Tuesday, September 1st 2020

SSD Becomes a System Requirement, 100GB SSD Required for WoW Shadowlands

PC game minimum system requirements have until now prescribed minimum storage space. Blizzard's upcoming "World of Warcraft: Shadowlands" changes this, with the game specifically calling for at least 100 GB of SSD storage. Windows already has a way of telling an HDD from an SSD, and game developers can in theory enforce the requirement. With "Shadowlands," though, there doesn't appear to be any enforcement, with numerous VIPs on the Blizzard forums reporting that the game should launch from HDDs, albeit game load times could hurt. With next-generation game consoles implementing SSD for their higher transfer rates - but more importantly - for their significantly lower access times compared to HDDs, SSD as a system requirement on the PC platform was bound to happen. The gaming industry is designing its next-generation gaming experiencing around the low access times of SSD, and an HDD would fall short. The game's other system requirements are listed below.
Source: Notebookcheck
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77 Comments on SSD Becomes a System Requirement, 100GB SSD Required for WoW Shadowlands

#1
BorisDG
PC oriented game so I see no reason for adapting it to an SSD... and don't forget it's 15+ year old so I'm not expecting some streaming issues.
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#2
YoRkFiElD
Is a RAID0 from 3x 970EVO 250GB running all at x4 PCIE lanes + another 970EVO 500GB for OS ok?
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#3
gdallsk
an old ass engine, where new features are bolted on with self tappers
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#4
ExcuseMeWtf
BorisDG
PC oriented game so I see no reason for adapting it to an SSD... and don't forget it's 15+ year old so I'm not expecting some streaming issues.
It doesn't matter if we see reasons or not, if actual users have checked this and reported issues with loading times.

Much like you can frequently launch games on systems below minimum specified requirements but do not expect enjoyable gameplay.
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#6
btarunr
Editor & Senior Moderator
YoRkFiElD
Is a RAID0 from 3x 970EVO 250GB running all at x4 PCIE lanes + another 970EVO 500GB for OS ok?
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#7
Verpal
YoRkFiElD
Is a RAID0 from 3x 970EVO 250GB running all at x4 PCIE lanes + another 970EVO 500GB for OS ok?
Of course not, what are you thinking here? To fully embrace the full glory of Warcraft, you need at least 4x raid 0 Intel® Optane SSD.




This comment is sponsored by Intel and Activision Blizzard.
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#8
TheLostSwede
Game runs on potato PC, requires SSD :roll:
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#9
Easo
TheLostSwede
Game runs on potato PC, requires SSD :roll:
Yes, but also no. WoW of 2020 is a very different game, both technically and gameplay wise than it was when released in 2004.
It will run on a potato - but said potato has to be relatively modern.
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#10
TheLostSwede
Easo
Yes, but also no. WoW of 2020 is a very different game, both technically and gameplay wise than it was when released in 2004.
It will run on a potato - but said potato has to be relatively modern.
Intel UHD 630 graphics is fairly modern? AMD FX 8300 fairly modern? I guess we have different definitions of what modern means.
I think what you meant was, it can't be an antique potato PC.
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#11
TheDeeGee
Easo
Yes, but also no. WoW of 2020 is a very different game, both technically and gameplay wise than it was when released in 2004.
It will run on a potato - but said potato has to be relatively modern.
:kookoo:
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#12
Vendor
iirc, Star Citizen also recommends an SSD
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#13
Vayra86
btarunr

Those in the know... know that to the right of this dude, outside the window there are graphite pieces of the Chernobyl reactor that just blew up :D

In case that piqued anyone's interest... Chernobyl. Watch that series... you'll never forget it.
ExcuseMeWtf
It doesn't matter if we see reasons or not, if actual users have checked this and reported issues with loading times.

Much like you can frequently launch games on systems below minimum specified requirements but do not expect enjoyable gameplay.
Indeed. SSD's have been 'semi' necessary for gaming now for several years. The first omg experience for me was in Guild Wars 2. I came from loading that game off HDDs and moved to SSD later... jaw dropping. The game had long load times for a map... and you'd switch maps all the time. I could suddenly do in two hours what I used to do in half a day.

Streamed game engines similarly... have been around now for a long time. They all benefit from having an SSD as this will give the rest of your pipeline more 'time' to calculate the next frame. Storage is becoming a live part of the pipeline and I don't see how this is ever a bad thing. The more you can store, the less you need to calculate.
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#14
Imouto
I remember that Lineage II ran far better on a SSD than an HDD. If you used a RAMDisk all the storage bottlenecks were gone and your CPU was the only thing holding you back. Lineage II launched barely 1 year before WoW.
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#15
birdie
YoRkFiElD
Is a RAID0 from 3x 970EVO 250GB running all at x4 PCIE lanes + another 970EVO 500GB for OS ok?
Are you using it instead of RAM? Because it surely works as fast as RAM for lots of people.
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#16
shhnedo
Anybody wanna try Path of Exile on a mechanical drive?
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#17
Gruffalo.Soldier
I'm the only one
HDD are for peasants. I don't use them in my PC anymore. The wow subs are very low at the moment 1.7M, not too long before it is free to play with in game shop.
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#18
Shihabyooo
"System Requirements" have, for a long time now, became two thirds recommendations, one third actual requirements. SSDs fall with the former.

A game "requires" d3dx and, in some insignificant cases, a feature or two exclusive to a certain generation/designer. A simple, d3d10 game wouldn't care if you launched it on a GT630 or an RTX2080. It will run significantly slower on the former, but that's up to the user to decide if it was acceptable or not.

Personally, I don't see why any dev would "enforce" using an SSD, barring some extreme, Apple-esque, QA enforcement.
btarunr
The gaming industry is designing its next-generation gaming experiencing around the low access times of SSD, and an HDD would fall short.
It would be a shame to have that short, loading animation loop more than two times, that's for sure. :(
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#19
Easo
TheLostSwede
Intel UHD 630 graphics is fairly modern? AMD FX 8300 fairly modern? I guess we have different definitions of what modern means.
I think what you meant was, it can't be an antique potato PC.
I mean, yes? UHD 630 was 2017, so yeah, it absolutely is fairly modern. Sure, the AMD CPU is from 2013, but then again, 3rd gen i7's are still in use from the same time period and more than enough for lightish/mediumish gaming. Same goes for the FX 8300.

The average PC in the world is worse than what we have here in use by forum members.
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#20
xrror
Honestly this is probably aimed more at pre-empting complaints from people running the game from ancient 5400RPM (or 4200 ewww) laptop drives then filing complaints about their 20+min load times between zones.

I've actually worked with people who when we upgraded them from HDD to SDD drives were like "meh, I can't really tell much difference" then when we pulled the SSD (to use elsewhere where it would be appreciated) then kept whining about the machine being slow.

Other than the angle that they're intentionally being obtuse to try and get an entirely new machine (by claiming that it was still slow with SSD) it seems common. I guess these people just have to whine about something I guess?
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#21
EmperorOfFinland
Well i dont find this too surprising. some games are already hitting lagspikes when textures are being loaded during gameplay, one example of this was Rfactor 2 in VR, it used to cause regular 1-2 second stutters when i was playing it. that all stopped when i moved the game from my 5400rpm usb external HDD to my SSD. But not every game is suspectible for this though so it can be hard to notice stuff like this. but if you ask me i think that this will become more common with games the more we go into the future.

Meaning SSD will become mandatory for gaming at somepoint or otherwise the game keeps freezing up.

The problem with this is that Big SSD's are criminally expensive at this moment and games eat 100-200GB of space from a 2TB SSD meaning you will run out of space pretty quickly even with 2TB ssd's that cost 250€ at this moment, the NVME SSD's are even more expensive.
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#22
Gruffalo.Soldier
I'm the only one
EmperorOfFinland
Well i dont find this too surprising. some games are already hitting lagspikes when textures are being loaded during gameplay, one example of this was Rfactor 2 in VR, it used to cause regular 1-2 second stutters when i was playing it. that all stopped when i moved the game from my 5400rpm usb external HDD to my SSD. But not every game is suspectible for this though so it can be hard to notice stuff like this. but if you ask me i think that this will become more common with games the more we go into the future.

Meaning SSD will become mandatory for gaming at somepoint or otherwise the game keeps freezing up.

The problem with this is that Big SSD's are criminally expensive at this moment and games eat 100-200GB of space from a 2TB SSD
I have over 70 games installed from steam A/C on my 2TB M2 sabrent, and still have over 500GB left, so not that bad
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#23
DRDNA
EmperorOfFinland
Well i dont find this too surprising. some games are already hitting lagspikes when textures are being loaded during gameplay, one example of this was Rfactor 2 in VR, it used to cause regular 1-2 second stutters when i was playing it. that all stopped when i moved the game from my 5400rpm usb external HDD to my SSD. But not every game is suspectible for this though so it can be hard to notice stuff like this. but if you ask me i think that this will become more common with games the more we go into the future.

Meaning SSD will become mandatory for gaming at somepoint or otherwise the game keeps freezing up.

The problem with this is that Big SSD's are criminally expensive at this moment and games eat 100-200GB of space from a 2TB SSD meaning you will run out of space pretty quickly even with 2TB ssd's that cost 250€ at this moment, the NVME SSD's are even more expensive.
Yes Sir, I too have seen this and while not many games suffer there are enough that do suffer on plater drives!
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#24
Legacy-ZA
Yes, SSD's recommended all round, but the high prices and my wallet say no.

The irony is, it's far more expensive to make HDD's and much heavier to ship, increasing shipping costs. :rolleyes:
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#25
EmperorOfFinland
It all depends on the size of the games ofcourse, i have couple that hit 100-200GB per game. 2TB used to be plenty of space before but now its kinda low amount of space. personally i cant justify adding smaller than 2TB drives for my system for anything else than os since thouse drives are just a waste of a sata or nvme slot.

Im not sure how the way the new consoles load their textures is going to change games for the PC
But i know the mass adoption for SSD's for gaming is when the 2TB drives will drop to about 130€. they are still about 100€ from that though.
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