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Mount & Blade II: Bannerlord - Performance Tweaks and Settings Guide

Created by kony   ::   Apr 5, 2020    


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A guide explaining which settings you need to change in order to run Bannerlord smoothly.

Guide to Performance Tweaks and Settings



Introduction



We all have different hardware as well as demands, therefore writing perfect settings for one or few configurations will help almost no one. Therefore there came an idea to me that explaining how various settings work should help you configure your game to however you'd like it to run.


Aspects to consider before setting up Bannerlord:

Do you focus on single or multi player game?

Multiplayer is always significantly more demanding than singleplayer, therefore if you plan on playing both I recommend testing results in multiplayer. It is very possible that your PC might run SP smoothly on high, but struggle with stable frame rates on medium in MP.

Monitor refresh rate and expectations

Do you aim at 30, 60, or 144 FPS? When playing single player, the amount of FPS will not matter as much as the player's reaction as well as intelligence (at least I hope so) will always surpass bots. Therefore choosing stable 30 FPS and more beautiful graphic settings might be more preferable to some than lower quality but smoother image. This is very subjective. Nonetheless, for multiplayer I strongly recommend aiming at 60 FPS or more as the difference might be a matter of killing your enemy or losing to him as with FPS around 30 will give you inferior reaction to what is happening. Giving up graphical eye candy for more smooth image should be your preference. 144 FPS should be aim only if you have high refresh-rate display and powerful hardware to support it.

General performance of your system

Be realistic, how do you suspect the game will run on your hardware? You will not get decent results the first time, so start at some likely to be satisfying results the first time and then either lower or improve settings depending how the game works for you.

The game's performance depends on: CPU, GPU, RAM and drive. I will assume that you have at least 16 GB of RAM, because if you do not, then you really should upgrade it. The speed of RAM should not affect performance in any significant way, therefore this guide will not mention it further. The guide will focus on the CPU, GPU and drive dependency.

Keeping in mind all of the above, let's begin.

CPU and GPU Settings



The below settings should help you change settings depending how CPU or GPU limited your PC is. Next to each setting I put in brackets the device it is dependent. You can ignore "drive" requirements if you have SSD, however, if you still use HDD, then keep those on low.

Audio

Sound Channels (CPU high): Unless you have a high end CPU, then set the sound channels to 128 (low). This will lower demand on CPU while you're unlikely to hear much difference in the game anyway.

Video

  • Screen Resolution (GPU): Preferably use native of your monitor, only lower if otherwise game is unplayable. Lowering will result in extremely blurry image (unless you still use CRT monitor).
  • Resolution Scale (GPU): Same as screen resolution, but lowers only 3D resolution without 2D menus.
  • V-Sync (GPU): Disable unless you experience screen tearing.

Performance

Estimated GPU Memory Usage: Watch that it never goes beyond your GPU's capacity when changing any settings!

  • Shader Quality (GPU, CPU)
  • Texture Streaming Budget (GPU memory) - 3 GB of VRAM is already enough to run it on Very High
  • Texture Quality (GPU, drive)
  • Shadow Quality (GPU)
  • Shadow Type (CPU, GPU)
  • Shadow Filtering (GPU)
  • Particle Detail (CPU, GPU)
  • Particle Quality (GPU)
  • Foliage Quality (GPU, CPU)
  • Character Detail (CPU, GPU)
  • Environment Detail (CPU, GPU)
  • Terrain Quality (GPU)
  • Number of Ragdolls (CPU)
  • Occlusion Method (GPU)
  • Texture Filtering (GPU)
  • Water Quality (GPU)
  • Anti-aliasing (GPU)
  • Lighting Quality (CPU, GPU)
  • Decal Quantity (CPU)
  • Depth of Field (GPU)
  • Screen Space Reflection (GPU)
  • Cloth Simulation (GPU)
  • Interactive Grass (CPU)
  • Sun Shafts (GPU)
  • Subsurface Scattering (GPU)
  • Tesselation (GPU)
  • Bloom (GPU)
  • Film Grain (GPU)
  • Motion Blur (GPU)

Multiplayer Siege Mode Settings Examples



Siege (60vs60 PvP) is the most demanding part of Bannerlord. This mode really puts your hardware to its knees. Siege requires significantly more GPU power than in other MP modes or SP. The performance is basically halved in contrast with other game modes.

To give you an idea, here is my hardware and what settings I use to run stable 60 FPS. I welcome others to share theirs.

  • i7-8550u (1800-4000 MHz, 4c/8t).
  • 16 GB RAM DDR3.
  • GTX 1060 3GB.
  • PCIe SSD.

With the above setup I am limited by my GPU, while CPU performs perfectly fine. That means that I can set settings that use CPU high, while I need to keep GPU demanding settings low.

  • Resolution - 1920x1200 (100% resolution scale).
  • Shader Quality - LOW.
  • Texture Streaming Budget - VERY HIGH.
  • Texture Quality - MEDIUM.
  • Shadow Quality - LOW.
  • Shadow Type - STATIC ONLY.
  • Shadow Filtering - NONE.
  • Particle Detail - LOW.
  • Particle Quality - LOW.
  • Foliage Quality - LOW.
  • Character Detail - LOW.
  • Environment Detail - LOW.
  • Terrain Quality - LOW.
  • Number of Ragdolls - UNLIMITED.
  • Occlusion Method - NONE.
  • Texture Filtering - TRILINEAR.
  • Water Quality - MEDIUM.
  • Anti-aliasing - NONE.
  • Lighting Quality - MEDIUM.
  • Decal Quantity - HIGH.
  • All additional settings OFF.

In comparison, when playing SP battles I can set preset to high and have stable 60 FPS.

W.I.P.



Created by kony.