There was an internet war earlier this week as gaming fans decided that, once again, Nvidia’s GameWorks technology was messing with the performance of its games on AMD hardware.
At first it was the racing game, Project Cars that attracted the attention of the vast Reddit community, with people stating that the game is built on a version of PhysX that doesn’t work on AMD hardware.
In response, AMD’s corporate VP of alliances Roy Taylor responded with a tweet, saying “Thank for supporting/ wanting an open and fair PC gaming industry.”This was followed by a Reddit reply from Nvidia’s GameWorks director Rev Lebaredian, saying that “PhysX within Project Cars does not offload any computation to the GPU on any platform, including NVIDIA. I’m not sure how the OP came to the conclusion that it does, but this has never been claimed by the developer or us; nor is there any technical proof offered in this thread that shows this is the case.”
With complaints flowing in, Project Cars developer Slightly Mad Studios joined the ongoing battle, and proceeded to place the blame for the game’s issues squarely on AMD. “We’ve provided AMD with 20 keys for game testing as they work on the driver side,” said Ian Bell. “But you only have to look at the lesser hardware in the consoles to see how optimised we are on AMD based chips.”
Whilst AMD seems to have made up with Slightly Mad Studios, the company is facing yet another supposedly GameWorks-related struggle with CD Projekt Red’s fresh release The Witcher 3. The game makes use of several GameWorks technologies, one of which adds tens of thousands of tessellated hair strands to characters, dramatically decreases frame rate performance on AMD graphics cards, sometimes by as much as 50 percent.
A developer from the company stated :
“Many of you have asked us if AMD Radeon GPUs would be able to run NVIDIA’s HairWorks technology—the answer is yes! However, unsatisfactory performance may be experienced, as the code of this feature cannot be optimized for AMD products. Radeon users are encouraged to disable NVIDIA HairWorks if the performance is below expectations.”
AMD make it sound that Nvidia isn’t willing to share the source code for its proprietary graphics APIs like HairWorks and HBAO+. Without that source code, AMD can’t optimize its drivers for Nvidia’s tech. Nvidia responded to the claims and refused to go along with the argument that access to source code would solve AMD’s problems.
You can disable the HairWorks feature to return your frame rate, but obviously, you will lose some of the phenomenal detail.
Thank You to arstechnica for providing us with this information
Image courtesy of GameSpot