|One of the most highly anticipated titles of 2005, Monolith's new paranormal thriller F.E.A.R promises to be as thrilling to the mind as it is to the eyes. Taking a look at the minimum system requirements, we see that you will need at least a 1.7GHz Pentium 4 with 512MB of system memory and a 64MB graphics card that is a Radeon 9000 or GeForce4 Ti-class or better to adequately run the game. Using the full retail release of the game patched to v1.02, we put the graphics cards in this review through their paces to see how they fared with a promising new title. Here, all graphics settings within the game were set to the maximum values, but with soft shadows disabled (Soft shadows and anti-aliasing do not work together currently). Benchmark runs were then completed at resolutions of 1280x960 and 1600x1200, with and without anti-aliasing and anisotropic filtering enabled.|
F.E.A.R did not perform as well as we had expected with CrossFire, but we suspect there is an issue with the beta drives ATI had us use for testing because this was another game that repeatedly crashed on us. And we also encountered a bug that caused CrossFire to spontaneously be disabled in the Catalyst Control Center during our F.E.A.R testing. We tried two sets of drivers here (5.12 beta and 5.13 beta), ran numerous test loops, and this is the performance data presented to us by the test system. As you can see, the SLI systems had a marked performed advantage when no additional pixel processing was used, but their leads diminished somewhat once anti-aliasing and anisotropic filtering were enabled. The Radeon X1800 XTs were actually able to nudge past the 256MB GeForce 7800 GTXs at 1600x1200 when anti-aliasing and anisotropic filtering were used.