Performance in RPG
The current version of Gothic 3 game doesn’t support FSAA therefore we tested all the cards with anisotropic filtering only.
Since the game uses no anti-aliasing, it turns easier for GeForce 8600 GTS to run as fast as Radeon X1950 Pro in all resolutions including 1920x1200. However, there is no gaming comfort whatsoever. Only the owners of Radeon X1900 XT can play Gothic 3 in 1280x1024 with the maximum level of detail.
Neverwinter Nights 2
The game allows using FSAA beginning with version 1.04. The HDR support, however, is still not finalized, so we ran the tests in NWN 2 in “eye candy” mode only.
The newcomer feels quite at home in low resolutions. GeForce 8600 GTS performs close to Radeon X1900 XT in 1280x1024. Although we couldn’t get very high-precision control of the virtual troops, because the minimal performance may sometimes drop below 15fps, Nvidia’s mainstream solution still looked quite OK in this test.
As the resolution increases, GeForce 8600 GTS loses its speed dramatically dropping down to the level of GeForce 7900 GS, which indicates that it lacks memory bandwidth. This is no big deal, because GeForce 8600 GTS is not intended for gaming in high resolutions anyway, however, we still expected a new-generation solution to do better than that.