The latest Forspoken update released two days ago has introduced several frame rate optimizations to the open world action RPG, including improved VRAM usage and an updated DirectX 12 API version on PC.
We decided to run the benchmark tool again to compare Forspoken update 1.10 with our original run analyzed at the game’s launch in late January. The results were interesting. Just like the developers had claimed, the patch provides a sizable frame rate boost.
Using the same configuration of the previous benchmark (Intel i7 12700KF, GeForce RTX 4090, 16GB DDR4 RAM), we gained exactly ten frames per second as the tally at the benchmark’s end registered 103 FPS, compared to the 93 FPS of the launch version. That’s at 4K resolution, with DLSS Super Resolution set to Quality and every graphics setting maxed.
However, Forspoken update 1.10 has lengthened load times on most occasions. As you’ll recall, the built-in benchmark tool also measures load times when jumping from one scene to another since Forspoken is the first game with support for Microsoft’s DirectStorage, the API that promises to greatly reduce load times in PC games.
The first scene from New York actually loads faster than the launch version by nearly two seconds.
The same is true of the second scene, where the benchmark moves to a dark cave filled with vegetation and a dragon-like creature. Here, Forspoken update 1.10 still loads faster by nearly a whole second.
All five subsequent loads were slower, though, starting with the one set in Praenost starring a fiery skeleton monster. Here, Forspoken update 1.10 is 2.2 seconds slower than the launch version.
A similar split is seen in the first Cipal scene, the one featuring NPCs, where the launch version of Forspoken loaded 1.8 seconds faster.
In Junoon Castle, we have one of the worse examples of increased load times. The launch version took less than half the time to load than Forspoken update 1.10.
The same applies to the Avoalet river scene. Forspoken update 1.10 loads in over four seconds, while the launch version took less than one and a half seconds.
The last scene of the benchmark goes back to Cipal (albeit without any NPCs), and it is yet another example of the slower load times. Forspoken update 1.10 takes 4.440 seconds to load, while the launch version did it in less than two.
It is weird, and we’ll try to inquire with Square Enix as to why that might be the case, but I would take longer load times over a worse frame rate any day of the week and twice on Sunday.
Forspoken update 1.10 also improved lighting and textures in certain places, thus enhancing the game’s graphics. As such, it’s hard not to declare the patch a winner, especially as it also improves accessibility options.
Of course, performance was far from the biggest complaints we outlined in our review. Indeed, Square Enix admitted a few days ago that the sales performance of Forspoken was lackluster, though their displeasure was already apparent when developer Luminous Productions was formally folded back into the internal Square Enix development divisions.
The developers are nonetheless committed to improving the game, as shown by this patch. There’s also a prequel DLC, In Tantas We Trust, supposedly on the way later this Summer.