Civilization 6

First up in our CPU gaming tests is Civilization 6. Originally penned by Sid Meier and his team, the Civ series of turn-based strategy games are a cult classic, and many an excuse for an all-nighter trying to get Gandhi to declare war on you due to an integer overflow. Truth be told I never actually played the first version, but every edition from the second to the sixth, including the fourth as voiced by the late Leonard Nimoy, it a game that is easy to pick up, but hard to master.

Benchmarking Civilization has always been somewhat of an oxymoron – for a turn based strategy game, the frame rate is not necessarily the important thing here and even in the right mood, something as low as 5 frames per second can be enough. With Civilization 6 however, Firaxis went hardcore on visual fidelity, trying to pull you into the game. As a result, Civilization can taxing on graphics and CPUs as we crank up the details, especially in DirectX 12.

Perhaps a more poignant benchmark would be during the late game, when in the older versions of Civilization it could take 20 minutes to cycle around the AI players before the human regained control. The new version of Civilization has an integrated ‘AI Benchmark’, although it is not currently part of our benchmark portfolio yet, due to technical reasons which we are trying to solve. Instead, we run the graphics test, which provides an example of a mid-game setup at our settings.

At both 1920x1080 and 4K resolutions, we run the same settings. Civilization 6 has sliders for MSAA, Performance Impact and Memory Impact. The latter two refer to detail and texture size respectively, and are rated between 0 (lowest) to 5 (extreme). We run our Civ6 benchmark in position four for performance (ultra) and 0 on memory, with MSAA set to 2x.

For reviews where we include 8K and 16K benchmarks (Civ6 allows us to benchmark extreme resolutions on any monitor) on our GTX 1080, we run the 8K tests similar to the 4K tests, but the 16K tests are set to the lowest option for Performance.

For all our results, we show the average frame rate at 1080p first. Mouse over the other graphs underneath to see 99th percentile frame rates and 'Time Under' graphs, as well as results for other resolutions. All of our benchmark results can also be found in our benchmark engine, Bench.

MSI GTX 1080 Gaming 8G Performance



ASUS GTX 1060 Strix 6GB Performance



Sapphire R9 Fury 4GB Performance



Sapphire RX 480 8GB Performance



Civilization 6 Conclusion

In all our testing scenarios, AMD wins at 1080p with minor margins on the frame rates but considerable gains in the time under analysis. Intel pushes ahead in almost all of the 4K results, except with the time under analysis at 4K using an R9 Fury, perhaps indicating that AMD is offering a steadier range in its frame rate, despite the average being lower.

Benchmarking Performance: CPU Legacy Tests Gaming Performance: Ashes of the Singularity Escalation (1080p, 4K)
Comments Locked


View All Comments

  • Ian Cutress - Monday, July 24, 2017 - link

    In the way everyone has historically been reporting PCIe lanes, Ryzen only has 16 PCIe lanes intended for graphics, with the other four for the chipset and another four for storage as an SoC. We've repeated this over and over and over again. Same with Threadripper: 60, plus four for chipset. If we're going to start counting PCIe lanes for chipsets (and DMI equivalents) and SoC related PCIe lanes for storage and others, we'll have to go and rewrite the PCIe lane counts for the last several generations of Intel and AMD CPUs.
  • Kalelovil - Monday, July 24, 2017 - link

    If the category is PCIe lanes for graphics that is quite right.
    But by that token doesn't (non cut-down) Broadwell-E/Skylake-E only have 32 lanes intended for graphics, as the switching logic allows for 2x16 and 4x8 configurations.

    Although this is getting quite in-the-weeds. Overall I really appreciate the time and effort put into PC component reviews by the Anandtech staff.
  • FreckledTrout - Monday, July 24, 2017 - link

    I agree with Ian as 4 PCIe lanes are always taken since you are running Ryzen with a chipset with no real way around that. I also would agree with say Skylake-x reporting 4 less PCIe lanes for the DMI link.
  • Trenteth - Wednesday, July 26, 2017 - link

    except Ryzen has 16x GPU lanes, $x to the chipset and 4x diect to an NVMe or U.2 drive. it's 20 PCIe 3.0 lanes off the CPU usable.
  • Notmyusualid - Tuesday, July 25, 2017 - link

    I got 40 lanes on my E5-2690.

    I'm running 4x 1070s on that, and PCIe based storage, and I doubled my throughput by moving the SSD to a riser card (until the 4th GPU went in), which means its back on the m/b.

    Though, you can't notice in everyday use. Oddly.
  • Trenteth - Wednesday, July 26, 2017 - link

    Having the 4x PCIe 3.0 lanes for a NVMe drive is an advantage, it's connected directly to the CPU and bypasses the chipset link which allows more bandwidth for USB/PCIe 2.0 lanes and SATA. I don't agree with you on not counting them.
  • Kalelovil - Monday, July 24, 2017 - link

    Your charts seem to label the i7 7740X with a $329 MSRP.
    In contrast your first page (and Intel ARK) lists a $339-$350 MSRP.

    I assume the former is a mistake?
  • Ian Cutress - Monday, July 24, 2017 - link

    $339 is the 1k tray price - the one that Intel quotes in the price lists and applicable if you buy 1000 OEM CPUs. $350 is MSRP that retailers will apply from their stock from distributors. Add more if you want a cooler. The issue here is that sometimes Intel never quotes an MSRP for some OEM-only processors, and AMD never seem to quote tray/OEM prices for retail parts. I'll edit this and make it clearer.
  • Kalelovil - Monday, July 24, 2017 - link

    Oh, by former I was referring to the $329 in your charts not the $339 on ARK
  • Ian Cutress - Monday, July 24, 2017 - link

    Oops, I misread the price and misread your comment. Graphs should be updated with a cache refresh.

Log in

Don't have an account? Sign up now