Here’s a similar situation to the Cities In Motion issue, this particular CAD software also has a problem running on ATI/AMD drivers newer than Catalyst 10.4, or at least 10.4 looks reliable enough to function properly. After launching, amdkmdap has a driver reset when the 3d rendering panel appears, crashing the application.
The fix is nice and simple, just place the appropriate OpenGL driver into the program’s folder where CityEngine.exe is.
If you have any other OpenGL game or application that is crashing after 10.4, try this fix or the Cities in Motion one.
UPDATE: 11.4 is out, grab it from AMD. The 2 dlls are exactly the same as the preview dlls dated February 27, so it’s not an issue anymore.
If you dared to install Catalyst 11.3 WHQL over the 11.4 Previews, then you might run into this in Battlefield Bad Company 2. In DirectX 10 or 11 mode, enabling anti-aliasing causes various effects to disappear, mostly transparent ones.
Luckily there’s a simple fix. Just place aticfx32.dll and atidxx32.dll from either 11.2 or 11.4p into the game folder and everything is back to normal.
UPDATE:I was curious as to what this FAQ item was for Atom Zombie Smasher, so I tried the demo. Nothing appears, just the exe starts up. Seems the same atigktxx.dll trick does the job for this game as well, it loads up just fine now.
Looks like Cities in Motion is an OpenGL game with the exact same issue that The Polynomial had for a few months. On drivers after Catalyst 10.4, it appears crossfire is breaking the game from working, and there is no way to disable it on a 4870×2 like myself. Some single gpu cards may be affected, so you might as well try this, too.
The simple fix should be placing 10.4’s atigktxx.dll into the game folder. Here’s an alternative fix that may or may not work for you if you have tried this atigktxx trick.
Do note that the file is from the 64-bit Vista/7 drivers, I’m not sure what the effect will be on 32-bit, XP, or on the latest 6 series cards. If you have crashes or freezes that happen after the game menu has loaded, then you might have a different problem unrelated to this. The beta, demo, and final release all should act the same. If the demo worked before (on drivers after 10.4) while the final does not, then you probably have a different issue.
FINAL UPDATE: This post is a mess… this should not be a problem anymore for anyone. You should be on drivers newer than 11.2 or older than 10.5. This used to affect the BIT.TRIP games, but those run fine now as well. What has not yet been fixed in updated drivers is Cities in Motion.
FINAL FIX: Turns out you just need atigktxx.dll in the game folder! No mess, not even the main atioglxx.dll. Download the 10.4 dll here, place it where polynomial.exe is, done! I also noticed after installing Catalyst 11.2, the dll might not be needed anymore.
FIX ATTEMPT: I tried a brute force method, I put every driver file of 10.4 into the game folder. You can do this while still having whatever newer Catalyst you have installed, just run the 10.4 installer, cancel it, open a cmd prompt at C:\ATI\Support\10-4_vista64_win7_64_dd_ccc_wdm_enu\Packages\Drivers\ Display\W76A_INF\B_98282 or similar, then simply ‘expand -r *.* c:\pathtoyourgamefolder‘ and voila! I have not yet tried deleting any of the files 1 by 1 to see which ones are required to stop the BSOD so the game folder would look cleaner, but so far it works!
UPDATE2: mixed reports saying 10.12 is good, it’s almost a guarantee that it’s good for 5970 users that were stuttering, but it’s the same crash for me still on 10.12.
UPDATE: this might be affecting Bit.Trip Beat as well. Something to do with crossfire, but there are some reports of 5970s working fine.
So I finally attempted to try the demo of The Polynomial, but the driver is crashing on startup of the game (it’s in OpenGL). I’m trying this on a 4870×2, Catalyst 10.11 WHQL, latest CAP, Vista 64.
It might be something to do with crossfire, or at least in my case and this user. The developer is also active in that thread, and I’ll try to get some form of exposure to ATI/AMD, so we’ll see how this goes.
-The whole older driver package: refer to the working fix at the top of this page.
–Current iD Tech games (with this side effect! depends on the visualizer options): doom3.exe, etqw.exe, prey.exe, quake4.exe, wolf2mp.exe
–Riddick Butcher’s Bay profile looks like a bunch of detail is lost, and the bloom is lower resolution, yet the bright flashing lights are gone: sbzengine.exe
–An older atioglxx.dll: I tried 10.2 and 10.4, the game launched without glitches, but has a BSOD soon after. This must be because crossfire changed at 10.5, as mixing dx10/11 dlls older than 10.5 would also BSOD in Shattered Horizon and Bad Company 2. If you’re ok with not having the latest drivers (if you don’t need the fixes in there), you may be able to get away with installing 10.4 and just the latest CAP.
–RadeonPro recently added some OpenGL support, but the crossfire options are not functional just yet. I can’t think of any DX9 things to test if the ‘disable crossfire’ option is different from just disabling CatalystAI, but if it is, then this would end up a working solution once this app is updated.
Dark Athena, older Quakes, Unigine, FurMark, and a couple other profiles I attempted to launch act like the original game’s driver crash.
I will update this post if there’s a workaround better than the iD one, if there’s some combination of settings to try, or if either the drivers or game manage to fix it.
I HEARD YOU LIKE UPDATES: 10.10 works perfect, I tested every one of the stuck games, and a couple of the regular.
UPDATE2: Get the 10.9 hotfix, so you can have any other fixes that are in 10.9 itself. This list here still applies, since both 10.9 and the HF were made before I even started this list. Hopefully they figure it out for 10.10.
NEW HOTFIX DRIVER: 10.8b says it fixed the issue, which might have appeared on 10.6. It’s almost perfect, the games are ok, but when exiting some of them, the core is still in 3d speeds. Here’s a list of some games that I tested. I was close to trying TwL‘s drivers, too…
Today I installed Catalyst 10.7 drivers after skipping 10.6 from hearing some horror stories. I’m with a 4870×2 using Vista64. The installation went smoothly, including the HDMI install. (A year ago the HDMI installer failed on one release, worked on the next month’s release.)
After some testing, there’s a severe problem with the 2d/3d detection, so far with the second core.
With DX9 and OGL games, the second core does not switch between 2d and 3d speeds. On a fresh boot, it stays idle after launching a game. This mismatch makes games really stuttery, especially if they are more demanding. The DX9 games I tested were: Borderlands, Call of Duty Modern Warfare 2, Far Cry 2, Lead and Gold, Mirror’s Edge, Moonbase Alpha, Need for Speed SHIFT, Serious Sam HD.
Mirror’s Edge managed to flip the second core into 3d, but then it got stuck after exiting! I checked Borderlands and it was as smooth as it was before (some areas can dip to ~45fps). Lead and Gold finally has a crossfire profile in the drivers, so now that the second core was in 3d mode, the game was nice and smooth without the huge flicker and ~40fps from before.
DirectX 10/11 games I tested (Battlefield Bad Company 2, Red Faction Guerrilla, Shattered Horizon) work just fine. Launching and exiting flips both cores correctly into 2d/3d. Even after Mirror’s Edge locks the second core into 3D, you could reset it back to idle speed by opening and closing a DX10 game.
If there is no hotfix, it might still be possible to take a specific .dll from 10.5 or 10.6 and put it in the Windows system folder so you can still use the new game profiles of 10.7.
UPDATE2: You can just put atidxx32.dll into your game folder if you don’t want to install the whole 10.5HF package. Expand it from the installer or use the one I have posted here. Here’s my test again with 10.5WHQL, then placing the dll into the game’s folder.
10.5 – 29s
10.5 – 26s
HF dll – 10s
HF dll – 11s
HF dll – 12s (vsync)
HF dll – 11s (vsync)
OLD UPDATE: Apparently they aren’t in the WHQL 10.5s, no wonder.
ATI Catalyst 10.5 was supposed to fix the loading times for Battlefield Bad Company 2 when using 4800 series cards. I’m a 4870×2, but I didn’t really notice much difference. Maybe my 3.6ghz Q9550 or crossfire made it less noticeable. Oh well, at least it’s not the horror stories of 1 minute or more. I’ll have to check some single 4870 or 4850 user stories to compare, but here are my own results:
Panama Canal empty map and vsync with D3DOverrider, since the game’s option does not work. I load it once from a fresh start of the game, exit to the main menu, then load once more. The total time is from the fade to black on the server browser to the fade to black on the map loading screen. (This second time is from the first fade until the fps goes really high and hard drive usage relaxes.)
10.4 – 36s (25s)
10.4 – 34s (25s)
10.5 – 36s (25s)
10.5 – 34s (24s)
10.5 – 28s (23s) – Decided to close D3DOverrider so that the fps is unlocked, relaunched the game… seems that took off about ~6-8 seconds on the first time load.
I should have tested without vsync on 10.4, but still it’s just a few seconds difference. I wonder when they finally fix the in-game option if it will be any different.
UPDATE: On some newer UE3 games, enabling vsync either in-game or from the .ini files causes severe stuttering, particularly in crossfire. If you run into such a game, you need to use D3DOverrider to force triple buffering. I can confirm this on a 4870×2 and a 570m in UDK, Tribes Ascend, Blacklight, Monday Night Combat, Hawken, and probably some others. Single GPU or Crossfire, same type of low framerate and stutter caused by vsync without triple buffering. Otherwise, no problems with a lot of older games like Borderlands.
Quick tip for Unreal Engine: Fix the awful defaults. Mainly, set the smooth framerate option to match your refresh, enable vsync, and disable mouse smoothing.
Any movement or animation on any monitor screen is visually smoothest when it’s synchronized to the screen’s output, or refresh, rate. Vsync does just that. The Aero theme of Vista/7 looks nice and smooth when things are moving because it always has vsync enabled. Similarly, games should also have it enabled whenever possible. This even applies if you’re getting lower fps that’s not completely aligned to your refresh. For example in Crysis, I’ve seen it go around 35-45 fps, but looking really jerky until vsync is enabled.
Watch out for increased input lag, however. This is when you push a button or move your mouse, the action that should appear on screen gets delayed. Different engines handle this side effect better than others. Source engine appears to get almost unplayable with vsync enabled, unless you cap the game with fps_max (removed in Left 4 Dead and Left 4 Dead 2, so it’s a little more annoying). Unreal seems to be quite nice with vsync, especially since the engine can be set to render only up to your refresh to avoid the input lag seen in Left 4 Dead. Unreal also appears to have triple buffering built in, helping if your system cannot render as fast as your refresh: It won’t just jump straight down to half fps, but render as fast as it can with light ticking stutters.
Anyway, on with the Unreal tweaks. You’ll need the *Engine.ini and *Input.ini files for the game you’re adjusting. You’ll have to figure out where they’re located, but it’s usually either in MyDocuments or AppData. Here are a few:
Under the Engine.ini, find the smooth framerate parameters. When set to false, I noticed lots of stuttering in Mirror’s Edge, so I always keep it on just as it is by default. I just put the min at 0. More importantly, fix the max since it’s always at 62 at default (why!), make it 60 or whatever your refresh rate is:
Also find the vsync toggle if there is none in your in-game options, might as well do it now since you’re in the Engine.ini:
UseVsync=True (note the message at the top of this page)
Now go to the Input.ini. It seems that in Unreal Engine, when you’re fps starts dropping with mouse smoothing enabled (which is usually default), the mouse movement starts accelerating! This completely throws your aiming way off. Turn smoothing off and your movements should be the same on screen whether you’re 60, 40, 20, or any fps:
Now your Unreal Engine based game is as smooth as it can be! Unless of course your system isn’t powerful enough to sustain 60/refresh framerates, but it’s still less jerky than if the image was tearing or your mouse control was changing speeds. Have fun!
Of course, this is all separate from any actual in-game options that raise or lower details. Even if you can’t stay at a constant 60 (or whatever your refresh is), these tweaks still apply to make it smoothest even at lower fps.