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Ghost Recon Wildlands Notebook and Desktop Benchmarks

Florian Glaser (translated by Andreas Osthoff), 03/18/2017

GTA meets Far Cry. Ubisoft launches the next action highlight right after For Honor. A group of special forces is fighting against a Bolivian drug cartel in Ghost Recon Wildlands. We test how different notebook GPUs can handle the open world title.

Ghost Recon Wildlands

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Graphics

It does not matter if you like the gameplay of Ghost Recon Wildlands or not, but the graphics of the ambitious action title are very good most of the time and impress with enormous viewing distance in particular. You can see a landscape full of trees and grass for miles when the main character is standing at a cliff or the edge of a mountain. There is no criticism for the lighting, either: Besides lights and shadows, we are also impressed by the reflections. The latter is connected to the nice water presentation. The combination with the smooth day/night transitions and the high number of details (like decorative elements) creates a great atmosphere in Wildlands, which is further supported by mostly sharp textures, nice effects (especially smoke) and smooth animations.

Ubisoft could improve the controls. While the handling is very smooth, intuitive, and simple on foot, car controls are – similar to Watch Dogs 2 – pretty spongy and hyper sensitive. The excellent damage model can hardly compensate for that. We also would have liked to see an even finer anti-aliasing; the available modes in Wildlands (FXAA & TAA) do not always work perfectly.

Ghost Recon Wildlands
Ghost Recon Wildlands
Ghost Recon Wildlands
Ghost Recon Wildlands
Ghost Recon Wildlands
Ghost Recon Wildlands

Speaking of settings: Similar to the previous Ubisoft titles (For HonorThe DivisionRainbow Six Siege, etc.), you get very comprehensive graphics settings. The settings were divided into two sub menus, so you do not have to scroll so much. The video tab is – as expected – focused on the display and the basic picture settings like the resolution, frequency, depth of field, brightness, contrast, gamma, and sharpness. You will also find V-Sync and a frame limit, which can be deactivated. The option Resolution Scaling, which can be used for downsampling or upscaling, was always set to the default value of 1.00 for our tests.

The Graphics menu is more comprehensive; we count 18 individual settings and 5 presets, which will adjust the overall quality with a simple click. Ubisoft not only deserves praise for the fact that all changes are applied without a restart, but also for the explanations. Even cooler: Wildlands shows the effects of the setting on a picture, so you will immediately see how the changes look. Similar to the previously tested For Honor, there is a big difference between low and medium settings (also in terms of performance), whereas the change from medium to high is hardly noticeable except for the drawing distance. The picture gets nicer with very high details, and the ultra preset creates a visibly nicer overall impression.

Ghost Recon Wildlands
Ghost Recon Wildlands
Ghost Recon Wildlands
Ghost Recon Wildlands
Ghost Recon Wildlands
Ghost Recon Wildlands

Wildlands is a part of Nvidia's gaming program "the way it's meant to be played", so there are numerous GameWorks effects in cooperation with the GPU manufacturer. This includes HBAO+, volumetric illumination, and so-called turf effects (snapping grass by heavy objects).

All the technology comes at a price though: The download version of Wildlands is almost 45 GB, and the system requirements are not conservative, either. The integrated VRAM display shows that the highest settings require a lot of video memory. 1920x1080 pixels requires more than 4 GB and 3840x2160 pixels more than 5 GB (ultra preset). We recommend (very) high details when you have a high-end GPU with less than 4 GB VRAM.

Ghost Recon Wildlands
Ghost Recon Wildlands
Ghost Recon Wildlands
Ghost Recon Wildlands
Ghost Recon Wildlands
Ghost Recon Wildlands

We hardly noticed any bugs, graphics errors or crashes during our tests; only resolution changes occasionally caused some issues (double picture, wrong scaling).

We are not completely convinced by Wildlands' gameplay. Yes, the atmospheric intro video and the powerful character editor increase our interest. Yes, it is fun to drive through the open world with vehicles and cause mayhem. However, the generic and rather uninspired missions, which follow the typical Ubisoft formula from the last couple of years, will probably not be very entertaining for a long time – weapon upgrades and skill menu or not. We were quickly bored by the generic story.

Benchmark

The developers also deserve respect for the integrated benchmark. Press "B" in the graphics settings and you launch a one-minute camera ride that shows close-ups and environmental shots of the open world as well as several explosions (particularly demanding). Contrary to many other titles, Wildlands not only records the frames per second, but it also shows CPU & GPU load, VRAM load as well as the GPU temperature. It is even possible to pause the benchmark in order to analyze details or – in our case – create comparison pictures (see further below).

The final analysis is also excellent. Besides the minimum, average, and maximum fps and loads, the benchmark also shows the basic system requirements and the current driver version. Nvidia launched the brand-new ForceWare 378.78 right in time for Wildlands, but we got identical results with the previous version 378.66. The game should run smoothly when the benchmark indicates between 35-40 fps based on our experiences, but the performance is often lower during car drives and other demanding scenes, so you should consider some headroom.

Results

We already mentioned that Ghost Recon Wildlands needs a powerful system. Entry-level GPUs like the slightly outdated HD Graphics 4600 are not powerful enough, even at the lowest settings and 1280x720 pixels. Smooth fps numbers require mainstream chips or older gaming GPUs. 1366x768 pixels and the medium preset require at least a GeForce GTX 960M.

Low Preset
Low Preset
Medium Preset
Medium Preset
High Preset
High Preset
Ultra Preset
Ultra Preset
Low Preset
Low Preset
Medium Preset
Medium Preset
High Preset
High Preset
Ultra Preset
Ultra Preset

You need a high-end GPU for 1920x1080 pixels, and we recommend at least a GeForce GTX 970M (High), GTX 980 or GTX 1060 (Ultra), respectively, depending on the settings. The 4K resolution is a big challenge even for very powerful laptops. Only Nvidia's current top model GeForce GTX 1080 manages smooth frame rates for the combination 4K and high details.

Note: We will add benchmarks for AMD chips and other Intel and Nvidia GPUs over the next couple of days/weeks.

Discussion
Ghost Recon Wildlands
    3840x2160 Very High Preset AA:T AF:8x     1920x1080 Ultra Preset AA:T AF:16x     1920x1080 High Preset AA:T AF:4x     1920x1080 Medium Preset AA:FX     1366x768 Medium Preset AA:FX     1280x720 Low Preset
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1080 (Desktop), 6700K
Desktop PC
42.8 (min: 34) fps ∼82%
62.6 (min: 54) fps ∼89%
110 (min: 97) fps ∼88%
120 (min: 107) fps ∼90%
148 (min: 128) fps ∼100%
200 (min: 175) fps ∼99%
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1070 (Desktop), 6700K
Desktop PC
35.4 (min: 27) fps ∼68%
53.8 (min: 47) fps ∼77%
95.4 (min: 83) fps ∼76%
104 (min: 90) fps ∼78%
131 (min: 119) fps ∼89%
190 (min: 167) fps ∼94%
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1070 (Laptop), 6820HK
Asus G752VS
32 (min: 24) fps ∼61%
50.7 (min: 44) fps ∼72%
86.9 (min: 75) fps ∼70%
94.1 (min: 80) fps ∼71%
106 (min: 92) fps ∼72%
134 (min: 115) fps ∼66%
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 980 Ti, 4790K
Asus Strix GTX 980 Ti Desktop PC
32.8 (min: 25) fps ∼63%
48.6 (min: 43) fps ∼69%
82 (min: 73) fps ∼66%
88 (min: 78) fps ∼66%
156 (min: 134) fps ∼77%
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 980, 6700K
Desktop PC
25.7 (min: 20) fps ∼49%
38.8 (min: 31) fps ∼55%
70.4 (min: 61) fps ∼56%
76.4 (min: 66) fps ∼57%
97.1 (min: 87) fps ∼66%
144 (min: 125) fps ∼71%
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1060 (Desktop), 6700K
Desktop PC
24.4 (min: 18) fps ∼47%
40.2 (min: 35) fps ∼57%
71 (min: 58) fps ∼57%
76.8 (min: 65) fps ∼58%
101 (min: 91) fps ∼68%
155 (min: 132) fps ∼76%
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1060 (Laptop), 6820HK
MSI GT62VR
22.3 (min: 16) fps ∼43%
38.1 (min: 32) fps ∼54%
67 (min: 55) fps ∼54%
71.9 (min: 56) fps ∼54%
89.6 (min: 83) fps ∼61%
113 (min: 102) fps ∼56%
AMD Radeon RX 480, 4790K
AMD Radeon RX 480 8 GB Reference
35.1 (min: 29) fps ∼50%
64 (min: 53) fps ∼51%
70 (min: 55) fps ∼53%
132 (min: 101) fps ∼65%
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 970, 4790K
MSI Gaming Z GeForce GTX 970 Desktop PC
22.1 (min: 16) fps ∼42%
33.8 (min: 29) fps ∼48%
64.5 (min: 54) fps ∼52%
70.5 (min: 59) fps ∼53%
138 (min: 117) fps ∼68%
AMD Radeon RX 470 (Desktop), 4790K
MSI RX 470 Gaming X 4GB
20.6 (min: 15) fps ∼39%
29.7 (min: 23) fps ∼42%
58.7 (min: 49) fps ∼47%
63.9 (min: 51) fps ∼48%
130 (min: 106) fps ∼64%
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 980M, 4700MQ
Schenker W504
18.8 (min: 13) fps ∼36%
28.3 (min: 20) fps ∼40%
50.4 (min: 44) fps ∼40%
56.6 (min: 47) fps ∼43%
74.9 (min: 67) fps ∼51%
108 (min: 92) fps ∼53%
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050 Ti (Notebook), 7700HQ
MSI GE72 7RE-046
9.8 (min: 8) fps ∼14%
40.3 (min: 31) fps ∼32%
46.1 (min: 37) fps ∼35%
63.3 (min: 55) fps ∼43%
106 (min: 88) fps ∼52%
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 970M, 4700MQ
Schenker W504
14 (min: 9) fps ∼27%
23.1 (min: 19) fps ∼33%
41.1 (min: 34) fps ∼33%
44.2 (min: 37) fps ∼33%
62.5 (min: 56) fps ∼42%
95 (min: 81) fps ∼47%
AMD Radeon RX 460 (Desktop), 4790K
XFX RX-460P4DFG5 Double Dissipation 4 GB
17.5 (min: 14) fps ∼25%
34 (min: 25) fps ∼27%
37.5 (min: 27) fps ∼28%
82 (min: 64) fps ∼40%
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050 (Notebook), 7700HQ
MSI GL62M 7RD-077
4.1 (min: 4) fps ∼6%
32.6 (min: 26) fps ∼26%
39.3 (min: 33) fps ∼30%
54.6 (min: 45) fps ∼37%
90.8 (min: 72) fps ∼45%
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 960M, 4720HQ
Schenker XMG A505
7.1 (min: 5) fps ∼14%
12.3 (min: 9) fps ∼17%
24.9 (min: 20) fps ∼20%
27.3 (min: 22) fps ∼21%
39.2 (min: 35) fps ∼26%
59.9 (min: 51) fps ∼30%
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 950M, 6700HQ
MSI PE60 2QD
6.2 (min: 5) fps ∼9%
21.2 (min: 17) fps ∼17%
23.9 (min: 18) fps ∼18%
33.3 (min: 29) fps ∼23%
54.8 (min: 45) fps ∼27%
NVIDIA GeForce 940MX, 6700HQ
MSI CX72 6QD
11.3 (min: 9) fps ∼8%
17 (min: 14) fps ∼11%
29 (min: 24) fps ∼14%
NVIDIA GeForce 940M, 5700HQ
MSI GP62 2QD
2.4 (min: 2) fps ∼3%
9.8 (min: 8) fps ∼8%
11.2 (min: 9) fps ∼8%
17 (min: 15) fps ∼11%
29.3 (min: 25) fps ∼14%
Intel HD Graphics 4600, 4700MQ
Schenker W504
6.8 (min: 5) fps ∼5%
11.3 (min: 8) fps ∼6%

Overview

Show Restrictions
Pos      Model                                     Ghost Recon Wildlands
 Ghost Recon Wildlands (2017)
low
1280x720
Low Preset
med.
1920x1080
Medium Preset
FXAA
high
1920x1080
High Preset
4xAF TAA
ultra
1920x1080
Ultra Preset
16xAF TAA
4k
3840x2160
Very High Preset
8xAF TAA
 1NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1080 Ti (Desktop)
203
133
125
70.3
52.2
 2NVIDIA Titan X Pascal
182
127
117
67
47
 5NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1080 (Desktop)
200
120
110
62.6
42.8
 8NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1070 (Desktop)
190
104
95.4
53.8
35.4
 9NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1070 (Laptop)
134
94.1
86.9
50.7
32
 11NVIDIA GeForce GTX 980 Ti
156
88
82
48.6
32.8
 15NVIDIA GeForce GTX 980
144
76.4
70.4
38.8
25.7
 21NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1060 (Desktop)
155
76.8
71
40.2
24.4
 23AMD Radeon RX 480
132
70
64
35.1
 24NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1060 (Laptop)
113
69.052
63.552
36.92
22.3
 26NVIDIA GeForce GTX 970
138
70.5
64.5
33.8
22.1
 27AMD Radeon RX 470 (Desktop)
130
62.052
57.152
29.82
20.6
 39NVIDIA GeForce GTX 980M
108
56.6
50.4
28.3
18.8
 44NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050 Ti (Notebook)
106
46.1
40.62
15.52
 46NVIDIA GeForce GTX 970M
95
44.2
41.1
23.1
14
 59NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050 (Notebook)
90.8
39.3
32.6
4.1
 72AMD Radeon RX 460 (Desktop)
82
37.5
34
17.5
 94NVIDIA GeForce GTX 960M
59.9
27.3
24.9
12.3
7.1
 111NVIDIA GeForce GTX 950M
54.8
23.9
21.2
6.2
Pos      Model                                     Ghost Recon Wildlands
lowmed.highultra4k
 187NVIDIA GeForce 940MX
29
11.3
 189NVIDIA GeForce 940M
29.3
11.2
9.8
2.4
 204*AMD Radeon R7 (Bristol Ridge)
11.9
5.3
 266Intel HD Graphics 630
14.7
6.7
 268Intel HD Graphics 530
13.4
 273AMD Radeon R5 (Stoney Ridge)
10.9
 368Intel HD Graphics 4600
11.3
 413Intel HD Graphics 515
9.4
4.3
* Smaller values are better. / * Approximate position

 

Legend
5Stutters – This game is very likely to stutter and have poor frame rates. Based on all known benchmarks using the specified graphical settings, average frame rates are expected to fall below 25fps
May Stutter – This graphics card has not been explicitly tested on this game. Based on interpolated information from surrounding graphics cards of similar performance levels, stutters and poor frame rates are expected.
30Fluent – Based on all known benchmarks using the specified graphical settings, this game should run at or above 25fps
40Fluent – Based on all known benchmarks using the specified graphical settings, this game should run at or above 35fps
May Run Fluently – This graphics card has not been explicitly tested on this game. Based on interpolated information from surrounding graphics cards of similar performance levels, fluent frame rates are expected.
123Uncertain – This graphics card experienced unexpected performance issues during testing for this game. A slower card may be able to achieve better and more consistent frame rates than this particular GPU running the same benchmark scene.
Uncertain – This graphics card has not been explicitly tested on this game and no reliable interpolation can be made based on the performances of surrounding cards of the same class or family.
The value in the fields displays the average frame rate of all values in the database. Move your cursor over the value to see individual results.

Test Systems

Desktop-PCs Plattform I Plattform II
Mainboard Asus Z170-A Asus Z97-Deluxe
Processor Intel Core i7-6700K (Skylake) Intel Core i7-4790K (Haswell)
Graphics card MSI GeForce GTX 1080 (8 GB GDDR5X)
MSI GeForce GTX 1070 (8 GB GDDR5)
Nvidia GeForce GTX 1060 (6 GB GDDR5)
Nvidia GeForce GTX 980 (4 GB GDDR5)
Nvidia GeForce GTX 1080 (8 GB GDDR5X)
Asus GeForce GTX 980 Ti (6 GB GDDR5)
XFX Radeon R9 Fury (4 GB HBM)
Sapphire Radeon R9 290X (4 GB GDDR5)
Sapphire Radeon R9 280X (3 GB GDDR5)
MSI Radeon R7 370 (2 GB GDDR5)
Memory 2x 8 GB DDR4-2133 2x 4 GB DDR3-1600
Storage Crucial MX100 SSD (256 GB)
Crucial M500 SSD (480 GB)
OCZ Trion 100 SSD (480 GB)
OCZ Trion 150 SSD (960 GB)
Intel SSD 530 (240 GB)
OCZ Trion 100 SSD (480 GB)
OS Windows 10 Pro 64-bit Windows 10 Home 64-bit
Schenker Notebooks Schenker W504 Schenker XMG A505 Schenker S413
Processor Intel Core i7-4700MQ (Haswell) Intel Core i7-4720HQ (Haswell) Intel Core i7-4750HQ (Haswell)
Graphics card Nvidia GeForce GTX 980M (8 GB GDDR5)
GTX 970M (6 GB GDDR5)
GTX 880M (8 GB GDDR5)
GTX 870M (6 GB GDDR5)
GTX 860M Kepler (4 GB GDDR5)
Nvidia GeForce GTX 960M (2 GB GDDR5) Intel Iris Pro Graphics 5200
Memory 2x 4 GB DDR3-1600 2x 4 GB DDR3-1600 2x 8 GB DDR3-1600
Storage Samsung SSD 840 EVO (250 GB) Micron M600 SSD (128 GB)
HGST Travelstar 7K1000 HDD (1000 GB)
Intel SSD
OS Windows 10 Pro 64-bit Windows 10 Home 64-bit Windows 10 Home 64-bit
MSI Notebooks MSI GT62VR MSI GE72 MSI PE60 MSI GP62 MSI CX61 MSI CX61 MSI GE 72 7RE-046 MSI GL62 7RD
Processor Intel Core i7-6820HK (Skylake) Intel Core i7-6700HQ (Skylake) Intel Core i7-6700HQ (Skylake) Intel Core i7-5700HQ (Broadwell) Intel Celeron 2970M (Haswell) Intel Core i5-4200M (Haswell) Intel Core i7-7700HQ (Kaby Lake) Intel Core i7-7700HQ (Kaby Lake)
Graphics card Nvidia GeForce GTX 1060 (6 GB GDDR5) Nvidia GeForce GTX 965M 2016 (2 GB GDDR5) Nvidia GeForce GTX 950M (2 GB GDDR5) Nvidia GeForce 940M (2 GB DDR3) Nvidia GeForce 920M (2 GB DDR3) Nvidia GeForce GT 720M (2 GB DDR3) Nvidia GeForce GTX 1050 Ti Nvidia GeForce GTX 1050
Memory 4x 8 GB DDR4-2133 1x 8 GB DDR4-2133 2x 4 GB DDR4-2133 1x 8 GB DDR3-1600 1x 8 GB DDR3-1600 1x 8 GB DDR3-1600 2x 4 GB DDR4 2x 4 GB DDR4
Storage Samsung NVMe MZVPV128 SSD (128 GB) Toshiba THNSNJ128G8NU SSD (128 GB)
WDC WD10JPVX HDD (1000 GB)
OCZ Trion 100 SSD (480 GB)
Toshiba MQ01ABF050 HDD (500 GB) WDC Scorpio Blue HDD (1000 GB) Samsung SSD, Toshiba Trion 150 SSD Samsung SSD, Toshiba Trion 150 SSD
OS Windows 10 Pro 64-bit Windows 10 Home 64-bit Windows 10 Windows 10 Windows 10 Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit Windows 10 64-bit Windows 10 64-bit
Asus Notebooks Asus G752VS Asus N551ZU Asus ROG Strix GL753VD
Processor Intel Core i7-6820HK (Skylake) AMD FX-7600P (Kaveri) Intel Core i7-7700HQ
Graphics card Nvidia GeForce GTX 1070 (8 GB GDDR5) AMD Radeon R9 M280X (4 GB GDDR5) Nvidia GeForce GTX 1050
Memory 4x 16 GB DDR4-2400 2x 4 GB DDR3-1600 2x 8 GB DDR4
Storage Toshiba NVMe THNSN5512GPU7 SSD (512 GB) Samsung SSD 830 (256 GB) Micron SSD 1100 (256 GB)
OS Windows 10 Pro 64-bit Windows 10 64-bit Windows 10 64-bit
4K Monitor Nvidia driver AMD driver Intel driver
2x Asus PB287Q ForceWare 378.78 Crimson 17.3.1 15.40.28.4501
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> Notebook / Laptop Reviews and News > Reviews > Ghost Recon Wildlands Notebook and Desktop Benchmarks
Florian Glaser, 2017-03-18 (Update: 2017-03-18)