Total War: Three Kingdoms PC Performance Review

PC System Requirements and Testing Methodology

Total War: Three Kingdoms PC Performance Review

PC System Requirements

The Total War series has always been designed to scale, enabling gamers to play each title on a wide variety of systems, ranging from notebooks to high-end gaming PCs.

Total War can punish today's highest-end gaming PCs, but also scale down enough to run on low power notebooks. Like other entries in the series, Three Kingdoms is designed to run on high-end gaming PCs and low-cost notebooks, which is great news for those of us who wish to load up a few cloud saves and continue our campaigns on the go. 

Below are Total War: Three Kingdom's PC system requirements. 


PC Minimum Specifications (Integrated)

Expected around 25-35 FPS on the campaign map and in a 1v1, 21 units vs 21 units battle, default graphics preset set to “Low”, running at 1280×720
Operating System: Windows 7 64 Bit
Processor: i7-8550U 1.80GHz
RAM: 6GB
Video Card: Intel UHD Graphics 620

PC Minimum Specifications (Discrete)

Expected around 25-35 FPS on the campaign map and in a 1v1, 21 units vs 21 units battle, default graphics preset set to “Low”, running at 1280×720
Operating System: Windows 7 64 Bit
Processor: Intel Core 2 Duo 3.00Ghz
RAM: 4GB
Video Card: GTX 650 Ti | HD 7850 1GB VRAM

PC Recommended Specifications

Expected around 45-55 FPS on the campaign map and in a 1v1, 21 units vs 21 units battle, default graphics preset set to “High”, running at 1920×1080
Operating System: Windows 10 64 Bit
Processor: Intel i5-6600 | Ryzen 5 2600X
RAM: 8GB
Video Card: GTX 970 | R9 Fury X 4GB VRAM

PC 60 FPS+ Specifications

Expect 60 FPS+ on the campaign map and in a 1v1, 21 units vs 21 units battle, default graphics preset set to “Ultra”, running at 1920×1080
Operating System: Windows 10 64 Bit
Processor: Intel® Core™ Intel i7-8700K
RAM: 8GB
Video Card: NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1080 | NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2060  


GPU drivers


When testing Total War: Three Kingdoms, we opted to use the newest drivers from both the Radeon and Geforce camps, utilising AMD's Radeon Software Adrenalin Edition 19.5.2 driver as well as Nvidia's Geforce 430.64 driver.

Testing Methodology

OC3D is a website that is dedicated to PC hardware, so you better believe that we test every game on a wide range of hardware configurations. This commitment to variety means that we will be using both Intel and AMD based testbeds as well as a range of GPU offerings from both Nvidia and Radeon. 

Our primary test system uses Intel's X99 platform, containing an Intel Core i7 6850K at a fixed clock speed of 4GHz. This testbed will use 32GB of Corsair Vengeance DDR4 memory and will be powered and cooled by an HX1200i PSU and an H110i AIO liquid cooler respectively, with everything sitting inside a Corsair 460X chassis. In this system, we are using an ASUS Strix X99 motherboard.

The system below will be used to conduct the majority of our game testing. This system will be used in this review unless otherwise stated.

 


Game Test Rig

Intel i7 6850K @4.0 GHz
ASUS X99 Strix
Corsair Vengeance LP 4x8GB DDR4 3200MHz
Corsair HX1200i
Corsair H110i GT
Windows 10 x64 "October 2018 Update"

 


Secondary Ryzen Test System

Aside from our standard X99 test system we also have a testbed based on AMD's Ryzen 7 1700X CPU, which will sit at a clock speed of 4GHz be housed in an ASUS Crosshair VI Hero motherboard. This system will use Corsair's 3200MHz Vengeance White LED memory and is contained inside another Corsair 460X chassis. 

This additional system will allow us to see if any games offer a performance advantage to AMD's Ryzen or Intel's Core series processors.  

 

AMD Ryzen Game Test Rig
AMD Ryzen 7 1700X @ 4.0GHz
ASUS X370 Crosshair VI Hero
Corsair Vengeance LED 2x8GB DDR4 3200MHz
Corsair 460X System Chassis
Corsair RMi650
Corsair H115i
Nvidia GTX 1080 Founders Edition
Windows 10 x64 "October 2018 Update"

 

Rise of the Tomb Raider update - Has AMD Performance Ryzen?

 

GPU Selection

No gaming test suite would be complete without a large selection of GPUs, which in this case covers Nvidia's RTX 20-series GTX 10-series and 9-series and AMD's RX Vega, RX 400 and R9 300 series graphics cards. We have replaced our RX 480 GPU with its RX 580 equivalent, giving us a fairer comparison point between AMD/Nvidia's modern graphics card lineups. 

Starting with Metro Exodus, we will be testing new PC games with Nvidia's latest RTX series of graphics cards, with the mid-range RTX 2060 and high-end RTX 2080 Ti entering our graphics card lineup. 


Geforce RTX 20-Series

- Nvidia RTX 2080 Ti Founders Edition
- Nvidia RTX 2060 Founders Edition

nVidia RTX 2080 and RTX 2080Ti ReviewnVidia RTX 2060 Review

Geforce GTX 10-series

- Nvidia GTX 1080 Founders Edition
- Nvidia GTX 1070 Founders Edition
- ASUS GTX 1060 Strix Gaming OC


Geforce GTX 900-series 

- ASUS GTX 960 Strix 

       No Man's Sky PC Performance ReviewMetal Gear Solid 5 Performance Review with ASUS

AMD RX Vega Series

- AMD RX Vega 56

AMD RX 500 Series

- AMD RX 580 Strix OC


AMD GCN GPUs

- ASUS R9 380 Strix

Far Cry 5 PC Performance ReviewMetal Gear Solid 5 Performance Review with ASUS

Keyboard & Mouse

To control this setup, we will be using Corsair Strafe RGB keyboard with Cherry MX Silent keys alongside a Corsair M65 RGB mouse, matching the general theme of this RGB illuminated system.  

Cherry MX Silent Keys are ideal for gaming, coming with similar characteristics as Cherry MX Red keys, but with quieter operation. This comparative silence will help keep players immersed in their games, without the distracting clicks that are present in other Cherry key switches.  

 

 Warhammer 40,000 Dawn of War III PC performance review  Warhammer 40,000 Dawn of War III PC performance review 

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Most Recent Comments

26-05-2019, 13:57:17

NeverBackDown
Fantastic write up Mark

I too did some limited testing and let me tell you the performance is certainly better than Warhammer 2, but man some settings are insane!

TAA in my testing easily eats up 11-12 FPS. Shadows also are extremely demanding, basically everything that was extremely demanding before still is. Though the major improvement to CPU performance is definitely helping make it a more consistent and better gameplay experience.

It looks like I'll dial down every setting except unit sizes to high. Not much benefit using more based off the screenshots.

I also would like to see separate settings for campaign and battle. They can be so much different in terms of framerates it's makes you have to take into account both modes and dial back settings.Quote

26-05-2019, 18:50:16

WYP
Quote:
Originally Posted by NeverBackDown View Post
Fantastic write up Mark

I too did some limited testing and let me tell you the performance is certainly better than Warhammer 2, but man some settings are insane!

TAA in my testing easily eats up 11-12 FPS. Shadows also are extremely demanding, basically everything that was extremely demanding before still is. Though the major improvement to CPU performance is definitely helping make it a more consistent and better gameplay experience.

It looks like I'll dial down every setting except unit sizes to high. Not much benefit using more based off the screenshots.

I also would like to see separate settings for campaign and battle. They can be so much different in terms of framerates it's makes you have to take into account both modes and dial back settings.
Thanks. Yeah, there are lot of complexities to the Total War series.

This game definitely runs better than Warhammer II, that said, the extra unit variety and the unit sizes that some factions offer do not do that game any favours. The Skaven will kill your CPU cycles faster than any of those dwarf things.

While TAA can be demanding, it is a great addition to the game. It deals with a lot of the aliasing and smooths over a lot of the fuzziness that the game has with FXAA or no AA. As nice as MSAA sounds on paper, it is more demanding and doesn't address all types of aliasing.

I'd love to have that 5GHz i9-9900KS right now...Quote

26-05-2019, 20:39:06

NeverBackDown
Playing at 1440p it reduces the need for TAA but it still does look slightly better. But with my 1080 just maintaing 60fps is enough of a task. Adding TAA drops me to the 45-50 range. So i'll stick with no TAA.

I use extreme unit settings to, which is also another reason TAA is such a big performance hit since it has to calculate for all the extra units.Quote
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