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Deus Ex RTX Remix proves again that ray tracing is best on old games

With the addition of sophisticated ray traced shadows and lighting, the 24 year old classic FPS is transformed by Nvidia RTX Remix.

deus ex rtx remix

Deus Ex is often cited as one of the best FPS games ever made, alongside the likes of Half-Life and Doom. Its innovative combination of shooter mechanics with role playing elements, stealth, and its infamous body augmentations made it a landmark title. However, by today’s standards, it looks like garbage, unless you’re playing the new Deus Ex RTX Remix version, that is.

Yes, RTX Remix’s ever-growing library of ray tracing-enhanced games now includes the year 2000 classic, with Nvidia‘s software suite allowing modders to get to work converting the game to work with some ray tracing elements on the best graphics cards available.

The result is a transformation akin to when we first saw ray traced Quake or even ray traced Minecraft. Ray tracing can indeed do amazing things in the likes of Cyberpunk 2077, but its effects are felt far more on otherwise simple-looking games. Just look at some of the before and after shots below from the Deux Ex version.

Deus Ex RTX Remix ray tracing comparison screenshot

On the right we have the original version of the scene, on the left we have the ray traced version – these shots (above and below) were provided by Jacob Freeman, Nvidia’s GeForce evangelist.

Deus Ex RTX Remix ray tracing comparison screenshot

Meanwhile, the below images showcase just how much color and life can be brought into the scene with the mod enabled, though Deus Ex remains just as dark and gloomy a game as always.

deus ex rtx remix ray tracing 02

deus ex rtx remix comparison 02

We have modder onnoj on github to thank for this stunning new Deus Ex look. They engineered a brand new renderer for the game, despite there already being several renderers available, and RTX Remix being a relatively plug and play system.

The reason for this is that is because, “Out of the box, Deus Ex (and other Unreal-Engine games) work poorly with Remix; from Remix’s perspective,” explains onnoj, adding that “[the game] is pre-transformed in view-space, so while some basic raytracing can happen, the results look awful, and things like lighting can never look correct.”

They went on to explain that, thanks to the game’s original developer, Ion Storm, providing an SDK (a software interface) for the game’s engine, modders have been able to re-engineer the game’s renderer to work better with RTX Remix.

What’s more, unlike some RTX Remix projects that are still in the early stages, or require some fiddling to try out, the Deus Ex RTX Remix is simple to try, according to onnoj. Their instructions are as follows:

  1. Grab the latest RTX Remix release, extract it in Deus Ex’s System folder.
  2. Grab the latest release of the renderer, extract it in the game’s system folder as well.
  3. If you haven’t already, grab Deus Exe, again in Deus Ex’s System folder.
  4. Start the game, select the “Echelon Renderer” from the list of renderers. If you use Deus Exe, for the best performance, set “FPS Limit” to 0, and turn off “Raw Input”.
  5. Have fun! (Use alt+x to set a graphics preset)

As you might expect, you’ll need an RTX-capable graphics card to actually run RTX Remix games but with the likes of the RTX 4060 now available for under $300, the cost of entry isn’t too high, and such lowly cards will easily run a ray traced game such as this one.