Monster Hunter World is a game that many PC players are looking forward to. While the game was released in January 2018 on consoles, it took almost six months until we saw it on PC. Capcom claimed that it took some extra time to offer an optimized product, so here we are today with the PC version available at the moment. As such, it's time to benchmark it and see how it works on the PC platform.
For this PC Performance Analysis, we used an Intel i7 4930K (4.2 GHz overlock) with 8GB RAM, AMD's Radeon RX580 and RX Vega 64, and NVIDIA's GTX980Ti, Windows 10 64-bit and the latest version of GeForce and Catalyst drivers. We did not use GTX690 as this is a very demanding game and there is currently no SLI profile for it.
Capcom has added a respectful number of graphical settings. PC players can customize the quality of textures, surrounding occlusion, volume rendering, shadows, anti-aliasing, LOD bias, Max LOD level, anisotropic filtration, SH diffus, dynamic range, and they can enable / disable foliage, subdivision, display field reflections, water reflections and Z-prepass. There are also possibilities for resolution calibration and framerate. Note that in order to get an original resolution, use the High Resolution Calibration setting.
To find out how the game works on a variety of CPUs, we simulated a dual-core and a quad-core CPU. For our CPU tests, we used the hub area in the game that has many NPCs. We also dropped the 720p resolution and the resolution scaling to Low (but held the highest settings) so that we could eliminate any possible GPU bottleneck.
Monster Hunter World is one of the few titles that utilize more than four CPU cores / threads. Without Hyper Threading, our simulated dual-core was unable to run the game (due to extreme strain) and our simulated quad-core could offer at least 60fps and average 64fps. When we enabled Hyper Threading, our simulated dual-core was able to run the game at least 52 fps and an average of 56 fps and our simulated quad core skyrocket to a minimum of 77 fps and an average of 82 fps. As for our six core system, it could offer at least 77fps and average 83fps (with or without Hyper Threading).
So while PC players with moderate CPUs will be able to enjoy the 60fps game, they will require a high-end GPU to achieve something like that at 1080p and at the highest settings. Monster Hunter World is one of the most demanding titles to date, and at its highest settings, the GTX980Ti was unable to get close to 60fps experience.
For the GPU tests, we used the Forest area as it is more GPU-bound. Our GTX980Ti managed to create at least 46fps and an average of 56fps while our AMD Radeon RX Vega 64 managed to get close to 60fps experience as it offered a minimum of 57fps and an average of 67fps.
To get an experience of 60fps on GTX980Ti, we had to lower some settings (or use high preset). At high settings and at 1080p we could get a minimum of 75fps and an average of 80fps. By lowering our settings even better, we were able to beat slightly higher framerates, but it is worth noting that the GTX980Ti both 720p + Highest Settings and 1080p + Low Setting drove the game better than the Radeon RX Vega 64. This is due to to NVIDIA's better optimized drivers (we have said many times that AMD drivers have a large CPU overhead in DX11, and this is also clear here too.)
But what about higher resolutions? Well, our GTX980Ti was able to offer a 1440p console experience and Highest Settings while the AMD Radeon RX Vega 64 managed to beat NVIDIA's GPU at around 15 fps. In 4K, the performance difference was lower (around 5 fps). Enough to say that PC players need to lower their settings to achieve a somewhat steady experience at something higher than 1080p (unless they have NVIDIA's latest GPU, GTX1080Ti).
What's Also It is worth noting that the visual differences between the high and the highest settings are minimal. As such, we strongly recommend that you use a mix of High and Highest Settings to achieve a steady experience, as some settings are demanding at their highest values (without offering significant visual improvements).
Graphically, we were not really impressed with what Monster Hunter World shows. It looks good for most, but most textures have low-res (even when using the highest texture setting). Volume rendering gives a very annoying clarity (and to be honest we think the game looks better without it), lip sync is mediocre and everything feels a little dated. To put it simple, Monster Hunter World performs worse than Assassin's Creed Origins, and looks far beyond that. And that's a bit disappointing.
All in all, the PC version of Monster Hunter World is not as optimal as we had hoped, especially if we take into account the fact that Capcom decided to delay it almost half a year. The game requires a really powerful GPU, but the good news is that players can lower their settings to improve performance. However, the images displayed on the screen, at least in our opinion, do not justify these high GPU requirements. Furthermore, the game has trouble balancing mouse problems, and the default key bindings may be a little problematic (fortunately, the game allows to bind all keys).