Dishonored 2 PC Performance Review

Conclusion

Dishonored 2 PC Performance Preview

Conclusion

Dishonored 2 is a hugely demanding game on PC, so much so that even a GTX 1080 cannot achieve a steady 60+ FPS at 1080p max settings. Bethesda has promised a performance enhancing patch, but right now the company has issues no clear release date and has not detailed exactly what the developers plan on fixing.

Bethesda initially designed this game to play at sub-1080p resolutions on today's consoles at 30FPS, which makes for a highly demanding PC release, especially when combined with the game's additional graphical settings and the desire of PC gamers to play at 60FPS.

Right now Bethesda is recommending that PC gamers play at High or lower graphical settings, even when using modern high-end hardware, with the company recommending that PC players use a GTX 1070 or a GTX 1080 for 1440p gameplay and not offering any recommendations for users of 4K monitors. Right now we would recommend the same and tell gamers that this game is very VRAM hungry as well as hugely demanding. This will make running this game problematic when using GPUs like the R9 Fury, Nano, Fury X or any high-end GPU with a small frame buffer at Ultra settings or high resolutions, as this game can quickly eat up 6GB of VRAM at 1080p if it can.  

When comparing our GTX 1060 Strix and RX 480 Strix we could see that both GPUs performed similarly throughout testing, though Nvidia has a clear performance advantage in this title.  

Some may say that for this reason that Dishonored 2 is poorly optimised, but at the same time we must remember that the PC gaming market does require ultra-demanding titles like this to push the industry forward. Where would GPUs be today without demanding applications like Crysis to drive the hardware industry forward? Don't we need uber demanding games to get Nvidia to release their GTX 1080 Ti, or get to get AMD to focus on GPUs that are higher end than the RX 480? 

To say the least Dishonored 2 is a demanding PC release, requiring some beefy systems to play at a resolution Ultra settings or 1080p+ resolutions. Hopefully, Bethesda will be able to fix some of the game's issues with a post-launch patch, but for now PC gamers should expect to play this game at lower settings or resolutions than they would usually expect. 

To make a long story short we have enjoyed out time playing Dishonored 2, but the PC performance of this game has a lot of room for improvement. We will have another look at this game once Bethesda has released their next game patch, but to be honest, this kind of PC performance optimisation should have been present in the game at launch, especially given Bethesda's recent controversies. 

Bethesda could have avoided a lot of negative press if they had delayed the PC version of Dishonored 2 by as little as a week to apply their upcoming performance patch, but now the game has launched, and the game has to be assessed as it is. 

Right now we would recommend Dishonored 2 only to those who own high-end setups and tell them that they will likely need to play the game at lower settings than they would expect. Performance wise this game is much better than Mafia III was at launch, but certainly not something that I would recommend to someone who was using a lower end setup.  

Hopefully, Bethesda will be able to improve this game's performance with a new patch shortly, as gameplay-wise Dishonored 2 is just as fun to play as the original, with a larger world, more unique powers and a lot of hidden choices to figure out. 

 

You can join the discussion on Dishonored 2 on the OC3D Forums

 

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Most Recent Comments

13-11-2016, 16:00:17

AngryGoldfish
Thanks a lot for another excellent article. I appreciate all the work you (and others) do.

I read from the game's developer on Twitter that the high demands were not solely linked to the visuals. He said that the AI as well as the non-linear map design added to the weighty graphics demands. This is interesting to me as I have seen many criticise the game's visuals by saying it's doesn't match up, but if the next stage of video game design and gameplay revolves around level design and AI then I'm all for that. Crysis may have pushed the boundaries of texture quality and the Unreal Engine 4 may have done so with dynamic lighting and whatnot, maybe games like Dishonored are the future of how we will be playing these intensive games. You could also apply the same logic to games like Quantum Break with its time-manipulating gameplay and Deus Ex for its open world level design.Quote

13-11-2016, 16:02:55

WYP
Quote:
Originally Posted by AngryGoldfish View Post
Thanks a lot for another excellent article. I appreciate all the work you (and others) do.

I read from the game's developer on Twitter that the high demands were not solely linked to the visuals. He said that the AI as well as the non-linear map design added to the weighty graphics demands. This is interesting to me as I have seen many criticise the game's visuals by saying it's doesn't match up, but if the next stage of video game design and gameplay revolves around level design and AI then I'm all for that. Crysis may have pushed the boundaries of texture quality and the Unreal Engine 4 may have done so with dynamic lighting and whatnot, maybe games like Dishonored are the future of how we will be playing these intensive games. You could also apply the same logic to games like Quantum Break with its time-manipulating gameplay and Deus Ex for its open world level design.
Exactly, there is much more to a game than graphics along and TBH Dishonored 2 looks great. Maybe not the best looking game ever, but the facial animations are supurb and it sticks really well to its art style.Quote

13-11-2016, 16:06:57

NeverBackDown
That vram consumption skyrockets from Med to high yet frame differences show it doesn't change much? Losses aren't great compared to what the vram chart would show. Wonder if that's a bug? Or intentional, just add as much into memory as possible at medium?Quote

13-11-2016, 16:30:19

TheF34RChannel
Thanks for the review, much appreciated! The 1440p Performance first paragraph had me worried, however looking upon the graph at ultra w/ HBAO+ I realise the frames are in the low side but I could live with that average. Hopefully future patches will improve upon this. Maybe the VRAM consumption needs addressing too?

As far as prettiness goes, this may not be number one but it fits the game and I find it very nice looking in its own way. Having said that, at the same time its high hardware requirements do not fit the graphics from what I've seen.Quote
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