|Gigabyte GA-P55-UD6 Motherboard: P55 vs X58|
|Reviews - Featured Reviews: Motherboards|
|Written by Olin Coles|
|Thursday, 24 September 2009|
Page 15 of 18
Far Cry 2 Benchmark
Ubisoft has developed Far Cry 2 as a sequel to the original, but with a very different approach to game play and story line. Far Cry 2 features a vast world built on Ubisoft's new game engine called Dunia, meaning "world", "earth" or "living" in Farci. The setting in Far Cry 2 takes place on a fictional Central African landscape, set to a modern day timeline.
The Dunia engine was built specifically for Far Cry 2, by Ubisoft Montreal development team. It delivers realistic semi-destructible environments, special effects such as dynamic fire propagation and storms, real-time night-and-day sun light and moon light cycles, dynamic music system, and non-scripted enemy A.I actions.
The Dunia game engine takes advantage of multi-core processors as well as multiple processors and supports DirectX 9 as well as DirectX 10. Only 2 or 3 percent of the original CryEngine code is re-used, according to Michiel Verheijdt, Senior Product Manager for Ubisoft Netherlands. Additionally, the engine is less hardware-demanding than CryEngine 2, the engine used in Crysis.
However, it should be noted that Crysis delivers greater character and object texture detail, as well as more destructible elements within the environment. For example; trees breaking into many smaller pieces and buildings breaking down to their component panels. Far Cry 2 also supports the amBX technology from Philips. With the proper hardware, this adds effects like vibrations, ambient colored lights, and fans that generate wind effects.
There is a benchmark tool in the PC version of Far Cry 2, which offers an excellent array of settings for performance testing. For the CPU-dependant tests Far Cry 2 was run at the ultra-low resolution of 640x480 with settings turned to low. With no strain on the GPU, both P55 and X58 systems produced nearly 159 FPS.
Benchmark Reviews used the maximum settings allowed for our tests, with the resolution set to 1920x1200. The performance settings were all set to 'Very High', DirectX 9 Render Quality was set to 'Ultra High' overall quality, 8x anti-aliasing was applied, and HDR and Bloom were enabled. At this resolution, the X58 system led by little more than 1 FPS, which is too close to determine a pure advantage.
Although the Dunia engine in Far Cry 2 is slightly less demanding than CryEngine 2 engine in Crysis, the strain appears to be extremely close. In Crysis we didn't dare to test AA above 4x, whereas we used 8x AA and 'Ultra High' settings in Far Cry 2. The end effect was a separation between what is capable of maximum settings, and what is not. Using the short 'Ranch Small' time demo (which yields the lowest FPS of the three tests available), the GeForce GTX 285 was left to perform its best on each motherboard.
After a long series of processor-specific testing, the advantage goes to the P55/i7-860 system. Even most of the memory tests preferred the dual-channel configuration on Intel's P55 platform. When it came to gaming performance, the GeForce GTX 285 we used on both systems really had no preference, and produced the same frame rate regardless of chipset or processor. Only one test remained: power consumption.