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Member Since 01 Dec 2003
Offline Last Active Nov 21 2017 05:31 AM

Posts I've Made

In Topic: Feral's upcoming project?

18 November 2017 - 01:27 PM

View PostTrautman, on 16 November 2017 - 10:41 PM, said:

DiRT Rally for Mac works great. But there are not several video settings (Advanced Ambient Occlusion, Smoke Shadows & Advanced Blending).

Smoke Shadows & Advanced Blending are special Windows specific features written by Intel that are not exposed on Mac OS X.

I don't recall exactly why Advanced Ambient Occlusion isn't available right now but it's either also an Intel feature like above or the it could have been causing GPU restarts / kernel panics and would have been removed for stability reasons.

View Postjeannot, on 17 November 2017 - 12:30 PM, said:

Apparently, the Mac version of the game can't be set to windowed mode. The PC version can. :unsure:
While the game runs fine (and it should, as I basically have the fastest Mac), performance under boot camp is 30-50% better.

Our application takes advantage of running in "detached mode" so that the window compositor is bypassed which should result in a smoother experience. A requirement on running in detached mode is that the application is fullscreen. As soon as you enable Windowed mode you can't use detached mode.

With regards to performance, I would be interested as to which GPU you are testing on, for AMD GPUs anything below 20% performance disparity is very unusual for us to see on any of our Metal games. Depending on the setting, if framerate is above 120fps (which is quite possible on DiRT Rally with it's engine), we are capped at 120 by the OS, irrespective of the Vsync interval or cap set by the application, which would massively skew comparisons to Windows at lower settings.

With recommended mode we run a stable and consistent capped framerate in all scenarios, and we have done this for every single supported Mac in the range, which we see as far more important that maximum framerate, when running on a 60Hz screen. By making the frame rate stable and not rendering frames you'll never see on a 60Hz screen it allows us to thermal temperatures down which in turn means you'll get consistent performance over extended gameplay. This means a cooler Mac and your batteries will last longer too if you're a laptop.

If you think you have a bug with DiRT Rally then please do contact our support with a support report attached and we'll investigate your issue.

In Topic: Use External GPU on Mac Mini 2014

25 September 2017 - 08:00 AM

View PostBifBologna, on 27 August 2017 - 11:08 AM, said:

Slightly off topic, but related...

Is there a way that you could use an eGPU to share a video card between two computers without having to physically swap a cable connection?

Nope you'll need to plug them into one machine only. This isn't something you can share between machines.

In Topic: Animated loading screens and stutter

25 September 2017 - 07:57 AM

View Postmattw, on 22 September 2017 - 08:10 AM, said:

Thanks - I might try moving the install to my SSD for F1 2017 as I expect to put plenty of hours in. From what I remember in the past I was disappointed how little difference it made (Borderlands 2 and F1 2012 if I recall).

SSD's can help with loading assets off the HDD however it won't help for CPU/GPU specific things like shader warming/loading. That why depending on the game an SSD will make a bigger or smaller impact on the load times. SSD's will always be better but they are not a magic bullet.

View Postmattw, on 22 September 2017 - 08:10 AM, said:

Edwin - good to know it is normal.

Seems a strange decision by the developer to have as complex a screen if it then makes loading the game slow. One thing that put me off a console to date was talk of load times in minutes.

That's why loading screens aren't complex :) They usually have a small loading animation but even that can stutter so usually dots or something simpler like rotating images are used. In some cases locked/slow opening double doors with a small corridor in-between are used to hide the fact you're loading in new assets/areas. A small corridor with a few twists and turns is another trick that's used.

This clever designs lowers the load on the game allowing it to load in the rest of the new area assets while you travel though this simple looking area. If you look out for them in games you'll start to notice them a little more :) You might in some cases get a small stutter as a door opens or you pass around a corner. The area looks simple so you'd not expect a stutter but if these happen just before a new large area you'll now know why! :)

In Topic: Animated loading screens and stutter

22 September 2017 - 07:44 AM

The hint is in the name :)

A loading screen is something displayed while a game is loading assets ready to start playing. At this point there is a lot of load on the computer from CPU to GPU along with usually some file access. This has nothing to do with how MacOS deals with file IO and is more down to what a loading screen is designed to hide and that is the loading in of assets before you start that area of the game. The stutter could be reduced in some cases but that would mean less resources available for the actual loading process (as you need to dedicate resources to making sure the animations run without frame rate loss) ending with longer load times!

This is why many loading screens on complex games are hidden behind loading screens with very little animation or are hidden behind un-skippable video introductions to hide this process from the user. A faster HDD can help with some stutters as that can help with file IO however the overall reasons behind the loading screens are usually much more complex.