Forza Horizon 4 PC Performance Review

Graphical Comparison - Lowest to Maximum

Forza Horizon 4 PC Performance Review

Graphical Comparison - Lowest to Maximum  

Playground Games has created Forza Horizon 4 to be extremely scalable on PC, so much so that we'd argue that the game is almost not worth playing under its lowest preset, where vehicle geometry is compromised, and the lack of in-game shadows creates a world that is full of contrast. 

In motion, some vehicles appear much worse than others, with the Bugatti Senna below acting as a prime example, where super low polygon structures are revealed under the vehicle's rear bodywork. This is hidden by shadow at low settings and makes the game appear much more passable, but PC gamers should aim for higher levels of graphical fidelity when playing Forza Horizon 4, as it would be a shame to miss out on the supreme level of detail that Playground delivers in this game.  

(Lowest VS Low)
Forza Horizon 4 PC Performance Review  Forza Horizon 4 PC Performance Review

Moving from Low to Medium delivers another significant uptick in graphical quality, presenting higher quality vehicles with more geometric edges. The first three cars in these screenshots see a notable uptick in graphical detail, with textures near the game's viewport appearing with more detail (See the Horizon banner at the bottom left).

Increased levels of shadow detail are also apparent, especially in the shadow of the Bugatti Senna. Higher resolution reflections are also visible on the rear windscreen of the Senna, something which looks fantastic when driving across the English countryside.    

When jumping to Forza Horizon 4's Medium preset, MSAA 2X is activated, reducing the Aliasing/Jaggies on the rendered image. This change makes the game appear much clearer than before, with reduced stair-stepping effect around geometric edges.  

(Low VS Medium)
Forza Horizon 4 PC Performance Review  Forza Horizon 4 PC Performance Review

Cranking Forza up to the game's high preset is where we start to see some major graphical enhancements, with improved textures in more distant details (look at the banners at the side of the track) and increased population density for both crowds and vegetation. Now the Horizon Festival appears to be full of life and not a mostly empty venue. 

Reflection detail also sees a notable uplift, though you will need to click on the link below to see a full-size version of this comparison slider to notice the difference. 

(Medium VS High)
Forza Horizon 4 PC Performance Review  Forza Horizon 4 PC Performance Review

Jumping up to Ultra will see shadow resolutions continue to increase while more detail is drawn in at a distance. Once again we see an increase in reflection quality, with details appearing much sharper than before. 

In the distance, we can see an increase in geometric detail on vehicles, with cars like the far-off BMW gaining significantly more quality (The car now has wing mirrors!). This adjustment will allow Forza Horizon 4 to present less detail pop-in, especially when drivers quickly catch up to distant vehicles.  

(High VS Ultra)
Forza Horizon 4 PC Performance Review  Forza Horizon 4 PC Performance Review

Moving beyond Ultra will offer PC players two distinct graphical advantages with 8X MSAA providing reduced stair-stepping/Aliasing along geometric edges, boosted crowd counts and further increases in detail shadow detail. These options are designed for users of high-end PC hardware, as they require a lot of VRAM and compute performance to utilise with high framerates.  

(Ultra VS Maximum)
Forza Horizon 4 PC Performance Review  Forza Horizon 4 PC Performance Review  

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Most Recent Comments

05-10-2018, 16:45:39

Considering 1080p is my best (poor eye sight) I'm well impressed at how well it runs on Ultra, and I do like the Forza Horizon gamesQuote

06-10-2018, 03:30:11

Vega 64 only 1.6FPS behind a 1080 Ti at 1440P, Impressive.Quote

06-10-2018, 05:48:32

Originally Posted by Dicehunter View Post
Vega 64 only 1.6FPS behind a 1080 Ti at 1440P, Impressive.
Yeah, Forza is a great showing on Radeon's Vega graphics cards. It's well strange that the RX 580 and GTX 1060 are level pegging, but the Vega 64 demolishes the GTX 1080.

Anyway guys, all feedback is appreciated here. Feel welcome to post criticism, especially for the video, as it is our first time doing that.Quote

06-10-2018, 11:21:13

Wow, that is the first time I've ever seen Vega match a 1080Ti in gaming. Even games that favour Vega specifically like Far Cry 5 and Wolfenstein II don't show Vega being on par with the 1080Ti; it was always still slightly behind, at least from what I've seen and remember. Very impressive.

Also, OC3D's video game analysis articles are one of the only places I know of that shows performance scaling with different in-game settings. There's nothing worse than seeing a graph for a game where a GTX 1080 or Vega 64 can't hit 60 FPS at 1440p in a new game at max settings but easily hits 80 FPS with just a couple of superfluous settings turned down or off. So thanks very much for the extra work.

On a similar note, what I think could be the best way to test a game is to have target FPS points. So for instance you'd have a GTX 1050/RX 460, GTX 1060/RX 580 and GTX 1080/Vega 64 comparison, and you'd show what the graphics settings would need to be in order to hit 60, 90 or 120 FPS, maybe with screenshot comparisons as you guys already do. So if I had a GTX 1060, I'd know that in AC Odyssey I'd have to use FXAA and High shadows in order to hit 60 FPS at 1080p, or I'd have to turn off a couple of other things to hit 90 FPS. The same thing for the other cards. It would take a lot of work and may not be possible for most, but it would be the best way to do things in my opinion. I always appreciated Nvidia's breakdown of AAA games and their graphics settings. It basically meant that if I had for example a GTX 970 and still wanted to hit 60 FPS at 1080p, I'd know that either I'd need to upgrade my graphics card, or how far I'd have to reduce the in-game settings to hit that point, or whether that was something I was willing to do.

Again, excellent work, Mark and all those involved.Quote

06-10-2018, 11:22:23

Look at the vega 56 compared to 1080 too!Quote

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