World in Conflict relives the cold war in a very different way. Instead of closing the cold war with a gradual drawdown and anticlimactic whimper, Russia launches an all-out invasion of the United States. The developers went all out on the graphics to render the scope of these battles. Well-designed small towns and massive cities are common these days, but World in Conflict's skyline, smoke trails, and explosions will leave you breathless.
We used World in Conflict's built-in benchmark for our testing. The demo shows off numerous special effects that include the water, clouds, shadowing, and the now-infamous nuclear blast. We averaged the results of three separate runs to generate our final scores.
World in Conflict has a tremendous number of settings, so many that you'll have to enable or disable several of them to affect performance significantly. We toggle all of them to find out which settings will give you back the most performance.
DirectX 10 support, a minimum requirement of Direct X9.0c, and deformable terrain all mean one thing: You're going to need a good video card. The minimum specs require at least a GeForce 6600 GT, but we'd recommend going a few notches higher. Check out the graphics section to find out how the game performs across a variety of video cards as well as in Windows Vista with DirectX 10.
World in Conflict loves CPU cores. If you're on an aging Pentium 4 or a single-core Athlon 64 you will really want to consider upgrading to a dual-core chip.
World in Conflict requires 512MB of memory in XP and 1GB of memory in Vista. We tested the game with 512MB, 1GB, 2GB, and 3GB of RAM to see how much memory the game really needs to function. The game barely loads with 512MB of system memory and actually automatically disables numerous graphics options.
Sample System Performance
We put together a few sample systems to show how the game performed using real-world computers. Our single-core Pentium 4 2.8GHz system with GeForce 6800 barely ran the game with low settings at 1024x768. The AMD Athlon 64 4000+ with Radeon X1650 XT put up decent performance at 1280x1024 with medium settings, although to get it playable we had to dial the resolution down to 1024x768. The dual-core Athlon 64 FX-60 paired with Radeon X1900 XT 256MB ran very well at 1280x1024 with medium settings. Both of our Intel Core 2 setups paired with GeForce 8800 series cards ran World in Conflict very well, but the GeForce 8800 GTX, 2.93GHz Intel Core 2 system tripled the frame rates of our GeForce 8800 GTS 320MB system.
System Level Performance Tests
(Longer bars indicate better performance)
1600x1200, Very High Quality
1600x1200, High Quality
1280x1024, Medium Quality
1024x768, Low Quality
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, ATI Catalyst 7.9.
Intel Pentium 4 2.8GHz, 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.