Articles :: How to Benchmark a Videocard ::

Doc Overclock · 12-01-2003 · Category: Guides

Serious Sam: 1 & 2

The first Serious Sam was released in 2000 by Croteam click here to visit their website. A highly successful FPS (first person shooter) that tried to bring fun back into the genre, Serious Sam included various benchmarking options and showcased the technologies of that era (bump mapping, Transform and Lighting).

Serious Sam the Second Encounter was the successful followup to the first game. Serious Sam TSE sported all kinds of new benchmarking features that helped reviewers see the difference between different cards. Even though the game was released in 2001, it's still relevant. Quad texturing, which Serious Sam the Second Encounter supports is coming into vogue more and more. Anisotropic filtering is supported as well with everything from no AF to 128 tap anisotropic filtering (no current card supports this many taps, the highest is the RADEON 9800XT with 16 tap anisotropic filtering.)

Setting up SS and SS: TSE is fairly easy for benchmarking purposes. For our purposes, the single player demo is sufficient, as it contains the same benchmarking features and mostly the same demos as the full game does. Simply double-click serioussamsedemo.exe and the self extracting installer will install the demo on your computer.

Benchmarking SS:TSE and Serious Sam The First Encounteris a little bit complicated however. As every videocard have different settings with SS: TSE, making an apple to apples comparison isn't ordinarily possible using the default benchmark settings. In order to make things compared equally, the reviewer needs to use the extreme quality settings or the default quality add-on. The extreme setting sets all of the benchmark settings to a high level. Included in this is setting the anisotropic filtering level to the highest the card supports. Of course, with NVIDIA cards supporting 8x anisotropic filtering and ATI cards 16x AF, it's necessary to set the level equally.

Once the settings are equal, benchmarking is fairly easy. Bring up the console by hitting the ~ (tilde) key. From here simply enter the following /dem_bprofile=1. This sets the benchmark up. At this point, simply hit Esc and click demo. A list of demos will be displayed at this point. There are 5 maps available in the SP demo of Serious Sam that can be used for benchmarking, labeled SP and MP. The available demos in the SP demo for SS TSE are Little Trouble, Cooperative, Valley of the Jaguar and Sierra de Chiapas. I like Little Trouble because it's fairly fun to watch. After the benchmark is run, a set of numbers is brought up including original run, run without excessive peaks, high peak lows, low peak, high sustained, low sustained. The average fps is the originally recorded setting.


  1. Introduction
  2. Dronezmark
  3. SpecViewPerf 7.0
  4. Final Fantasy XI The benchmark
  5. Serious Sam: 1 & 2
  6. UT2003
  7. Quake3 Arena
  8. 3dmark 2001SE Build 330
  9. 3dmark 2003
  10. Gunmetal Benchmark 2
  11. Halo
  12. Aquamark 3
  13. Conclusion