Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
I'll start off by saying that my computer is not the best for this game. It barely meets the minimum requirements (and actually fails the processor bit), but I don't think I'm alone in that. All in all, the game runs fine. A few crashes here and there, but not bad. However, there's an elephant in the closet that I've kept quiet about, and it's the UI. It seems to be horribly unoptimized. I've made three videos to prove my point, and a fourth for comparison to WoW, in case it's needed.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=b0FxDn8dHzw - Ground Exploration FPS Benchmark
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GXhSrQCdEOg - Space Exploration FPS Benchmark
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=X3EkbOpzrEQ - Other UI bits FPS Benchmark
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=s8KNUglkdzc - World of ******** FPS Benchmark

I opted to include the fourth video to make a comparison. WoW's default UI has been refined and optimized over the years to a sleak, smooth UI that doesn't hinder the gameplay experience.

The biggest offenders I see in terms of major slowdown are the inventory, character/ship equipment screen and the massive elephant in the room, the Duty Officer window. A lot of other stuff is fine, although I'm theorizing that the gradients used in all of the UI elements are also all drawn in real time, rather than pulled from resource images. I'm probably wrong on that, but from my experiences with programming, that's a big contribution to a slow UI.

At the very least, I'd like to have a minimalist/customizable UI implemented. The minimalist UI would scrap the mini map, scrap the shiny gradients, etc. For a customizable UI, being able to disable a few of the power trays and other small bits of the UI is nice, but not far enough in my opinion. I don't need to see the mini map. I don't need to see my mission progress. There are probably other things I don't need that I'm stuck with as well.

Even better would be to mimic WoW's ability to add/remove from the default UI or completely replace it, but if that's out of the question, I understand.

I'm not sure how successful I'll be at getting things changed. Cryptic is strapped for resources as it is and they've got important things to work on, like new content and fixing major bugs. However, if enough of us have this problem (or just a problem with an unoptimized UI in the first place), they might throw a few spare minutes at it day by day and see this resolved sometime.

For what it's worth, I personally will be upgrading my computer when I get paid within the next month (I have a weird job without a weekly salary), so that will kind of fix things on my end for those who are about to suggest I just upgrade. However, others will still be stuck with this UI problem.
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 2
02-13-2012, 04:51 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by Radkip View Post
I'll start off by saying that my computer is not the best for this game. It barely meets the minimum requirements (and actually fails the processor bit), but I don't think I'm alone in that. All in all, the game runs fine. A few crashes here and there, but not bad. However, there's an elephant in the closet that I've kept quiet about, and it's the UI. It seems to be horribly unoptimized. I've made three videos to prove my point, and a fourth for comparison to WoW, in case it's needed.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=b0FxDn8dHzw - Ground Exploration FPS Benchmark
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GXhSrQCdEOg - Space Exploration FPS Benchmark
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=X3EkbOpzrEQ - Other UI bits FPS Benchmark
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=s8KNUglkdzc - World of ******** FPS Benchmark

I opted to include the fourth video to make a comparison. WoW's default UI has been refined and optimized over the years to a sleak, smooth UI that doesn't hinder the gameplay experience.
The UI slowdown is actually more due to some of the UI scripting and not due to rendering. I posted about it in the other thread here. http://forums.startrekonline.com/sho...3&postcount=20

The UI people are aware of the issue, too. Optimization is an ongoing thing.

Quote:
The biggest offenders I see in terms of major slowdown are the inventory, character/ship equipment screen and the massive elephant in the room, the Duty Officer window. A lot of other stuff is fine, although I'm theorizing that the gradients used in all of the UI elements are also all drawn in real time, rather than pulled from resource images. I'm probably wrong on that, but from my experiences with programming, that's a big contribution to a slow UI.
Generating the gradient on the fly with a shader would actually be faster due to fewer texture fetches and would rely on the GPU's interpolation (the same way it interpolates position and other stuff). But in reality, it's just an image, which is more practical for our UI artists to manipulate than a shader.

Quote:
At the very least, I'd like to have a minimalist/customizable UI implemented. The minimalist UI would scrap the mini map, scrap the shiny gradients, etc. For a customizable UI, being able to disable a few of the power trays and other small bits of the UI is nice, but not far enough in my opinion. I don't need to see the mini map. I don't need to see my mission progress. There are probably other things I don't need that I'm stuck with as well.
Removing pieces of the UI or making them optional for performance might be reasonable (just due to each UI element adding to CPU load with each internal script they run).

Quote:
Even better would be to mimic WoW's ability to add/remove from the default UI or completely replace it, but if that's out of the question, I understand.
This has been discussed before. UI modding isn't something we support at the moment, though.

Quote:
I'm not sure how successful I'll be at getting things changed. Cryptic is strapped for resources as it is and they've got important things to work on, like new content and fixing major bugs. However, if enough of us have this problem (or just a problem with an unoptimized UI in the first place), they might throw a few spare minutes at it day by day and see this resolved sometime.

For what it's worth, I personally will be upgrading my computer when I get paid within the next month (I have a weird job without a weekly salary), so that will kind of fix things on my end for those who are about to suggest I just upgrade. However, others will still be stuck with this UI problem.
If you're looking into upgrading, a faster CPU will probably go a lot further with the UI speed than a new graphics card.

What are your system specs?
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 3
02-13-2012, 05:09 PM
i've found a bleed where if you open any window ie: character, Inventory, Doff, Pve/Pvp queues you loss 10fps instantly.
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 4
02-13-2012, 05:12 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by cmdraftbrn View Post
i've found a bleed where if you open any window ie: character, Inventory, Doff, Pve/Pvp queues you loss 10fps instantly.
This doesn't tell us much. A drop in framerate from 100 fps to 90 fps is a much different performance hit than a drop from 20 fps to 10 fps.

If you're using the in-game FPS counter, the more useful number (to us) is the milliseconds per frame counter next to it.
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 5
02-13-2012, 06:08 PM
my bad. looks like that ones been solved. lol
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 6
02-13-2012, 06:20 PM
The Injury healing screen could use another pass. There are occasions when the buttons don't work (Heal or Cancel) and you can't close out of it. These mostly happen when you're incaped and trying to heal your injuries before respawning or having just respawned and try to heal your injuries while there's a massive fight going on (i.e. KA Space). You can't close out of the window unless you hit the esc button. Not too much of a problem yet, but it might lead to some frustration.
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 7
02-13-2012, 07:05 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by CrypticCliff
This doesn't tell us much. A drop in framerate from 100 fps to 90 fps is a much different performance hit than a drop from 20 fps to 10 fps.

If you're using the in-game FPS counter, the more useful number (to us) is the milliseconds per frame counter next to it.
I see this drop off often, I'll be sure to post some numbers.
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 8
02-13-2012, 09:14 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by CrypticCliff
The UI slowdown is actually more due to some of the UI scripting and not due to rendering. I posted about it in the other thread here. http://forums.startrekonline.com/sho...3&postcount=20

The UI people are aware of the issue, too. Optimization is an ongoing thing.
Good to hear, I probably should have taken a look around before coming in all guns blazing. Good to know you've got your guys working on it and well aware.

Quote:
Generating the gradient on the fly with a shader would actually be faster due to fewer texture fetches and would rely on the GPU's interpolation (the same way it interpolates position and other stuff). But in reality, it's just an image, which is more practical for our UI artists to manipulate than a shader.
Really, I did not know this, but I don't have much experience with shaders... I'll keep that in mind.

Quote:
This has been discussed before. UI modding isn't something we support at the moment, though.
Fair enough, it's a daunting task, and if you're not careful, easily abusable. That's the last thing we need.

Quote:
If you're looking into upgrading, a faster CPU will probably go a lot further with the UI speed than a new graphics card.

What are your system specs?
I'll actually be upgrading from a laptop to a desktop PC, so I'll be getting both.

My system specs are average for a bargain bin computer, which was given to me as a graduation gift by my high school. It's got a pair of Intel Core Duo 2s at 1.3ghz a piece, which is probably the biggest contributor to my slowdown. I'm running on an old Intel chipset as well, which wasn't specifically mentioned in the system requirements, but I'm assuming it's fine if the game runs for me. I've also got 2GB ram.

The upgrade I'm aiming at was recently done by a friend who says that it runs the game at full settings with no slowdown, so I don't think it'll be much of a problem for me after I'm upgraded. It'll just bug me as an amateur programmer who goes nuts over optimization.

Quote:
Originally Posted by nPoon
The Injury healing screen could use another pass. There are occasions when the buttons don't work (Heal or Cancel) and you can't close out of it. These mostly happen when you're incaped and trying to heal your injuries before respawning or having just respawned and try to heal your injuries while there's a massive fight going on (i.e. KA Space). You can't close out of the window unless you hit the esc button. Not too much of a problem yet, but it might lead to some frustration.
This is probably the only window I haven't had a problem with, actually. I'll have trouble pressing a button every now and then, but that's just the UI being slow for me. I don't have too much trouble repairing ship injuries even during heavy combat.

However, if time permits for the UI team, then yeah, they could go over it again. Specifically to remove that whole "Do you really want to spend 0 EC to heal this?" thing.
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 9
02-13-2012, 10:30 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by Radkip View Post
However, if time permits for the UI team, then yeah, they could go over it again. Specifically to remove that whole "Do you really want to spend 0 EC to heal this?" thing.
Or the "Double Click on something too many times and get TWO pop up confirmation boxes, one blank and one with the actual confirmation, but both do the same thing" functionality.
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 10
02-14-2012, 02:00 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by CrypticCliff
This doesn't tell us much. A drop in framerate from 100 fps to 90 fps is a much different performance hit than a drop from 20 fps to 10 fps.

If you're using the in-game FPS counter, the more useful number (to us) is the milliseconds per frame counter next to it.
Alright. With three active listings in my friend's list, one pending invitation, and one hundred and five offline entries, I go from 63 fps (15.8ms/fm) to 28 fps (37.5ms/fm) when its open.. and in Champions, I go from 43 fps (22.6ms/fm) to 18 fps (50.4ms/fm) with that same window/tab active.

Star Trek Online's numbers were taken just outside of Sol in sector space and Champions happened by the tailor in Millennium City's Renaissance Centre.

Hope this helps.
Reply

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is Off
HTML code is Off


All times are GMT -7. The time now is 01:32 AM.