Metro: Last Light Low End Performance and Tweak Guide
Field of View
Field of view can only be changed in “user.cfg” file found in “%LOCALAPPDATA%\4A Games\Metro LL\” (C:\Users\PCNAME\AppData\Local\4A Games\Metro LL) after updating the game. Look for “r_base_fov” to change the value. The default FOV value is 50.625. I tried lower value and higher than 89 but it sets back to the default.
Setting higher field of view value, the view becomes wider and the objects in front look farther. The performance is slightly affected by this setting and you can set this according to your preference.
You can also change the Direct X mode in “user.cfg”. Look for the “r_api” and set it to “0” for DirectX 9, “1” for DirectX 10, and “2” for DirectX 11. You won’t have access to tessellation when you set it to DirectX 9 and 10.
There are no visible change between modes but switching to DirectX 9 the performance will be greatly diminished. DirectX 10 and 11 perform just fine.
Skip Intro Videos
This is a non-performance tweak, but in case you don’t want to wait by watching the videos, here is the trick. Go to “steam\steamapps\common\Metro Last Light\” or to the installation folder, look for “legal.ogv” and rename it to “legal.ogv.bak”.
VIDEO CARD PERFORMANCE
Having 512MB of video memory is enough for all levels of quality (low, normal, high, very high). Low and normal quality will utilize the GPU from moderate to high while high and very high quality will definitely use all the processing power of the GPU.
9600GT is playable on low and normal quality with 48 and 45fps. With high quality, the performance dropped to 25 and much lower on very high with 15fps. The HD 7750 is slightly affected only dropping from 50fps to 42fps at very high quality.
When playing on low and normal with 9600GT, circular patterns appear and there are visible tearing on some animation. These distortions are removed when played on high and very high, but the performance will be diminished so much so you’ll likely have to deal with these distortions if you want to have a playable experience with 9600GT.
The game uses the two available cores at roughly 90-95%, doesn’t matter if it is clocked at 2.6, 2.1, or 1.6 GHz. Having a single core the usage is up to 95-100%.
The minimum CPU requirement is 2.2GHz dual-core processor but a slightly lower clocked 2.1 GHz processor is still capable of delivering playable frame per second with 42fps average and 29fps minimum. Though the 1.6 GHz offered an average of 39fps, the minimum is too low with only 8fps, enough to feel the slowdowns throughout the game and expect worse experience in single-core processors even clocked with higher frequency.
The minimum requirement is 2GB, which is enough to have a playable experience. Having 4GB of memory doesn’t change the result but having 6GB improved the result adding 3fps on the average and 1fps to the minimum.
WINDOWS 8 PERFORMANCE
This game performed better in Windows 7 than in Windows 8 but the gap is too low to feel such difference.
I am glad to see that the 9600GT can still perform fairly with normal quality in this visually stunning game while the HD 7750 performed far better even with very high quality, but turning all settings on gives the card a tough challenge. Luckily our custom preset gave us a playable result without losing much visual qualities. The Celeron, maybe the cheapest dual-core around, also put a nice performance at 2.6 GHz – that means dual-core CPUs are still capable of gaming. We didn’t squeezed much fps on tweaking, but updating the game doubled the performance, from 25fps to 50fps – I’ve never seen anything such improvement before. I hope that current games can and will do the same. But I still have one question left – haven’t the developers tested their game with wide range of video cards before releasing the game?
Video Update – Developer Pack