During the second closed beta I gave my first impressions on Black Desert as well as my final thoughts once the beta had ended and one of my biggest frustrations was the inability to get anything better than 15 fps out of the game. It didn’t matter what graphic settings I chose or how I tweaked them, the performance was always abysmal. My first thought was that the game was simply not optimized yet but with BDO now live and my problems persisting that was no longer an option.
Yesterday on Twitter I posted the recommended specs for the game alongside the specs for my laptop to see if anyone else could spot the issue seeing as how I’m not the most educated of individuals when it comes to the inner workings of a PC and how it affects game play. From what I could tell though I should have been fine. Not running on Ultra mind you, but playable at the low to mid range. I received a lot of great suggestions (all of them from @Lysrin) but unfortunately none of them seemed to be my specific issue.
So I turned to google. First of all, I learned a whole lot more about GPUs and Antialiasing, SSDs and Bloom and a whole lot of other words and acronyms that have to do with PC gaming. I also found a great reddit post on determining the best settings for Black Desert depending on your computer, which I subsequently lost and have been unable to find again. But hey, I got the information I needed before I closed the tab on accident. It wasn’t until I saw another reddit post where someone mentioned checking to make sure the game was actually utilizing the GPU and not just the CPU that I found my answer.
Back to google and a few how-to sites later and I figured out how to maneuver through the Nvidia control panel and that’s where I confirmed the issue. The game was running without my graphics card; no wonder nothing I did seemed to make a difference (other than making things worse). I’m still not running at 60 fps on ultra or anything but I’m finally able to enjoy the game at about 35-40 fps at the low to medium settings. For my three year old laptop, that’s acceptable for this game.