Return of the PTR

Hi folks,

We’re standing up the PTR again and asking for your help to test some big changes coming down the pipe.

Here’s the TLDR: we’re changing how graphics work in SCR. Please test on the PTR to make sure your video card doesn’t run into any problems.

If you want a deeper dive:

In November of last year, we tried to launch an update to the web browser that powers the Remastered front-end UI (CEF). For some people, it had performance and stability issues, so we reverted some key components of the update. However, for compliance reasons, we’re obliged to update it to a more recent version as soon as we can. We’ve been working on our implementation over the last few months, and we’d like to implement a staged rollout on PTR to get broader feedback from our community.

The first stage involves substantial changes to our rendering backends:

  • Mac: Metal backend added.
  • Windows: DirectX11 and DirectX12 backends added.

These new backends are likely to bring (in some cases significant) performance benefits as well as more reliable hardware compatibility as new video cards are released. Those users with older DX9 hardware will continue to be supported via our DX11 backend. This PTR version contains a “soft” deprecation of our dedicated DX9 backend and our OpenGL backend - both are unnecessary with the new backends in play. (Soft meaning that the backends technically still exist in the codebase, but we don’t anticipate anyone needing to run them anymore). In future, we’ll fully deprecate these superfluous backends.

Needless to say, the renderer is a very fundamental part of the game engine, therefore it’s critical that people try this PTR build to ensure their hardware is fully supported going forward . This change will be rolled out to our live pipeline in future, so this is the chance for us to investigate anything that needs addressing before that happens.

HOW TO RUN THE PTR BUILD?

The PTR environment will be an “opt-in” experience from the Blizzard Launcher. You can opt in and out at any time.

To access the PTR environment from the Blizzard launcher, click the dropdown list of regions. Public Test Realm will show as a separate region.

A few caveats as always to bear in mind with the PTR environment:

  • There will be far fewer players online at any given time in the PTR environment - although we hope that most/all players will spend some time in the PTR helping our test efforts, outside of the testing most people will revert to the live environment. Therefore, expect issues such as longer queue times in matchmaking.
  • We have fewer proxy servers available in our PTR environment. It’s likely that you will experience greater lag on PTR.
  • Your settings, profiles, etc. are all separate on PTR - they will not transfer to or from PTR.

We’re excited to be moving our rendering pipeline forward to provide a better experience for our wonderful community. Thanks for your support, and let the PTR testing begin!

WHEN WILL THE PTR BUILD BE AVAILABLE?

(Soon™). We’ll update this thread when we have a more accurate date.

4 Likes

Thanks. I expect this is going to fix some of the UI issues I have been having. I ll try the PTR out soon.

was hoping for a 2v2 ranked test :frowning: , anyways ill download this PTR and try to help

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Yeah, I was also hoping to test out 2v2 ladder…
Hopefully they will implement it soon.

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No electron is better for everybody. Go and tell the Warcraft team to do so as well!

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Is it possible to change the game to server based rather than p2p connections?

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Great news! Thanks! Will be glad to test once it’s operating.

For many reasons I lost hope in Blizzard already but this post gets me excited again. Gogo Blizzard team! Show us what you can! Moving away from Electron to native graphics is a huge step for the best. I’ll definitely try PTR at least against computers in custom games.

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i don’t have option for PTR in launcher. Any advice?

I believe there will be an option whenever it is updated. Cydra did say that more info is to come.

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Please send out emails reminding users about PTR otherwise this probably wont work as well as you want too.
I strongly suggest this.

This is live now. Have a great weekend!

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Where is the PTR / How do you join the server? I don’t see it anywhere.

The Blizzard Launcher will update after a time, but you can force it by closing and re-opening it.
Then there will be a dropdown above the Launch button. You can change that to Public Test Realm.

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Thanks I appreciate it :slight_smile:

Option menu is too slow when opened the first time.

After several tests, it is safe to say that whatever graphical changes you made has 100% fixed my FPS(Frames per second) issues in the game that I have been having since Remastered, basically at any given point in any (regular) game, the game drops below 50 FPS for a duration of 5-10 seconds, making the game unplayable because the mouse freezes, this issue is fixed however on the PTR. Some others said that you force Direct X 10, is this why?

Whatever it is, you fixed my FPS issues and i’m sure many other issues as well, it stays at a consistent 300 FPS now, thank you, please push this change out, it works!

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Time will tell but right now PTR does seem to feel more snappy. I have to play more with it to see if my sporadic input lag issue is gone.