keywords: Graphics, Optimization at Deep Level


Documents - Comprehensive

The Visual Technology of Gears 5 | Unreal Dev Days 2019 | Unreal Engine
The Visual Technology of Gears 5

Improving visuals while achieving 60fps using Unreal Engine 4

The making of Gears 5: how the Coalition hit 60fps - and improved visual quality

Gears 5 Graphics Options Performance Breakdown

Performance Tips when Writing Shaders

Documents - Drawcalls

The engine draws the things you see on the screen in batches and such a batch is called a drawcall.

The time a drawcall takes consists of two parts:

  • a static overhead, that is always the same no matter how many things get drawn;
  • a dynamic part that depends on how many things there are to draw;

One basic thing is that each model in idTech4 gets drawn once per light that hits that model. And each of these draws of the model is split into drawcalls for each material.

So if you have a model with two different materials that is hit by 3 lights, the entire model is drawn 3 times, and the engine uses 2 * 3 = 6 drawcalls to do so.

Reference: Drawcalls

Documents - Unsynchronized Mapping

Approaching Zero Driver Overhead
GDC 2014: Approaching Zero Driver Overhead (AZDO) in OpenGL
Best Practices for Working with Vertex Data
Map Buffer Range Super Slow?

Documents - Vulkan

Arm Best Practice warnings in the Vulkan SDK (Arm Mali GPUs)

GPU Rendering and Multi-Draw Indirect
Vulkan Samples of Performance

Documents - Compiling

Branches in mobile shaders


Papers - Ambient Occlusion Visualization

Ambient Occlusion Opacity Mapping for Visualization of Internal Molecular Structure


Blogs - Texture

The top mip level of a texture is responsible for about 75% of the memory usage, so dropping one or two mip levels should be plenty of texture detail range for any game. For example starting with 2GB of textures and dropping two mip levels from all of them would take you down to 128MB of textures.

Also note that if you’re running out of texture memory D3DFMT_DXT1 is 8 times smaller than D3DFMT_X8R8G8B8 and should be less of a quality reduction than dropping a mip level.


Blogs - Frame Analysis

GTA V - Graphics Study

Behind the Pretty Frames: God of War


Books - Lighting Issues Visualization

Computer Graphics and Imaging
Computer Graphics and Imaging (October 23, 2019)

Tools & Frameworks

Tools - Lighting Issues Visualization

Quoted from Dynamic analytic indirect light:
Triangulating the direct light enables analytic integrals for diffuse geometry with correct occlusion. The occlusion step uses the Sutherland–Hodgman algorithm to determine overlap between triangles. Complexity is O(n^4) and the shader is found here:
The faster version skips indirect occlusion and is O(n^3):

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