2022 was a better and worse year for PC game releases. We’ve seen incredible success with rank and file loyalty Dying Light 2, but also basically broken PC ports and such Gotham Knights. As 2022 draws to a close, I wanted to look back at the best and worst PC games we’ve seen in the past year.
Remember that ReSpec is a technical column – I generally focus on the technical aspects of the PC versions, not my favorite games. elden ring, for example, winning 2022’s top games is a personal favorite. But this list doesn’t look quite the same.
Best: Portal RTX
RTX portal It’s such a demanding game that few people can play it, so I debated including it on this list. But if nothing else RTX portal This is a great demonstration of how Nvidia’s RTX Remix modeling tools and ray tracing work to redefine the look and feel of games.
We are far ahead of the days Quake II RTX Oversaturated lighting and distracting reflections were the best ray-tracing performances. Physics-based materials, more efficient path-tracking techniques, scaling, and framing have helped bring more realistic lighting to the game. RTX portal This is our first demonstration of the power of these techniques.
I’m very excited about what this means for RTX Remix in the future. Moderators have already released versions Max Payne, Half-Life and SWAT 4 Remastered via RTX Remix and they all look amazing. In the future, I’ll be taking a closer look at these games (and hopefully more).
Worst: Gotham Knights
Gotham Knights at the opposite end – it’s a bad look at the past. In the veins of the infamous Arkham Knight PC port, Gotham Knights Shipped on a PC with massive stuttering issues and a combination of non-ray tracking options. Although with several improved features, Gotham Knights can’t keep the frame rate stable.
It doesn’t help that the game looks dated. It was originally designed with the latest consoles in mind before the publisher decided to pull the plug, but it doesn’t live up to that standard either. Shortly after release, a number of images appeared comparing the game’s graphical fidelity to that of 2015. Arkham Knight began to flow (and spoilers: Arkham Knight he won the battle).
Personally, it was a blow. Even about some issues you can read in our article Got itham heroes review, I enjoyed playing the game. Even months after launch, I can’t stand the massive amount of glitches that still haven’t been fixed. It’s worse than that Elden Ring’stuttering and other games I’ve played this year and this problem isn’t going away any time soon. Recently, a patch Gotham Knights made the game unplayable on Steam. Yes.
Best: Uncharted Legacy of Thieves Collection
Unknown Legacy of Thieves Collection This is a prime example of how to properly port a PC. Amazing performance, extensive graphics options, and pre-made shaders make it smooth to use on any rig, and Nathan Drake’s long-awaited debut on PC.
PlayStation knocked it out of the park with all of its PC versions, though Uncharted is toned compared to god of war and Marvel’s Spider-Man. You’ll get some enhanced textures, but the original console version is mostly intact. Instead, the port compiles shaders into the menu to prevent stuttering and allows any GPU enhancement in the form of FidelityFX Super Resolution (FSR) 2 and Nvidia’s Deep Learning Super Sampling (DLSS).
The only downside is the installation size. Uncharted Legacy of Thieves Collection It requires 126GB of storage (it’s roughly 113GB when all is said and done, but we’re splitting hairs here), and that amount comes with an improved build on the back. Installations over 100GB are common on PCs with these high-density assets, but love the game Far Cry 6 allows you to skip high resolution assets to install smaller ones, I’d like to see that Uncharted.
However, the only thing I can complain about is the amount of PC game installs for 2022, which is a very good thing.
Worst: Warhammer 40,000 Darktide
I will admit Warhammer 40,000 Darktide This is one of my favorite games of 2022, even if it has a lot of technical problems. A long and bug-ridden beta period led to a much more broken release, which included frequent network outages, game crashes due to ray tracing, and countless visual glitches.
Some examples: Turning off the opacity and over-demanding surface diffusion settings means that skin won’t show up on characters; turning on DLSS to improve ray tracing performance will crash the game; and lens flare can cause significant framerate drops, just one of many settings that can cause CPU bottlenecks in games.
Since its release, developer Fat Shark has continued to improve the game and it is now in a better place. While it’s disappointing that it was one of the few new titles released with DLSS 3 and not on older versions, the game’s launch context can’t be denied.
Best: Marvel’s Spider-Man (and Miles Morales)
Marvel’s Spider-Man and Miles Morales Sony’s PC ports have been approached differently, based on PC technology rather than consistent performance. They’re both stable games, but they’re also loaded with many ray tracing and enhancement options, and technologies like Deep Learning Anti-Aliasing (DLAA) and DLSS Frame Generation.
Ray tracing looks great Marvel’s Spider-Man, This allows you to push reflections and shadows further than what’s available on the PlayStation 5. Miles Morales AI-generated frames don’t always look perfect, but DLSS 3 is particularly impressive.
Now that Spider-Man 2 It was announced for PlayStation 5 next year, so hopefully we’ll see it on PC. If these first two releases don’t make it, hopefully the second game will shine even more on high-end gaming devices.
Worst: Stray/Elden Ring
I’m grouping A wanderer and Elden Ring This is because they both had the same problem: shader compilation stuttering. Elden Ring better than before wandering, but with the shaders being converted on the GPU, both started crashing regularly on the PC.
You can see here that this is mainly a problem with Unreal Engine Gotham Knights. Said, Elden Ring uses a special engine that has been shown to affect the game engine. Shaders (programs) need to be transferred to your GPU before they can run, and each time a new shader is introduced it will slow down.
The good news about these two versions is that unlike them, they are now playable Gotham Knights. Still, it’s disappointing that two of the best games of the year have suffered such heavy crashes.
PC ports in 2023
Looking forward to 2023, hopefully the days of shader compilation crashes and PC ports are long gone. FortniteThe move to Unreal Engine 5 shows a bright future for the huge number of titles that use Unreal. On the other hand, we are looking at the next gen Witcher 3 updates and titles etc Callisto protocol release into states of destruction.
On the plus side, more PC versions include technologies like FSR, DLSS, and Frame Generation, as well as latency-reducing tools like Reflex, which help engine-optimized games run more smoothly. I am sure that in 2023 we will make more progress in this area.
This article is part of ReSpec, a regular bi-weekly column that features discussion, advice, and in-depth reports on the technology behind PC gaming.