Batman: Arkham Origins Benchmarked: GPU & CPU Efficiency

During the development of Warner Bros Games Montréal, many fans feared that Arkham Origins would not (could?) Not do justice to its predecessors produced by Rocksteady. As is often the case with console-oriented releases, PC gamers have had the added concern of whether or not to expect a quality port.

While Origins has received some of the criticism, it doesn't seem like a complete disappointment when most of the review aggregators, including our own, get respectable results (Batman: Arkham Origins)

74

). In addition, the PC version seems to have received special attention in the graphics department.

Although the developer was created using Epic's aging Unreal Engine 3, it used a heavily modified version of the software. Granted, we've heard this countless times from other studios at the time, but the tweaks seem pretty extensive in this case, especially given all of the game's DirectX 11 and PhysX effects.

DX11 enhancements like Tessellation, Ambient Occlusion HBAO +, Percentage Closer Soft Shadows (PCSS), and Depth of Field (DoF) are used in Origins, as are Nvidia exclusives like TXAA and PhysX. People with a supporting GeForce card can look forward to more realistic and dynamic environments.

When PhysX is enabled, some areas will contain additional snow or fog that will respond to Batman moving through the area. These effects are reduced or disabled without PhysX support. Before you toss your keyboard, it doesn't necessarily mean you won't be able to experience some of these with your new Radeon R9 290X.

Origins has two PhysX levels: normal and high. The former adds flags, banners, papers, and more that interact with the world in expected ways. The CPU can handle this mode for AMD owners so they don't miss anything, but you should definitely be playing with a GeForce for maximum attention.

APEX turbulence effects come into full swing with PhysX, enhancing existing particle effects and adding more visual elements elsewhere. Compared to the PhysX particles in Arkham Asylum and City, APEX particles are more realistic, can be manipulated in more ways and, most importantly, run faster, which optimizes frame rates.

Since APEX turbulence effects cannot be activated with AMD graphics cards, we will only consider the normal PhysX mode in our tests. Of course, in addition to our usual analysis of CPU performance, including Intel and AMD overclocking results, we'll also test performance with PhysX completely disabled.

Test methodology

When benchmarking a new game, we usually find a challenging scene to benchmark with Fraps, but as with previous Batman titles, Arkham Origins has a solid built-in benchmark (note: it needs to be run with "benchmark" as the link target – it doesn't appear to have the GUI of the game itself to be accessible).

Adjusting the benchmark settings is just as crude as saving it in an XML file in the game's "Documents" folder. To test many configurations, we had to create multiple versions of the original GFXSettings.BatmanArkhamOrigins.xml and then swap them out for benchmarking.

This was slow and tedious, but we wanted to use the built-in benchmark so you can easily compare your own results. In the end, we tested 30 graphics cards from AMD and Nvidia with the latest beta drivers. Aside from testing at three resolutions (1680 x 1050, 1920 x 1200 and 2560 x 1600), we also tested with FXAA and MSAAx8 enabled along with Physx Normal and Physx Off to get a wider picture.

  • HIS Radeon R9 290X (4096 MB)
  • HIS Radeon R9 280X (3072 MB)
  • HIS Radeon HD 7970 GHz (3072 MB)
  • HIS Radeon HD 7970 (3072 MB)
  • HIS Radeon HD 7950 Boost (3072 MB)
  • HIS Radeon HD 7950 (3072 MB)
  • HIS Radeon R9 270X (2048 MB)
  • HIS Radeon HD 7870 (2048 MB)
  • HIS Radeon HD 7850 (2048 MB)
  • HIS Radeon HD 7770 (1024 MB)
  • HIS Radeon HD 6970 (2048 MB)
  • HIS Radeon HD 6870 (1024 MB)
  • Gigabyte GeForce GTX Titan (6144 MB)
  • Gainward GeForce GTX 780 (3072 MB)
  • Gainward GeForce GTX 770 (2048 MB)
  • Gainward GeForce GTX 760 (2048 MB)
  • Gainward GeForce GTX 680 (2048 MB)
  • Gigabyte GeForce GTX 670 (2048 MB)
  • Gainward GeForce GTX 660 Ti (2048 MB)
  • Gigabyte GeForce GTX 660 (2048 MB)
  • Gainward GeForce GTX 650 Ti Boost (2048 MB)
  • Gainward GeForce GTX 650 Ti (2048 MB)
  • Gigabyte GeForce GTX 580 (1536 MB)
  • Gigabyte GeForce GTX 560 Ti (1024 MB)
  • Gigabyte GeForce GTX 480 (1536 MB)
  • Intel Core i7-4770K (3.50 GHz)
  • x2 8 GB Ultimate DDR3-2133 (CAS 11-12-11-24)
  • Asrock Z87 Extreme9 (Intel Z87)
  • OCZ ZX series 1250w
  • Crucial m4 512 GB (SATA 6 Gbit / s)
  • Microsoft Windows 8 64-bit
  • Nvidia Forceware 331.58 Beta
  • AMD Catalyst 13.11 (Beta 6)

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