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What is SSAO? Please view...

Bulldog773Bulldog773 Senior MemberRegistered Users Posts: 196
edited January 2011 in Technology
I have never messed around with the different settings in the totalwar series except for army size and unit quality. What are all the other options for(what do they do), like AA, SSAO, Etc.?
Post edited by Bulldog773 on


  • BerntBernt Member Registered Users Posts: 72
    edited January 2011
    AA = anti-aliasing the basic of it is that the corners get less jagged by making the object in higher resolution.

    SSAO = screen space ambient occlusion something about making shades more realistic (I really don't know)
  • About30NinjazAbout30Ninjaz Banned Banned Users Posts: 223
    edited January 2011
    SSAO is not worth it right now, as it is un-optimized, you cant really tell the difference and it isn't worth the MASSIVE frame hit. I can run the game at maximum everything with 4x AA at 50-60 FPS but SSAO brings it down to 30-40.
  • BillyRuffianBillyRuffian Moderator UKRegistered Users, Moderators, Knights Posts: 37,195
    edited January 2011
    http://blogs.sega.com/totalwar/2009/03/05/empire-total-war-graphics-work-shop/#more-83. This was done for Empire but it basically explains all the graphics options.

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  • jmaszkjmaszk Senior Member ...riding with the Sarmatae Auxilia...Registered Users Posts: 1,297
    edited January 2011
    Why is this thread even in this forum?

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  • SystemSystem Posts: 7,117
    edited January 2011
    because it belongs here in the tech forum.
  • HardwaremasterHardwaremaster Senior Member In 3dsmax Los Angeles CaliforniaRegistered Users, Tech Moderators Posts: 6,391
    edited January 2011
    Actually SSAO isn't best understood in terms of Total War, as it handles it differently than it should because of the scale and number of points to sample, mainly its the following:

    Objects that intersect or are adjacent to another object will Occlude the light from the source, it will dim in corners. Although, total war deals with it in a slightly different way, mostly it generates a "Cloud" of shadow under units and between units where light has a tougher time reaching without bouncing off of a surface or two.

    The best possible explanation is in the GPU Gems 2 or 3 books and online Ebook.. lemme see.

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  • AlJabberwockAlJabberwock Moderator USAModerators, Tech Moderators, Knights Posts: 7,729
    edited January 2011
    That's a good explanation and interesting information on the TW series use of SSAO. My personal experience of it is that if I turn SSAO off but still have shadows ON, that items in shadow look a bit ugly/artifacty, particularly horses and other large items amongst trees.

    If I think I want to turn off SSAO, I am more likley to simply turn off shadow altogether, as I find that a less distracting option, since no shadow looks better than very odd-looking surfaces where "something" related to shadow is supposed to be.
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