Wolfenstein II: The New Colossus (Vulkan)

id Software is popularly known for a few games involving shooting stuff until it dies, just with different 'stuff' for each one: Nazis, demons, or other players while scorning the laws of physics. Wolfenstein II is the latest of the first, the sequel of a modern reboot series developed by MachineGames and built on id Tech 6. While the tone is significantly less pulpy nowadays, the game is still a frenetic FPS at heart, succeeding DOOM as a modern Vulkan flagship title and arriving as a pure Vullkan implementation rather than the originally OpenGL DOOM.

Featuring a Nazi-occupied America of 1961, Wolfenstein II is lushly designed yet not oppressively intensive on the hardware, something that goes well with its pace of action that emerge suddenly from a level design flush with alternate historical details.

The highest quality preset, "Mein leben!", was used. Wolfenstein II also features Vega-centric GPU Culling and Rapid Packed Math, as well as Radeon-centric Deferred Rendering; in accordance with the preset, neither GPU Culling nor Deferred Rendering was enabled.

Wolfenstein II 1920x1080 2560x1440 3840x2160
Average FPS
99th Percentile

I am actually impressed with Wolfenstein II and its Vulkan implementation more than the absurd 250+ framerates, if only because many other games hold back the GPU because of the occurring CPU bottleneck. In DOOM, there was a hard 200fps cap because of engine/implementation limitations, a bit of a corner case, but manufacturers make 240Hz monitors nowadays, too. On a GPU performance profiling side, of course, reducing the CPU bottleneck makes comparing powerful GPUs much easier at 1080p, and with a better signal-to-noise than at 4K.

This is combined with the fact that at 4K, the 20 series are looking a huge 60 to 68% lead over the 10 series, and we'll be cross-referencing these performance deltas with other sections of the game. Even in the case of a 'flat-track bully' scenario where the 2080 Ti is running up the score, the 2080 Ti's speed compared to the 2080 is somewhat less than expected at 24 to 27%. It's a somewhat intriguing result for an optimized Vulkan game, as the game runs and scales generally well across the board; It's also not unnoticed that both the RX Vega cards and GeForce Turing cards outperform their expected positions, though without the graphics workload details it's hard to speculate with substance. With framerates like these, the 4K HDR dream at 144 Hz is a real possibility, and it would be interesting to compare with Titan V and Titan Xp results.

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  • whaever85343 - Friday, September 21, 2018 - link

    Whatever, this is your new benchmark:
  • Golgatha777 - Friday, September 21, 2018 - link

    I just want to be able to play all my games at 1440p, 60 FPS with all the eye candy turned on. Looks like my overclocked 1080 TI will be good for the immediate future is what I got from this review. The only real upgrade path is to the 2080 TI, and at $1200 that's an extremely hard sell.
  • vivekvs1992 - Friday, September 21, 2018 - link

    Well the problem is in India retailers are not willing to reduce the price of 1080 deries.. At present the 2080 is cheaper than all models of 1080 ti.. If given the chance I will definitely go for 2080..thing is that I will have to invest in a gaming monitor first
  • webdoctors - Friday, September 21, 2018 - link

    Any mining benchmarks?

    Can I actually make money buying these cards?
  • ravyne - Friday, September 21, 2018 - link

    I agree these are really for early-adopters of RT, or if you're doing a new build or need of a new card but want it to last you 3+ years, so you need to catch the RT wave now.

    I think the next generation of RT-enabled cards will probably be the optimal entry-point; Presumably they'll be able to double (or so) RT performance on a 7nm process, and that means that the next xx70/80 products will actually have enough RT to match the resolution/framerate expectations of a high-end card, and also that the RT core won't be too costly to put into xx50/60 tier SKUs (If we even see a 2060 SKU, I don't think it will include RT cores at all, simply because the performance it could offer won't really be meaningful).

    More than a few things are conspiring against the price too -- Aside from the specter of terriffs, the high price of all kinds of RAM right now, and that this is a 12nm product rather than 7nm, it looks to me like the large and relatively monolithic nature of the RT core itself is preventing nV from salvaging/binning more dies -- with the cuda/tensor cores I'd imagine they build in some redundant units so they can salvage the SM even if there are minor flaws in the functional units, but since there's only 1 RT core per SM, any flaw there means the whole SM is out -- that explains why the 2080 is based on the same GPU as the TI, and why the 2070 is the only card based on the GPU that would normally serve the xx70 and xx80 SKUs. Its possible they might be holding onto the dies with too many flawed RT cores to re-purpose them for the AI market, but that would compete with existing products.
  • gglaw - Saturday, September 22, 2018 - link

    Is there a graph error for BF1 99th percentile at 4k resolution? The 2080 TI FE is at 90, and the 2080 TI (non founders) is 68. How is it possible to have this gigantic difference when almost all other benchmarks and games they are neck and neck?
  • vandamick - Saturday, September 22, 2018 - link

    A GTX 980 user. Would the RTX2080 be a big upgrade? Or should I stick with the 1080Ti that I had earlier planned? My upgrade cycle is about 3 years.
  • Inteli - Saturday, September 22, 2018 - link

    Are you willing to pay the extra $1-200 for a 2080 over a 1080 Ti for the same performance in current games, in exchange for the new Turing features (Ray-tracing and DLSS)?

    I'm not convinced yet that the 2080 will be able to run ray-traced games at acceptable frame rates, but it is "more future-proof" for the extra money you pay.
  • mapesdhs - Thursday, September 27, 2018 - link

    Thing is, for the features you're talking about, the 2080 _is not fast enough_ at using them. I don't understand why more people aren't taking this onboard. NVIDIA's own demos show this to be the case, at least for RT. DLSS is more interesting, but the 2080 has less RAM. Until games exist that make decent use of these new features, buying into this tech now when it's at such a gimped low level is unwise. He's far better off with the 1080 Ti, that'll run his existing games faster straight away.
  • AshlayW - Saturday, September 22, 2018 - link

    They've completely priced me out of the entire RTX series lol. My budget ends at £400 and even that is pushing it :(

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