When Remedy shared the official Alan Wake 2 system requirements just one week before launch, the specs stirred a sizable controversy among PC gamers.
Not only were some graphics cards, namely the GTX 10 Series and RX 5000 Series, left behind due to their lack of hardware Mesh Shaders support; even recent and capable GPUs were seemingly relegated to lower-than-expected performance.
NVIDIA’s GeForce RTX 3070, for instance, was listed as only capable of 60 frames per second when running a 1080p resolution reconstructed from 540p (with DLSS set to Performance Mode) and at Medium graphics preset. That raised many eyebrows on the performance, to say the least.
However, Digital Foundry’s Alex Battaglia dispelled many of those concerns in a dedicated video, concluding that Alan Wake 2 is not too demanding at all. First, he described Remedy’s long-awaited survival horror sequel as possibly the best-looking game ever made (concurring with Wccftech’s Hassan and Francesco), and that’s true even for the rasterized version at Medium preset.
That’s because Alan Wake 2 utilizes several advanced technical features. For example, even with ray tracing off, there is a form of software ray tracing included underneath the screen space reflections. It’s a bit like Unreal Engine 5’s software version of Lumen. The software global illumination technique is also very solid and a major reason for the game’s very eye-catching visuals. Mesh Shaders, on the other hand, are used extensively throughout the game to increase geometric detail.
When it comes to performance, a GeForce RTX 3070 can actually pull off 1440P resolution with DLSS set to Balanced and achieve over 80 frames per second. With this headroom, users can set graphics settings like anisotropic filtering, shadows, and reflections to High while still maintaining over 60 frames per second. In short, this isn’t the new Crysis in bringing PCs to their knees.
Of course, if you don’t have a high-end PC and want to witness the full glory of path tracing and DLSS 3.5 (Ray Reconstruction), there’s always the option to go with NVIDIA’s GeForce NOW cloud platform.