Ray tracing?

Full ray tracing is unlikely to happen as it’s incredibly computationally intensive per frame. Generally you can use ray tracing to do things like validating what you got via more conventional methods. The more rays you have the more accurate you can be. So things like screen space reflections can still be used, but ray tracing can be used to determine cut off and alpha for example. It’s the classic dichotomy of accurate and fast.

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For a game pushing for realism like Tomb Raider i can see the benefit.

For a cartoony game like WoW? The point is entirely lost to me.

Still want to get 2-3 years out of my current rig anyway so not going to see it for a while outside PS5 games.

It can actually look insanely cool for things like light shafts, shadows, and reflections even in games like WoW.

That’s a slight perspective fix. We are kind of used to seeing “good lighting” in realistic games and realistic games looking dark and sparse.
But full raytracing in wow would most likely embolden the cartoon atmosphere, the enhanced global illumination would make the cartoon graphics pop more and add even more color.

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I guess while questing, but while raiding or playing M+ or Arena i actually drop graphical settings.

I mostly pay attention to timers and the ground anyway, i prefer not dropping frames than a pretty game.

I’ll be honest it’s not ready for prime time yet:

You’re not the only person to do this, and ray tracing was 1/2ing your framerate. But lately with Nvidia’s DLSS. You can bring your res down to 1080, DLSS upscales it to 4k (results show even better results than native 4 in a lot of cases) and you can still get 60 fps.
It’s said that Full raytracing Cyberpunk 2077 was running at 60+fps during it’s influencer demo.

There’s always [Sunwarmed Sand] and [Jar of Sunwarmed Sand], both of which change the time of day to noon for an hour for just your character, the former of which has no cooldown.

I was going to ask if anyone had tested with a potion of inky darkness but this confirms my hunch that it doesn’t matter as the lighting is largely baked.

yeah I won’t be using it, it’s not enough of a diff right now. Even if full raytracing comes, I would definitely need DLSS to bear the fps drop.

Have you seen the before/after pictures for WoW? There’s almost no difference.

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Wow has never had full raytracing.

As I’ve said elsewhere it’s currently best used as a tool with other techniques and not alone. As blizz matures their implementation we’ll probably see much better performance. They seem to be rapidly evolving their engine to support a lot more options than previously existed.

To have any seriously noticeable difference you’d need spot lights.

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If you play with low shadow details, you’re not going to see any major differences. Play with High Shadows and the difference becomes clear especially with movement. Screenshots don’t do it any favors being still images, moving around with Ray Tracing you really see the effects play out.

Whatever it is that they just enabled, it doesn’t seem to make much of a difference at the cost of half your framerate.

Correct, this is because WoW has never really used spot lights, just a global ‘light’. Everything else is off of that AFAIK currently. There are some minor exceptions but they are rare and I’m struggling to even remember where they are.

I completely agree. It gives hope for the future tho.

There are some doodads and weapons that cast dynamic light, like the lampposts in Elwynn which have had dynamic light since the original WoW alpha. These lights have never factored into shadow calculation though, they only affect lighting. If raytracing made them cast shadows that’d be neat.

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I really really hope they do light shafts next. Because the following would be amazing if they can get it right:

  • Nya’lotha exit to the outside portion
  • Duskwood/Elwynn/Eversong/Jade Forest
  • Priest Class hall
  • Stormwind Cathedral
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If you have coords I’ll test later, I was going to see if I couldn’t get a list of places to test that likely have direct illum.