Ashes of the Singularity: Escalation

Seen as the holy child of DirectX12, Ashes of the Singularity (AoTS, or just Ashes) has been the first title to actively go explore as many of DirectX12s features as it possibly can. Stardock, the developer behind the Nitrous engine which powers the game, has ensured that the real-time strategy title takes advantage of multiple cores and multiple graphics cards, in as many configurations as possible.

As a real-time strategy title, Ashes is all about responsiveness during both wide open shots but also concentrated battles. With DirectX12 at the helm, the ability to implement more draw calls per second allows the engine to work with substantial unit depth and effects that other RTS titles had to rely on combined draw calls to achieve, making some combined unit structures ultimately very rigid.

Stardock clearly understand the importance of an in-game benchmark, ensuring that such a tool was available and capable from day one, especially with all the additional DX12 features used and being able to characterize how they affected the title for the developer was important. The in-game benchmark performs a four minute fixed seed battle environment with a variety of shots, and outputs a vast amount of data to analyze.

For our benchmark, we run a fixed v2.11 version of the game due to some peculiarities of the splash screen added after the merger with the standalone Escalation expansion, and have an automated tool to call the benchmark on the command line. (Prior to v2.11, the benchmark also supported 8K/16K testing, however v2.11 has odd behavior which nukes this.)

At both 1920x1080 and 4K resolutions, we run the same settings. Ashes has dropdown options for MSAA, Light Quality, Object Quality, Shading Samples, Shadow Quality, Textures, and separate options for the terrain. There are several presents, from Very Low to Extreme: we run our benchmarks at Extreme settings, and take the frame-time output for our average, percentile, and time under analysis.

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


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4K

ASUS GTX 1060 Strix 6GB Performance


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4K

Sapphire R9 Fury 4GB Performance


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4K

Sapphire RX 480 8GB Performance


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4K

Gaming Performance: Civilization 6 (1080p, 4K, 8K, 16K) Gaming Performance: Shadow of Mordor (1080p, 4K)
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  • Teknobug - Friday, July 28, 2017 - link

    Guess the Rzyen 3 1300X isn't much of an upgrade over my other PC which is i5 3550 (OC'd to 3.9GHz) system then. Reply
  • jamyryals - Friday, July 28, 2017 - link

    It's great to have some competition going on again! Reply
  • Mumrik - Friday, July 28, 2017 - link

    If you run a 0% line horizontally through a graph like you do on page 17, and especially if it actually moves around a bit from graph to graph, I'd suggest making that line thicker than the others. Reply
  • harobikes333 - Saturday, July 29, 2017 - link

    AMD pretty much has all the CPU segments covered <3
    Planning on a build soon!
    Reply
  • LostPassword - Sunday, July 30, 2017 - link

    i know a lot of people will say it doesn't matter. but the beauty about these ryzen 3 is that they are unlocked. i see alot of youtubers hit 3.7-3.8ghz on stock cooler. Reply
  • Oxford Guy - Wednesday, August 2, 2017 - link

    Tom's Hardware used 3200 RAM for its review. I suggest reading that one because it paints a different picture than this one which uses slow RAM. Reply
  • Mugur - Thursday, August 3, 2017 - link

    I think the author missed the point with this review: Ryzen 3 is obviously targeted towards gaming to a very tight budget, not B2B, not Enterprise, not Office, etc...

    Of course, this doesn't mean that certain cpu benchmarks shouldn't be used, but the test bed should definitely include overclocking (using the included Stealth cooler) and 3200 Mhz RAM (I wonder about AGESA 1006?). I don't care as much for "normalizing" benchmarks and Anandtech bench (a useful tool though), but just make me see how those 2 cpus are performing in the kind of environment they will be used. And add 2 entry level cards like RX 560 and GTX 1050/Ti; I know the reason about using a high end graphics card and I agree on paper, but this is not how those cpus will be used. It's an academical exercise.

    Not everything should be a PhD dissertation, especially for this low level, budget components. If I have to reconmmend someone a cheap gaming machine I need to know whether a Ryzen 1200@3.9 Ghz + 8 GB 3200 DDR4 + RX 560 4 GB is a viable option (or not), better than a G4560 + 8 GB 2400 + GTX 1050 for example, especially in the long run.
    Reply
  • Oxford Guy - Friday, August 11, 2017 - link

    Worrying about RAM speed when you're using a low-grade GPU is unwise. You'll be very GPU-limited most of the time.

    No, what this review needed was 3200 RAM plus relevant GPUs. At the very least the 3000 speed RAM in the machine they tested with shouldn't have been heavily downclocked.
    Reply
  • chiname - Saturday, November 18, 2017 - link

    This actually depends on where you live.I did a pc a week ago.It's just an small entry level pc for kids to play some games.The price to performance was favoring AMD.I really wouldve liked to get an intel i3 7100 but the cost was higher than the 1200 amd.So hench we went with amd.

    Complete amd pc cost 6.5k include gfx card.intel wouldve cost us over 8k.
    Reply
  • John_M - Sunday, April 29, 2018 - link

    "We’re still working through our gaming testing as this review goes live, and we’ll add graphs for that in a bit."

    I've read that so often on this site but the promise is seldom fulfilled.
    Reply

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