BioShock Hardware Performance Guide

Find out what hardware you need to play BioShock at its very best.

by

From the moment you touch land in BioShock, you get the feeling that you've stepped into a scientifically and philosophically misguided world where Leave It to Beaver never drifted out of the psyche. The game takes place in underwater city that's about to crack open from numerous internal and external forces. Water, understandably, plays an enormous role in the game as you'll spend lots of time splashing through it, running around it, and sometimes using it to electrocute your enemies. The developer spared no expense in making it utterly drinkable for the eyes. You're going to need a decent rig to get everything looking just right in BioShock, but even more modest systems can provide a fantastic experience once you knock down a few settings.

We used the third-party FRAPs video program to benchmark BioShock because the game doesn't have a built-in test. We created a 30-second run through Rapture's medical facilities for our test. The tour passes through wide-open spaces (or, at least, as wide as they get in BioShock), small corridors, and dark, shadow-ridden rooms. Between these varied environments the test run should be a fair representation of the game.

We've divided our guide into four main sections that have the biggest impact on game performance: game settings, video cards, processors, and system memory.

Game Settings
There are definitely a few settings you should tweak if you don't have an up-to-date computer. You can reclaim a lot of performance if you're willing to make a few compromises. Fortunately, the game still looks fantastic at even the lowest-quality settings. We enabled and disabled each setting to see how they affected frame rates, and we've also taken graphics-comparison shots to show you what they do.

Graphics
There's no getting around it: BioShock demands a good video card. The minimum specs require at least a GeForce 6600 GT, but we'd recommend going few notches higher. Find out how the game performs across a variety of video cards, and in Windows Vista with DirectX 10.

CPU
We've found that BioShock benefits from multicore processors. If you're on an aging Pentium 4 or a slower Athlon 64, you might have something to worry about.

Memory
BioShock requires 1GB of memory according to the developer, but we tested the game with 512MB, 1GB, and 2GB of RAM to see how much memory the game really needs to function. The game does load with 512MB of system memory, but the resultant chugging makes the game almost unplayable.

Sample System Performance

We put together a few sample systems to show how the game performed using real-world computers. Our aging 2.4GHz Pentium 4 system barely managed to run the game at higher graphics settings. We had to knock the graphical settings down to medium and set the resolution to 800x600 to get the game in a playable state. Our single-core AMD Athlon 64 4000+ with Radeon X1650 XT gave us a decent experience at lower resolutions, but we did notice that the system took a bit longer to load textures, which often froze us for a few seconds when we entered new areas. The dual-core Athlon 64 FX-60 paired with the Radeon X1900 XT 256MB performed very well, and the game was more than playable at 1280x1024 with high-quality settings. Both of our Intel Core 2 setups paired with GeForce 8800 series cards had no issues whatsoever running BioShock. We cranked up the resolution and the settings with nary a hiccup.

System Setup: Intel Core 2 X6800, Intel Core 2 E6600, Intel 975XBX2, 2GB Corsair XMS Memory (1GB x 2), 160GB Seagate 7200.7 SATA Hard Disk Drive, Windows Vista. Graphics Cards: GeForce 8800 GTX 768MB, XFX GeForce 8800 GTS 320MB XXX Edition, beta Nvidia ForceWare 163.44.
Athlon 64 FX-60, Athlon 64 4000+, Asus A8R32 MVP Deluxe, 1GB Corsair XMS Memory (512MB x 2), 160GB Seagate 7200.7 SATA Hard Disk Drive, Windows XP Professional SP2. Graphics Cards: Radeon X1900 XT 256MB, Radeon X1650 XT 256MB, beta ATI Catalyst Hot Fix 8.401.1.
Intel Pentium 4 2.4GHz, Asus P4C800, 1GB Corsair XMS Memory (512MB x 2), 160GB Seagate 7200.7 SATA Hard Disk Drive, Windows XP Professional SP2. Graphics Card: GeForce 6800 128MB, beta Nvidia ForceWare 163.44.

Game Settings

Unless you have a top-of-the-line computer, you're going to have to relax some of the settings to get adequate performance in BioShock. The game's strong art design still makes the game look great even if you disable most of the advanced graphics settings. As usual, enabling shadows takes a bite out of your frame rates. Consider disabling High Detail Shaders next. However, the shaders add a tremendous amount of detail to the game, so you might want to trade off and drop the resolution a notch or two before you lose shaders.

You can also opt to use BioShock's preset quality settings--high, medium, and low. High, as expected, leaves all the settings enabled, and low disables pretty much everything, while at the same time enabling Force Global Lighting, which actually reduces the quality of lighting in the game. According to the manual, Global Lighting disables shadows for characters and dynamic objects, as well as enabling "a one-pass inaccurate lighting method." The medium setting disables High Detail Shaders and Real Time Reflections, and takes the sliders for textures and actor detail down to medium. Check out our image comparison shots on the next page to see each graphics setting in action.

System Setup: Intel Core 2 X6800, Intel 975XBX2, 2GB Corsair XMS Memory (1GBx2), 160GB Seagate 7200.7 SATA Hard Disk Drive, Windows XP Professional SP2. Graphics Card: GeForce 8800 GTX, Nvidia ForceWare 163.44

Image Quality Comparison

High Quality vs. Medium Quality

Medium Quality vs. Low Quality

High Quality Textures vs. Medium Quality Textures

Medium Quality Textures vs. Low Quality Textures

Shadows Maps Enabled vs. Shadow Maps Disabled

Distortion Enabled vs. Distortion Disabled

Image Quality Comparison Continued

Real Time Reflection Enabled vs. Real Time Reflection Disabled

High Detail Shaders Enabled vs. High Detail Shaders Disabled

High Detail Post Processing Enabled vs. High Detail Post Processing Disabled

Force Global Lighting Enabled vs. Force Global Lighting Disabled

Actor Detail High vs. Actor Detail Medium

Actor Detail Medium vs. Actor Detail Low

Image Quality Comparison Continued

Our original DirectX9 and DirectX10 comparison shots didn’t show the differences due to a glitch in the game. After forcing BioShock to run in DirectX9 via a command line switch, we got to see just how different the game looks. Some effects, like sharper shadows, are subtle. Once we waded into the water the differences were stark. Even smoke rolling effects are obviously different in how they interact with objects in the game. Also pay particular attention to the cash register in the first set of shots, the DX10 version has much more detail than the DX9 version.

DirectX 9 vs. DirectX 10 Set 1

DirectX 9 vs. DirectX 10 Set 2

DirectX 9 vs. DirectX 10 Set 3

Video Cards

BioShock, not surprisingly, performs better on more expensive video cards, but they aren't required. We could get almost all of the video cards we tested to run reasonably well at high quality, but we had to drop the resolution to get them to do so. Note that BioShock requires a DirectX 9.0c or better video card, which will be a problem for PC owners who are still rockin' cards from 2003.

The game had noticeably higher frame rates in Windows XP than in Windows Vista. According to our quick-and-dirty image quality comparison, you probably aren't missing out on very much by sticking with DirectX 9 instead of DirectX 10. The Radeon HD 2900 XT took an enormous performance hit when we moved from Windows XP to Windows Vista; our guess is that ATI will have a patch out shortly. In addition, the Radeon HD 2900 XT CrossFire failed to load the game properly, owners will likely have to wait for a new driver release to enable functionality.

System Setup: Intel Core 2 X6800, Intel 975XBX2, eVGA 680i SLI, 2GB Corsair XMS Memory (1GBx2), 160GB Seagate 7200.7 SATA Hard Disk Drive, Windows XP Professional SP2. Graphics Cards: GeForce 8800 GTX 768MB, GeForce 8800 GTS 640MB, XFX GeForce 8800 GTS 320MB XXX Edition, GeForce 8600 GTS 256MB, GeForce 8600 GT 256MB, GeForce 7900 GS 256MB, GeForce 7600 GT 256MB, GeForce 6800 128MB, GeForce 6600GT 128MB, Radeon HD 2900 XT 512MB, Radeon HD 2600 XT 256MB, Radeon HD 2600 Pro 256MB, Radeon HD 2400 XT 256MB, Radeon X1950 XTX 512MB, Radeon X1900 XT 256MB, Radeon X1950 Pro 256MB, Radeon X1650 XT 256MB, Radeon X1300 XT 256MB. Graphics Drivers: beta Nvidia ForceWare163.44, beta ATI Catalyst Hot Fix 8.401.1.

CPU

Our Intel Core 2 and dual-core Athlon 64 processors ran BioShock with ease, but performance dropped once we switched over to our single-core Athlon 64. It also seems like having at least two processing cores is more important than overall processor speed. Our 2.4GHz and 1.86GHz Intel Core 2 Duo processors had the exact same framerate.

System Setup: Intel Core 2 X6800, Intel Core 2 Duo E6600, Intel Core 2 Duo E6300, Intel 975XBX2, AMD Athlon 64 FX-60, AMD Athlon 64 4000+, ASUS A8R32-MVP Deluxe, 2GB Corsair XMS Memory (1GBx2), 160GB Seagate 7200.7 SATA Hard Disk Drive, Windows XP Professional SP2. Graphics Card: GeForce 8800 GTX, beta Nvidia ForceWare 163.44.

Memory

Even though the game requires 1GB of RAM to run, we went ahead and tested it with 512MB of RAM. BioShock did run, but we experienced a lot of stuttering, as the game struggled each time we turned a corner or entered a new room. The game played great when we jumped up to the recommended 1GB. Moving up to 2GB of RAM didn't affect our performance significantly.

System Setup: Intel Core 2 X6800, Intel 975XBX2, 2GB Corsair XMS Memory (1GB x 2), Corsair XMS Memory 1GB (512MB x 2), Corsair XMS Memory 512MB, 160GB Seagate 7200.7 SATA Hard Disk Drive, Windows XP Professional SP2. Graphics Card: GeForce 8800 GTX 768MB, beta Nvidia ForceWare 163.44.

Systems

We put together a few sample systems to show how the game performed using real-world computers. Our aging Pentium 4 paired with a GeForce 6800 barely managed to run the game. We had to knock the graphical settings down to medium and set the resolution to 800x600 to achieve playability. Our single-core AMD Athlon 64 4000+ paired with a Radeon X1650 XT gave us a decent experience at lower resolutions, although we did notice that the system took a bit longer to load textures, which left us walking around in a blurry mess for a few seconds when we entered new areas. The dual-core Athlon 64 FX-60 paired with the Radeon X1900 XT 256MB performed very well, and the game was more than playable at 1280x1024 with high-quality settings. Both of our Intel Core 2 setups paired with 8800 series cards had no issues whatsoever running BioShock. We cranked up the resolution and the settings with nary a hiccup.

System Setup:
Intel Core 2 X6800, Intel Core 2 E6600, Intel 975XBX2, 2GB Corsair XMS Memory (1GB x 2), 160GB Seagate 7200.7 SATA Hard Disk Drive, Windows Vista. Graphics Card: GeForce 8800 GTX 768MB, XFX GeForce 8800 GTS 320MB XXX Edition, beta Nvidia ForceWare 163.44.
Athlon 64 FX-60, Athlon 64 4000+, Asus A8R32 MVP Deluxe, 1GB Corsair XMS Memory (512MB x 2), 160GB Seagate 7200.7 SATA Hard Disk Drive, Windows XP Professional SP2. Graphics Card:Radeon X1900 XT 256MB, Radeon X1650 XT 256MB, beta ATI Catalyst Hot Fix 8.401.1.
Intel Pentium 4 2.4GHz, Asus P4C800, 1GB Corsair XMS Memory (512MB x 2), 160GB Seagate 7200.7 SATA Hard Disk Drive, Windows XP Professional SP2. Graphics Card: GeForce 6800 128MB, beta Nvidia ForceWare 163.44.

Discussion

480 comments
uchitha
uchitha

Great comparison... gonna try this with the new PC im hoping to buy ....

lobsterbushcrab
lobsterbushcrab

"Will it run on 8600????" yes my 7600GT runs it on max at 1152X864

K_M82
K_M82

I bought GF6800GT with P4 in November 2004 for about US$ 900. At that time no console game can even come close to PC graphical quality. Let's not talk about the cutting edge like F.E.A.R, Doom 3, Halve Live, or FarCry, these games are design for PC. Even the multiplatform game like Prince of Persia or NFS series looks far better on PC. I used to play NFS Most Wanted, F.E.A.R, ES4 Oblivion and Splinter Cell Double Agent in 1280x1024 with that PC and graphically that was almost as good as in the XBOX 360 or PS3 (1280x720+AA). The last game I Play on that PC was DIRT CMR. PC and consoles each has advantages and disadvantages. The price for a new console is a bit difficult to swallow at first (US$ 399), and any multiplatform game that came out at the time a new console is out can be played with last year mid end PC (my friend completed Oblivion an F.E.A.R with 6600GT on 1024x768.). At that time PC gamer don't need to spend a dime to play F.E.A.R, while console gamer need to buy a new console. As time goes by PC gamer have a choice between upgrading and enjoy the cutting edge or enjoy what they already had while the console gamer can still enjoy their hefty initial investment. In time the PC will have to be upgraded to follow the DirectX while the console gamer can only watch in awe at how far ahead the PC graphic is, and wait enthusiastically for the next generation of console. It has been like this since the first time I game (back in the PS1 day), and it will still be like this for a long time to come (next generation of NVIDIA GPU will be released in December).

ZEtAHybrid
ZEtAHybrid

just because it has an ati license on it doesnt mean all ati cards are the same buddy

Kirbysuperstar
Kirbysuperstar

"i dont get it. wasn't bioshock developed for both the x360 and pc. The 360 has a ati gpu, so why does it run so slowly on a ati video card?" Because there were two teams. Those doing the 360 version and those doing the PC version.

Baselerd
Baselerd

stewiegriffin, you can run bioshock maxed out on an 8800gts 320MB, which costs $100-$120 less than the xbox360. What a good deal.

vgplaya
vgplaya

Will it run on 8600????

NF_Reaper
NF_Reaper

@ iebubu the game does run better on ATI cards. Just have a look at the Video Cards results. Gamespot have used lower end ATI graphic cards on their "System Level Performance Tests" while using the top end nvidia ones even thought the ATI perform better. Can't guess why. Anyway I'm using an X1900XTX and Pentium Dual Core 930 with 2GB RAM and can run everything maxed (except DX10) at 1440x900 (I have a widescreen) without no problems at all. From what I've heard from my clan mates you can run the game maxed out on much lower specs if your willing to sacrifice a little resolution.

wytefang
wytefang

Is there some lame reason that Gamespot forgot to use the 1900x1200 resolution setting for people with larger monitors. It's quickly becoming the de facto screen resolution for any kind of graphic tests like these. Guess they should stick to games and not hardware...

Viridianzealot
Viridianzealot

Well I have an AMD Athlon 64 @ 3000 with 1GB DDR @ 400 and an ATi Radeon X1950 Pro 512MB AGP (Catalysts 7.4) running on Windows XP ENG PRO. Bioshock is displayed on a Samsung 22'' Wide SM226BW @ 1680 x 1050 with details at full (except DX10) and it runs like a beauty. Very good coding from the developers.

khurramawais
khurramawais

i have p4..... 2.4Ghz....gforce 6200 (256 Mb)....1Ghz ram...CAN I RUN BIO SHOCK ON MY SYSTEM?????

CaribouLou5
CaribouLou5

Well it runs great on my ATi X1900XTX. High settings, 1680 x 1050. Also, there's nothing wrong with the widescreen. 2K developed the game for widescreen then added extra to the top and bottom for fullscreen.

antality
antality

Inspiron 9300 dell Laptop, 2.13ghz pin modded Single CPU, 1 GB ram, Nvidia 6800 GO 256mb video card, all settings turned on except global env, and resolution set to lowest, game runs excellent. Other than not sharp edges, it's awesome on this nifty little laptop of mine..

iebubu
iebubu

i dont get it. wasn't bioshock developed for both the x360 and pc. The 360 has a ati gpu, so why does it run so slowly on a ati video card?

narutoxx5
narutoxx5

people were the fck you get all this money@!!?

smokerz911k
smokerz911k

ahh for all of u who have sli 8800gtx or ultra.....shut up alrdy u know tat we know tat ur over 1 grand rig can over kill the game at least 10 times. or maybe even more. but the point is. stop bragging about ur super high end rigs for the next 2 month til a new video card or new cpu comes out and all of sudden u see the stuff u bought just took a huge dive from the retail price

siawash
siawash

Bioshock and NVIDIA = amazing Bioshock and ATI = comic book benches say a different story.........

XFireCrossX
XFireCrossX

this games still looks awesome even with the lowest graphics on

andrewass121
andrewass121

will my ati x700 series pro work on this game

WMDN
WMDN

oh sorry...i forgot one thing...(ATI NO MORE)...my last was a X1600XT who was murdered by LOST PLANET Extreme Conditions and Dirt. :P Bioshock and NVIDIA = amazing Bioshock and ATI = comic book Who knows on the next generation.............

Flav333
Flav333

I got 4gb ram , 2x 8800 ultra SLI and a intel core 2 QE6800 :D that should work at the maximum quality :D

aranos420
aranos420

AMD athlon 64 Dual Core 3.0 Ghz + 4 gig DDR2 RAM + XFI Sound Card + 2 8800 GTXs SLI. HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHHHAHAHAHAH... err, excuse me. Lol this game is pretty on my machine ;) And as for ATI... good luck. I've never had more graphical errors, glitches, and overheats than when I was using ATI cards. nVidia FTW.

gabi098
gabi098

3500+ 2gig ddr 8600 GT all high exept dx10 (cose its on xp) and i rarely go under 30 fps!!! so how with: AMD Athlon 64 4000+, Radeon X1650 XT 256MB, 1GB RAM, Windows XP they got 18 I just can't get it. unless RAM is such a big issue I can't explain! only thing I have encountered however is slow texture loading after a loading a saved game or entering a new arem but i didn't get any freeze the textures simply appeared after a few minutes.

oliver1415
oliver1415

4gbs RAM , GeForce 8800 GTS, ect, should run sweet on mine

IrishSJ23
IrishSJ23

No rainmaster the 5 series graphics cards cant run Bioshock. You need a 6600GT. Thats the lowest of the low that will play it. Find a nice cheap 256mb 7900 or a 512mb 6800.

majicebe
majicebe

Runs like a 12fps hunk of poo on my 7800GT at 1600x900, 1.8GHz Core2, 3GB RAM with higher graphics settings. To play how the game is meant to be played, you really need a 8800GTS or higher. Oh, and the game starts kinda slow, but I'm about 1/2 to 2/3 the way through the game and it's been a ton of fun. Highly recommended at $30-50 depending on how long you want to wait for it.

pco_rainmaster
pco_rainmaster

im really not into graphics, im into the quality of a gameplay, can i run bioshock without a lag on a medium quality settings coz i have a P4 2.4 and an old video card of FX 5500 256mb?

marianox1
marianox1

beckoflight HAHHAHAHA ) ATI 2900 XT ... will show its quality from now on because of its drivers .... the aritecture was allready superrior evan to the ULTRA ... practacaly the only thing that the 2900 has lower than both 8800 GTX & ULTRA is the ddr .... but starting from the clock to the transitor count its far more superrior ... i wonder why they didn't test two 2900 XT in corssfire .... i think the answer is clear Nvidia is a much better sponsor ! PAY ATTENTION when reading the performance guide, it says that 2 hd2900 in crossfire couldn't load properly the game due to driver problems, when that problem is solved, i'm pretty sure that will surpass 2gtx in sli

tiagor87
tiagor87

the game is suberb on my 7600GT fatality

hardtailer
hardtailer

Great game. It has such low system requirements too. i got a 7900gtx, amd 64 x2 5600 and 2gb of 800mhz ocz ram and i play it on full @1600x900 res and it runs awsome! it bugs me on the fact that half life 2 got .8 points more than this game. this game makes half life 2 looks like a 2 or a 3

WMDN
WMDN

I`ts being amazing on my E6300+2gb ram+8600GT(forceware163 driver) running at FULL -1024x768. I can`t believe in that graphics...It´s a dream... Thnks a lot 2K games ;) ...I hope that G.Spot don`t give a low score to this revolutionary game.

AnnoyedDragon
AnnoyedDragon

Don't know why they are only showing 8 series Nvidia cards, game runs fine on my 7900GT.

Slappywhite2001
Slappywhite2001

@SMFES you cannot play the game because the X800 series uses shader 2.0, and this game requires a 3.0 compatible card. i encountered this problem with my X850XT-PE, which uses 2.0b, and in terms of every other spec should run the game without a problem. There is an underground movement to create user-made patches to allow the game to run, but who knows.

Errur
Errur

@GT3_and_JP they've released a SM2 patch n u need to use that one to play this game

kaziechameleon
kaziechameleon

well if that isn't a ATI fanboy, ok so ATI is loosing generally speaking ever since the end of the 9000 series, don't go making up lies even if the ATI cards are comparable in speed they need aproximately the same juice and run tons hotter than the Geforce counterparts. and though crossfire came latter it is actually alot weeker so time spent on that config was wasted. SLI is the best though little specific. geforce cards are much solider and more reliable if you can manage some nice water cooling or a good AC bill in the middle of summer by all means get a ATI it is to behind the bar, i've had several and all my friends just replaced there last gen x800 cards and such with the 8000 Geforce cards because of so many issues, issues i shared in. ATI is pulling preformance out of their @$% that is why the temps are so high same for AMD. everyone loves to say game spot likes this brand better, maybe it's just more concistently preformend for them rather than being all over the place like ATI. maybe they did poorely review two ps3 exclusives that fanboys had been touting for the last year and a half, but then agian maybe the games weren't that good, or just plain broken.

beckoflight
beckoflight

HAHHAHAHA :)) ATI 2900 XT ... will show its quality from now on because of its drivers .... the aritecture was allready superrior evan to the ULTRA ... practacaly the only thing that the 2900 has lower than both 8800 GTX & ULTRA is the ddr .... but starting from the clock to the transitor count its far more superrior ... i wonder why they didn't test two 2900 XT in corssfire .... i think the answer is clear Nvidia is a much better sponsor :D !

knut-am
knut-am

Game runs like water on 8800 GTX Ultra XXX at 1920x1200 res with evrything maxed in DX!0, my first experience with DX10 and do i love it,, O YEAH

daveg1
daveg1

the global lighting option in this game is a puzzler...

beckoflight
beckoflight

Well i see that AMERICA sticks to AMERA & they did not mention the 2900 XT in there ... but i will recomend you thse board the game runs with 60 + to on it !

GT3_and_JP
GT3_and_JP

I have 1.6GHz,GeForce FX 5900,1GB RAM Windows XP and i downloaded the demo but i can`t launch it

Fists1
Fists1

"the game still looks fantastic at even the lowest-quality settings" what? i played the demo on my rather sub-par computer and it looked REALLY!!! bad nothing fantastic if you dont have a good computer (im a console person)

Lidve
Lidve

@Sonicgod Because lower ressolution = less strugling for pc to calculate data. If u dont like jaggies u can allways turn Antialiasing on. My advice is bether play on low res with everything on and AA than on max res with low/moderate settings,because first one looks waaaayyy bether

cccp1988
cccp1988

My Sistem is 3500+AMD Nvida7600GST Innovision 1,5gb Ram and i run the bioshok demo at 1280*1024 at maximum whit average 35 FPS !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

12sharmar
12sharmar

i have an e6600, x1950 pro, 2 gigz ram, windows vista, can i run bioshock smoothly?

Sonicgod
Sonicgod

MY Nvida 8800gtx and my old ati x1900xtx system both have the same amount of blood, no glitch with either last video driver out as of this day.

Sonicgod
Sonicgod

800 x 600 is worse than Xbox 360 ports low 720 p Res that is a wide screen 1024x768. (1280x720p60 ) and PC's had a sqaure 4:3 1024 by 768 as standard years ago in the 90'. having the xbox 350 upscale to 1080p does not count it looks worse than real 1080p; The xbox 360 is blurry has low res textures and makes me feel like i need glasses because it is only displaying at 720p 1280x720p60 and the controler is bad so playing at low res on a pc is worth it to get a mouse and keyboard. I have not seen a game run at 800x600 since starcraft in 1998. I have not seen a Pc game run at 1024x768 since 2000 either. and if you are using a LCD flat pannel the monitor will upscale and make those 2 res look even worse. Why even have a scale meter for 800x600?

runico
runico

question: in your tests with the ati cards did you notice missing blood and blood decals....as this is a problem across many ati cards just search the 2k forums for missing blood decals....just wondering if you noticed the lack of blood?...it seems alot of people have this glitch...they just dont realize it....

diegones1
diegones1

IT RUNS WELL ON MY COMPUTER 800*600 HIGH QUALITY AMD ATHLON 3200+ 939 ATI X1300PRO 1GB RAM WINDOWS VISTA

lonerayven
lonerayven

I've got an Opteron 148 2.2 ghz processor, geforce 8800 640mb, 3GB of ram, and a DFI Lanparty mobo. The game runs at MAX graphics for DX 9 and no lag at all! The only gripe I have are semi-long loading screens.