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Author Topic: Insanely low FPS! Increasing FPS? Help needed!  (Read 8966 times)

Huscarl

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Insanely low FPS! Increasing FPS? Help needed!
« on: July 09, 2017, 12:42:55 PM »

Hello there,

A year or.. five? ago I played Starsector for the first time. Apologies if that's the most lousy estimate ever, but that's what my brain is saying.  ??? I remember playing it an getting decent enough FPS. It was laggy in large scale battles (which, with most of my PC setups, is honestly not surprising.) but was fine in most smaller battles.

I just re-installed the game a few days ago after seeing it on Youtube and going 'wow, this looks different' and the game does look very different and .. much better, if I may say so. Visually not much has changed, but the gameplay is spectacular now. I'm really liking it.

Now here is my problem (and, I suppose that this is better fit for technical support, but none of the threads match my query and some of the general threads do). I'm getting a lousy 14 FPS in battle and about roughly the same in the maps. The game then proceeds to drop to a whopping.. what, maybe 5 FPS in maps once there are things on screen.

For example, I'm flying from one system to the other, and I can get 20 FPS, but the moment another fleet pops up, or the systems them self pop in, the FPS drops for some reason.

The strange thing is that the idle is at 2%, which should honestly be a bit higher with the game not being that demanding.





As you can see here are the specs for my laptop. I know R4 isn't that good but it's served me well and it runs games like CSGO rather well so I'm not complaining. Of course, CSGO is built on source.. so, that's not really a good measuring thing. But still, I can run some of the slightly older games quite well with some tweaking.

I'm thinking that with the idle at 2%, that's probably the problem, isn't it? Is there anything I can do to fix this?
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TheWetFish

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Re: Insanely low FPS! Increasing FPS? Help needed!
« Reply #1 on: July 09, 2017, 06:27:29 PM »

Check that it's using the graphics card and not any low performance integrated chip set.  Right click on the Starsector shortcut and see if you've got the option for "Run with graphics processor ->" 
The option may need to be enabled if not already present.  Could be a couple of causes but check that first up ;)
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MesoTroniK

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Re: Insanely low FPS! Increasing FPS? Help needed!
« Reply #2 on: July 09, 2017, 07:58:47 PM »

Unfortunately, it is a perfect storm of the APU you have possessing very poor performance. Compounded by the fact that AMD graphics drivers are infamously bad at OpenGL.

Though a question occurs, are you running mods and what mods are they if you are?

Huscarl

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Re: Insanely low FPS! Increasing FPS? Help needed!
« Reply #3 on: July 10, 2017, 04:33:55 AM »

Check that it's using the graphics card and not any low performance integrated chip set.  Right click on the Starsector shortcut and see if you've got the option for "Run with graphics processor ->" 
The option may need to be enabled if not already present.  Could be a couple of causes but check that first up ;)

There's no such options in the properties of Starsector.exe, but there's also none in the window that comes up itself.

Unfortunately, it is a perfect storm of the APU you have possessing very poor performance. Compounded by the fact that AMD graphics drivers are infamously bad at OpenGL.

Though a question occurs, are you running mods and what mods are they if you are?

That's what I'm thinking too, the APU isn't terrible in my experience but then I'm also not running games that need 200 things calculated per second. I think the one game that comes close to this one in terms of things needing to be calculated is Dwarf Fortress and that game slows down a fair bit too *but not as noticeably as this one.*

I'm not running any mods, since I can barely run vanilla.  ;D

Seems like downscaling the graphic is the way to go, maybe? But there's no options for that. I heard something in other threads about the settings file, but I can't for the life of me find any relevant settings except for vsync, which I've tried to switch and it didn't do much for me in terms of FPS/idling.
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Schwartz

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Re: Insanely low FPS! Increasing FPS? Help needed!
« Reply #4 on: July 10, 2017, 08:10:18 AM »

Post 7XXX generation AMD graphics have an issue with FPS and smooth gameplay in OpenGL games. It's not a problem of performance but overhead.
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Huscarl

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Re: Insanely low FPS! Increasing FPS? Help needed!
« Reply #5 on: July 10, 2017, 08:22:22 AM »

Post 7XXX generation AMD graphics have an issue with FPS and smooth gameplay in OpenGL games. It's not a problem of performance but overhead.

So, there is no fix unless I get another card? Nothing I can do to lessen the load and get smooth(er) gameplay?
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TJJ

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Re: Insanely low FPS! Increasing FPS? Help needed!
« Reply #6 on: July 10, 2017, 09:21:05 AM »

So, there is no fix unless I get another card? Nothing I can do to lessen the load and get smooth(er) gameplay?

You need a whole new PC tbh.

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Huscarl

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Re: Insanely low FPS! Increasing FPS? Help needed!
« Reply #7 on: July 10, 2017, 09:28:12 AM »

So, there is no fix unless I get another card? Nothing I can do to lessen the load and get smooth(er) gameplay?

You need a whole new PC tbh.

I figured, that's the answer to most of my games and their low FPS.  ;D

Guess I'll keep the game on the backburner until I get something new set up!
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xenoargh

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Re: Insanely low FPS! Increasing FPS? Help needed!
« Reply #8 on: July 10, 2017, 01:28:57 PM »

First off, update the AMD drivers; sometimes that miraculously fixes everything.

Second off, set the Battle Size to the lowest-possible setting.

Third off, there are now several mods available that lower the CPU requirements and should be a bit lighter on the GPU.  I'm now playing SS on an 8-year-old laptop that was just-barely able to upgrade to Windows 10, to test these mods out as I develop them.
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Schwartz

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Re: Insanely low FPS! Increasing FPS? Help needed!
« Reply #9 on: July 11, 2017, 12:53:16 AM »

Yeah, the CPU is also not ideal. The question that interests me the most is: Have you played SS on the same laptop some years back and has performance been very different then? Because as the game grows it seems requirements grow with it. I hope we can expect an optimization pass at some point in the future.

Anyway.. definitely the R4 puts a heavy limit on your frames. I get the same thing with my R9 - low FPS while the card basically idles in low power. Newer drivers have not helped and probably won't help you either. You could try drivers that are a couple of years old, but I doubt they'll help. AMD just never really fixed their sh*tty openGL for these newer architectures. That doesn't mean it's a bad card, and I'm not surprised you can play Source games just fine.
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Huscarl

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Re: Insanely low FPS! Increasing FPS? Help needed!
« Reply #10 on: July 11, 2017, 04:10:57 AM »

First off, update the AMD drivers; sometimes that miraculously fixes everything.

Second off, set the Battle Size to the lowest-possible setting.

Third off, there are now several mods available that lower the CPU requirements and should be a bit lighter on the GPU.  I'm now playing SS on an 8-year-old laptop that was just-barely able to upgrade to Windows 10, to test these mods out as I develop them.

I tried updating AMD drivers but the way their system was set up I screwed up my system and had to roll back the drivers due to lag on screen (like, scrolling a webpage, the scrollbar would get stuck and unstuck) due to their insanely bad auto-detect system. Took me a while to figure out R4 is on Legacy support which means there's no newer drivers than the ones I have atm.

The second option is likely to help, but I'd probably not enjoy the game very much at that point if every battle is just a duel. I've almost max-leveled a character even with the lag, so it's not like I'm desperate to play the game even more. I can just wait until I get a better PC.

As for the mods, I'd like to look into that. I've already got one that reduces the SFX load which seemed to help a little bit but it wasn't updated so some effects lack the 'lower graphics' things. Besides that, a quick look hasn't yet made me see any of these other mods.

Yeah, the CPU is also not ideal. The question that interests me the most is: Have you played SS on the same laptop some years back and has performance been very different then? Because as the game grows it seems requirements grow with it. I hope we can expect an optimization pass at some point in the future.

Anyway.. definitely the R4 puts a heavy limit on your frames. I get the same thing with my R9 - low FPS while the card basically idles in low power. Newer drivers have not helped and probably won't help you either. You could try drivers that are a couple of years old, but I doubt they'll help. AMD just never really fixed their sh*tty openGL for these newer architectures. That doesn't mean it's a bad card, and I'm not surprised you can play Source games just fine.

No, it was on a desktop, but that desktop is no longer mine and has moved on to my father. I think the specs were better but like.. only slightly. Due to being on a laptop now, it's to be expected that it just can't push out the same level of power with the current specs. The spec's aren't bad, just not really good enough for this game which seems to be quite high in CPU load?

Yeah drivers didn't do *** except *** up the color calibration on my screen.  ::) Gotta love AMD right? I don't think the older drivers are gonna help much either.
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TheWetFish

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Re: Insanely low FPS! Increasing FPS? Help needed!
« Reply #11 on: July 11, 2017, 07:47:56 AM »

Ah, I thought it had previously worked on this laptop.  Oh well, still good to check.  It looks like it's quite different for AMD users

You're looking for some form of AMD Radeon Settings and there should be a section for High Performance applications, where Starsector and the java installation in \Starsector\jre\bin\ can be added

Also check your Windows power settings are set to maximum power when plugged in (and that the laptop is in fact plugged in)

No guarantee but worth checking
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Huscarl

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Re: Insanely low FPS! Increasing FPS? Help needed!
« Reply #12 on: July 11, 2017, 08:23:44 AM »

Ah, I thought it had previously worked on this laptop.  Oh well, still good to check.  It looks like it's quite different for AMD users

You're looking for some form of AMD Radeon Settings and there should be a section for High Performance applications, where Starsector and the java installation in \Starsector\jre\bin\ can be added

Also check your Windows power settings are set to maximum power when plugged in (and that the laptop is in fact plugged in)

No guarantee but worth checking

Nope, older PC. The AMD Radeon settings is there but there's no high performance applications. I added Starsector and tweaked the settings a bit, turning everything to more or less the lowest I could, but I have my doubts it'd even work. Similarly, I set it to maximum power when plugged in (.. it was on balanced before.. which seems stupid because my laptop is literally always plugged in, RIP battery). That's a standard thing to do, rookie mistake, my bad.  ;D I'll see if it helps. But I have my doubts.
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TheWetFish

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Re: Insanely low FPS! Increasing FPS? Help needed!
« Reply #13 on: July 11, 2017, 05:46:16 PM »

Don't forget to add (Starsector's) Java too
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Zaskow

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Re: Insanely low FPS! Increasing FPS? Help needed!
« Reply #14 on: July 13, 2017, 11:20:44 AM »

To be honest, but Starsector has noticeable lower FPS with 0.8 version coming. Especially when a lot fleets appears on system map.
« Last Edit: July 13, 2017, 11:26:06 AM by Zaskow »
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