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Croteam are continuing to be one of my favourite developers, as The Talos Principle [Steam] has been patched with some goodies.

Here's what's changed:

  • Bugs fixed and performance improvements for Vulkan graphics API.
  • Fixed some rendering issues under OpenGL graphics API.
  • Better detection of usable CPU cores.
  • Fixed problems with Chinese Traditional translation in Road to Gehenna.
  • Removed usage of D3DX library DLL.
  • Enlarged FPS graph and added average line.
  • Fixed problem with imprecise frame-rate limitation on Windows platforms.

Since I haven't tested it for a while, I ran some quick benchmarks this morning to see how much has changed. This is on my Ubuntu 17.10, i7-5960X 3GHZ, 16GB DDR4 RAM, GeForce GTX 980 Ti (384.111 driver).

Not too much between Vulkan, as a lot of the performance fixes might not even be seen during the short benchmark, but when you put them next to OpenGL the difference is clear:

The Talos Principle, Ultra SettingsLatest OpenGL + Vulkan vs Vulkan Old Vulkan New 121.8Vulkan NewVulkan Old 118.7Vulkan OldOpenGL 80.7OpenGL Vulkan New 121.8Vulkan Old 118.7OpenGL 80.7 121.8118.780.7 0255075100125 Average FPS

Vulkan doesn't just have better FPS in The Talos Principle, it's also noticeably smoother too. On a cold start (first load) OpenGL has a fair amount of stutter, but Vulkan has a lot less.

It's actually on sale with 80% off, if you still haven't picked it up now is an awesome time to do so. Croteam have great Linux support and it is a fantastic puzzle game.

21 Likes, Who?
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27 comments
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morgancoxuk 10 January 2018 at 10:51 am UTC
Thanks for notifying about the deal (been waiting for this to be on offer).

Just purchased, another Linux sale !
pete910 10 January 2018 at 10:54 am UTC
Nice improvement! Every little helps.

Really wish Vulkan would be more widely used tbh. More chance of us Linux people getting a port too.
Jahimself 10 January 2018 at 11:05 am UTC
Amazing tech support for this game. 3 and a half year after release they continue to update the game. I agree pete910. But for vulkan it is not that easy to optimize it. For the moment appart from Talos Principle and Ashes of Singularity, and doom 4 not so many devs have managed to push the api that far. Good decision though, the perfs are better and it will run better with lower end hardware due the good cpu core management.
rkfg 10 January 2018 at 11:20 am UTC
QuoteCroteam are continuing to be one of my favourite developers
They are the favorite AAA-developer! IIRC, they were the first to announce and deliver the visually stunning AAA title, Serious Sam 3, on Linux. Valve don't quite count, of course they would have ported all their games if they started all this. But Croteam not only jumped on the Linux train first, they delivered a great game with astonishing performance and visuals right from the first release AND they continue to polish it and their other titles further with Vulkan and even VR. They're also very open and are not afraid of tech talk on Steam forums discussing graphics tricks and performance optimizations in general. That's rare nowadays and I appreciate it.

Of course, in terms of released titles Feral are way ahead but among the game developers, not porters, Croteam shine the most brightly (for me, of course).
Leopard 10 January 2018 at 11:41 am UTC
JahimselfAmazing tech support for this game. 3 and a half year after release they continue to update the game. I agree pete910. But for vulkan it is not that easy to optimize it. For the moment appart from Talos Principle and Ashes of Singularity, and doom 4 not so many devs have managed to push the api that far. Good decision though, the perfs are better and it will run better with lower end hardware due the good cpu core management.

Also i want to add ; Wolfenstein 2 is a Vulkan exclusive title. It doesn't have OpenGL renderer unlike Doom 2016 has.

Dx12 and Vulkan are both more difficult api's to dealt with ; when you compare them to Dx11.

But because of the high Windows 7 usage ; devs cannot move forward to Dx12 with ditching other api's. But on Vulkan , they can.

It is not limited to Win10 , despite Dx12 is.
Flabb 10 January 2018 at 11:43 am UTC
pete910Really wish Vulkan would be more widely used tbh. More chance of us Linux people getting a port too.

Most developers won't bother with implementing a new renderer themselves, they would rather use a complete 3rd party engine with renderers that come with it. So we need major engines (such as UE, Unity) to implement proper Vulkan renderers firstly, and after that we'll probably see much more games with Vulkan support.
As I see, UE4 and Unity already have experimental Vulkan support, and some developers have turned it on in their projects (see Ballistic Overkill and Helium Rain). Maybe we're not so far from the time when Vulkan will become more widespread.
melkemind 10 January 2018 at 12:49 pm UTC
pete910Nice improvement! Every little helps.

Really wish Vulkan would be more widely used tbh. More chance of us Linux people getting a port too.

To be fair, there are more games with Vulkan support than DirectX 12 support. I'd say that's progress.
g000h 10 January 2018 at 1:57 pm UTC
melkemind
pete910Nice improvement! Every little helps.

Really wish Vulkan would be more widely used tbh. More chance of us Linux people getting a port too.

To be fair, there are more games with Vulkan support than DirectX 12 support. I'd say that's progress.

However, Microsoft are doing what they're best at - Monopolizing the market - They don't allow developers to use Vulkan on XBOX One platform, only DX12. So if you want to develop for Windows and XBOX, then you have to include DX12 support to get your game on XBOX.

One of the things that has irritated me about Microsoft for years is their anti-competitive practices. Would be great if the EU could sue them about it.
jegmancs 10 January 2018 at 2:43 pm UTC
rkfg
QuoteCroteam are continuing to be one of my favourite developers
They are the favorite AAA-developer! IIRC, they were the first to announce and deliver the visually stunning AAA title, Serious Sam 3, on Linux. Valve don't quite count, of course they would have ported all their games if they started all this. But Croteam not only jumped on the Linux train first, they delivered a great game with astonishing performance and visuals right from the first release AND they continue to polish it and their other titles further with Vulkan and even VR. They're also very open and are not afraid of tech talk on Steam forums discussing graphics tricks and performance optimizations in general. That's rare nowadays and I appreciate it.

Of course, in terms of released titles Feral are way ahead but among the game developers, not porters, Croteam shine the most brightly (for me, of course).

Croteam is pretty much indie, still, nowhere near AAA (activision, EA, bungie, ubisoft, etc.) They are not just indie at size, but at heart (lovely press at E3 )
tuubi 10 January 2018 at 3:16 pm UTC
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g000hHowever, Microsoft are doing what they're best at - Monopolizing the market - They don't allow developers to use Vulkan on XBOX One platform, only DX12. So if you want to develop for Windows and XBOX, then you have to include DX12 support to get your game on XBOX.

One of the things that has irritated me about Microsoft for years is their anti-competitive practices. Would be great if the EU could sue them about it.
The European Commission has sued and fined Microsoft multiple times for abusing the de facto monopoly Windows holds on the desktop, but Sony is actually much larger in the European console market. And I don't see Vulkan support on the PS4 either. (Unofficial Linux hacks don't count.)

There's also the fact that consoles aren't considered computers, but gaming appliances. There's no expectation of openness or freedom of use here, unlike with personal computers.
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