Elden Ring – the long-awaited RPG from FromSoftware – is finally here and while the game has been racking up the critical acclaim, it hasn’t been without some issues. Most of it are issues that every new game will encounter upon its launch, but there is one that has stuck out the most from the rest: performance, specifically on PC.
FromSoftware hasn’t had a great track record when it comes to the PC ports of their games. Many of us can remember the disaster that was the PC version of the first Dark Souls. They’ve been improving ever since then, however, and while it has certainly gotten better, the state that Elden Ring has released in on PC is concerning.
Go watch any performance videos of the game and you can see just how much stuttering is happening in the game. Frame rate drops, sluggish movement, you name it. It’s a disappointing state for the game to be in and a lot of the problems can be traced back to the engine the game is running on. Elden Ring sees FromSoftware’s transition into using DirectX 12 in their engine. DirectX 12 changes a few things when it comes to how games run, mainly that things like memory management and threading are no longer handled by the drivers. It gives developers a greater control in their games.
A lot of the stuttering issues we are seeing with Elden Ring are suggesting issues with the shaders in the game, specifically that when you encounter a shader effect that you have not seen yet, the game is hit with a stutter. You move your character for the first time, see a new enemy, swing your weapon, all of these – when does at first – cause a significant delay in the game’s rendering. Now, the good news is that once you have encountered something, it won’t bring about a stutter of that size again. So as you keep progressing, the performance will improve. The only issue is that if you were to update the game or update your drivers, the issues will come back again, at the same severity.
Few PC’s and players are reporting a consistent 60fps when playing, and this is even something that has extended onto console versions of the game. While seemingly more consistent than their PC counterpart, the Xbox and PlayStation versions of Elden Ring are also struggling to keep up with that 60 frames. Framrate can vary wildly between 40 and 60 frames, and while that’s still not bad, when the game is constantly swinging between that range, it can be a little jarring at first.
Fortunately, this is something that can absolutely be fixed and FromSoftware is already working on getting a performance patch out. We have no idea when that patch could come but we imagine it won’t be terribly long. This is not a Cyberpunk 2077 kind of situation where it will take months to get the game running properly. Hopefully, it will just take one patch in the near-future to get the game running perfectly.
Despite these issues, we have put a good amount of time into the game and can report that all the critical acclaim is more than justified. It is an absolutely masterful game and possibly the best that FromSoftware has made – we just hope they can get the PC version to a place where players can truly experience it as it should be.
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