Entry Level Graphics Cards
Alas, owners of entry-level graphics cards don’t have much speed in this game. The best products of this category cannot ensure an average frame rate of 30fps even at 1280x1024. The cheapest cards are as slow as 12-15fps. They can only be used for playing HD video, but not for running modern 3D games.
The test with 4x MSAA proves our point about the capabilities of entry-level graphics cards. Despite its rather good specs, the Nvidia GeForce 8600 GT cannot reach the 24-25fps minimum at which the eye perceives movement as smooth.
We won’t give you any recommendations in this class because every entry-level graphics card is as unsuitable for playing Half-Life 2: Episode Two as any other. If you’ve got such a card and want to have a comfortable play, you should think about upgrading. This is the only way since playing at resolutions below 1280x1024 with reduced graphics quality settings means you are missing something in the game that the developer has tried to put into it.