The Tom's Hardware Definitive List of PC Games: GPU Melting Games

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Jsimenhoff

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The submission period is now over. Click here to vote on the Tom's Hardware Definitive List of PC Games

The Tom's Hardware Definitive List of PC Games: GPU Melting Games

Are we living in a new "golden age" for PC Gaming? Of course, it is impossible to give a definitive answer. The distance of time and a heaping dose of nostalgia are both necessary prerequisites for any "golden age". And, while it may be easy to argue the merits of one generation over another, one thing is abundantly clear: PC Gaming in 2017 is more widespread and more accessible than ever before. The maturation of digital distribution, a new diversity of platforms, and the adoption of x86 CPU architecture by console manufactures have together, created the perfect environment for a PC Gaming renaissance. PC Gamers have access to more games than ever before, including overlooked titles from past generations and current games that would have been either too costly or too difficult to port. Games are so ubiquitous that you're more likely to hear complaints of having too many games, rather than too few. The number of "good" games is now so great that even the hardest of the most hardcore gamers struggle in their search to find the very best.

To help navigate this brave new world for gaming, Tom's Hardware is in the process of assembling the definitive list of PC games in a number of genres. We've already put a few lists together, but the number of titles is lacking. While the Tom's Hardware Editorial team is few in number, the Tom's Hardware Community is legion. With your input we hope to assemble a list of the best and worst PC games that can truly be called definitive. Over the next few weeks we'll be collecting Community feedback across multiple categories. Once we have a sufficient number of submissions, we'll have the Community vote on the most popular, with a showcase of the winning games on the Tom's Hardware homepage.

This thread will decide the best GPU melting PC games.

To help get you started here are the Editorial Team's list the best GPU melting PC games. Remember we're looking for suggestions that aren't on the list below.

May the best game win!

[video="https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nS6FxFI7G5o"][/video]
The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt


[video="https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HaJx4TdshFA"][/video]
Star Citizen


[video="https://gaming.youtube.com/watch?v=Vzue74y7A84"][/video]
Grand Theft Auto V


[video="https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4pY3hlQEOc0"][/video]
Battlefield 1


[video="https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=L9pTAOJntho"][/video]
Hitman

The submission period is now over. Click here to vote on the Tom's Hardware Definitive List of PC Games
 

cats_Paw

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If modding is allowed, not even Leonidas will be able to shout as loud as the dragonborn that mods hammer GPUs.
I just build a new PC with a watercooled 1080 and got Morrowind with graphics overhaul to the max.
Getting dips to under 30 FPS in some areas on 4k.
 

brucewithatemper

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Has anyone ever played lord of the rings shadow of mordor? That's definitely a GPU melter if I've ever seen on. Disk activity says it takes up to 10 gb of RAM when i checked it. Absolute firestarter.
 

ledhead11

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Well I have to ask if this includes setting ALL game settings to max at 4k/50-60+fps),

If so,

both Metro's w/ AA maxed still bring down either my 1080SLI or 1080TI
Rise of the Tomb Raider and Tomb Raider-same
Crysis 3
Batman Arkham Knight(it's o.k. to laugh but still worth for benching)-BTW though none of the NV drivers since 379.92 allow all the gameworks settings.
Fallout 4-Remastered-not completely demanding but it has its moments.
Assassin's Creed IV

I forgot to add Dead Island Special Edition, w/ max settings this too needs a tank and looks great.
Mass Effect Andromeda, sure it's got it's issues but at moments looks awesome but at max settings needs some serious hardware too,
 


SOM runs well on a very modest GPU. GTX970 gets you 1440p, ULTRA details. (unless you choose the stupid hires texture pack that adds very little)

Not sure what memory you talk about when you say "10GB" but that sounds like system memory since the game doesn't normally use much more than 3GB of VRAM. (and the system memory the game actually uses is likely closer to 2GB)
 

otakucho

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Black desert online and Revelation online.. blew both my HDMI ports for my r7 when trying to run on mid-high, not even max settings.
 

opforce

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Like how others have said; Crysis, metro, Rise of the tomb Raider, witcher 3. While mass effect Andromeda does require a lot of GPU, I have 2 x 1070 at 4k and still cant max it, I think its more of an optimization thing. It may look a little better then Star wars Battlefront but not at less then half the performance.
 

beowulf6666

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well...i donno if unoptimized games count...but some in this list definately are

like arma 3 or playerunknowns battleground or ark or conan exiles

but then there is
battlefield 1
rise of the tomb raider
the later assassin's creed games

 

Tri-Tra-Troppa

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Here a little list of mostly older but also demanding games not only at their releases:

Half Life 1
Unreal 1+2
Aquanox
Dungeon Keeper 2
Morrowind
Max Payne 2
Far Cry
F.E.A.R.
The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion
Splinter Cell: Double Agent
Crysis 1+3
Metro 2033
Battlefield 3
 

ledhead11

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I agree,
Whether using my 1080SLI @ 4k or 1080ti @ 1440p it can be pretty choppy at times and not just the cut scenes. At moments it can look great but definitely not a well optomized game.

 

Magical Hippy

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The Solus Project in room scale VR.
Onward.
NVIDIA VR Funhouse.
Total War: Warhammer.
Edit: Oops I forgot about Project Cars it should be on top of the list with the VR mode.
 

Tocamac

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Not well optimized but Ark:Survival Evolved can tax most systems to their knees if you want to get decent frame rates at 1440p and up with all options maxed out. I've finally got it running well at 2560x1600@60Hz with a 1080 Ti mated to a 4.6GHz 2600K!
 

WashclothRepairman

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[Here a little list of mostly older but also demanding games not only at their releases:

Half Life 1
Unreal 1+2
Aquanox
Dungeon Keeper 2
Morrowind
Max Payne 2
Far Cry
F.E.A.R.
The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion
Splinter Cell: Double Agent
Crysis 1+3
Metro 2033
Battlefield 3
FEAR was a bigger system crusher when it came out then Crysis ever was. Maxing out that game on release day was insanity, it made the beefiest systems cry and beg for mercy.
 

WashclothRepairman

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Isn't Mankind Divided more a result of poor optimization? It has good graphics, sure, but to my eye they aren't significantly better than Witcher 3 or DOOM. And this brings up a new point, one we all knew was coming. Graphical improvement is an asymptote, they have diminishing returns. Going from 16bit color sprites to 32bit 3d models is huge. Visually going from a human face with 100 polys to 1,000 polys makes a greater difference than 1000 to 10000 and much more than 10000 to 100000. The graphical advancements of today are really just showing off if a pointless and expensive arms race with little tangible benefit. I love Witcher 3, but I wouldn't love it any less if it "only" looked as good as Witcher 2. Basically, graphics have reached a level of "good enough." Games are no longer held back by the current graphical capabilities. In the early 90s, sure, this was true. Portal would not have been possible in 1992. But a game from 2030, 13 years in the future would be possible to make for modern systems.

I appreciate every new, fancy graphics engine from a technical standpoint, I just think it's unnecessary. FEAR is a better FPS than the last 10 Cod games combined. Not only have graphics reached that level of good enough, gameplay and story are now and always have been more important. Amazing graphics on a bad game only leaves you with a tedious benchmarking tool.

/rant
 

loki1944

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ArmA 2 and 3 take the prize for worst running games and absolute shamer of systems of all time in my book. They don't really melt anything though since they hardly use what you have. And since they care little about your hardware overall; that means they run the same @7680x1440p as they do @2560x1440p.
 
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