable Motion Blur, Antialiasing, Ambient Occlusion, then reduce Resolution.

If after all the above, you're still having low performance, try to set Dynamic Lighting to Low. You'll then see that in scenes with many dynamic lights, some of them will now render in a much more simplified way and not look as nice.

Lowering this setting does have a big impact on both performance and immersion.
[Important] Textures
Important for Immersion / Performance Impact: Very Low

Textures option reduces or increases all textures' quality setting. It doesn't have a big performance impact, so I would recommend keeping them to Maximum setting.

Reduce it if you really still have poor performance after decreasing resolution, disabling all Post-Process effects and reducing everything to minimum. This is the last setting you want to decrease.
[Optional] Depth of Field
Nice-to-have / Performance Impact: High

The Depth of Field effect can simulate the blur that can be observed by a real-world camera, when it is focusing on close or distant objects.

If this effect is enabled, it will be used in the following cases:
  • Aiming Taser: The aimed at point becomes the focus. When aiming at close objects, distant objects are blurred, and vice-versa
  • Damaged: The screen becomes blurry for a few seconds
This effect is resource expensive; if you have an integrated graphics card and a low framerate, it's best to disable it.

[Optional] Motion Blur
Nice-to-have / Performance Impact: High

Motion Blur imitates real world camera's blur while the camera is moving / rotating fast, or an object moves fast in front of the camera.
This Post-Process effect adds realism when looking around, but is considered as a nice-to-have, especially because it's quite expensive.

If you have performance issues, or have a low-end / old PC or integrated graphics card, it's the first effect you should disable.

[Optional] Antialiasing
Nice-to-have / Performance Impact: Moderate

Antialiasing smooths out the rough edges everywhere on the screen. This Post-Process effect is expensive. I recommend to only enable it if you're already having great performance with the current setting you want to have.

If you want to max out the game, you should first set everything to maximum without Antialiasing, and if you see that the game runs well, you can try enabling it.

If you're having performance issues, this is the first Post-Process effect you want to disable.
[Optional] Particles
Nice to have / Performance Impact: Low

The Particles option disables or enables dynamic particles coming from Lasers impacts, and Taser shot. They are not very expensive, but really adds a nice effect and life to these objects.

I recommend keeping them ON, since they don't have a great performance impact, unless you still have a low performance even after decreasing resolution, and after disabling all other Optional Post-Process effects like Motion Blur and Anti-Aliasing.

[Optional] Shadows
Nice-to-have / Performance Impact: Moderate

The Shadows option is about dynamic shadow quality; Dynamic shadows cannot be completely disabled as they are important for gameplay elements (most importantly cameras). However, their quality can be adjusted here.

The impact on performance is moderate, Default setting is High Resolution. Decreasing quality results in lower resolution for dynamic shadows, making them more rough and aliased.

I recommend keeping it to High. You should maybe try disabling all [Optional] Post-Process effects before lowering to Medium or Low resolution for shadows.