VR is pretty abusive to your CPU and your graphics card. In fact, it is about 3 times so. The graphics scene is generated and rendered exactly three times. Once for the monitor display, and once for each eye. If you don’t have some horsey-power, it’s not going to work very well. Here are some tweaks to minimize the brute force requirements on your system and hopefully get you some decent gameplay.
First up, on the in-game VR GUI, you’ll see:
Refresh Rate: Just leave this at 60. Any other setting is experimental and probably doesn’t work anyway.
Max Entity: Try lowering this if you are having problems with lag and screen tear. This is the maximum number of entities that will be drawn on your screen. Entities take a lot of time to draw, so this helps. Oculus Quest 2 will want this about as low as it will go.
Max Particle: Another good number to try lowering in case of lag. Less things to draw equals less time. Again, Oculus Quest 2 will want this about as low as it goes.
Now, on the Escape GUI, you’ll find:
Render Distance: Lower is better, but then you can’t see as far. Most headsets should be OK at around 12-16. Oculus Quest 2 will want to set this down to around 6 or 8. This setting has a huge effect. Whatever you set this at, the Quest won’t get better than 40fps. That appears to be about its max.
Graphics: If you are still scrounging for more CPU cycles, set this to “low”.Move Particles: Less things to draw equals less horsepower required. Turn these off to save a few more cycles.
Show Clouds and Show Rain: Now you’re getting desperate, but yes, you can turn these off too.
Monitor Enable: Yes! Saving the best for last! Completely turn off the screen on your monitor. Why not if there is no one there to see it anyway? One less time the entire scene has to get rendered. Don’t worry. It gets turned back on automatically if you go into 3D mode… you won’t get left in the dark! Still, the monitor is useful if you get into a bind and need to use the keyboard for some reason. Just turn it back on when you need it.
I’ve gotten this to run fine on an AMD 6-core with an Nvidia 1060 and an HTC Vive. It also ran fine on my old 4-core i7 with an Nvidia 2080 Super and a Valve Index, but the Oculus, no matter where it is, even on my screaming fast brand new development machine, has a lot of trouble. Set everything you can to minimum or off if you have an Oculus.