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narrn001

Poser
#1
Best Visuals

Soon to return to W3 in 2018. But I fear the graphics may feel outdated and or not so desireable anymore.

What are the best visual enhancing mods that can really push the PC:

i7-5930K @ 4.5 GHz
4x 4GB HyperX DDR4 @ 2400Mhz
2x ASUS GTX 1080 Ti STRIX OC
Samsung 850 Pro 256GB SSD

Thanks.
 

Killrog2

Junior Member
#2
Beautiful Grass https://www.nexusmods.com/witcher3/mods/2686
HD Reworked Project https://www.nexusmods.com/witcher3/mods/top/
High Quality Faces https://www.nexusmods.com/witcher3/mods/1024
Increased Draw Distance https://www.nexusmods.com/witcher3/mods/949
Nitpicker's Patch https://www.nexusmods.com/witcher3/mods/2117
COMPILATION https://www.nexusmods.com/witcher3/mods/2230
*Volumetric* Couds Over Skellige https://www.nexusmods.com/witcher3/mods/1302
Beautiful Rocks https://www.nexusmods.com/witcher3/mods/2691
More Shadows https://www.nexusmods.com/witcher3/mods/1886
Alternative Chimney Smoke https://www.nexusmods.com/witcher3/mods/2751
Next Gen Candles https://www.nexusmods.com/witcher3/mods/1350
Lip Movement and HiRes Shadows on NPCs in Gameplay https://www.nexusmods.com/witcher3/mods/1902
Improved Particle System https://www.nexusmods.com/witcher3/mods/2493
Tweaks (let you adjust some settings beyond vanilla ultra settings) https://www.nexusmods.com/witcher3/mods/2658

Search on www.nexusmods.com for more, you can choose whatever lighting mod/reshade to your liking.
Hope this helps you.
 
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PloughEnthusiast

Junior Member
#3
HD Reworked Project
Next Gen Stones and Miscellaneous
Increased Draw Distance Mod
Extended View Distance Mod
Animals and Monsters Hairworks Wind Effect
Better FX
Brutal Blood
Roach Gallop Dust
Hair LOD Mod (also download the Geralt Hair and Geralt Beard LOD increase files)
Igni and Yrden Lightsource
Ice Breath for Skellige
Volumetric Clouds over Skellige
The Legendary Viper - pick one of those
Viper Armor HD Chainmail
Supreme to Extreme Graphics Options
High-Res Character Shadows and Lip Movement

are the main graphics-boosting mods that don't overly change the game's visual presentation, but enhance it. Some particle effects mods are way too over the top, which is why I like Better FX - it blends in quite nicely for the most part.

Optional ones are:
More Shadows
More Shadows for Toussaint
and a lighting mod of your choice, such as STLM 3.2, Wiedzmin Lighting Mod, E3 Lighting Mod, Lighting Deluxe 3.0... unfortunately, not all of these lighting mods work flawlessly, and even the more popular ones such as STLM apparently have some issues.
 

LukeSparow

Junior Member
#6
https://youtu.be/W1t8TG6q0jU

This is my personal set-up, I am very happy with it. The biggest impact is from the lighting combo you can find in the comments.
Full mod list is in the description.

If you want to see how it all looks throughout the game I have the playthrough uploaded up until Novigrad so you can take a look at the different areas.
 

PloughEnthusiast

Junior Member
#7
GregorWladacz;n10948709 said:
Nothing of that except Supreme to Extreme Graphics really pushes your pc.
True, but I thought he was going for the best overall visuals in Witcher 3, not what mods have the biggest impact on FPS.
 

PloughEnthusiast

Junior Member
#8
MonarchX;n10948970 said:
Yeah, set cascade shadow resolution to 8192 for the most Carnage. Brings my rig to it's knees.
Yes, with 2x 1080Ti he can run that quite smoothly I'd guess. My single 1080Ti could run it as well, but not with maxed out graphics at 1440p 60FPS. My FPS drop into the 30s at times with 8K shadows. However, 8K shadows give you the option of turning your CascadeShadowDistanceScale0 to 4 without visibly losing shadow quality.

Either use Supreme to Extreme Graphics Options mod, or modify your user settings file like this:

CascadeShadowFadeTreshold=0.5
CascadeShadowMapSize=8192
CascadeShadowQuality=4
CascadeShadowDistanceScale0=4
CascadeShadowDistanceScale1=4
CascadeShadowDistanceScale2=3
CascadeShadowDistanceScale3=2
 

narrn001

Poser
#9
So this cascadeshadow thing, how much of an improvement does it make. Has anyone got some screenshots?
 

PloughEnthusiast

Junior Member
#10
You will notice it immediately. Just run around with Geralt in vanilla, and look for shadows. About 3-5 meters in front of Geralt, you'll see the shadows switching from lower quality to a higher quality. If you change CascadeShadowDistanceScale0 to a higher number, it moves that invisible line in the sand of the very close high-res shadows where it switches between different shadow qualities further away from Geralt. However, it also reduces your shadow quality because it "stretches" the available shadows you have, so you gotta increase the shadow resolution.

I have it at CSDS0 at 2 (wish I could have it at 4, but that would require 8K shadows which my 1080Ti can't handle at 60FPS) and 4K shadows, which seems to be good.
With your insane rig with two 1080Ti, I would go for what I posted above. Your machine should be capable of handling 8K shadows and CSDS0 at 4.
Please note: You can't just change these values willy nilly to whatever values you want. You can enter whatever you want, but only certain values will be actually accepted and displayed.

I recommend these two resources:
https://www.geforce.com/whats-new/gu...tweaking-guide
https://forums.cdprojektred.com/foru...the-pc-version

You can find sections to shadow tweaks in both links. Again, for your machine, just try the values I posted above. If they are too hard on performance for you, use these instead:

CascadeShadowFadeTreshold=0.5
CascadeShadowMapSize=4096
CascadeShadowQuality=2
CascadeShadowDistanceScale0=2
CascadeShadowDistanceScale1=2
CascadeShadowDistanceScale2=3
CascadeShadowDistanceScale3=2


I'm not too sure about CascadeShadowQuality. It doesn't seem to do anything from what I could see in testing. I've seen the screenshots from the nVidia tweaking guide, but in that comparison, CSQuality set to 4 actually looked worse than 1. So I set it to 2 and that's that. Maybe someone more knowledgable could chime in on that one. But you're gonna be fine with either of those settings I posted. Just pick the ones that fit you better in terms of performance.
 
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MonarchX

User
#11
CascadeShadowFadeTreshold=0.1
CascadeShadowMapSize=8192
CascadeShadowQuality=6
CascadeShadowDistanceScale0=16
CascadeShadowDistanceScale1=8
CascadeShadowDistanceScale2=4
CascadeShadowDistanceScale3=2

or at least

CascadeShadowFadeTreshold=0.1
CascadeShadowMapSize=6144
CascadeShadowQuality=6
CascadeShadowDistanceScale0=8
CascadeShadowDistanceScale1=4
CascadeShadowDistanceScale2=3
CascadeShadowDistanceScale3=2

is what I prefer, but each level has its own shadow settings (w2s files) and the settings above look good in Novigrad/Velen, but in Kaer Morhen you would get blocky shadows. I get sub-40fps with all the mods and 8192 resolution for cascade shadows on my GTX 1080 Ti rig @ 1080p...
 

narrn001

Poser
#12
OK thanks for all the suggestions.

I am only interested in these mods so far:

-HD Reworked Project
-High-Res Character Shadows and Lip Movement
-Supreme to Extreme Graphics Options
-The Legendary Viper
-Volumetric Clouds over Skellige
-Brutal Blood
-Better FX
-Compilations
-Improved Sign FX
-Extended View Distance Mod
-Increased Draw Distance Mod
-Next Gen Stones and Miscellaneous
-More Shadows

So would anyone know if they would all be compatible with Ghost Mod?
 

LukeSparow

Junior Member
#13
narrn001
Jup, completely compatible. You'll still need to run Script Merger though. And maybe Mod Merger if for nothing else than to increase load times.
 

MonarchX

User
#14
Skip ALL COMPILATION mods and all mods by the same author! They have an epic ton of errors, are not cooked correctly, offer very little improvement, cannot be merged most of the time, and they do not represent what the author described. Skip Ultra HD mod too for similar reasons.

Have you noticed how HD Reworked Project shows comparison of vanilla to his mod's textures? COMPILATION author does not...

COMPILATION and mods by same author simply sharpen some textures and that is useful if you can isolate them from all the broken textures. For that, you would have to learn how to uncook, get rid of some 100's of files, re-cook, etc. I use some 450MB of custom-selected textures from all of his mods, but I can't upload them due to need of permission from the author who abandoned his mods and left strict permission requirements.
 

LukeSparow

Junior Member
#16
MonarchX;n10950926 said:
Skip ALL COMPILATION mods and all mods by the same author! They have an epic ton of errors, are not cooked correctly, offer very little improvement, cannot be merged most of the time, and they do not represent what the author described. Skip Ultra HD mod too for similar reasons.

Have you noticed how HD Reworked Project shows comparison of vanilla to his mod's textures? COMPILATION author does not...

COMPILATION and mods by same author simply sharpen some textures and that is useful if you can isolate them from all the broken textures. For that, you would have to learn how to uncook, get rid of some 100's of files, re-cook, etc. I use some 450MB of custom-selected textures from all of his mods, but I can't upload them due to need of permission from the author who abandoned his mods and left strict permission requirements.
Eh, 1.0 is pretty good imo.
The eye mods included especially so.
 

PloughEnthusiast

Junior Member
#17
MonarchX;n10950680 said:
CascadeShadowFadeTreshold=0.1
CascadeShadowMapSize=8192
CascadeShadowQuality=6
CascadeShadowDistanceScale0=16
CascadeShadowDistanceScale1=8
CascadeShadowDistanceScale2=4
CascadeShadowDistanceScale3=2

or at least

CascadeShadowFadeTreshold=0.1
CascadeShadowMapSize=6144
CascadeShadowQuality=6
CascadeShadowDistanceScale0=8
CascadeShadowDistanceScale1=4
CascadeShadowDistanceScale2=3
CascadeShadowDistanceScale3=2

is what I prefer, but each level has its own shadow settings (w2s files) and the settings above look good in Novigrad/Velen, but in Kaer Morhen you would get blocky shadows. I get sub-40fps with all the mods and 8192 resolution for cascade shadows on my GTX 1080 Ti rig @ 1080p...
Why CSDS0 at 16? Isn't that overkill, considering that 4 is already like 20 meters away from Geralt. 8 would certainly be enough, and I noticed that shadows still look good if you have 8K shadow resolution and the distance set to 4. 8 might be fine, I don't know, but I highly doubt 16 will still be sharp. Shadows look ok enough at 4K with distance set to 4, but it you can already see quite a bit of shimmering, especially on character shadows and small foliage shadows (thin twigs, etc.).

How about FadeTreshold? That controls all shadows and how far they're drawn, did I get that right?

I wish I knew what CSQuality exactly does. "Quality" could mean different things. I tested it from 1 to 6 and I didn't really see a difference. Maybe I was testing it on the wrong kind of shadows. I looked for shadows on the ground of bushes and trees. There is a difference in the nVidia comparison shots, but in those shots CSQuality at 4 actually looked worse than 1 in my opinion. So CSQuality is the one variable that confuses me a bit.


@narrn001
I think you got a good list going on there, but I would add to that:
-Alternate Aard Water Ripple Effect (doesn't change anything visually, it just adds the water ripple effect for the 360° Aard Blast).
-Animals Hairworks Wind Effect (look for "wind" on nexus, there's like two mods that change wind, then look for the one that has a file that adds wind for animals; highly recommend it)
-Igni and Yrden Lightsource (Igni and Yrden cast light)

I would also rather stick to only Better FX and ditch Improved Sign Effects. ISE looks a bit overblown, but that's not really the issue. My problem with that mod is that it adds a weird audio distortion bug to Igni and Aard. The volume of the sounds is considerably higher, and the sounds are distorted. I don't know what causes the distortion (maybe the mod just plays the sound effect multiple times at the same time, or maybe it's the volume that blows out all the detail of the sound fx). Better FX is a neat mod. A signs-only version was recently uploaded, if you don't want all the other changes that mod provides.
I agree with MonarchX on Compilation. The rain part of that mod doesn't impress me too much. It would look good I think if there was more of it, but as it is now, vanilla looks more convincing to me.
 
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MonarchX

User
#18
Yeah, Improved Sign Effects replays FX several times and it also pauses/holds the emitter. All that can be done without script.
 

PloughEnthusiast

Junior Member
#19
Quick question about the Increased Draw Distance mod (https://www.nexusmods.com/witcher3/mods/949?tab=description)

If I click "vanilla" in the general tab and then disable both "Enable Mod" and "Enable Ultra Draw Distance", is everything back to vanilla? When clicking "vanilla" it sets the sliders to 1, but when I then enable the mod, the loading times triple or quadruple... but shouldn't it be still be the same loading time as the vanilla game, because it set the sliders to 1?

I got an issue during cutscenes - there's stuttering sometimes right after a cut to another camera angle or when a character enters the frame. I suspect it's because of the IDD mod.
 
#20
I have a suggestion. The mod ultimate graphics options. It let you push your graphics beyong exteme graphics mod without having to go into your files everytime. You can do it in game. Stretch that foliage distance out as far as it goes. It's 5 with ultimate graphics options. It makes a huge difference. Also toussaint grass in novigrad and velen, and beautiful grass for skellige. Just give toussaint grass priority for them to work together. The reason for the toussaint grass is because if you have to lower the density to keep your fps up because of how far your foliage distance is, toissaito grass still have a pretty good density compared to vanilla and beautiful grass so novigrad/velen still looks good even if you set the grass under vanilla low. And in Skellige there other shrubs and grasses besides the grass itself that keeps that density looking good along with beautiful grass. I'll post pics