Game Graphics - HQ Settings & Replacers
Deus Ex supports multiple levels of detail quality and its potential is further extended by the fantastic work of talented fans. Here you'll find out how to quickly configure the game for highest quality and performance, with tips on potential performance impact provided for important settings. To use most of the linked resources you'll need latest patched version of the game.
Improved Renderer - D3D10, OpenGL
Improved Launcher - Kentie's Exe
High-Quality Settings - WinDrv paste, D3D10 paste, OpenGL paste
High Resolution Textures - New Vision
Improved Meshes & Textures - HDTP (RE1, Patch1, Patch2,
1. Improved Game Renderer
Regardless of whether you have the game installed or are just about to do it, you'll need one of the available significantly improved renderer files for Deus Ex.
By default the game runs on old Direct3D renderer; and while it has several alternatives available in the renderer list, it is not recommended to use them. The improved renderers by Chris Dohnal and Marijn Kentie cover both Direct3D as well as OpenGL options, listed below in the order of their potential. Please be sure to check the respective websites for the newest versions.
- Direct 3D 10 Renderer by Marjin Kentie
Latest unofficial update for the game that aims to significantly improve the performance and looks; it fixes rendering bugs, provides improved visuals for modern hardware, supports full range of engine potential and goes beyond that by providing method for artists and modders to bypass the texture quality limitations altogether. Importantly for modern gamers it also comes with proper widescreen support through added high resolutions, calculated widescreen field of view settings, and improved depth precision.
Mentioned for the reference, the advanced settings enable POM or Bump Maps, HDR, Bloom, but texture enhancements will require community input in the shape of modpacks. Through texture overrides D3D10 by Kentie is the only renderer that is capable of providing quality not possible with stock or S3TC technology which the New Vision project or future MP S3TC packs are based on.
A must-have for a modern PC.
- Enhanced OpenGL Renderer by Chris Dohnal
This is the renderer development series that most top multiplayer players have sworn by for what is nearly a decade. It offers a significant improvement over the buggy OpenGL renderer that shipped with the game and it is also your top choice for update should you lack Direct10 (or newer) compatible card, or are stuck with Windows XP or even older version for some reason. Enhanced OpenGL allows lot of performance tweaking, but some of those settings should not be touched unless you have read the instructions provided in advanced tweaking guide here or on the authors documentation page. It nicely supports the full range of game quality settings, but lacks the potential and some new features of the D3D10 above. Supports AA, AF. Please note that most of the new releases require at least Windows 2000, but older versions work fine for win98.
Preferred update for older hardware or for those generally struggling with framerate during intense fights. A must-have for WinXP and DX9 (or older) computers.
Direct 3D9 Renderer by Chris Dohnal
Based largely on the author's work on his OpenGL renderer, this rendering option is for those that encounter significant problems with OpenGL, due to graphics drivers not playing nice with OpenGL or for some other reasons.
Use as debug alternative for OpenGL or D3D10, superior to default renderers.
2. Configuration - Launcher
Configuring changes made quick and easy with Marijn Kentie's Deus Ex Launcher. It is a must have for modern PC for hardware compatibility reasons, but mentioned here for the graphics related settings and their management.
Requirements: game not Direct2Drive version, C++ 2012 runtimes installed
- Comes with GUI Fix mod which stops user interface from scaling up for higher resolutions, getting rid of the massive and blocky belt and hud items. Note that as of writing this guide this does not work in multiplayer and will result in crash (package mismatch). Highly recommended for single player.
- It also allows easy enabling-disabling of New Vision high resolution texture pack, relevant to multiplayer gamers as the new textures will currently and by default result in a crash upon trying to enter any server (package mismatch).
- GUI: enable GUI Fix for Single Player, Default GUI for Multi-Player;
- Engine: default limit of 100 FPS is fine, use lower value for troubleshooting framerate lag but no higher than 150 or the game breaks. Due to the way scope zoom breaks earlier, purists may enjoy 60 fps cap more in single player.
- Input: leave it alone for classic settings, disable if you hate game mouse acceleration and are not on winXP (partially broken)
- Audio: if you encounter obvious game audio issues such as bad white noise or crackling, change latency +20, to 60 for test. Known game bug on windows 7 and in some cases reported for WinXP.
- Resolution: pick your preferred resolution or enter a custom one, fullscreen selection toggles windowed or fullscreen game startup; select correct field of view if you have widescreen resolution - D3D10 will do this automatically, but may not be suitable for some multiplayer gamers. Quicklist: 4:3 standard monitor is fov 75, 16:10 fov is around 85, 16:9 widescreen fov is around 91 - game minimum is 70 and maximum 120.
- Quality: on a modern computer the 32bit colour depth should not deliver much of a performance hit, but on a 690Mhz processor the difference is tremendous. Change to 16bit if all hope is lost. Detail textures enable some extra detail on surfaces where the feature is available, example provided by Kentie below. It would provide a bit of desirable quality even in multi-player, and it is not recommended to disable it unless for debugging for extra few potential fps.
3. High Quality Settings
While stock settings can be modified from game menu (nb: simply going to display menu resets your resolution to the tiny supported 4:3 res) and advanced renderer settings can be configured through PREFERENCES command's Advanced Menu, for the ease of copy-pasta and editing it is the DeusEx.ini entries that will be provided here.
- Make sure you have started Deus Ex at least once with your preferred new renderer and then exit game and open DeusEx.ini file - it is a configuration file that may have a gearbox icon and your windows may hide the .ini extension by default. You can find it from 'My Documents\Deus Ex' directory with default launcher settings, or from your game's own System folder with launcher set to use -localdata.
- Search for: [WinDrv.WindowsClient] block. By default it looks like this:
[WinDrv.WindowsClient] WindowedViewportX=640 WindowedViewportY=480 WindowedColorBits=16 FullscreenViewportX=640 FullscreenViewportY=480 FullscreenColorBits=32 Brightness=0.600000 MipFactor=1.000000 UseDirectDraw=True UseJoystick=False CaptureMouse=True StartupFullscreen=True CurvedSurfaces=False ScreenFlashes=True NoLighting=False SlowVideoBuffering=False DeadZoneXYZ=True DeadZoneRUV=False InvertVertical=False ScaleXYZ=1000.000000 ScaleRUV=2000.000000 SkinDetail=High TextureDetail=High Decals=True MinDesiredFrameRate=1.0
- For maximum quality, replace entire block with this:
[WinDrv.WindowsClient] WindowedViewportX=640 WindowedViewportY=480 WindowedColorBits=32 FullscreenViewportX=1600 FullscreenViewportY=1200 FullscreenColorBits=32 Brightness=0.600000 MipFactor=1.000000 UseDirectDraw=True UseJoystick=False CaptureMouse=True StartupFullscreen=True CurvedSurfaces=True ScreenFlashes=True NoLighting=False SlowVideoBuffering=False DeadZoneXYZ=True DeadZoneRUV=False InvertVertical=False ScaleXYZ=1000.000000 ScaleRUV=2000.000000 SkinDetail=High TextureDetail=High Decals=True MinDesiredFrameRate=30.000000 UseDirectInput=False NoDynamicLights=False
- Only setting you'll certainly want to reconfigure for personal preference is the resolution, which you can comfortably do with the new launcher.
Renderer Settings - Direct 3D 10:
- If you've chosen D3D10 as your preferred renderer, search for [D3D10Drv.D3D10RenderDevice] block and replace it with the following:
[D3D10Drv.D3D10RenderDevice] Coronas=True DetailTextures=True ShinySurfaces=True HighDetailActors=True VolumetricLighting=True Precache=True Antialiasing=4 Anisotropy=16 VSync=False ParallaxOcclusionMapping=True LODBias=0 AlphaToCoverage=True DescFlags=0 Description= FrameRateLimit=120 BumpMapping=False ClassicLighting=False AutoFOV=True FPSLimit=120 simulateMultipassTexturing=True unlimitedViewDistance=False
These settings should be sufficient for cautious high quality tweaking, but Antialiasing can be set as high as 16 if your video card supports it - it is one of the biggest performance impactors in this list, however. Another gpu intensive option is ParallaxOM, and those who really struggle with FPS might want to disable AA, POM, Anisotropy completely (set to 0) or test lower values (2 4 8 16). Purists may prefer ClassicLightning set to true, and single player may benefit from VSync=True as it is by default for this renderer. In multiplayer VSync produces significant amount of input lag and affects fragging accuracy. Note that setting AA and possibly AF higher than supported (16 max) by your graphics card will lead to the renderer reverting to next supported value.
Renderer Settings - Enhanced OpenGL:
- For Enhanced OpenGL you'll search for [OpenGLDrv.OpenGLRenderDevice] block and replace it with:
[OpenGLDrv.OpenGLRenderDevice] ZRangeHack=False NoAATiles=True NumAASamples=4 UseAA=True MaskedTextureHack=True SmoothMaskedTextures=True SceneNodeHack=True FrameRateLimit=120 SwapInterval=0 UseFragmentProgram=True UseVertexProgram=True UseCVA=False UseMultiDrawArrays=True TexDXT1ToDXT3=False DynamicTexIdRecycleLevel=100 CacheStaticMaps=True UseTexPool=True UseTexIdPool=True UseSSE=True UseSSE2=True BufferTileQuads=True SinglePassDetail=False SinglePassFog=False ColorizeDetailTextures=False DetailClipping=False DetailMax=2 RefreshRate=0 MaxTMUnits=0 NoFiltering=False MaxAnisotropy=16 UseTNT=False Use16BitTextures=False UseS3TC=True UseAlphaPalette=True UseTrilinear=False UsePrecache=True ShareLists=False UsePalette=True UseMultiTexture=True UseBGRATextures=True UseZTrick=False MaxLogTextureSize=12 MinLogTextureSize=0 OneXBlending=True GammaCorrectScreenshots=False GammaOffsetBlue=0.000000 GammaOffsetGreen=0.000000 GammaOffsetRed=0.000000 GammaOffset=0.000000 LODBias=0.000000 DetailTextures=True DescFlags=0 Description= HighDetailActors=True Coronas=True ShinySurfaces=True VolumetricLighting=True
This renderer provides a lot more tweaking options, several of them for problems with some decade old cards that you are unlikely to use. Most of the information is same as with D3D10 above. To use VSync set SwapInterval to 1; if you struggle with FPS lower or disable AA and AF, can enable UseTrilinear instead of AF for old-school quality with marginal impact on performance. Some of these settings require hardware support that even Pentium4 has, but a detailed tutorial will cover the specifics of these settings later on.
- For balance between performance and quality, AntiAliasing values of 4 are used for both blocks and come as default for at least D3D10, if you want to push it you can use 8 or max 16 instead. For D3D10 it is 'Antialiasing=' and for OpenGL it is 'NumAASamples='
- It is possible to override or enhance these settings with some graphics card software configurations, such as nVidia control panel global and general profiles, allowing even more intense AntiAliasing and-or AF, among other driver quality settings that you might find there
- This guide does not endorse the use of negative (or positive) LODBias values which add fake crispy-ness to textures and are often recommended by some GFX guides for Unreal 1 games. If you want quality then this is not how you get it, but for those interested you can experiment with LODBias=-1.5000 for openGL and D3D10. Values above 0 make the textures blurrier than they are. Values below sharpen distant textures, but create an unnecessary amount of noise in my experience, in addition to being considered fake improvement.
4. High Resolution Textures - New Vision (S3TC)
New Vision is the only complete retexture package for Deus Ex that uses S3TC function on updated renderers to provide times higher resolutions than the engine is normally capable of. Enabled by default on D3D10 renderer, it requires S3TC set to True on OpenGL (done in paste block above).
- It is current not supported by multi-player and will result in a crash if you attempt to enter a server. Kentie's Launcher will make enabling and disabling these textures very simple
Deus Ex - New Vision
Requirements: one of the improved renderers linked above or supplied with the New Vision package; Single Player only
5. Project HDTP (Models, Textures)
7-8 years slowly in the making, HDTP has one official demo release and 3 partial patches that are all well-worth the trouble of checking out. While it intended to replace all textures with improved resolutions and supply more detailed models-meshes, over time it has become a more model-focused resource from which the New Vision project stemmed. They also intended to improve textures that could be found as low as 32x32 resolution by maxing them within engine 256x256 limitations, whereas New Vision is able to provide several times those sizes through S3TC.
Download packages below, the official release is an installer but the following patches must be manually extracted and installed according to provided instructions.
- Functional load order in Kentie's Launcher 'Paths' should be the following:
HDTP\Textures HDTP\System New Vision\Maps New Vision\Textures
HDTP replaces most important character meshes and lot of object meshes, as well as their textures, while New Vision re-textures map geometry surfaces such as walls, signs.
- Bugs: the beta patches feature two known bugs, more important one being that MJ12Troop can freeze or cause crashes and as such should be disabled from HDTP menu in-game. The second bug is about Anna Navarre's lips not moving during conversation, you can disable the new mesh from HDTP menu or ignore it - which ever you prefer.