We’re used to our Dota 2 updates being a little more balance-focused than this. Valve released another patch to their MOBA yesterday, allowing it to now support the Vulkan graphics API. It’s still in a beta phase, but is available to everyone through Steam’s DLC menu. It’s then enabled with a console launch command, -vulkan, to make sure it can be disabled easily. It also requires a the Vulkan version of the Steam overlay from the client beta.
The best Dota 2 heroes running even better.
What does Vulkan actually mean for you? Well it can theoretically give a massive performance boost due to allowing developers more control over the GPU and CPU. This isn’t a huge deal if you’re tricking yourself out with the latest techbut for mid-range PCs can really make a difference. This is especially true for integrated graphics and the like, where previously bottlenecking could be a serious problem. More on that in our dedicated what is Vulkan post.
As for Dota 2 specifically, Valve haven't given any specs on what it should and shouldn't improve, likely wanting to see how it performs in the wild before making claims. Definitely worth testing if you're a regular player who has had framerate issues. Here’s the minimum requirements to give it a shot:
- Windows 7/8/10 64-bit: NVIDIA 600-series+ (365.19+ driver), AMD 7700+ (Crimson 220.127.116.11+ driver)
- Linux 64-bit: NVIDIA 600-series+ (364.16+ driver), AMD GCN 1.2 (16.20.3 driver)
- 2GB of GPU memory required - may experience crashes with < 2GB of GPU memory.
Valve also advise that you may experience severe stuttering in the first game you watch or play upon booting as things are cached. The easiest solution would be to set up a moderately long replay, or spectate a friend, until it’s resolved. There’s a dedicated Dota 2 Vulkan github page for any other bugs you might find.
Some more info over in the announcement post. These sorts of improvements could really help with Dota 2’s growth, especially outside more standard Western regions - developing nations are more likely to have cheaper systems, which is part of why the very scaleable League of Legends has done so well globally.