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Detroit: Become Human PC Performance Report and Graphics Settings
By Jon Sutton on December 16th, 2019 at 03:21pm - original article from game-debate

This time last year it would've seemed utterly impossible but the (ex) PS4 exclusive ¬¬g_id:23462[Detroit: Become Human]¬¬ is now out on PC. Quantic Dream's adventure game portrays the tale of three AI androids who believe themselves sentient, fighting for their to be considered human. It was a big budget, tentpole PS4 release back in 2018 and now it's back and looking better than ever on PC.

It's really quite trippy to see that familiar "Sony Interactive Entertainment Presents" black screen pop up on the PC release, let me tell you. There's a lot to say about Detroit beyond the technical perspective but its most apparent strength is its incredible visuals. It's a fantastic visual feast, albeit with a few large caveats (more on that later) but what does it all mean for performance? Let's find out.

Detroit: Become Human System Requirements

Detroit: Become Human Minimum System Requirements

  • OS: Windows 7 64-bit
  • CPU: Intel Core i7-3770 3.4 GHz or AMD FX-8350 4.0 GHz
  • RAM: 8 GB System Memory
  • GPU RAM: 3 GB Video Memory
  • GPU: Nvidia GeForce GTX 780 or AMD Radeon HD 7950
  • API: Vulkan
  • HDD: 45GB available space

Detroit: Become Human Recommended System Requirements 

  • OS: Windows 10 64-bit
  • CPU: Intel Core i5-8400 2.8 GHz or AMD Ryzen 5 1600 3.2 GHz
  • RAM: 16 GB System Memory
  • GPU RAM: 4 GB Video Memory
  • GPU: Nvidia GeForce GTX 1060 6GB or AMD Radeon RX 580 4GB
  • API: Vulkan
  • HDD: 45GB available space

Detroit: Become Human Graphics Settings 

Detroit: Become Human Video Settings

  • Display Mode
  • Resolution
  • Resolution Scale
  • FPS Limit
  • VSync
  • Brightness
  • Visual Quality

Detroit: Become Human Graphics Settings

  • Texture Quality
  • Texture Filtering
  • Shadow Quality
  • Model Quality
  • Depth of Field
  • Motion Blur
  • Volumetric Lighting
  • Screen Space Reflection
  • Ambient Occlusion
  • Bloom

Folks aren't going to be pleased with some of these settings, especially Depth of Field. When I say it is an intense effect, that is putting it tremendously lightly. Only the objects without a few feet of the player are crisp and clear, everything else is out of focus. There is no in-game option to turn off DoF entirely, all you can do is choose the level of quality. There may be a workaround but nothing I've discovered just yet.

The number of options available in D:BH is actually fairly small, and most have little to no impact on visual quality. Shadows, Textures, Ambient Occlusion and Volumetric Lighting are all going to be things you'll want to crank but, aside from a few specific instances, Low looks pretty comparable to Ultra.

One final thing to point out is that Detroit: Become Human is the latest in a growing list of games which opts to use the Vulkan graphics API rather than DirectX 12. 

Detroit: Become Human Performance

These benchmarks were performed during what is roughly the third chapter of Detroit: Become Human. It's one of the largest, most graphically complex environments found in the entire game with taxing reflections, plenty of NPCs, and a fairly long draw distance. We took average FPS results across multiple runs at 1080p, 1440p, and 4K screen resolutions, as well testing all four graphics presets - Low, Medium, High and Ultra.

 

Detroit: Become Human benchmarks and frames per second analysis performed on PNY XLR8 GeForce RTX 2060 GB OC | Intel i7-5820K @4.2 GHz| 16GB DDR4

Detroit: Become Human benchmarks and frames per second analysis performed on PNY XLR8 GeForce RTX 2060 GB OC | Intel i7-5820K @4.2 GHz| 16GB DDR4

  1080p 1440p 4K
Low 97 83 48
Medium 89 75 40
High 78 69 34
Ultra 75 68 32

Overall, we see generally good performance from the GeForce RTX 2060. Ideally situated as either a high refresh rate 1080p video card or a 1440p/60FPs solution, it manages to hit these targets well. The frame rate at 1440p/Ultra did dip below 60FPS on occasion, sometimes veering into the 40s but, overall, it help up consistent performance. A big shout out to 4K/High as well. Lock this at 30FPS and it provides a consistently excellent experience in Detroit, both visually and gameplay, which is very slow-paced.

Sadly, hitching can be prevalent, at least on my system. For the most part it's fine but in some of the larger areas you explore there can be some dropped frames. The FPS was locked to 60 on 1080p/Ultra, for example, but it didn't feel like it at times. I suspect this is something to do with the CPU usage, which is absolutely maxed out at all times. I'm using an Intel Core i7-5820K 12C/6T processor overclocked to 4.2GHz and Detroit absolutely guzzled it all down. It's quite difficult to see exactly why this would be the case, it doesn't follow the pattern for a typical CPU-bound title. It's slow-paced and there's not a lot going on in terms of gameplay systems and AI. I'd have thought it would've come down to GPU firepower but the GeForce RTX 2060 6GB was largely underutilised.

Detroit: Become Human CPU Usage Intel Core i7-5820K @ 4.2GHz

It's the end of the world but it can be a little distracting when it does happen. Detroit: Become Human's frame rate is typically very solid which only serves to highlight the moments where it dips.

My advice here would certainly be to consider capping the frame rate. You can only unlock the FPS by tweaking the config file anyway, otherwise it's capped at either 30FPS or 60FPS. In all honesty, to avoid the hitching, I would play Detroit: Become Human at 30 frames per second. It's so slow-paced that a high frame rate doesn't really matter whatsoever, although I know some folks may turn their nose up at a, erm, 'cinematic' frame rate.