Deep Silver has just released Dead Island 2 on PC, exclusively via Epic Games Store. Powered by Unreal Engine 4, it’s time now to benchmark it and see how it performs on the PC platform.
For this PC Performance Analysis, we used an AMD Ryzen 9 7950X3D, 32GB of DDR5 at 6000Mhz, AMD’s Radeon RX580, RX Vega 64, RX 6900XT, RX 7900XTX, NVIDIA’s GTX980Ti, RTX 2080Ti, RTX 3080 and RTX 4090. We also used Windows 10 64-bit, the GeForce 531.68 and the Radeon Software Adrenalin 2020 Edition 23.4.1 drivers.
Dambuster has included a respectable number of graphics settings. PC gamers can adjust the quality of Shadows, Textures, View Distance, Effects and more. The game also supports AMD’s FSR 2.0 tech, though there is no support for Intel XeSS or NVIDIA DLSS 2. Furthermore, the game will compile its shaders when you first launch it, meaning that you won’t experience any shader compilation stutters.
Dead Island 2 does not feature any built-in benchmark tool. So, for our GPU benchmarks, we used the first main mission in which you fight numerous zombies.
For our CPU benchmarks, we used the following scene. This scene features a large map/level with numerous zombies, meaning that it can stress both the CPU and the GPU.
In order to find out how the game scales on multiple CPU threads, we simulated a dual-core, a quad-core and a hexa-core CPU. We also disabled the second CCD on our AMD Ryzen 9 7950X3D.
Dead Island 2 does not require a high-end CPU. Even our simulated dual-core system was able to provide framerates higher than 60fps at 1080p/Ultra. There were some stutters without SMT (Hyper-Threading for our Intel readers) which were reduced the moment we enabled it. From what we can see, the game can take advantage of six CPU cores/threads. And although it can scale on even more CPU cores/threads, it does not bring any additional performance improvements.
At 1080p/Ultra, most of our GPUs were able to provide a constant 60fps experience. The AMD Radeon RX580 was able to push 40fps, and the GTX980Ti was noticeably slower than the RX Vega 64 (which could offer over 70fps at all times).
At 1440p/Ultra, our top five GPUs were able to push framerates higher than 60fps. And as for native 4K/Ultra, the only GPUs that were able to offer a smooth gaming experience were the AMD Radeon RX 7900XTX and the NVIDIA GeForce RTX 4090.
Graphics-wise, Dead Island 2 is one of the best-looking games on PC as it offers the best pre-baked lighting we’ve seen. Yes, the game does not have Ray Tracing or a fully dynamic Time of Day. And, to be honest, that’s one of the reasons why it looks so good. Dead Island 2 looks consistently amazing, with high-resolution textures, highly detailed characters, and an incredible GORE system. And since the rasterized dynamic TOD in most games is so inconsistent, I’d take pre-baked lighting any time of day (as long as it looks this good). My only gripe with Dead Island 2 is its pop-in issues. Thankfully, the game offers a better LOD than the one used in other triple-A games. Still, you will easily notice object pop-ins while exploring the environments. And to be honest, until games start using UE5’s Nanite, we won’t get a game without these pop-ins.
All in all, Dead Island 2 performs incredibly well on PC. This is one of the best-looking games on PC, and it does not require a high-end PC system for achieving 60fps. The game does not suffer from any mouse issues, there are proper on-screen K&M indicators, and we didn’t experience any crashes. I did experience some traversal stutters, though they weren’t that frequent. Nevertheless, I feel I should at least mention them. Overall, I was pleasantly impressed by Dead Island 2, so kudos to Dambuster Studios for offering such a polished game at launch!