Since the end of the Alpha phase and the beginning of the Bêta, rounds of optimization were launched each week, the world building has reached certain degree and amount that needs monitoring., this issue gave birth to a new process that I'm following extensively right now, especially when launch day is around the corner.
The process in question was established to monitor the following :
-FPS stats control
-GPU Streaming Control
-CPU Code and queries control.
-Lighting control (Especially when we are using a full dynamic lighting system)
1- Shader complexity and monitoring.
Each texture is displayed in relation to the pool offered by the GPU, and I had to make sure to start rounds of diagnosis in each area of the Lower Larth, to keep watch on anomalies that might disturb the overall gamer experience.
2- Textures and Material monitoring:
Each material in the shadows of Larth is composed by 2 to 7 textures, depending on the complexity from a simple wall, a sword or something more complex like human skin or hair, but the most consuming in matter of the streamer are two the base color and the normal map, for that I had to go back on approximately 4530 textures to re-size, edit or sometimes rework the unit from scratch.
This is an example of Isolating all the textures at once in the monitoring process:
3- Streaming itself :
In mid Bêta the streamer was really in a bad shape, after thorough investigation, the Non Streaming Mips were taking more than 1500mb which is very BAD, really really BAD! and under any circumstances I will never release a game like that.
In mid-December a round of textures rework started again this time the problem was first to detect the culprits in the total amounts (around 15k texture).
Unreal Engine and its Matrix were really helpful in the subject matter, and after 15 rounds of optimization I was finally able to break trough and solve the problem with a reduction from 1500mb to around 400/643 depending on the situation and the quality parameter that the players will set in the menu.
In the example above I'm using cinematic quality
4- Conclusion :
The polishing rounds have started since early January with 5 QA testers monitoring the experience in parallel. all to make sure you get a quality build for the v1.0.0 on launch day.