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Sims 2 (PC) Hardware Performance Guide
The Sims 2 is an odd game compared to others, in that it doesn't use too much graphical power, but depends on the processor (CPU) a lot more. This is one of the main conclusions that GameSpot pulls in a new hardware guide. In the article of five pages they test the effect of hardware in your computer, like the graphics card, CPU, memory, as well as the game's settings, on the framerate. The better the framerate, the smoother the game runs. When it comes to the settings, they say turning off viewing the neighbour lots gives a performance boost. The same goes for shadows. When it comes to the screen resolution, it doesn't matter much which you put it in. Even the graphics card, as long as it's not extremely old, doesn't matter a whole lot. ATI cards performed worse in GameSpot's test, but Maxis engineers say this is due to recent drivers. Performance might be improved using the "boolprop useshaders false" cheat, which puts the game in DirectX 7 mode, and so disables some advanced effects.

On the CPU page three tests show how much impact a fast processor can have on the framerate. The resolution doesn't matter at all. As for memory, GameSpot recommends 512Mb. If you're stuck with less, e.g. 256Mb, the game doesn't perform well at all. It doesn't perform much better with more than 512Mb though. Other than that, defragmenting the drive after installation is said to help. A fast hard drive might also help stop some hiccups due to hard drive access.

Although it all is a bit of a technical story, it might help some fans figure out what to upgrade on their system to improve the performance of the Sims 2. Check out the hardware guide for more details about the tests performed.

Written at 00:35 on Monday, 19 September 2005 by ChEeTaH.

1 Comment
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Written at 00:54 on Monday, 19 September 2005 by Neil Jones (NKTP)
The game might run at a decent speed on 512Mb but when you close the game down, the system will churn for ages afterwards.

It also speeds the loading of the game up a bit more to have extra memory over 512Mb, as well as limiting the amount of churning afterwards, but when switching between lots and so on, the extra memory does help.

Onboard graphics though, are a big no-no never mind the rest of the system. I tried it once; it wasn't pretty.

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