UX for updates wastes power, GPU pegged at 100%

Ok, so first impressions of the Sim after a long hiatus since FSX. The first thing greeting me was the update/install screen, which obviously due to the size of the game was active for a long time. 100GB for the first install or thereabouts took quite a while downloading it here in Australia. But this wasn’t exactly bad. The music did get annoying, but minimising the game muted it so no issue there.

Where my patience began to best tested was after the first update landed (sorry couldn’t resist the pun :P). the update screen did not provide an option to skip the update and play the currently installed game.

So, some important context before I go on (and yeah, I can go on an on… will try to be succint tho). We’re reviewing a PC and wanted to use FS2020 to test it. So we kinda wanted to skip updates to keep things consistent between runs as we’re swapping graphics cards and CPU to test them and we need things to remain constant.

So the update cant be skipped, this is design fail number 1 so far. There seems to be no pressing need in our eyes to force an update for a game. Security for an OS maybe, depends on the consequences, but it seems MS is getting in the habit of overstepping their authority when it comes to how they handle updating software. Maybe I am out of order here, maybe this is Asobo’s doing and not MS, dunno (please correct me if you know better). Either way, this frustrated us no end, as now we have to ditch all that work cause we’re not 100% the game is the same beast anymore and the performance tweaked.

Design fail number 2. Power usage. The update screen seems to use 100% of our GPU, which means a 100W+ overhead of power consumption compared to any other update for other software packages. Seriously guys, why do you need to render a static image in the game engine? There’s no need for this.
Right now with the new patches being downloaded, there are PCs wasting power because of this choice. Its nice that the background image for the update screen can change from time to time, but if its going to be static, you can simply give us a new static image.

Fixing both of these issues would make the first experience users have a positive one, its means our GPUs won’t be getting hot just to download the game and letting us decide what updates to apply would be greatly appreciated.

Hope this helps


Update screen is a 3D application so it uses GPU and trying to achieve highest FPS. So:

1.Solution for devs: Just limit FPS at loading screens by 30-60 FPS.
2.Workaround for users at this moment: Use VSYNC or limit FPS by something external like Riva Tuner Statistics Server. For example - when my game was updating - i just capped FPS at 10 and removed FPS cap after update.

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Hey man, thanks for commenting :slight_smile:

Agree with 2. as a potential workaround for updating, though I have my reservations about whether it will save much power, though I will test that using HW monitor to find out for sure.

Also I see a slight problem. Unless you know an update is about to happen, and/or if you don’t have a way to force the game to drop its frame rate (assuming Riva does this but I don’t have that app installed, so can’t verify) then you’re stuck. The update UI has only pause/resume options.
The graphics settings are not shown until after the update. So without a way to set the frame rate externally from the game, you’d either need to have V-sync on all the time, or have the frame rate limited all the time, or be able to tell in advance when an update is about to happen on your system.

Maybe I’ll try Riva then. Sounds interesting to be able to control FPS of other apps.

Anyway, my game is updated, I’ll try pushing the frame rate down and see if the power consumption improves any.

As for 1. I think the devs definitely should do something, but I would advise against limiting fps selectively, that might complicate their code to have frame rate restraints in some areas of the game and not in others. Simpler code is better code.

As a third option, allow users to decide to update when the game is closed, and to have progress reported via notifications or a system tray icon/app. I don’t see any benefit to the user updating while in game if the game can’t be played.

Looking at other game content platforms like steam, games are updated through the steam UI not through the game applications themselves. I can’t find any reasonable argument that says the way FS2020 updates is better or even on par with this.

Actually, there is a lot of games that uses external launcher for game updating and e.t.c. It’s normal.
For me - it’s not an actual problem that they need to solve asap, i want main problems to be solved first. Especially performance problems and night lighting.

Actually, there is a lot of games that uses external launcher for game updating and e.t.c. It’s normal.

Yep, thats what I referred to with steam. As you said a very normal and accepted practice, can’t think of any other games that update whilst the game itself is running.

Interesting though, what are the “main problems” you are experiencing, so far i have been pretty impressed when the game actually runs, would like to test! How can I reproduce the issues you’ve had?

Nividia control panel: V-sync enabled (ingame off), framerate limited to 30 fps. GTX 1660 ti went from 100% to 66%.

Well that is something in terms of a reduction in utilisation, but what about power consumption? I haven’t checked (I will try, forgot to today) but I am not sure that means an equal reduction in power consumption.

It does tempt to me to try it though :slight_smile: