The Witcher 3 is released for PS4, Xbox and PC. NVIDIA has done the sugar coated part by adding its tech like HBAO+, G-SYNC, HairWorks etc. But on the other side of note this optimization part is bitter for AMD Radeon users as enabling NVIDIA HairWorks consumed 10-15 more FPS and also causing stuttering. In the Graphics settings of The Witcher 3 there are only two options for NVIDIA HairWorks Off/On. In order to overcome with such situation the Reddit user FriedBongWater has posted a very interesting tip, enabling AMD cards to run The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt with NVIDIA HairWorks enabled, without a substantial performance hit.
The Witcher 3 – HairWorks Performance Tweak (Windows 7, 8 or 8.1)
Below you can see his post:
So thanks to a wonderful user over at Guru3D, it’s been discovered that hairworks can in fact run relatively smoothly on AMD cards. I’m talking 60fps smooth guys, and the trade-off is barely noticeable.
All you need to do is create a profile for witcher3.exe in your Catalyst Control Center, then set Tessellation Mode to “Override application settings”, and finally set the Maximum Tessellation Level to either 2x, 4x, 8x or 16x.
Important: Depending on what tessellation level you set, the hair quality AND performance will vary. For best performance while maintaining realistic hair I recommend 4x or 8x if your card can handle it. I would recommend against using 2x as it severely reduces quality and looks terrible. Here’s a comparison photo that lets you see the differences between 2x, 4x, 8x and 16x tessellation levels. (Thanks to nzweers from G3D for the comparison photo!)
For reference I’m using a r9 290 and I have little to no performance impact if I use 8x, if I bump it up to 16x then I regularly drop to 50 in intense areas (e.g. wolf packs). So there you have it, let me know if this also works for you guys – and also if you happen to find any issues that arise from doing this tweak.
Another way of doing the same, but you have to follow more steps:
- Step 1: Make sure that Hair Works is enabled (either for Geralt or Everything)
- Step 2: Open up Windows Explorer and go to The Witcher 3 Wild Hunt\bin\config\base
- Step 3: open “rendering.ini” with Notepad and search for “HairWorksAALevel=8”
- Step 4: Change the value for “HairWorksAALevel=8” to 6, 4, 2 or 0. (More for High end video cards)
- Step 5: Save “rendering.ini” and start your game. Enjoy a nice 5fps to 20fps performance boost (depending on what settings you chose) along with Geralt’s glorious mane!
After following these very basic steps AMD Radeon GPUs users will be able to run the game with NVIDIA HairWorks enabled and actually getting better performance than GeForce users not using a Maxwell architecture NVIDIA GPU. It appears somewhat unexpected, however exciting regardless.