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 - 3840x2160 -

Wolfenstein II - 2560x1440 -

Wolfenstein II - 1920x1080 -

We've known that Wolfenstein II enjoys its framebuffer, and to explain the obvious outlier first the Fury X's 4GB HBM1 simply isn't enough for smooth gameplay. The resulting performance is better conveyed by 99th percentile framerates, and even at 1080p the amount of stuttering renders the game unplayable.

Returning to the rest of the cards, Wolfenstein II's penchant for current-generation architectures (i.e. Turing, Vega) is again on display. Here, the Pascal-based GTX 1080 Ti FE isn't in the running for best-in-class, with the RTX 2080 taking pole and Radeon VII in a close second. Once again, the raw lead in average frametimes grows at lower resolutions, indicating that the Radeon VII is indeed a few shades slower than the reference RTX 2080, but judging from 99th percentile data the real-world difference is close to nil.

Compared to the RX Vega 64, the performance uplift is exactly 24% at 4K and 25% at 1440p, an amusing coincidence given the guidance of 25% given earlier.

Wolfenstein II - 99th Percentile - 3840x2160 -

Wolfenstein II - 99th Percentile - 2560x1440 -

Wolfenstein II - 99th Percentile - 1920x1080 -

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  • i4mt3hwin - Thursday, February 07, 2019 - link

    So FP64 is 1:4 and not 1:8 or 1:2 as previously known? Reply
  • tipoo - Thursday, February 07, 2019 - link

    Yep, looks like they changed the cap in vBIOS based on feedback.

    Which also means they could have uncapped it, but it's still cool that they did that.
    Reply
  • Ganimoth - Thursday, February 07, 2019 - link

    Does that mean it could be potentially unlocked by some bios mod? Reply
  • tipoo - Friday, February 08, 2019 - link

    I hope so! Reply
  • Hul8 - Thursday, February 07, 2019 - link

    I don't think it was ever reported or assumed to be 1/2 - that best possible ratio is only for the pro MI50 part. Early reports said 1/16. Reply
  • Ryan Smith - Thursday, February 07, 2019 - link

    For what it's worth, when we first asked AMD about it back at CES, FP64 performance wasn't among the features they were even throttling/holding back on. So for a time, 1/2 was on the table. Reply
  • GreenReaper - Thursday, February 07, 2019 - link

    So it was *your* fault! ;-p Reply
  • BigMamaInHouse - Thursday, February 07, 2019 - link

    Asrock just posted vBios: is this with the FP 1:4 or newer?
    https://www.asrock.com/Graphics-Card/AMD/Phantom%2...
    Reply
  • Ryan Smith - Thursday, February 07, 2019 - link

    We're not currently aware of any Radeon VII cards shipping with anything other than 1/4 rate FP64. Reply
  • BigMamaInHouse - Friday, February 08, 2019 - link

    So maybe it's new bios with some fixes?
    Did you tried it since all cards are the same reference design?
    Reply

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