Clarification & Further Information On Window Blur Changes

by CCP Falcon2:00pm on Thursday 14th June 2018

In this Tuesday’s patch (on June 12) we moved the ‘enable window blur’ option from an on/off toggle to the Low and High options within Shader Quality.

We’re aware that this action generated a lot of community discussion – a significant proportion of it negative – so we’d like to give a little more context and clarification as to why the change was made.

This decision was made for on several reasons:

  • The blur shader is quite costly in performance (up to 32ms depending on your GPU), we do not want low end machines having a 32ms cost for window blur. Low settings are about performance and High settings are about increased visual fidelity.
  • We recently put effort into optimizing client performance for mid to low end machines, after analyzing the most expensive items being rendered we noticed window blur was by far the largest. This meant we could try to squeeze 1 or 2 ms from preexisting visuals that are already highly optimized or tie a performance heavy feature such as window blur to shader quality.
  • As a strategy we try to combine settings where possible to reduce overall developer maintenance, reduce platform test matrix requirements, and make it easier to understand the settings that are available and what they do.

As we ‘ve seen there is a strong desire to have more control over window blur, we’ve decided to restore the ‘enable window blur’ setting. However, we will still restrict this on Low shader quality.

There was a use case we had not originally considered that we want to ensure is supported, if you were able to run medium or high shader quality before but kept blur off so you could have a smooth framerate you will not be able to do this.

This means:

  • If you have Medium or High Shader quality you can now turn Window Blur on/off.
  • If you have Low Shader quality enabled, the window blur will be disabled and the option will not be present.

We’ve also noted that the ‘Transparency’ option for Windows was not located in the most visible place, we’ve decided to move it to the top left corner of general Settings.

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Finally, we wanted to thank everyone for their feedback and this change is being made based off the comments and concerns the community has raised.

We hope you can understand that changes such as this are born out of a desire to ensure that those users who are not on the highest end hardware will receive the best performance based on the expected settings.