Radeon HD 5870 Review

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VGA performance: Tom Clancy's HAWX (DX10)

Tom Clancy's HAWX

We don't see many air combat games on the market these days and I sincerely don't know how many of you are still into classic flight sims. The famed Ace Combat series was nice. I did play the latest installment, Ace Combat 6, and I must say it has all the essentials of a decent arcadish-flavored flight game.

With HAWX we enter a new level. There are well over 50 planes in the game, each of which carries a destructive payload. You'll need it, as you'll engage multiple hostiles across a war-torn but still gorgeous looking terrain. However, you won't be alone, and you'll have the option of issuing orders to your squad mates, just like we are used to in the Ghost Recon series.

Visually, the game's impressive, especially when flying in close to cities, which really shows off the building details. But it's when the game pulls into the third-person perspective while you dog-fight that the game flaunts its visuals and you really see much of the environment. The genre of air combat games could finally see decent revival with Tom Clancy's H.A.W.X., and we like that... very much actually.

Tom Clancy's HAWX amazes me when it comes to originality, but more importantly... graphics wise it's quite a lovely game. For this game we selected the following image quality (IQ) settings. We locked our image quality settings to 4x AA, for ATI graphics cards we enable DX10.1 mode.

  • 4x AA
  • 16x AF
  • ALL settings @ HIGH
  • All candy like HDR, DOF etc ON
  • DirectX 10/10.1 mode + Ambient occlusion, sun shafts and shadows at HIGH

HAWX is very lenient towards ATI cards thanks to DX10.1, but with so much brute power, NVIDIA has been working nervously to optimize their drivers. And as such the more recent drivers make the GeForce cards much more competitive.

None the less, it's no match whatsoever for the Radeon HD 5870 as it brutally sodomizes the game.

You can look at these charts as performance VGA charts, per session. As stated ATI cards dominate thanks to DX 10.1. The 5870 once again is capable of surpassing a (reference clocked) GeForce GTX 295, which remains just weird to see.

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