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Author Topic: FPS issue on slow PCs: Worse than before? Or same?  (Read 7415 times)

i2amroy

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Re: FPS issue on slow PCs: Worse than before? Or same?
« Reply #15 on: February 03, 2013, 11:03:52 pm »

I think I've heard that quantum stockpiling can help reduce lag.  Maybe someone can confirm or dis-confirm that.

Avoiding embarks with lots of flowing water is also good.  A major river can give me an FPS hit even when I only have the starting 7 dwarves on a 3*3 embark.

I can't really say whether FPS issues are better or worse, because I've switched computers- except that I have noticed a big difference in worldgen taking longer in the new version.  This could be because I'm using a laptop, but it doesn't seem to correspond to a major drop in FPS during fortress mode.
1)Quantum stockpiling doesn't really reduce lag. You might get some small increases due to the reduced need of pathfinding, but that's about it.
2)Flowing liquids do cause large FPS drops, yes, but 7/7 liquids do not. Therefore a river shouldn't contribute too much to your FPS until you start messing with it (or if parts of it freeze at different times) in which case it will contribute much more.
3)World gen has gotten slower over time since 31.x as Toady is having the game track more things (items and various site stuff). The game as a whole has gotten faster though.
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enizer

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Re: FPS issue on slow PCs: Worse than before? Or same?
« Reply #16 on: February 04, 2013, 07:40:38 am »

DFhack "cleanowned scattered" can give a huge boost in fps, confiscate all the x(pig tail sock)x scattered about and such, sell all the crap to a caravan, not nearly as much in the most recent versions though, where x(clothing)x gets dumped and rots away, but it's still something

DFhack "clean all" can also help i feel, especially in areas with rain and outdoors pastures, a wet goat isnt JUST wet, every body part individually is wet, and for just ten goats that's well over a hundred *wet* attributes(obviously this is totally pointless DURING rain)
edit: also this feels more importnant for dwarves then animals since they actually CARE, causing *i'm wet* related thoughts,

generally rivers are not an issue, it's mostly waterfalls, i had to abandon a embark where i found a 40 tile wide river with a waterfall, at no point even in the start there did fps go above 20(i normally have 80+ in busy forts)

RL friend just mentioned: with all those tiny calculations and heavy ram use, can i run dwarf fortress entirely on a video card, those seem better suited to that kind of calculations?
« Last Edit: February 04, 2013, 07:44:01 am by enizer »
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Sutremaine

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Re: FPS issue on slow PCs: Worse than before? Or same?
« Reply #17 on: February 04, 2013, 10:33:16 am »

not nearly as much in the most recent versions though, where x(clothing)x gets dumped and rots away
I didn't think the game did that. I've seen XXclothingXX ending up in refuse stockpiles, but nothing less worn than that.

It is something you can set up by yourself though -- you can separate clothing according to production location or quality level, and have foreign or base-quality items placed in a clothing stockpile that has the Refuse option enabled but doesn't take any item within the Refuse option.
« Last Edit: February 04, 2013, 10:35:29 am by Sutremaine »
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Thundercraft

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Re: FPS issue on slow PCs: Worse than before? Or same?
« Reply #18 on: February 04, 2013, 11:01:49 am »

Another Mod that not only adds gigatons of content, but it also increases FPS really well: Masterwork.
I keep seeing this as well, but the only source of this is Meph himself. And I can't see how assigning the same attributes to every functionally identical material would make the drain caused by the storing and processing of the said attribute, leather names being the example. To me it appeared to run slower, just as any other extension mod.
It does seem suspicious that the only actual source of that speed claim is the author and he says that ~25% (for Accelerated DF) was based on "an educated guess". However, the fact that many quickly recommend this mod for FPS woes makes it sound tempting.

Question: If you found Masterwork to "run slower, just as any other extension mod", what do you think causes this slow down? The Accelerated DF portion (assigning same attributes to stuff) sounds like it should - in theory - simplify things and give DF less stuff to keep track of. But then, perhaps that part does not work as advertised, while the huge volumes of extra stuff it adds does contribute significantly to bogging down the system?

I'm confused because if the simplification techniques of Accelerated DF are not effective, then how is it that the complexity added by extension mods makes it worse? I would think if one is false, then the other would be false as well.

But, if it works by mostly by simplifying 'types' and renaming vanilla stuff to keep the names simplified, I can understand how that should not boost speed noticeably. Or maybe the increase in sluggishness from the added complexity trumps any minor speed gain from the FPS tweaks?
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Di

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Re: FPS issue on slow PCs: Worse than before? Or same?
« Reply #19 on: February 04, 2013, 12:58:10 pm »

Those mods tend to add a whole bunch of syndromey-interacting mechanics to a game each of which adding an additional counter to be processed for each tick. A couple dozens of dwarfs affected by fb's rot wouldn't add much of a work, but if you have a significant part of a fort affected by a couple of syndromes and capable of several interactions you'd get hundreds of additional computations per each tick, one of those pony-mods being the pinnacle of the case.

As for the list of materials, I believe that when stored in memory objects have a pointer to a material table in them. And it won't go away even if every object in game is made of the same stuff. As for the material table, I guess that given the amount of identical materials it would be natural, to make that up from a name string and a pointer to actual material template, which is the same for most of organic materials.
Removal of several pointers and strings per each animal (leather, bones, meat, fat, bodily liquids) and of like a dozen integers per each of forty stone types removed would free up like a couple of kilobytes or even a megabyte or two of your RAM, but I doubt that that would affect the speed of accessing any given memory address in memory.
Then again, those megos will be occupied by 1100+ of new creatures which I believe would take much more of memory than any material ever could.

The most that mods can do for fps is decreasing amount of items introduced to the world. And they usually do this by removing abundant clothes from invaders.
That's my thoughts on the matter.
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Thundercraft

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Re: FPS issue on slow PCs: Worse than before? Or same?
« Reply #20 on: February 05, 2013, 04:02:49 am »

Thanks for the reply and explanation. The syndrome interaction thing does sound like a likely culprit. I've read of plenty of examples where syndromes drastically reduce FPS and how DFHack is useful to fix that.

However, I found something on DFFD which seems to completely disprove the theory that lots of objects have a major impact on FPS. It's an example fort with an experimental design in item storage, complete with details of the experiment and theories on how it works:

Hamlet.Wallshadow !!Breakthrough Storage Design!!

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200k items in a fort with about 2k dug out tiles running at '50(48)' which is about top speed for my system. that's with 21 dwarfs.
Quote from: RavingManiac
...the story about number of items, be they clothing, rotting clothing or simply decorated items, causing slowdowns now seems to be a myth. when you don't complexify by digging or adding dorfs you can see that you can have 200k items, 200+ animals in a cage without noticing them much at all. everything else staying constant, the undump engine showed me that its the work created by having normal piles that drains FPS.

His motto? "Stockpile tiles that 'cause work' cause slowdown."

He claims "virtually no slowdows with siegers on the map" and that "variety has virtually zero impact on fps".

If I'm reading this right, it sounds like the pathfinding, hauling jobs, and computations involved in storage are the actual culprits, not the materials or the items themselves.

To fix this, it sounds like his design largely does away with a refuse pile, traditional stockpiles, and even bins and barrels. (As an added measure, he keeps is front door locked most of the time.) He has his fort's refuse and item hauling mechanized and down to a science.

To prove his point, he used DFHack to erase 21000 items and this only increased his FPS by 1 or 2! :o (BTW: He's using 34.07, which was before mine carts and wheelbarrows.)

It's unbelievable, really. His fort has over 2500 dead and 15 years of history!

I am reminded of your example of "abundant clothes from invaders" and other junk they drop. This would introduce a lot of extra hauling and pathfinding to the system as your dwarves want to pick that junk up.

Now, if I could only understand this design... (I use graphics sets as I hate trying to interpret ASCII.)
« Last Edit: February 05, 2013, 04:23:00 am by Thundercraft »
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Psieye

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Re: FPS issue on slow PCs: Worse than before? Or same?
« Reply #21 on: February 05, 2013, 03:21:06 pm »

This agrees with the research I did (back in NW_Kohaku's thread) - stockpiles drain FPS.

As for masterwork DF, I never tried it myself but I thought you could select what parts of the mod to include and it would edit the raw files in the way you filled out the checkboxes? So you could ask it to trim down excess vanilla content and not put anything new in.
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Thundercraft

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Re: FPS issue on slow PCs: Worse than before? Or same?
« Reply #22 on: February 05, 2013, 05:59:27 pm »

This agrees with the research I did (back in NW_Kohaku's thread) - stockpiles drain FPS.

As for masterwork DF, I never tried it myself but I thought you could select what parts of the mod to include and it would edit the raw files in the way you filled out the checkboxes? So you could ask it to trim down excess vanilla content and not put anything new in.

But that's just it: If such research disproves the myth that excess items have a significant impact on FPS, what's the point of cutting down on vanilla items? Even ignoring that - even if that did help, no matter how much stuff Masterwork "standardizes", simplifies, or cuts out, it should not even begin to make up for the FPS hit from the truckloads of new content it adds.

As for Masterwork DF allowing users to pick and choose: Yes, it more or less does. It includes a "GUI to enable/disable 90% of the mod". However, I fear that the 10% which is installed whether the user wants it or not is stuff that I would not want, such as the vanilla content it removes to "save FPS". If it has no real impact on FPS, I'd much rather leave it in.

I guess I'll just ask what that 10% is.

EDIT: If all you want is to "trim down excess vanilla content" the way Masterwork DF does, you might be interested in Accelerated DF. That's all it is, Masterwork without all the extras, and they're both from Meph.

Myself, I'm tempted to use Modest Mod as it is mostly bugfixes, tweaks, and stuff "everyone should be able to use comfortably and without reservation" - leaving out controversial stuff. However, it has a few "balance" changes that I disprove of...
« Last Edit: February 05, 2013, 06:12:52 pm by Thundercraft »
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Meph

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Re: FPS issue on slow PCs: Worse than before? Or same?
« Reply #23 on: February 05, 2013, 06:26:59 pm »

I also made a Modest Mod + Accelerared DF (same thread) that combines the FPS increasement and the bugfixes. And yes, Masterwork, even with every setting off, will still add tons of stuff.

Best FPS saving:
 - Keep creature amount low
 - Keep pathfinding low (open caverns, no dead ends, use traffic designations)
 - Keep job numbers low (if you have 50 active and 500 inactive jobs it slows down FPS)
 - Keep item count low.
 - No liquid movement, weather or temperature.
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Kipi

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Re: FPS issue on slow PCs: Worse than before? Or same?
« Reply #24 on: February 06, 2013, 01:32:38 am »

I have one issue with the !!SCIENCE!! about items and FPS:
When the items were destroyed, was the game rebooted afterwards? I think the game is properly cleaning the items (destroyed or sold) from memory only when the game is rebooted. I have read this from several sources and experienced something similar myself.

For example, in one fortress I sold about ten bins full of worn clothes. The caravan left and, after I rebooted the game, my FPS was about 20 higher than before rebooting. The only thing I can think of that would explain it was the items getting removed from the map and memory, which properly took place only after I rebooted the game...
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Vndetta

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Re: FPS issue on slow PCs: Worse than before? Or same?
« Reply #25 on: February 07, 2013, 02:37:08 pm »

I recently returned to DF after a long hiatus, entirely caused by FPS frustration. I like the idea of long-term games but inevitably hit single-digit FPS within 3 years. Once I had 2 FPS at the end of year one, after going crazy with industry and production. So when I came back, I tried a new world (smaller region, year 1050, 2 cavern layers) and new fort with this in mind.

I did a 2x2 embark, no running water, very limited digging/construction (relied on glass/clay), population cap at 80 (though I messed it up by forgetting the baby cap, it ended up at 120 or so). I used single-tile minecart dumps and quantum stockpiles. I designed simple (non-open) areas for pathfinding efficiency. No cavern breach. Temperature and weather were off. I used DFHack to regularly "cleanmap" starting at year 3, and often "cleanowned" from the beginning. I even used traffic designation and restricted every single tile on my map except "high traffic" paths running around the fort (took a while). Everything went great until around year 4-5, when the FPS crept down into single digits like it used to despite all this attention to detail. So, essentially, it took longer, but it still happened.

Then, surprisingly, I fixed it. By year 5 my fort was prosperous, and I sold off thousands upon thousands of prepared meals, drinks, worn clothes, bins, containers, etc. At least 50k. After the traders left and a reboot, my FPS immediately jumped from 3 to 40 and has stayed there with regular selling-off of goods. I'm so overjoyed at this discovery that I might break out my old forts and "fix" them too, finally getting to finish my games.

EDIT: It is amusing to watch the traders show up with 8 wagons in subsequent years, since you've given them a couple million in profit... I didn't think the baggage train would end.
« Last Edit: February 07, 2013, 02:53:10 pm by Vndetta »
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Thundercraft

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Re: FPS issue on slow PCs: Worse than before? Or same?
« Reply #26 on: February 15, 2013, 02:36:40 pm »

The Maximizing framerate page of Magma Wiki is updated for 2012. There are a lot of suggestions there.

A bit of FPS trivia:

The most recent poll on the Phoebus' Graphic Set thread asks "What are your most common reasons for losing a fort?"

Interestingly, the most common answer by far is "FPS Death"!  :o
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Hydrall

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Re: FPS issue on slow PCs: Worse than before? Or same?
« Reply #27 on: February 23, 2013, 08:37:08 pm »

I never lose forts to FPS any more... Which is odd, since my computer is worse now.
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enizer

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Re: FPS issue on slow PCs: Worse than before? Or same?
« Reply #28 on: February 25, 2013, 07:05:01 am »

hereīs an interesting thought, reading init.txt the dwarf fortress renderer is defaulted to the slowest mode, (description notes that itīs most stable)

if you really end up near FPS death, then it might be worth a shot to test one of the seven other PRINT_MODE options
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Thundercraft

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Re: FPS issue on slow PCs: Worse than before? Or same?
« Reply #29 on: February 25, 2013, 07:12:24 am »

I never lose forts to FPS any more... Which is odd, since my computer is worse now.

Interesting. Question: Do you do anything different with forts now that you maybe did not before? Like, perhaps, different init settings such as turning temperature off, or different world gen parameters or embark size? Or maybe you use DFHack to clean up contaminants or destroy excess items? Or simply trade away clutter before it can accumulate?
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