After the anticipated announcement from NVIDIA, we finally know what’s coming: the GeForce RTX 2080 Ti, GeForce RTX 2080, and GeForce RTX 2070. So naturally, NVIDIA provided hands-on demos and gameplay as the main event of their public GeForce Gaming Celebration. The demos in question were all powered by the $1200 GeForce RTX 2080 Ti Founders Edition, with obligatory custom watercooling rigs showing off their new gaming flagship.
While also having a presence at Gamescom 2018, this is their main fare for showcasing the new GeForce RTX cards. In a separate walled-off area, NVIDIA offered press some gameplay time with two GeForce RTX supporting titles: Shadow of the Tomb Raider and Battlefield V. Otherwise, they also had a veritable army of RTX 2080 Ti equipped gaming PCs for the public, also demoing Battlefield V and Shadow of the Tomb Raider (without RTX features), along with Hitman 2 and Metro: Exodus..
|NVIDIA RTX Support for Games
As of August 20, 2018
|Game||Real-Time Raytracing||Deep Learning Super Sampling (DLSS)|
|Ark: Survival Evolved||No||Yes|
|Assetto Corsa Competizione||Yes||No|
|Final Fantasy XV||No||Yes|
|Islands of Nyne||No||Yes|
|MechWarrior 5: Mercenaries||Yes|
|Remnant: From the Ashes||No||Yes|
|Serious Sam 4: Planet Badass||No||Yes|
|Shadow of the Tomb Raider||Yes||No|
|The Forge Arena||No||Yes|
|We Happy Few||No||Yes|
GeForce RTX 2080 Ti Hands-on: Shadow of the Tomb Raider
Starting with Shadow of the Tomb Raider, players got to play through a platforming puzzling sequence that was amusingly difficult to navigate. The game was rendered in 1080p and capped at 60fps with the graphics settings locked.
GeForce RTX 2080 Ti Hands-on: Battlefield V
For Battlefield V, the situation was similar with a 1080p 144Hz monitor, playing on the Rotterdam map over LAN. There were framedrops during fast-paced scenes and in general it didn’t seem like it could keep up with the game. Again, there was no FPS info available but the RTX 2080 Ti was almost surely not cranking out constant 60fps. Here, the real-time ray tracing was quite noticeable, with vivid dynamic reflections in puddles, windows, and river. Even at 1080p, those features added to the overall image quality, though the ultimate performance cost was unclear. Framerates aren’t a good tradeoff for image quality in fast-paced FPS.
While the in-game real-time ray traced footage trailer is obviously putting the game and RTX in the best light possible, there is visible merit in explosions and lighting being reflected where they should. This time around, recorded gameplay footage could not be published until a later date, so words are all we have.
In Gamescom proper, there were a few GeForce RTX 20-series AIB cards on display, including EVGA and Palit/Gainward. The Palit/Gainward representative mentioned their custom cards would be due mid-September, and that they had yet to start shipping, an interesting but unsurprising tidbit considering NVIDIA had just announced a firm date.
NVIDIA even had a Gamescom booth with just the GeForce RTX 2080 Ti in a glass display stand, meant for photo ops. People got an NVIDIA RTX T-shirt out of it.
Here are a few relevant takeaways from the hands-on:
- RTX in terms of real-time ray-tracing is still in development, which is something confirmed by developers themselves for Shadow of the Tomb Raider and Battlefield V;
- As presented thus far, RTX in terms of both real-time ray-tracing and deep learning super sampling (DLSS) require developer support and implementations may vary between them;
- As presented thus far, RTX in terms of a technology or a platform is fairly confusing for gamers, because includes a few different technologies like real-time ray-tracing and deep learning super sampling (DLSS), but also provides the namesake for the “GeForce RTX” 20-series and “GeForce RTX” branded games (we will explain all this in detail when the time comes);
- The demos didn’t clarify apples-to-apples performance differences between the GTX 1080 Ti and RTX 2080 Ti
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