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Stalker Clear Sky solution(s) for "Black box;" "Lines" and low quality shadows

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#1
This is for users who are experiencing the black box that surrounds your character, the texture lines that run along the ground and also for those who wish to increase the quality of their shadows without a performance degredation.

This has been documented primarily with Vista users, a large portion being ATI GPU owners, however it does affect others. It also does not matter whether you use Static, Full, Dynamic or Enhanced visual modes.

In each of the following screen shots, I will show you the variable/command used in the User.ltx(your game/user profile) file accompanied with it's default (or near default) value, and what the effect/anomaly looks like. Then, to counter it, I will show you the optimized or increased IQ picture, with the appropriate settings/variables that should be used in the User.ltx file.

I prefer to run the game, open the console with the tilda "~" key, and enter the commands that way, which will automatically save to your User.ltx file. This saves any possible overrides and conflicts that might occur, if you set them manually through the .ltx file, and THEN start the game for the first time since making the adjustments. You also do not need to restart the game, once you've entered the new command values.


1) The Black Box.

Some users, primarily those using 1.5.04 or 1.5.05 have seen this, which moves with you wherever you go or turn:

R2_Sun_Near 4


R2_Sun_Near 1
(Fixed)




2) Black/Grey lines across textures(primarily on the ground):

R2_Sun_Depth_Far_Bias 0


R2_Sun_Depth_Far_Bias -0.001
(Fixed)



3) Missing shadows, or parts of shadows and/or faux-dyanamic shadows drawing while in motion(compare the tree shadow against the side of the white barn in each picture):

R2_Sun_Tsm On


R2_Sun_Tsm Off
(Fixed)



4) Low resolution, wobbly and shimmering shadows:

R2_Sun_Far 100


R2_Sun_Far 51
(Fixed)




5) Fine tune shadows:

R2_Sun_Focus Off


R2_Sun_Focus On
(Fixed)




Here is a final shot with all of the adjustments:








As a last note, and word of warning. When you use R2_Sun_Far 51, you receive the best possible shadow quality, but from time to time you will find black lines(not like the ones in the screenshots above) instead of actual shadows, far out on distant landscape. It's probably only seen about 5% of the time, and isn't intrusive, but if it does bother you, you can use R2_Sun_Far 70 and that should be a fair compromise.


If anyone happens to know a resolution for the bugged texture shimmering when playing in XP, please do fill me in. I'd like to go back to it for the Edge AA and MSAA, even if Vista does net better performance.
 
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#2
excellent post, man, should help many people out! :toast:


As a last note, and word of warning. When you use R2_Sun_Far 51, you receive the best possible shadow quality, but from time to time you will find black lines(not like the ones in the screenshots above) instead of actual shadows, far out on distant landscape. It's probably only seen about 5% of the time, and isn't intrusive, but if it does bother you, you can use R2_Sun_Far 70 and that should be a fair compromise.

just wanted to point out the black-line shadow thing here - I think that's by design. At a certain distance, shadows don't look "filled-in", and you get those lines. If you pay real close attention to those shadows, while getting closer to a wall . . . past a certain distance, they go from broken lines to fleshed out shadows.

now if there was only a way to increase this distance setting . . .
 
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#3
Yes, though I didn't take a screenshot of that. I will eventually.
 

jimmyme

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#4
Great post, I was hating how so many shadows would 'pop' into view. I had twaked most of the settings you have specified here but nothing came out that good.
I tried these settings, then tweaked them to my liking and now no shadows jumping up and they are all of a good quality.
Thanks man!

PS you should post this helpful info over at gsc-forums!?
 
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#5
I have, though I've just linked it back to here since you can't thumbnail on GSC.
 
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#6
one question, nc - there's a slightly irritating issues I've had occasionally and haven't pinned down . . .

it happens all times of day, but more noticeable during dusk and dawn. It's like textures vanish for a quick second and reappear, sometimes like they're flashing - I say it's more noticeable early and late in the day because there are more darker textures, so they're noticed easier . . . almost like a flashing. But, if you stand still, or move slower, it's not as bad.

any ideas?
 
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#7
The nature of that makes me think it's driver related, or your GPUs texture capacity or texture fill rate. Are those 1gb versions?

Can you test it with only one card running?
 
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#8
The nature of that makes me think it's driver related, or your GPUs texture capacity or texture fill rate. Are those 1gb versions?

Can you test it with only one card running?
naw, these puppies are 512 a pop, but I wouldn't figure I'd be hampered by tex/pixel fill rate; going by GPU-Z, my current tex fill rate is 33.8 GTexel/s, pixel fill rate s 13.5 GPixel/s; bandwidth is up there as well, 134 GB/s. Still wish I had 1GB cards, though :p

It might be driver related, but has anyone had any issues with CAT 8.10?



-edit-

I'll try to run just one card later tonight, see if it's still present . . . didn't even dawn on me it might be a crossfire related issue . . .
 
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#9
thanks dude

i hate that black box i was gonna post about it in another thread. lets hope i can fix it
 
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#10
Welcome Chrome.

Yes do so Imperial, at least if anything, to rule it out.