Periodic Game Stuttering

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operation404
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Joined: Tue Sep 28, 2021 11:14 pm

Periodic Game Stuttering

Post by operation404 »

Hello, first post here because I just could not figure out this problem on my own, and I'm hoping for some help from people far more familiar with DFU than myself :)

The situation: My game periodically stutters about every 3-5 seconds. This is a quick stutter, usually no more than a fraction of a second. Using the tdbg command, I can see that my framerate dips by about roughly 20-30% for just a short time before very quickly recovering. The input delay, or whatever the statistic being measured in milliseconds is, also jumps up for a very brief duration. When DREAM's music plugin is enabled, a small static-y pause in the audio also becomes noticeable during these stutters. As if the entire game is freezing.

This problem is present across all characters and happens all the time, even when motionless in a corner. I have made many new saves to test this out and it happens in the wilderness, in towns, and indoors. With many mods enabled this problem is most severe. The pause is around 0.2~0.3 seconds or so, which isn't awful but really impacts gameplay since it happens every few seconds. As I disable mods the stutters improve, but doesn't go away. When disabling all mods, the issue still seems to be present but the stutter is incredibly subdued. Only a few frames dropped and a millisecond or two of extra delay during the stutter. I can barely even notice if it's happening even more with tdbg. I have also done this testing with a fresh install of DFU, same result as with all mods disabled on my normal install.

Technical information, as best as I can provide currently:
- I am using version 0.12.3
- My processor is an i9-9900K overclocked to 5.0 GHz, GPU is an RTX 2060, and I have 16gb of memory.
- When I run DFU and monitor my system, my CPU, GPU, Memory, and Disk are all fine. Nothing is maxed out even with full mods enabled.
- This issue happens with vsync on or off. I have tried various resolutions and DFU graphic settings as well as uninstalling ReShade.
- I have updated my graphics card driver as well as done a fresh driver install. I have also used the NVidia control panel to force off multiple graphical settings or leave it to the application to decide.

Despite some of the things I've tried above, the problem still seems to persist.

If there is more information I can provide such as logs or a video, please let me know. Any help or insight is appreciated! Thank you.

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Interkarma
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Re: Periodic Game Stuttering

Post by Interkarma »

Hey welcome to the forums. :)

The timing sounds like quest machine tick. For example, if you've previously installed Warm Ashes, you might have hundreds of quests running that dip performance every quest machine update.

Try opening console with tilde/backquote key and entering "purgeallquests" into console and pressing enter. This will unload all quests from quest machine and help confirm that's the issue.

If that helps, you might just want to unload side quests. You can use "purgenonstoryquests" to unload all quests except those related to main quest. Just be sure to wrap up any side quests you want to finish first.

If you're still having issues, please provide a save and hopefully someone can help. Details on where to find saves for each platform can be found here.

Good luck!

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operation404
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Re: Periodic Game Stuttering

Post by operation404 »

Thanks for the help, Interkarma.

I gave it a try and sadly it seems to have no impact on the stuttering. But I did learn some more about what's going on.

The most severe stuttering actually only happens when I have tdbg turned on. When tdbg is on, I stutter every 3-5 seconds and it's a significant stutter. With tdbg off however, I only get a stutter once every 15-20 seconds, and it's less noticeable. Still there and still repeating on the same cycle over and over, but way less impactful. I can actually play the game in this state, and while it's not ideal it's better than nothing!

I also forgot to mention this last time, but I have a strange issue where when I first load into the game, my fps is pretty bad and seems to not ever get above 30, if even that. However, if I hit escape, open the controls, and then advanced controls, and then close back out of all those menus again, my game freezes/stutters for a fraction of a second and then my framerate dramatically improves and stays this way. I am unsure if these problems are related.

I wish I had a more firm idea of what's going on, it feels like some engine or hardware jank on my end, but that's an educated guess at best. I will attach one of my test character save files. It was made with a lot of mods enabled, but I've also loaded the save without any mods on for testing purposes before and it seemed to not explode on me. But I can create a save that's purely unmodded as well if need be.
Attachments
SAVE18.zip
(475.37 KiB) Downloaded 6 times

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Jay_H
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Re: Periodic Game Stuttering

Post by Jay_H »

While I'm not much help on the technical side, I loaded it and agree that you don't have many quests running, only 55. You may find that number increase swiftly with "Perform at Taverns" installed; I understand imsobadatnicknames has made some efforts to prevent quest duplication inside it, but some users still see that one duplicate very quickly. I'll let you monitor that in the future. That's all I can offer for my part.

Regnier
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Re: Periodic Game Stuttering

Post by Regnier »

im having this exact problem

ive knocked alot of visuals down to compensate but it still creeps in.

i assumed its my pc getting too hot or w/e. Good to know its a common thing.


you may find your game can crash at high speeds if using tedious travel.

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King of Worms
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Re: Periodic Game Stuttering

Post by King of Worms »

Ive had some very small stutters in the cities, they also appeared periodic and for sure they did not relate to the amount of stuff rendered. My estimate was around 1 stutter per 1 minute. It felt like some small issue with streaming (appeared while running around)... I had a idea it might be caused by the commoners spawning around, but thats just a blind shot. Maybe the shadows updates, not sure.

I will test some more and report back. But Ive made upgrade to 1080ti from gtx970 and it SEEMS its gone. I purged all quests just to be sure, as Ive read in this thread, but I had a grand total of 1 quest running :lol:

PS: the ALT+Tab crashes are gone after the INI fix

Regnier
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Re: Periodic Game Stuttering

Post by Regnier »

lol flatten that lumpy mattress with MORE MATTRESSES

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Shapur
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Re: Periodic Game Stuttering

Post by Shapur »

Regnier wrote: Thu Oct 28, 2021 11:14 pm lol flatten that lumpy mattress with MORE MATTRESSES
Lmao :D :D
Link to my github here.
And here is my nexus profile.

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operation404
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Re: Periodic Game Stuttering

Post by operation404 »

I appreciate the tips and help. I'll definitely keep an eye on those quests. Though I am afraid of accidentally wiping out a ton of background quests needed by other mods lol. I'm not very experienced with the quest engine or how any of that background stuff is handled.

So far I still haven't solved the stuttering, but since it only happens once or twice a minute now and is very minor I've been able to play and have a good time still. I'd prefer it gone, but the game is still enjoyable as is.

The issue with fps being stuck at 15-20 when first entering the overworld is still quite strange to me. Even if I wait it doesn't get better, but if I open up the controls menu and close it again it magically fixes itself! Very strange. It's a minor inconvenience but since the fix is so simple it hasn't really caused problems either. Still, it is fairly odd and I'm still monitoring my system resources closely, I'm not at capacity.

I wish I had solutions to share, but the only thing I've done is stop using tdbg and have a different program display my game fps. I still assume it's probably something to do with my personal machine and less so the game, but I haven't had the time to do more thorough investigations.

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Interkarma
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Re: Periodic Game Stuttering

Post by Interkarma »

operation404 wrote: Fri Oct 29, 2021 6:50 pm The issue with fps being stuck at 15-20 when first entering the overworld is still quite strange to me. Even if I wait it doesn't get better, but if I open up the controls menu and close it again it magically fixes itself!
It's normal for the overworld to lag a few seconds (more with heavy mods) when you first start the game or fast travel. But it's not normal for that to to persist until you open a menu. Since you can reproduce this one, could you please trigger it then zip up your player log and attach to a reply here? We might see something in the log to give us a clue. You'll find player log in the same place as your saves folder.

Just as a matter of interest, closing and opening menus triggers a garbage collection (internal clean-up) that also happens periodically as game is running. Normally you don't notice this, but large amounts of garbage can cause game to stall during periodic cleanup. Perhaps something is generating extra garbage at runtime, such as the "tdbg" overlay itself.

Can I also confirm that you're using the DaggerfallGameFiles data, not some other source of data? Some versions of Daggerfall don't even have the official patches included (glares at Bethesda) and aren't cleanly compatible with DFU. It's important for troubleshooting that we're all testing the same thing and you're using the recommended game files we provide for DFU.

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