Need for Speed: Shift Patch 2 accelerates Radeon graphics cards
Patch 2 for Need for Speed: Shift doesn't deliver additional content but also improves the performance of modern Ati Radeon graphics cards.
Need for Speed: Shift Patch 2 - Background
When Need for Speed: Shift was released, we criticized the surprisingly low performance of AMD's Radeon cards. Especially in scenes with many vehicles the framerate was bad - no matter if the resolution was set to 800 x 600, 1920 x 1200 or any other resolution. The first time the racing game was updated, the problem was not solved, but the second patch for Need for Speed: Shift delivers more frames per second - according to the readme because of "Improved ATI graphics card support”. The reason for the up to now poor performance of Radeon cards has not been unveiled although rumors say that certain Shader routines had not been optimized. Honi soit qui mal y pense - Shift is part of Nvidia's TWIMTBP program.
Need for Speed: Shift - Benchmarks
In order to show the huge performance benefit for Radeon cards delivered by the patch, we race against 15 computer opponents on "Brands Hatch GP” in broad daylight. We record the framerate for 30 seconds. Without the patch a Radeon HD 5850 wasn't able to exceed 45 fps on average at 1280 x 1024 or 1680 x 1050 (each with 4x MSAA and 16:1 AF), but the update to version 1.02 the performance is increased by 60respectively 44 percent. At 2560 x 1600 the performance advantage of "only” 19 percent is, as expected, a little smaller. The Radeon HD 4000 cards also get a benefit from the patch. In our benchmarks a Radeon HD 4870 runs between 11 and 34 percent faster (depending on the settings). In matter of performance Geforce owners on the other hand don't necessarily need the patch since the game runs "only” 2 to 4 percent faster.