Table of Contents
2. [General] Graphics Card Drivers - Keep it fresh!
3. [Windows] Windows Updates - Stay tuned!
4. [Astellia] Adjust Settings - Know your limits!
5. [Windows] Background Processes - Shut it down!
6. [General] Temperatures - Keep it cool!
7. [Windows] Windows Power Plan - Give it all you got!
8. [General] File Management - Keep it tidy!
9. [Windows] Hibernation Mode - Stay awake!
This article deals with a few of the many ways of improving your performance and squeezing out a bit more out of your resources.
Being confronted with low performance in Astellia can destroy a lot of the game's atmosphere - who doesn't want to have it all shiny and foremost fluidly while collecting all the loot and slicing through the hordes of villains. 🧙♀️
Following will be a collection of the most common ways to bring your hardware and software to the best use to run Astellia or any other game. It is a long list which mentions some essential procedures, but also some less known steps.
We will guide you through this list step by step, but if you don't feel comfortable doing something out of doubt or knowledge, please write us a ticket and we will be at your side to clarify any issues. 😊
2. [General] Graphics Card Drivers
Keep it fresh!🌊
To have an up to date and functional GPU driver is one of the most important and essential measures to keep your gameplay experience smoothly.
A Fresh Start - Reinstalling & Updating Your Drivers
Should you struggle with your performance or see graphical glitches it can be the case that your GPU driver is not working correctly or is outdated. To fix this we recommend a clean removal of your current driver and to install the newest driver.
For this procedure are many tools on the Internet available for instance the Display Driver Uninstaller (DDU).
Know Your Graphics Card Driver
After having your driver removed you need of course a new one - no driver, no fun!
Since there are so many different GPU models out there it can be a hassle to find out which one is suited for you, but don't worry we got your back!
To find out what exact GPU model you have build in your setup you can simply create a DxDiag report and lookup (Ctrl + F enables the search function in any editor) "Card name". Here is an example of an Nvidia card:
As soon as you have retrieved this information you can go the vendor's support page to download the latest driver by filling in the information:
3. [Windows] Windows Updates
Your operating system (OS) is the platform all your applications are running on. To keep it updated should always have a high priority to retrieve all technical and security updates.
- Select the Start button
- Go to Settings
- Select Update & Security
- Click on Windows Update
- Select Check for updates.
- Open Windows Update by swiping in from the right edge of the screen (or, if you're using a mouse, pointing to the lower-right corner of the screen and moving the mouse pointer up),
- Select Settings
- Go to Change PC settings
- Click on Update and recovery
- Select Windows Update.
- Click Check now.
Follow this KB from Microsoft: https://support.microsoft.com/en-us/help/973135/how-to-download-a-windows-update-manually
Please be aware that the support for Windows 7 will end on the 14th of January 2020! Microsoft will no longer provide any technical support, software updates or security updates. We strongly recommend upgrading your OS until then to avoid the risk of malfunctions or security breaches on your system.
4. [Astellia] Adjust Settings
Know your limits!📉
Depending on your hardware there might be simply not enough to get out of your machine.
Please always keep our minimum hardware requirements in mind. You can look them up here.
If you undercut these requirements you need to upgrade your components to be able to play the game.
If you match the requirements though lower your in-game settings (especially the resolution is a big factor) and/or follow the technical KB's here.
5. [Windows] Background Processes
Shut it down!🚫
Windows and 3rd party applications are sometimes getting out of hand and feel a bit too much at home. It's always nice to stay in control what program or service is allowed to be executed and what can be discarded to free up resources.
If you are having issues to run the game properly there might be another application interfering with Astellia.
To test this out you can simply run a Clean Boot so that your OS boots only with the basic programs and drivers.
6. [General] Temperatures
Keep it cool! 🔥
Heat is your hardware's enemy. If your components are getting too hot your system will throttle down its performance in order to keep it cool so that no physical damage is done.
If your case is getting too dusty the airflow from your fans might no longer function properly and the heat cannot get blown out of your tower.
It is recommended to keep an eye on the dust in your tower and remove it. Be careful though that you don't damage any components by being too rough to the material or expose them to electric static shocks.
The gentlest way to remove dust is with compressed air. You can even blow the fans free (don't let the fans turn, or unplug them before sending air through them!)
If you're dust-free an increase of the fan's RPM can often result in lower temperatures. To do this you can use applications to control the speed of the fans.
A popular application for this purpose is MSI Afterburner, but there are many more out there.
Especially for the CPU's the thermal paste can lose its efficiency over time and it might be wise to reapply it.
It's not advised to do this when you don't feel comfortable handling hardware in general, but there are many video guides on the internet you can look up. Be aware that it is a very sensitive measure so don't be too shy to ask a knowledgable friend or professional technician for help!
7. [Windows] Windows Power Plan
Give it all you got! 💥
Especially Laptops have often on default low power settings enabled. This is useful to save the batteries life and to extend its powered duration but can result in a low-performance output.
For gaming, in general, it is useful to set the power settings to 'High Performance' in your Windows settings. You can check and change this by following these steps:
- Press the Windows-Key (on your keyboard) + X
- Select Power Options
- Click on the right side Additional power settings
- Check High Performance
Above you see pre-created plan settings, but you can adjust these if you like and customize them.
Simply click on Change Plan Settings and go to Change advanced power settings.
Within the new window, you can decide how Windows is supposed to control and distribute power.
8. [General] File Management
Keep it tidy! 🧐
To empower Windows to access important files it is important to get certain obstacles out of the way.
Defragmentation - HDD's
When moving, deleting, copying, pasting, cutting files it can happen to rip apart the structure of files. Windows still know what segments it needs to put together, but should there be noncontiguous fragments of data it can take longer to process them.
To reconnect the fragments it is useful to run a Defragmentation. You can either use the built-in Windows tool or use a 3rd party tool to do this.
Firmware - SSD
If you use an SSD it is recommended to deactivate any automatic defragmentation for it since it lowers the life expectancy of it.
Instead, make sure to install the latest firmware and run the included optimization program. The relevant software can be found on the homepage of your SSD vendor.
When you suffer under stutters and long loading screens it is worthy to check your disk health. You can use a tool like HDTune to run a benchmark test and have a look.
Should you see any issues on your precious hard drive it may be wise to let a repair tool have a look at it. A tool capable of doing this is DiskFresh, but as always - there are many other options out there :)
Getting Rid of Useless Files
If you run updates, delete files, even if you surf on the internet: after a while, your OS just starts hoarding a lot of old data which it doesn't need or touch which can slow down your performance (have a look at the Defragmentation).
Windows got a Disk cleanup option implemented which you can use, but again (You probably saw it coming) there are also tools you can use.
One of them is CCleaner which is also handy in cleaning your registry entries.
9. [Windows] Hibernation Mode
Parts of your resources are on default used by Windows to constantly save an image of your memory (RAM) in case you decide to send your system to sleep. If you never use this feature it is useful to disable it.
How to Disable the Hibernation Mode
- Press the Windows-Key on your Keyboard or click Start in your Taskbar
- Type in cmd to search for the command prompt application
- Right-click on it and select 'Run as Administrator'
- Type in the following command: powercfg.exe /hibernate off
- Press Enter
- All the mentioned 3rd party applications are free to use and are used on your own discretion.