Thursday, November 5th 2015

Black Ops III: 12 GB RAM and GTX 980 Ti Not Enough

This year's installment to the Call of Duty franchise, Black Ops III, has just hit stores, and is predictably flying off shelves. As with every ceremonial annual release, Black Ops III raises the visual presentation standards for the franchise. There is, however, one hitch with the way the game deals with system memory amounts as high as 12 GB and video memory amounts as high as 8 GB. This hitch could possibly be the reason behind the stuttering issues many users are reporting.

In our first play-through of the game with its highest possible settings on our personal gaming machines - equipped with a 2560 x 1600 pixels display, Core i7 "Haswell" quad-core CPU, 12 GB of RAM, a GeForce GTX 980 Ti graphics card, NVIDIA's latest Black Ops III Game Ready driver 385.87, and Windows 7 64-bit to top it all off, we noticed that the game was running out of memory. Taking a peek at Task Manager revealed that in "Ultra" settings (and 2560 x 1600 resolution), the game was maxing out memory usage within our 12 GB, not counting the 1.5-2 GB used up by the OS and essential lightweight tasks (such as antivirus).
We also noticed game crashes as little as 10 seconds into gameplay, on a machine with 8 GB of system memory and a GTX 980 Ti.

What's even more interesting is its video memory behavior. The GTX 980 Ti, with its 6 GB video memory, was developing a noticeable stutter. This stutter disappeared on the GTX TITAN X, with its 12 GB video memory, in which memory load shot up from maxed out 6 GB on the GTX 980 Ti, to 8.4 GB on the video memory. What's more, system memory usage dropped with the GTX TITAN X, down to 8.3 GB.
On Steam Forums, users report performance issues that don't necessarily point at low FPS (frames per second), but stuttering, especially at high settings. Perhaps the game needs better memory management. Once we installed 16 GB RAM in the system, the game ran buttery-smooth with our GTX 980 Ti.
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168 Comments on Black Ops III: 12 GB RAM and GTX 980 Ti Not Enough

#51
ElNiko
I remember playing COD MW2 on a Pentium 4, 1gb DDR and my first dedicated video, HD5450. That P4 though, melted three 4-pin 12v PSU connectors...

MW3 started stuttering if maxed out anyway, so now that I got my i5-2500/8gb/HD7870 and thought I could run almost everything on my 720p old screen, this comes to me... F*ck you, Activision ! Down here in Argentina things cost triple than there !
Posted on Reply
#52
hhumas
wtf cod bop iii . first flop of black ops
Posted on Reply
#53
KarymidoN
rooivalk said:
Ha! who said 8GB VRAM on 390 useless xD
:pimp:

n-ster said:
An interesting test to do is how it behaves with Fury and its HBM
Probably will not be better. From what has been shown so far this game needs a lot of memory, not Faster memory and a Greater Bandwidth (as HBM). TitanX (12gb), R9 390 (8GB) must be Good
Posted on Reply
#54
Serpent of Darkness
Szaby59 said:
Activision must be jealous to the "attention" what WB got with Batman: AK if they allowed to release this... :wtf:
WB recently posted that they can't fix the issues found in Batman: Arkham Knight. So whether this "might" computes to increased sales because of the publicity, or an acknowledgement of failure, I honestly don't think it's going to help WB in the least. The same could be said for Black OPs 3. The issue could very well be a memory leak of some type. Other's have mention Crysis 3. On it's release day, it needed a patch because it was stuttering on Ultra or Very High Settings, and the patch fixed it. So this could be a typical hic-up on release day that a lot of games experience.


GhostRyder said:
So basically we are stuck with about 5 video cards with enough video memory to run this game at ultra...
I fail to see the relevant point. We are getting to a point where games are being pushed to the extremes. The cries of many PC Gaming Enthusiast "wishes" are coming true to fully utilize hardware for the best gaming experience that could possibly be provided. When the masses get what they want, they cry at the cost that comes with it. Imagine how much TPU and others are going to cry when Star Citizens is released. How many discrete graphic cards are you going to count when you have to render ships and cockpits that use more than 7 digits worth for points, not including baked high-res texture maps, not including displacements and AO maps, just so you get the eye-candy experience you've been demanding? I find it irrelevant because if we want better PC Games, and I'm not talking about 100% functioning games, we have to pay for it not with money alone. We have to pay for it in our systems to process the work necessary to play them. The money we invest in our systems determines in some proportion the level of experience we'll get as an output. If Black OPs 3 requires 16 GBs CPU Framebuffer just to push higher resolutions of texture, particle effects, shadows, and other crap at decent FPS, then either deal with it or don't. Just take into account that this is the future... We've lived in a PC Era were the demands weren't high, and our systems could easily over-kill on the requirements. Now that we want more, and we are getting more, the over-kill factor is slowly shrinking.


GigabyteFanBoy said:
why are people calling this the new crysis? Wont this just be patched in no time and then it will be just another call of duty game.
They are calling it the new Crysis because of it's consumption. It requires around 16 GBs CPU Ram to run on the highest settings, and it uses more than 6GBs of VRAM on the discrete graphic card's GPU Framebuffer just to push the highest level of graphics and play. Simple answer, it's pushing the bar. Basically, it has a lot of information being stored on the GPU and CPU side. Some are saying this could be memory leaks, and I can see where they are coming from. I suspect that higher resolution baked Textures is one thing. Another is less to do with the game-engine itself, and more to do with the level of detail they have on their models, in the game. High detailed models equates to high use of polygons. High use of polygons per models equates to higher system demands and memory usage just to store the information. Add multiple high poly models in a scene, and you increase the demands on the CPU and GPU side. A lot of players don't realize that on the 3D side of the spectrum, a lot of games use lower QUAD-models for characters and models. Take for example Planetside 2. We are probably looking at roughly 7,000 pt models of characters, per player, x 50 to 100 players in a given region, not including the terrain in the area, or the building (assuming of course your looking at it so it's being rendered), plus a bunch of other crap like explosions, tanks, flying vehicles, tracers, etc-- is what made the game so demanding... I know for a fact that one of the spaceships from Star Citizens, I think it's the Mustang, had a poly count of over 100,000 points. It could be more than that. Typically if you want to add more detail into your models, you increase the point count. For PC games, you want the points count to be low so you can render other 3D objects in the scene at a faster time.
Posted on Reply
#55
ZeppMan217
Serpent of Darkness said:
Simple answer, it's pushing the bar.
Does it? Crysis had unmatched visual fidelity in 2007, what's so special about BLOPS3?
Posted on Reply
#56
chr0nos
This is just lazy coding at worst (or best IYKWIM :rolleyes:)

People wanted games that used the most resources, that does not mean they have to use it wisely. :nutkick:
Posted on Reply
#57
GhostRyder
Serpent of Darkness said:

I fail to see the relevant point. We are getting to a point where games are being pushed to the extremes. The cries of many PC Gaming Enthusiast "wishes" are coming true to fully utilize hardware for the best gaming experience that could possibly be provided. When the masses get what they want, they cry at the cost that comes with it. Imagine how much TPU and others are going to cry when Star Citizens is released. How many discrete graphic cards are you going to count when you have to render ships and cockpits that use more than 7 digits worth for points, not including baked high-res texture maps, not including displacements and AO maps, just so you get the eye-candy experience you've been demanding? I find it irrelevant because if we want better PC Games, and I'm not talking about 100% functioning games, we have to pay for it not with money alone. We have to pay for it in our systems to process the work necessary to play them. The money we invest in our systems determines in some proportion the level of experience we'll get as an output. If Black OPs 3 requires 16 GBs CPU Framebuffer just to push higher resolutions of texture, particle effects, shadows, and other crap at decent FPS, then either deal with it or don't. Just take into account that this is the future... We've lived in a PC Era were the demands weren't high, and our systems could easily over-kill on the requirements. Now that we want more, and we are getting more, the over-kill factor is slowly shrinking.
What exactly are you inferring with that comment???

First of all, yes pushing the envelope requires that technology advance and is a good thing when done correctly as it delivers a next level experience to the gamers which in turn requires more hardware to keep up with. However, this is not one of those cases and as we have all seen from the screenshots and Beta's for this game its not anything to write home about graphics wise. When we compare games like GTA 5, Witcher 3, or any AAA title in recent times and compare their performance and requirements to this it becomes pretty obvious how ridiculous the requirements are.

If this game was delivering breath taking visuals, AI that is smarter than the average, and/or set pieces that are bigger than what we have seen before that would be a different story. What this is, is either a bug in the system (Likely a memory leak), lazy coding, or something else...

ZeppMan217 said:
Does it? Crysis had unmatched visual fidelity in 2007, what's so special about BLOPS3?
^Bingo
Posted on Reply
#58
Filip Georgievski
First of all, I played (almost) all of the COD series (single and multi player).
You can see my config in my details.
I have never had problems with COD (not even with Advanced Warfare running on high settings)
I think that this is too much of Activision to ask as not all of us have money to afford those parts (TITAN X 12GB = 500eur +)
My opinion is poor coding since I did play Crysis 3 on medium to high with this config and It does 50fps tops, 35fps min.
Posted on Reply
#59
Ubersonic
A CoD game that's really really badly coded? whatever next :P
Posted on Reply
#60
Filip Georgievski
Just the case of old engine, new game.....

You all remember Mafia 2 right? Of course you do...
Toughest game ever for most PCs, beside Crysis 3....
I was released 2011 as I recall (correct me if I'm wrong)
Mafia 3 is scheduled to be released in 2016.
5 years of working on a game? Even a Comodore 64 will be able to run this game with a frame or 2.
COD AW - 2014 to COD BO3 - 2015
Really? Just 1 year to get the game out?
Posted on Reply
#61
Bytales
truth teller said:

this is call of doody blac kops 4-1, released in november 2015


this is unreal tournament 3, released in november 2007

one was released 8 years ago and works perfectly fine on 2gb of ram and 0.5gb vram
the other is a pile of coder vomit that requires 8gb on a professional graphics card paired along with 12gb of ram to minimally function, at least until the next crash

if your kid asks for this for christmas you are failing at parenting
LOOOOL, COder Vomit, you couldnt have said it better if you wanted.
Probably they tested on their Server with 256 gb ram and 16/12gb Fire/Quadro Cards. Oh look, it works flawlesly, that means ist ready, lets start selling it.

CoD-(Er Vo-Mit) looooool
Posted on Reply
#62
64K
Filip Georgievski said:

COD AW - 2014 to COD BO3 - 2015
Really? Just 1 year to get the game out?
There were two different developers for those games published by Activision. The developer Treyarch spent a couple of years making Black Ops 3.
Posted on Reply
#63
yogurt_21
Filip Georgievski said:
Just the case of old engine, new game.....

You all remember Mafia 2 right? Of course you do...
Toughest game ever for most PCs, beside Crysis 3....
I was released 2011 as I recall (correct me if I'm wrong)
Mafia 3 is scheduled to be released in 2016.
5 years of working on a game? Even a Comodore 64 will be able to run this game with a frame or 2.
COD AW - 2014 to COD BO3 - 2015
Really? Just 1 year to get the game out?
multiple teams typically work on the series more than likely taking far longer than a year on each game. Black Ops 2 was released in 2012 Id imagine this is the same group that worked on that game.

also we are talking Ultra, used to be a setting reserved for only the highest graphics solutions and cpu/memory setups.

A 980 Ti and 12GB of memory is nicer than most setups, but it's not a Haswell E rig with 128GB of memory and 980 Ti sli.

I seem to remember Doom 3 on ultra at 2048x1536 being out of my rigs capabilities, also Quake 4 on ultra.

I remember a 7800GTX not being enough even in sli as you were out of vram and a single X1800XT being laughed off as having enough vram but not enough ROP's so X1800XT Crossfire with that annoying master card was the only thing that could run it along with an Athlon 64 clocked to over 3GHZ (FX-57 was the fastest at stock at 2.8GHZ and even it struggled) This was the single core days. When 2GB kits ruled the roost and this game really wanted 4GB. The 7800GTX 512MB came out in limited quantities, it made ultra playable at 1080P but you still needed sli for 2048x1536. Really Ultra on these games didn't really become playable until the next series of graphics cards and cpus. By then you had dual core cpu's, 4GB kits of DDR2 800(as opposed to DDR400) and the X1900XTX and 7900GTX. Even then at 2048x1536 and Ultra you had to crossfire or SLI.

Lately Ultra = 400$ graphics card + 500$ cpu/mem/mobo combination. That's not Ultra, that's medium at best.
Posted on Reply
#64
iSkylaker
Well isn't that obvious? this is what happen when you try to push things above the average. isn't 1080p @ 120fps enough?

Tomorrow I'll bet people will tell me 8GB of RAM isn't enough for gaming... :rolleye:
Posted on Reply
#65
iSkylaker
yogurt_21 said:
Lately Ultra = 400$ graphics card + 500$ cpu/mem/mobo combination. That's not Ultra, that's medium at best.
You couldn't be more wrong with that statement, Ultra doesn't necessarily means having x8 of MSAA, which is what taxes the most the performance of a game when you setup the "Ultra" preset of a game. I'm pretty sure the sample quality isn't part of a developer goal when targeting the final visual results in a video game, anything above x2 MSAA, heck even above any post-processing Anti Aliasing technique is pretty much a complement for more sharpness in the image.
Posted on Reply
#66
Parn
This kind of vram requirement is simply absurd.

If they do a survey on Steam, they will find out that 980Ti owners are among the minority let alone TITAN X. And let's not forget Fury X which is the top dog from AMD but is only equiped with 4GB VRAM. If 980Ti and Fury X cannot even run the game smoothly, guess how many average gamers with 970 and 290 are going to buy this game?
Posted on Reply
#67
rtwjunkie
PC Gaming Enthusiast
Ahem.....I've been saying for the last year, stop advising new PC builders they only need 8GB of RAM. 16GB will quickly become the new 8. But everyone keeps laughing at me on here when I say it. :rolleyes:
Posted on Reply
#68
iSkylaker
Parn said:
This kind of vram requirement is simply absurd.

If they do a survey on Steam, they will find out that 980Ti owners are among the minority let alone TITAN X. And let's not forget Fury X which is the top dog from AMD but is only equiped with 4GB VRAM. If 980Ti and Fury X cannot even run the game smoothly, guess how many average gamers with 970 and 290 are going to buy this game?
Is not like is a VRAM requirement, its probably that the game is not optimized to scale well at those resolutions. I assume by using the "Ultra" preset it also includes any taxing AA technique like MSAA with a high sample quality. The render buffer can be like four or eight times bigger depending on the sample quality.
Posted on Reply
#69
iSkylaker
rtwjunkie said:
Ahem.....I've been saying for the last year, stop advising new PC builders they only need 8GB of RAM. 16GB will quickly become the new 8. But everyone keeps laughing at me on here when I say it. :rolleyes:
It didn't take long enough it seems, like 20 min. Check the my comments above... and yeah I'm currently laughing at you.
Posted on Reply
#70
rtwjunkie
PC Gaming Enthusiast
iSkylaker said:
It didn't take long enough it seems, like 20 min. Check the my comments above... and yeah I'm currently laughing at you.
Sorry, I couldn't wait for my "I told you so" as soon as I read the first post. And I'm on record in these forums for the last year advising people 8GB is not "enough" anymore.

Also, the moderators frown deeply on double and triple posting.
Posted on Reply
#71
iSkylaker
rtwjunkie said:
Sorry, I couldn't wait for my "I told you so" as soon as I read the first post. And I'm on record in these forums for the last year advising people 8GB is not "enough" anymore.

Also, the moderators frown deeply on double and triple posting.
To be fair and with no offence, I'm afraid you will keep telling people that for the next 2 years.

And sorry for multiple posting.
Posted on Reply
#72
Basard
W1zzard said:
or have 16 GB RAM, which makes GTX 980 Ti work flawlessly
So how much system RAM do I need if my card is only 1280MB?
Posted on Reply
#73
rtwjunkie
PC Gaming Enthusiast
iSkylaker said:
To be fair and with no offence, I'm afraid you will keep telling people that for the next 2 years.

And sorry for multiple posting.
You are likely right. Sooner or later though, people will think the sky is falling. Then all those that haven't upgraded to Skylake or higher will be scrambling to buy the dwindling stockpiles of DDR3. The two combined will make for a very expensive upgrade.

But...people tend to get set in their ways.

About the postings, just trying to help. :) Hopefully it will save you some grief later.
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#74
InhaleOblivion
This is just facepalm inducing. Oh well another game to avoid at launch. :banghead: :twitch:
Posted on Reply
#75
Dieinafire
The only reason you need that much ram is your using heavy AA and Supersampling
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