Ilitarist
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Concerns about AGE performance

Thu Dec 22, 2011 2:07 pm

I really want to love AGEOD games. And they have everything for me to love them. Good AI and complex systems is a great way to use your CPU. And 2D map shows you everything you need and doesn't eat much resources.

Sadly it looks like AGE engine does it wrong.

I can brag about long end turns but they have complex logic behind the scenes. I still don't think game should calculate moving soldiers on board of Pride of Nations longer than I deploy SQL Server, but at least it's understandable.

I couldn't play PoN demo till the end because of horrible FPS rate. Every screen movement loads some new images to show instead of low-res ones, you wait for several seconds for army screen to show or hide additional info. I thought the problem was in not supported and generally weak AMD/ATI notebook. But then I ran the game on Intel i7 3.4Ghz with 8 cores. Game works much better, but still beyond good and evil. I'm confused. I open task manager. What do I see?

Game eats only 500 mb RAM. The game that works slow on modern 8-core CPU and GPU, loads pictures on demand (I see dramatic rise of RAM usage when I scroll map) eats just 500 mb of RAM. When I end my turn RAM usage jumps to 750 mb.

Another strange thing is that CPU usage never jumps higher than 50% for the 3 cores that are used. Don't understand why. Maybe game constantly loads something from HDD?

So the big question is whaaat? 2D TBS game that lags even when nothing really happens is unbearable. I've got Revolution Under Siege on the same engine and it lags too (propably cause map is much smaller). Why does it happen? Why you don't cache everything? You don't want to use user's memory? I think you can safely assume that user would give you three times as much memory only if the game could run faster. Even if you want users with old PCs run the game? If they have even the same performance as I do they suffer greatly anyway.

So please give me some tips on getting better performance in AGE games. And please explain how and why this happens.

P.S. Sorry for newbinness, I'm new to those games and came from Paradox forums.

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Confederate
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Location: USA

Thu Dec 22, 2011 2:26 pm

I have to agree to what you said above. AGE games run terribly slowly (except for BIA) and it makes them nearly unbearable. I have like 98GB open on my hard drive and like 4GB in my disk drive (whatever you call that :P).
- Confederate

Ilitarist
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Thu Dec 22, 2011 2:28 pm

Confederate wrote:I have to agree to what you said above. AGE games run terribly slowly (except for BIA) and it makes them nearly unbearable. I have like 98GB open on my hard drive and like 4GB in my disk drive (whatever you call that :P).


You mean 4Gb of RAM, Random Access Memory. What's BIA?

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PhilThib
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Thu Dec 22, 2011 3:27 pm

He meant BOA (Birth Of America)... it looks surprising, because I have almost the same system elements than you (4 Gb RAM) and my many AGE games run like hares... only PON is a bit slow, but this is due to the huge amount of nations in the game...
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Ilitarist
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Thu Dec 22, 2011 4:36 pm

PhilThib wrote:He meant BOA (Birth Of America)... it looks surprising, because I have almost the same system elements than you (4 Gb RAM) and my many AGE games run like hares... only PON is a bit slow, but this is due to the huge amount of nations in the game...


On the last system I mentioned the game is playable, but overal PoN performance on just showing the map is pitiful - and that's just 2D picture - well, hundreds of pictures under filters but anyway systems that run modern mainstream FPS should work fine with this. It's sad to see that company with games that could potentially capture netbook/notebook users with the idea of slow, meditative and not demanding intellectual game.

Of course, I haven't seen said engine so I can't really say for sure, but it looks like it's afraid to cache data. Also I realize that adding proper GPU support could be hell, but indie 2D game developers did it since 2003 and gave us fast and beautiful games.

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