Reducing your lag

July 5, 2010 § 1 Comment

One of the most frequently used search terms to find my blog is “reducing lag,” so I decided to do a post on it.  I’m not super computer savvy.  I mean, I know enough to get by and enough to fake my way through most things, but I do not purport to have any type of ‘expertise’.  As such, I am not going to get super technical or try to explain all the ins and outs of all the game settings that might reduce your lag.  All I am going to do is tell you what I have done that reduces my game lag.  All how, no why.

If, by the way, you want a detailed explanation of the video settings in World of Warcraft, someone named Natala has done a magnificent write up on the official European forums.  Link.

Ok so I’m sure every single person that has played World of Warcraft has at some point experienced game lag.  It can be immensely frustrating to zone into Dalaran and try and get across the city in spits and spurts.  I actually avoid going to Dalaran if I can, preferring to use Shattrath as my hub point.  But I have discovered a few things that you can do to help reduce lag.

The setting that helped reduce my lag in Dalaran more than absolutely anything else, by a wide margin was reducing the view distance to its lowest amount.  Don’t get me wrong, I love when I can increase the setting to its highest.  In fact, I think that changed my game play when I ‘discovered’ the setting.  I change this setting a lot.  Unless I’m in a raid/heroic or questing, I have the view distance all the way down.  Just be aware that if you increase the view distance it will reload the UI every time.

Also, turn the shadow quality all the way down.  Unless you have a fancy system with super graphics, this setting will just drain your resources.

Next, if you are in an area with a lot of ground clutter (plants specifically), you’ll want to reduce the Ground Clutter Density and the Environmental Detail.

The rest of the settings don’t really do a whole lot in your average area.  Well, I guess having player textures on a low setting is helpful in Dalaran.  But aside from that I haven’t really done much testing to see if anything is consistently a major drain.  Usually I just have everything (minus the aforementioned settings) at their medium setting, and that suites me just fine.

Oh by the way, make sure to keep projected textures on.  Complicated technobable aside, if you turn this off you’ll die in fires.  Because you won’t be ale to see them.

Moving on from the video settings the other way you can reduce your lag is by turning off addons.  Seriously.  Do you really need to be running quest helper, auctioneer, gatherer, and cartographer while you are raiding?  Probably not.  Think about what you will be doing during your particular game play session.  If all you are going to be doing is hanging out in the city, you can probably turn off your raiding addons.

Outside of the actual game you can help improve game performance by not running other applications in the background.  Every application you run uses up your machines resources.  If you are running a lot of other things, there will be less resources for World of Warcraft.  My machine is old and tired so I don’t run anything except WoW and Ventrilo.

Finally, I prefer to use a wired internet connection rather than a wireless connection.  Again, I’m not smart enough to explain the whys and wherefores, all I know is that the game runs slower on a wireless connection and is less laggy on a wired one.

So, hopefully that has helped you out a little bit.  If you are a smart computer person, please feel free to explain and expound.  But don’t be an ass about it.  I don’t need to be ‘proved wrong.’  I don’t need some smug ass telling me what a fool I am.  Sorry…I recently had an encounter with a smug and arrogant ass that decided it was more important to prove me wrong than actually contribute anything constructive to the conversation.

But by all means, if you are a computer person and can explain it better and correct anything I might have gotten wrong, and can do it without being a douche, I welcome the input.

For now though I just hope to be able to relieve some of the pain and agony of Dalalag.

“[Insert clever sign off phrase here]”


§ One Response to Reducing your lag

  • Razorstorm says:

    Nice write-up! I’ve been struggling with this this weekend while I’ve been travelling and using less stellar connections. How do I access the “shadow quality”?

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