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Old 05-09-2012, 10:26 PM   #1
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Abysmal Performance

As the topic title states, I believe this game to have absolutely abysmal performance. I've read other stutter/etc topics and completely uninstalled/reinstalled my ATI drivers in Win7. No discernible improvement.

Current rig: Quad Core i7-930 @ 4ghz, 12gb RAM on Win7 64-bit Ultimate, ATI RadeonHD 6750-1gb (a temp stand-in for my HD 6870), and hard disks in a RAID stripe for loading speed.

Standing next to my car at the opening scene and looking towards the bridge, I get 17 FPS at the 'LOW' setting, and 1680x1050 with Vsync off.

While I realize the HD 6750 I'm using as a stand-in card isn't great, it should still be able to run this game at nominal framerates given the Low settings. 17 FPS isn't nominal, it is abysmal.

It concerns me that things like AA were hard-coded into the game, as it puts unnecessary strain on the GPU system. Additionally, there's no built in benchmark to test different settings.

Day 1 after having purchased Alan Wake, I'm already disappointed. Apparently the game needs fairly new hardware to run, and for a mostly uncomplicated horror-story walkthrough survival game, it shouldn't be anywhere this demanding or perform this badly.

I'll probably wait for my better graphics card to be repaired and come back to me, but in the meantime - buyer beware. You need a beefy rig to run this. Probably not worth the purchase unless all your hardware was designed within the last 12 months.

Edit: I ran the Game-o-Meter out on YouGamers as the sticky out here suggests to check my systems's performance for the game. My Quad-core CPU was around 160% of recommended speed, and my GPU was just under the recommended at about 95% (not minimum, recommended). And yet I still get 17 FPS while on LOW settings at lower than max resolution. The game's got something terribly wrong with it.

Edit 2: The poor performance is unrelated to having a 2nd monitor attached (an HD TV). Disabling that monitor and changing the config had no impact on performance. The only way I can get this machine to run Alan Wake with halfway decent framerates, is to use a LOW setting and very low resolution - and this for a machine which is overall above recommended specs.

Last edited by JagaTelesin: 05-09-2012 at 10:57 PM.
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Old 05-09-2012, 11:40 PM   #2
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Sounds like something is definately messed up. I have a laptop with a core I-7 and a nvidia gtx 570m and I run the game on max settings, with 4x AA and 8x AF at 1366x 786 resolution and get about 50 fps.

I would think your PC should be able to max out this game with good performance. Unfortunately, I am not sure what the problem could be. Maybe you are in a low power state or some kind and your computer has been downclocked. I would try to shut down and reboot your PC. I would also verify your game cache by right clicking on the game in your library and going into the properties.
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Old 05-10-2012, 12:06 AM   #3
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Not a low power problem. It has an 850 Watt power supply. The CPU overclock is manual through the BIOS, and passes regular stability tests (Prime95) with flying colors. I have never, with any software, seen it bluescreen or throw up on itself due to a lack of power.

I don't have problems with any other games - that includes new ones recently released. They run as expected with good framerates, even for this temporary card I'm using.

I've rebooted the machine multiple times - just recently when I was uninstalling/clean-installing new ATI 12.4 Catalyst drivers.

All game files in Steam successfully validated. No changes needed.

If I had to hazard a guess, the game's rendering system handles higher resolutions very poorly, and isn't optimized for all chipsets. After all it was developed for consoles, which have a single set of identical chips throughout. I run most games at my monitor's default resolution of 1920x1200, but am dropping that down just to try and get Alan Wake running properly. It won't until I get at or under the 1280x800 level, with LOW game settings. Just plain unacceptable.


At this point I'm at a loss. I'm going to try (against my better judgement) Driver Sweeper, though I've heard some bad things when using it on Win7 due to it messing with default Win7 drivers. If that fails, I'll either pester the developers on the Remedy forums, or simply return the software and warn others to stay clear of it in the meantime. If my entire library of software works with my current O/S and drivers, why does Alan Wake not?

As a sidenote: it is rather ridiculous to give users the recommendation of using a Driver Cleaner as a first solution for poor FPS (I see the Devs doing that). Their other games work, and cleaners are notoriously dangerous. It would seem to me like Alan Wake is a "high maintenance blonde" in that regard, and really needs more optimization and bugfixing.
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Old 05-10-2012, 12:16 AM   #4
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BTW, I think RavN meant with "low power" the settings in Windows. Set it to "High Performance" from the control panel. It probably isn't the case, but it's worth a shot.
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Old 05-10-2012, 12:34 AM   #5
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Ah, no. That isn't it at all. I do IT support for a living (PCs, Networks, Servers, etc), and would never miss something like that.

The only acceptable setting I've found so far is LOW in-game, and a resolution of 1200 by whatever. Anything higher on either, and the game gets very choppy. Doesn't bode well for the recommended hardware listing. I'm going to do Driver Sweeper tomorrow (still against my better judgement). It is really the last item I can try before throwing in the towel. I shouldn't have to get a $175 or better graphics card to run a ported Xbox game on the PC at normal framerates. While my primary card could probably handle it, this backup card at $100 should cover at least 25 FPS at average resolution and low settings, and it isn't.
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Old 05-10-2012, 05:05 AM   #6
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I think it has something to do with the card or maybe the resolution ... I tried it on my (not so new) notebook acer aspire 5740 and the frames where very crappy (doesn't matter what kind of settings) on a resolution 1368 x 768. It runs better on 1027 x 768. Now I tried it on my (about 6 years old!!!!) Q6600 with an ATI 48xx (1 GIG Vram) and it runs smoothly on highest settings. Resolution is 1280 x 1024.
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Old 05-10-2012, 07:47 AM   #7
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I'm getting the same issues as the OP. Haven't found a fix for it yet. Playing at 1920x1080 so I'll see what lowering the resolution does when I get home later tonight. Seems silly to have to do that with my specs though.

IvyBridge 3770K
Gigabyte Z77 UD5H-WB
Sapphire Radeon 7970 (Driver 12.4 WQL)
SeaSonic 1050w gold+
Windows 7 x64
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Old 05-10-2012, 09:30 AM   #8
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I think it's not a problem of hardware POWER (like i mentioned before, my isn't top of the line). I think it's specific hardware (like the mobility radeon in my notebook). If you turn the resolution down you will get some frames more but not enough to play it smoothly. Like I said, my old Desktop PC has no problems to run this game on highest settings...
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Old 05-10-2012, 09:35 AM   #9
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Oddly I'm running into this on a GTX 285, with an I7. It also seems to think the 285 is under minimum spec, or... at least that something is...
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Old 05-10-2012, 09:38 AM   #10
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I was a little worried buying this yesterday due to having an older system & I had already read about a few performance issues. I was more than a little surprised when I ran it for the first time to see very playable (for me) frames per second with all options (except AA) turned on or maxed including vsync.

No help for those of you with a performance problem but it might help those who are looking to purchase it but are worried about having an older system.

Here are my specs.
1680 x 1050 screen resolution.
All graphic options on or maxed except AA (see below).
Vsync enabled.
4x AA (not tried 8x yet).

Catalyst 11.7
Window Vista 64 bit.
E8400 Dual Core 3GHz (never oc'ed).
4GB Corsair RAM.
Sapphire HD4870 1GB (never oc'ed).
Standard SATA hard drive.

Frame Rates: Day 24-32, Night 18-30.
Basically hangs around 26-30 making it a pretty smooth experience with my older system.

Just a quick mention on how beautiful this game is (so far), blew me away. In my opinion some of the best environments I have seen on a PC (so far) & dripping with atmosphere, I think Esther may have something to start worrying about. Lovely.

Hope everyone gets their problems sorted out.
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Old 05-10-2012, 01:04 PM   #11
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For now I'm uninstalling Alan Wake and have requested a full refund from Steam. I simply don't have hours to throw around figuring out why all my other software runs fine on a Win7 rig that was rebuilt 5 months ago, and why Alan Wake runs super slow.

Perhaps in the future once the developers have thrown more resources at QC/QA for the PC port, and even come up with a demo, I will be able to test again and consider buying the game.

Without concrete steps on how to resolve performance issues, the developers are going to have to deal with negative feedback and lost sales. That's the nature of the business.
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Old 05-10-2012, 01:42 PM   #12
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Lol, yeah.. good luck getting a refund..
Thank you developers for making.. not a pc port, but a great pc game.
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Old 05-10-2012, 02:23 PM   #13
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Originally Posted by TimM View Post
not a pc port
You're wrong here on two accounts:

1) In cases where software was shown to be buggy and the customer has tried to fix the problem with developer/community help (without success), Steam can and does issue refunds at their discretion.

2) Alan Wake release dates:
- Xbox 360: May 18, 2010
- PC: Feb 16, 2012
Source: Wikipedia

Thus, the game is a PC Port from a Console original. This is where I believe the publisher's problem to stem from - the game engine still has problems with certain PC configurations/drivers/etc.

I am however, glad you were able to find humor in my inability to get the game running, and the subsequent request for a refund.
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Old 05-10-2012, 03:14 PM   #14
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My performance is rock solid, I do get graphic glitches now and then tho so not perfect. Game is maxed out @1080p vsynced 60fps.
i5 2500k oc 4.3GHZ
8GB Ram @1600mhz
HD7950 oc 1ghz 1575

My fps dont leave 60 stay rock solid game plays super smooth, just wish I knew how to stop the odd glitches of black strips from trees mostly.

Also loving the games story superb upto now
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Old 05-10-2012, 03:25 PM   #15
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What is your GPU/CPU usage in-game?
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