The recently released Assassin’s Creed Valhalla runs terribly. In our review, we tested Valhalla on a gaming pc, equipped with six-core Ryzen 3600x and the old flagship Nvidia 1080 Ti. At first, we were pretty confident that the game would run smoothly, given that our specs were more than enough for 1920×1200. However, to our surprise, it ran horribly. At the beginning of the game, Frames were extremely low. That was in particular because of Norway and it’s snowy weather. Subsequently, as the story progressed and we moved to England, it had become better. The problem we faced the majority of the time was that frames outside cities were terrific. We were getting more than 60 FPS on Ultra settings, but whenever we came close to the towns. It dropped by nearly 40%.
After trembling a few hours around the settings and trying to optimize all things, I think we at exputer have come forward with the best Valhalla settings. These settings are very likely to Run Valhalla at 60+ FPS while still maintaining decent graphics. Our guide is divided into three parts. The initial segment will guide you on Valhalla in-game graphics settings. While the following will be strictly related to Nvidia settings, and the third will focus on Windows 10 optimizations.
Note: As of November 10, 2020, Nvidia has not released GeForce Game Ready drivers, but we are hopeful they will do it soon. Nonetheless, here are the best Graphics Settings for Assassin’s Creed Valhalla on PC.
Optimized Assassin’s Creed Valhalla Graphics Settings For PC
Adaptive Quality- Off
Adaptive Quality causes inconsistency and unnecessary changes in the Graphics Settings. You can give it a shot, but sadly in our benchmarks, the frames were very inconsistent.
Resolution Scale – 100%
This feature takes hold on changing the entire graphics preset. Starting the game, I was using 120%, but during benchmarks, I changed it to 100%. The difference was barely noticeable, while frames eventually became very consistent.
Anti-Aliasing – Medium or Low
Anti-Aliasing reduces jagged-edged and overly sharped textures to smooth. We tried it on high as well as low. The difference was barely noticeable, and at the same time, FPS had dropped significantly.
World Details – Very High
World Details is perhaps the most important Graphics Feature. It defies graphics for nearly all components in Valhalla. Suppose your PC is still struggling to find its place; lowering this can improve frames. I benchmarked it with low, the Frames were better, yet the graphics were total plastic. See the second picture below for reference.
Clutter – Very High
Clutter’s primary responsibility is to sharpen and tweak numerous ground objects, like grass, trees, and rocks. I highly recommend keeping it at high; the ground looks more vibrant and dense.
Suppose you have a low-end PC that does not comply with the required system specifications. Keep it at medium, but not low. The difference in certain places is immense.
Shadows – High or Very High
Keeping Shadows High truly changes the dynamic of Graphics. You will see sharp and fresh shadows from both long and short distanced objects. Additionally, the sunlight reflecting on the objects also looks neat.
Shadow’s impact on performance is likewise immense. However, you will have to compromise on that since the change in visuals is significant.
Volumetric Clouds – Medium
Changing Voluematric Clouds can also have a mild impact on your performance. It does not play any considerable role in graphics; all it does is that it changes the intensity and resolution of clouds. Half of the time, you won’t be looking at clouds, so it’s not worth it. We would have preferred keeping it low, but the game’s least option available is medium.
Water Quality – Medium
Water Quality was pretty hard to benchmark, mostly because the difference wasn’t noticeable in most places. Assassin’s Creed Valhalla graphics preset say that changing water quality can impact “levels and underwater effects.” So what does that mean? Depending on whatever settings you use. There should be additional elements inside the water and outside the shoreline.
I tested low, medium, and high, the difference isn’t that major, and performance impact is nominal. Keeping it at Medium is best for balance.
Screen Space Reflections – On
Understanding Screen Space Reflections is a bit complex, so hear me out. When you start Assassin’s Creed Valhalla, the game begins in Norway, where the weather is snowy. Adequately, If you go to the nearby lake, and turn on Screen Space Reflections. You will find a vast difference. Take a look at his picture below.
Subsequently, as you progress and move to England, the weather alongside water changes dramatically. I benchmarked SSR at both places and noticed that difference in England was barely noticeable. Further, if we talk about performance, there was hardly any difference in frames. It would be best if you keep it enabled, even though there isn’t much difference.
Environment Textures – High
Much like World Details, the environment textures also play an essential role in setting the graphics meta. Anything below high changes the dynamics, and everything looks washed out. I took pictures of the same spot with World Detail set to High and Low. The distinction in all components is noticeable. Look at the two images for reference.
Depth of Field – Low
Depth of Field was another feature, where changing it from Low to High made no difference at all. My first thought on this was that it could not be possible, but after restarting PC and Valhalla twice, it was clear that the setting might be broken. Suppose this feature worked, the distant graphics should appear more sharp and clear. In our benchmarks, we saw that both were near identical.
Motion Blur – Off
The cinematics, along with Synin’s vision, look fantastic with Motion Blur on. However, in most scenarios, it’s unnecessary, so turn it off for better frames.
Assassin’s Creed Valhalla Screen Settings
Assassin’s Creed Valhalla screen settings are quite simple. Select the highest available resolution, along with the native aspect ratio. Further, set Resolution Scale to 100% and by any chance, If you have a 60 Hertz monitor with no Freesync/GSync. I’d highly recommend enabling VSync because it eliminates a lot of screen tearing. Also, turn off the FPS limit, and do not change the Field of View (FOV) from 100%.
Nvidia Graphics Settings For Assassin’s Creed Valhalla
After you are done with the In-Game settings, now, it’s time that we further optimize Valhalla by configuring the Nvidia Control Panel. Before we jump to the tweaks, you should be aware of a few more things. The FPS and Graphics after Nvidia configuration are only likely to get better. Further, at the time of writing this article, Nvidia hasn’t released its Game Ready Drivers for Valhalla. Consequently, we couldn’t do the Ansel calibration. Anyhow, follow the steps below.
- Open Nvidia Control Panel > Manage 3D Settings.
- Click on Program Settings and Add Assassins Creed Valhalla application.
- Once Valhalla is added, make the following changes.
- Image Sharpening – Sharpen 0.50
- Anisotropic Filtering – Application Controlled
- Antialiasing – Gamma correction – Use global setting (On)
- Antialiasing Transparency – Use Global setting (off)
- Select whatever Graphics card you are using under CUDA – GPUs
- Enable Low Latency Mode
- Disable Max Frame Rate
- Again, Select your Graphics Card under OpenGL Rendering GPU
- Prefer maximum performance under Power Management mode
- Turn on Shader Cache
- Enable Texture Filtering – Anisotropic sample optimization
- Allow Texture Filtering – Negative LOD Bias
- Select High Performance under Texture Filtering – Quality optimization
- Enable Texture Filtering – Trilinear optimization
- Select Auto under Threaded Optimization
Now that you are done with Graphics optimizations, make two more changes.
- Go to the change resolution tab, select native resolution, and the highest available refresh rate.
- Afterward, checkmark Nvidia color settings and make changes just like shown in the picture below.
Further Optimizing Assassin’s Creed Valhalla
As described in the first section of our guide, we’ll go through three major parts. The first is in-game graphics settings, the second is Nvidia settings, and the third is Windows 10 Optimizations. These optimizations are vital because all together, they can also result in a near 10-20 FPS Increase. Apart from frames, they will also heavily speed your Windows 10, and everything will feel better.
Enable Ultimate Performance
By default, Windows 10 is aimed towards a very balanced and optimal plan. If you want to get the highest available FPS in any game, you will have to enable ultimate performance. The ultimate performance plan overrides tons of power efficiency modes, that usually stops your CPU from max performance.
Here is how you can enable the ultimate performance plan
- Under Start > Search and Open Windows PowerShell.
- Copy and paste this code inside PowerShell.
powercfg -duplicatescheme e9a42b02 -d5df -448d -aa00 -03f14749eb61
- Afterward, go to start again > Open Edit Power Plan > Power Options.
- Checkmark’ ultimate performance and you are done.
Set Graphics Card Priority To High For Assassin’s Creed Valhalla
Ultimate Performance mainly sets the high tone for CPU. On the off chance that you need to do same for Graphics Card, and specifically do it for Assassin’s Creed Valhalla. Windows 10 has a feature called “Graphics Settings” that permits a user to set custom priority for applications. The method is relatively short and effective.
- Under Search > Type and Open Graphics Profile.
- Afterward, click on browse and add ACValhalla.exe.
- Once added, select High Performance under Options for ACValhalla.exe.
Disable all unnecessary applications running in the background
Suppose you are noticing inconsistent and low frames in Assassins Creed Valhalla. It’s best to check if any irrelevant application is running in the background. In the majority of cases, applications launch along with startup, so you never notice them. They continuously run in the background, squeezing a chunk of memory and CPU usage. Here is how you can disable both services and irrelevant applications running in the background.
- Under Start > Open run and type “msconfig”
- Go to the services tab and checkmark “hide all Microsoft Services.” This will remove the important ones from the list. Afterward, uncheck all services you feel are irrelevant.
- After you are done with services, click on startup, and disable all irrelevant applications as well.
Takeaways and Tips
The changes we made above should improve performance with additional perks. Assassin’s Creed Valhalla isn’t the most optimized title. Still, I think it’s always been the case with Assassin’s Creed and Ubisoft games in particular. I’m hopeful that some patches and Nvidia Game Ready Drivers will bring further stability. Right now, it’s a total mess, but given the settings and optimization above, there shouldn’t be a lot of problems. One more thing I wanted to highlight was that, during our benchmarks. We noticed that some settings weren’t making any difference at all. It seemed as if they were broken or something. If you are not following this detailed guide, I’ll highly recommend to try and test each setting. To warn you, It’s an absolute nightmare.
By all means, if you are still struggling to get decent FPS in Valhalla, here are some key tips.
- Reinstall and make sure you are using the latest Nvidia/AMD Drivers.
- Ensure Windows 10 is updated to the latest version.
- Compare your specifications with the required ones, and see if you are missing any piece of the puzzle.
- In case of random crashes, I would recommend checking your hardware temperatures.
- Disable Xbox Game Bar, Hardware Acceleration, and Enhance Pointer Precision across all places.
Update #1: Nvidia has now released Game Ready Drivers 457.30, bringing further performance stability and optimization for Assassins Creed Valhalla. The drivers can be downloaded from the Nvidia Website.
Update #2: The guide has now been updated once again, keeping the new updates in mind. Hassle-free gameplay!