Earlier this year Microsoft released the DX12-powered Gears of War: Ultimate Edition on PC, and it was a stuttering mess. Looks like Microsoft and developer The Coalition learned a lot from that debacle, because the Windows 10 version of Gears of War 4 runs like a proper PC release should.
Now keep in mind that I have a magical PC that somehow manages to avoid major issues that plague other PC gamers. Batman: Arkham Knight was fine for me, and while I’ve had a great experience with Forza Horizon 3 on PC, many others have not.
In an age where console to PC ports are generally barebones affairs presented with only the bare minimum of graphics settings, Gears of War 4 features a massive array of tweakable things to ensure your system can handle what it’s dishing out. While multi GPU support is still in the works and it doesn’t have exclusive fullscreen (dammit), it has just about everything else.
Here’s a rundown of the tweakables, courtesy of the game’s built-in benchmark. Note the graphics card and CPU I am playing on in the screen.
Also note those frames. This is me, running the game without making any tweaks to the settings aside from setting the resolution from the default 4K to standard HD. I didn’t tweak my graphics card, change any settings. I probably should, but for now a 120+ average is just fine by me.
Here’s the actual benchmark test in action.
Note that after I ran the test I realize there were still two settings that were not maxxed. Both screen space reflections and depth of field can be upped to insane, which lowered the average FPS to around 90 at 1920 x 1080.
Meanwhile, at 4K ultra settings . . .
An average of 40 is more than playable, all things considered. In fact, the lower frame rate makes the transition between gameplay and cinematic scenes a bit less jarring. I could probably squeeze a bit more performance out of the game by following Nvidia’s ridiculously in-depth tweak guide, but I don’t want to.
This is a beautiful game that’s running beautifully on my PC. Despite somehow playing through each game in the series, I’m not the biggest Gears of War fan. That said, I am having a joy of a time so far. Maybe I am a Gears fan and just won’t admit it. Either way, Gears of War 4 feels like a PC game, and not a port of a console title that wasn’t officially announced until a few months before launch.
If you’re interested in playing on PC, here’s how powerful your system must be to do so.