Lag Reduction Guide

Discussion in 'The Veterans' Lounge' started by Scornfire, Oct 28, 2012.

  1. Scornfire The Nimbus Prince

    I wrote one of these a few years back, but when the old forums were put to rest so too was my thread. Upon the insistence of some of our newer members I went ahead and made a revised version for the EQ 101 guide I've been writing. The following link will take you to the Lag reduction section for anyone interested. Bare in mind that there's a fair bit of cursing prevelant within it, so sully your virgin eyes at your own risk. If anyone notices a mistake or would like to suggest an addition, please feel free to contact me via ;tell cazic.Scornfire, or on our forums.

    Lag Reduction Guide
    RekMMO and Jilarak like this.
  2. Toquillaw Augur

    Wonderful, thanks very much! Always great to have a place to point people. We have a lot of lag spikes, but we just label them Verizon. :p
    Tarvas likes this.
  3. Hatsee Augur

    I would add something like this as well.

    The worst lag I had with EQ it turned out my connection was only about 1/20th of what it was supposed to be, lots of calls and complaining helped clear it up.

    If that's there and I missed it, oops.
  4. Scornfire The Nimbus Prince

    Didn't have that in there for sure, never actually used that program myself. Will go ahead and mess around with it for a few days here and see how it goes.

    Thanks for the reccomendation Hatsee
  5. Jilarak Elder

    thanks alot for the info
  6. Nissassa Elder

    Nice info, very informative, thanks for taking the time to make it available for everyone.
  7. Kamea Augur

    Not trying to just nitpick an otherwise fine guide, but 30 FPS for max FPS is too low. 60 is ideal as its the refresh rate of most monitors. For me at least, the very goal of turning down settings is so I can stay at 60 FPS on raids. EQ (like most PC games) doesn't has blurring, so the difference between 30 and 60 FPS is very noticeable, especially on raids... 24 or 30 fps being "smooth" applies more to cinema since it has innate blurring.


    I do /particle off every time I login. Is there a way to permanently turn this off yet?

    (This applies to particles that still remain on after everything in the options->display->particles menu is turned off.)
  8. Toquillaw Augur

    Plus, with the "set background FPS to minimum" idea is what causes issues with autofollow. The higher the FPS is set to the more reliable autofollow becomes, according to the posts on that subject. We changed our to 30fps foreground, and 45 background fps. Autofollow is now far better than it was ... but it still has some issues which appear to be trigonometry based. Certain areas still send the followers off in random directions.
  9. Mintalie Augur

    Wow, awesome write up.
  10. Fenthen aka Rath

    Very nice post, and humorous commentary. ;)

    Shadows are the best looking thing in EQ ever... and the first thing I turn off if I want to actually play the game.
  11. Scornfire The Nimbus Prince

    Thanks for the FPS input, Most of this stuff is from personal experience. I've raided with 100 FPS, 80/50/30/10, but that was on a very old computer at the time, and it could've very well just have been the refresh rate of that old clunker that made 30-35 my sweet spot for performance. As far as auto follow while boxing goes, I usually have 6-9 toons loaded at a time, so perhaps that's what caused me to miss the difference between 0-100 was pretty much non existant as far as getting the toons to move properly went (Usually have to go in straight lines then stop, adjust the auto-follow brigade's heading by strafing on the first toon, then move again /wrists). I'll go ahead and do some testing with a more average sized crew of 3 toons later and hopefully what I see supports your findings.

    At any rate, glad people are enjoying it~
  12. Candydare Elder

    Thanks for sharing! I always kept a copy of your guide:) I am sure many guilds will have that stickied on their forums for returning members and new players.
  13. Scornfire The Nimbus Prince

    For those who may not want to read the following dissertation on futility, my synopsis for FPS settings is simply: Play around with it yourself and figure out what works for you/your box crew.

    Alrighty, so I spent the past hour running around the most lag intensive zone available to me, that being the horror show of a Guild Hall I created (Grand Lag Hall as my guildies refer to it) with 3 toons. I toyed with the FPS settings a fair bit, I started with both foreground and background FPS at minimum, I think you can all well imagine what the result was...ultra choppy, terrible for /autofollow. I then used my previous setting of 30 foreground, minimum FPS. This was good as far as the foreground went, though the fact I've been playing with that setting for 5-6 years now shouldn't be forgotten, however, autofollow was still throwing my other toons all over the place. Next I upped the background to 30, while keeping foreground at 30, Autofollow capability saw a fairly dramatic increase, I was able to run with minimal stoppage around the entire main floor of the zone without losing any toons to sentient trees or the mini nexus of doom. Next trial was with Foreground 60 and background 30, Autofollow was still going well, but something about the foreground FPS irked me a little, it felt like it was freezing at times where it hadn't at 30 (this zone has LD'd some of my friends with 1 toon loaded mind you) and when it wasn't I felt like I was going slower than normal. I figured I'd go all the way with the next trial and set it to unlimited for foreground, keeping background at 30...I noticed almost instantly what my issue was with pretty much anything above 30, my mouselook sensitivity wasn't calibrated for the higher frame rate. Seeing this (and knowing full well that the idea here is to keep the FPS as low as possible without effecting gameplay) I put the foreground back to 60 and got my mouselook sensitivity where I wanted it and tried another run, instant success. Next I tried 60 foreground and 60 background, since it seemed the logical course, this proved troublesome right away, inducing a noticeable amount of lag on my setup. Back to 60/30 and deffinatley alot better. The thought then struck me that, given how long I've been doing 30/minimal with 6-9 toons, perhaps I was right all along, the insta lag from upping 3 toons by 30 background FPS was rather ominous, so I loaded up my whole crew and tried 60/30. I could barely run my main toon, nevermind the poor goobers trying to autofollow. So, with that all in mind, Unfortunatley, I don't think I came out of this with what I wanted to find, there doesn't really seem to be a blanket setting for people whatsoever, it's dependant on the amount of toons you have loaded at the very least, to say nothing of what settings you're using and how powerful your computer is. At any rate, when all was said and done, I put my settings back to 30/minimal, I mean hey, what did I roll a mage for if not to shun /autofollow anyway!

    Sidenote: Free trial of Tuneup utilities has expired, deffinatley a great tool for what I paid (that being nothing), didn't really yield much for me but the program is very user friendly and gives people easy access to alot of things I typically mess around with like fiddling with startup programs, disk cleanup and the ilk. I never managed to find the internet connection diagnosis however, so if you could maybe post a screenshot of that page and a quick rundown on how to access it, that would be great Hatsee
  14. Toquillaw Augur

    Thanks for the update, Scornfire. But you always seem to put foreground fps higher than background in your tests. I use 30 foreground, 45 background fps. Furthermore, I do things like make the alt characters look straight down or up to minimize calculations. They don't need to see anyway, plus I couldn't care less if they get blinded :D

    What that does is get you easily obtainable background fps which helps the autofollow, while also having decent foreground fps and responsiveness.

    Also, anytime I am in a zone which is heavily populated with PC characters, lag is crazy. But that isn't the normal play for me since I often use instances.

    What it all comes down to is that optimizing for 1 instance of EQ is different from boxing another account, and may again be different for multiple box accounts, and the hardware is always a factor. So everyone needs to do their own fine tuning, as you say, but they should be aware of all the combinations they can test.
  15. malkill New Member

    this is something he could never quite convey accurately through a forum. Its a magical world all in and of its own. I wish more people could see it , except, we don't need it to be any more laggy.
  16. Shillingworth Augur

    I don't know how many times I see it stated mistakenly, but here it goes with full explanation of why.

    Particles: you want to set the Near Clip to FARTHER to increase performance.

    In 3D rendering there are 6 clipping planes defined which collectively form a frustum. 4 of those are a result of the width and height of your screen, and 2 of them are adjustable for performance and accuracy reasons. The near clipping plane determines how far a pixel must be from the viewer before it can be considered visible. The far clip plane determines how far a pixel can be before it's no longer considered visible. Only the pixels between the near and far clip planes are visible, the rest on decent hardware are rejected either before or after the pixel shader is executed (depends on whether you graphics chipset supports early rejection or not).

    One of the properties of perspective projection (which EQ uses beyond any shadow of a doubt) is the size of an object is dependent upon how far away from the viewer the object is. An object near the viewer is larger than an equally sized object that is farther from the viewer. Since near objects are larger, they cover more pixels on the screen.

    For each pixel that gets passed any of your driver/chipset's rejection tests. The pixel shader that is currently set on the device must be executed. Since particles render from textures, these pixel shaders at some point sample a pixel from whatever textures are associated with them. Texture samples are not free, in fact they cost a minimum of 2 texture instructions: once for the minification filter and once for the magnification filter, regardless of whether filtering is disabled or enabled. With mip-mapping they cost a minimum of 4: the 3rd and 4th comes from sampling two mip levels.

    When all of that is done the pixels are then put through late visibility tests, and upon making it past those written into the pixel buffer. After enough of the pixel buffer is filled the graphics chipset then begins to execute whatever blending equation has been set for every single pixels in the pixel buffer. For alpha blending, which is most definitely what EQ is using, the equation is as follows: Existing Pixel RGB * (1 - New Pixel Alpha) + New Pixel RGB * New Pixel Alpha.

    Sources if you want to verify all of that:
    MSDN Direct3D9 Viewports and Clipping
    MSDN Direct3D9 Pixel Shader Basics
    MSDN XNA What Is Color Blend? (XNA is Direct3D9 in a different guise)
    Geozen likes this.
  17. Geozen Journeyman

    I have a great computer and have no issues currently, but I enjoyed the writeup and the descriptions of what the different settings actually do. You think they would have the descriptions pop up when you hover over the settings or something lol.
  18. Scornfire The Nimbus Prince

    Thanks for the info Shilling, I'll try to get through all those sources and update the Guide later tonight if I don't get too inebriated watching the hockey game. Granted, the best settings for particles is to have them off in regards to performance haha.

    Anyway, seemed like it was about time for a bump...Go Flames Go!~
  19. iniari-TR Augur

    question regarding the cpu affinity.

    in the past EQ only utilized 1 core. is this still true ? or does EQ now utilize all cores of a multi-core system ?
  20. Anuulified Elder

    Another helpful tool, when using Multiple Accounts on 1 computer. Make different "instances" of the game in your directory (if you have room). Put your alts in stickfigure mode and whichever is the screen you like to look at the most, keep it normal or the way you like it to look.