Alienware M18x R2 Gaming Laptop: Dual GPUs Attack

Article Index

Gaming Performance: Far Cry 2, Metro 2033, and Just Cause 2

FarCry 2
DX10 Gaming Performance

FarCry 2

Like the original, FarCry 2 is one of the more visually impressive games to be released on the PC to date. Courtesy of the Dunia game engine developed by Ubisoft, FarCry 2's game-play is enhanced by advanced environment physics, destructible terrain, high resolution textures, complex shaders, realistic dynamic lighting, and motion-captured animations. We benchmarked the graphics cards in this article with a fully patched version of FarCry 2, using one of the built-in demo runs recorded in the Ranch Map. The test results shown here were run at various resolutions and settings.

Far Cry 2 is a far cry from being a taxing benchmark, but due to its age, we've amassed a barrel full of benchmarks to compare systems with. That said, we may finally hit a performance wall. Dropping down from a 1920x1080 resolution to 1280x720 barely increased framerates, which hovered right around 175fps. Suffice to say, two GeForce GTX 680M GPUs in SLI is more than enough to handle literally any older DirectX 10 titles.

Metro 2033
DX11 Gaming Performance

Metro 2033

Metro 2033 is your basic post-apocalyptic first person shooter game with a few rather unconventional twists. Unlike most FPS titles, there is no health meter to measure your level of ailment, but rather you’re left to deal with life, or lack there-of more akin to the real world with blood spatter on your visor and your heart rate and respiration level as indicators. The game is loosely based on a novel by Russian Author Dmitry Glukhovsky. Metro 2003 boasts some of the best 3D visuals on the PC platform currently including a DX11 rendering mode that makes use of advanced depth of field effects and character model tessellation for increased realism.

Metro 2033 is one of those titles that scales fairly decent with multiple videocards, which plays right into the hands of the Alienware laptop. What's really remarkable, however, is that the M18x R2's framerates at 1920x1080 is nearly as high as an older M17x running at 1280x720.

Just Cause 2
DX10.1 Gaming Performance

Just Cause 2

Just Cause 2 was released in March 2010, from developers Avalanche Studios and Eidos Interactive. The game makes use of the Avalanche Engine 2.0, an updated version of the similarly named original. It is set on the fictional island of Panau in southeast Asia, and you play the role of Rico Rodriquez. We benchmarked the graphics cards in this article using one of the built-in demo runs called Desert Sunrise. The test results shown here were run at various resolutions and settings. This game also supports a few CUDA-enabled features, but they were left disabled to keep the playing field level.

As technology evolves, so too does Alienware's gaming laptop line, and Just Cause 2 provides a good opportunity to see how performance scales over time. This same model laptop with a single GPU from a couple of generations ago is 50 percent slower than the one we tested here.

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