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Speeding up slow D2 game & act exit/enter?

Discussion in 'Single Player Forum' started by Locohead, Apr 10, 2018.

  1. Locohead

    Locohead Diabloii.Net Member

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    Trying to speed up my D2 for tournaments. Here's the delays I have to deal with:

    Game start = 5.3 s
    Use WP to a new act = up to 3.5 s
    Exit game to title = 4.4 s

    Normally this doesn't bother me, but it kills me in things like the fast run tournaments. It's not "having a large map file" because I just tried start & exit with a brand new character, and there's virtually no change.

    As a comparison, when I go back to the same act which had already loaded, it's usually extremely fast (0.5s.) Although sometimes Kurast Docks becomes slow again. I can't nail down a pattern.

    I have D2 running without CD. I have an SSD. I play fullscreen. My PC is fairly potato, but has decent upgrades for the little I spent on it, and this game is many years older than it. What should I try to get rid of these delays?

    Relevant specs:
    (Windows 10 Pro)
    Core 2 Quad 9550 2.83 GHz
    8GB DDR2 RAM
    GTX750 Ti 2GB
    Crucial MX300 525GB SSD

    Overall I believe my DDR2 RAM is my primary system bottleneck, but not sure why a game as old as D2 would be affected.
     
  2. krischan

    krischan Europe Trade Moderator

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  3. T72on1

    T72on1 Diabloii.Net Member

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    Thanks for that link @krischan . Very interesting, I have to try that out.

    @Locohead I agree that for fast tournaments like the RFL, loading and S&E times are very important, and can become frustrating.

    My loading times for starting a new game and when going to another waypoint seem very stable, and not too long (definitely not 5 and 3 seconds). I do think there’s still some difference with other people, as there is no other way I can explain a run time difference of a few seconds between them and me, where our gameplay pretty much looks the same. Anyway, I have seen Gripphon mentioning running in Windowed mode with Glide wrapper disabled, so you can try that. Other than that you can try what krischan said.

    As for S&E times, there is a lot of difference. Most times it’s instant. However, I’ve had instances where it takes quite some time. I never really time dit, but it can be as much as 5 seconds maybe. I have this for example on my Nihl runs (others have indicated they have the same issue for that target) with my 99er Sorc, and also had it in the past with Rakanishu runs in the two TC3 tournaments. Short amount of time between games is something that would be a logical explanation. However, on my Travincal runs or Pindle runs I don’t have this issue, and they don’t take as long as Nihl runs. So I have no clue. I posted about this, but we never got to any really conclusions or solutions.
     
  4. Grisu

    Grisu Diabloii.Net Member

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    Back in the old days -ns command line (no sound) sped up loading times a lot for me. Haven't tried it out recently, because I mostly play tournament characters nowadays. But I'd give it a try!

    Oh, and windowed mode also helps, as T72on1 already mentioned. But you need to get used to it and don't run any fullscreen apps open with D2 in front - if you misclick, it takes some time to bring the D2 window back to the front. But monsters don't care about that and keep on harassing you :p
     
  5. Locohead

    Locohead Diabloii.Net Member

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    My audio drivers are extremely wonky. I guess it could be sound. I'll have to try that and the glide stuff.

    I'm not fond of the windowed idea for the reason you mention. I always mouse off of it, too annoying.
     
  6. drmalawi

    drmalawi Diabloii.Net Member

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    You'll get used do windowed play. Make a few HC chars and you are forced to learn ;)
     
    Grisu and T72on1 like this.
  7. Locohead

    Locohead Diabloii.Net Member

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    -ns didn't work
    -3dfx crashed it out unless I changed compatibility modes
    Tried XP compatibility, no change
    Windowed mode made it USUALLY fast to start and exit, but sometimes still slow to exit, and didn't lower the act-change lag.

    Does anyone here have their D2 running fast on fullscreen? I don't know if I can deal with windowed mode.
     
  8. GalaXyHaXz

    GalaXyHaXz Diabloii.Net Member

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    The game lags for me when running in any mode but DirectDraw. I usually run it in that and there aren't any problems.

    Edit: check your power saving plan. Windows can throttle the max CPU based on plan, so if you set it to "High Performance" it will ensure you get 100% cpu available.
     
  9. Shuffleblast

    Shuffleblast Diabloii.Net Member

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    I play fullscreen and my game starting times are under a second. My specs aren't much better than yours either.
    win7
    i3
    4gb ddr3
    ssd
     
  10. Locohead

    Locohead Diabloii.Net Member

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    It seems a lot better running the glide wrapper. Will probably stick with full screen if possible, can't get used to the mouse speed change even with locking the mouse to the window.
     
  11. drmalawi

    drmalawi Diabloii.Net Member

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    I have done some Couness runs lateley. When run time is about 20 seconds, S&E (in tower lvl 5) time is nothing, 30 seconds S&E time can be 2-4 seconds, above 30 seconds S&E time is nothing. I could do more in-depth tests. My thoughts were that the number of loaded levels and the death animation of the Countess would affect the S&E times, but it seems that it is the total time of the game that matters. Seems to be S&E breakpoints (?!) :p
     
  12. krischan

    krischan Europe Trade Moderator

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    -3dfx only works in combination with the Glide wrapper.
     
  13. darkstarhub

    darkstarhub Diabloii.Net Member

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    I don’t have any lag time at all between levels, waypoints, or save and exit on full screen in perspective mode. My computer isn’t anything special, but way more than what D2 needs.
    i5 2500K
    8 GB DDR3
    GeForce 970
    Crucial SSD
    Win 7
     
  14. sudomasochist

    sudomasochist Diabloii.Net Member

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    Back in the day, when storage devices were a lot slower and software was less intelligent about caching frequently used files, a trick some used for games with long load times was create a virtual drive in RAM and play the game from there. There was the risk of everything going up in a puff of smoke should there be a power outage or system crash, and the extra hassle of copying files to the RAM drive and back to non-volatile storage, but for some games it was worth the trouble.

    The benefits of such a practice today are dubious if one is using a modern operating system and a solid state drive, but it may be worth experimenting with if shaving every last second from run times is important.

    Here is a list of some RAM drive software available for Windows. I don't have any firsthand experience with any of them though so please don't take this as any sort of endorsement. Caveat emptor. A search engine will probably turn up other options.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_RAM_drive_software#Microsoft_Windows
     
  15. Shuffleblast

    Shuffleblast Diabloii.Net Member

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    I noticed that my save & exit times were pretty long though, about 3 seconds. -ns made them instant, though not having any sound is annoying. :/
     
  16. darkstarhub

    darkstarhub Diabloii.Net Member

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    Yeah D2 without Matt Uelmen’s music is just not right. It doesn’t work in this universe.
     
    Zyr likes this.

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