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What games require an NVMe SSD?

Kepalajamuran
Go to solution Solved by BobVonBob,

To my knowledge, there is not yet a game that requires an NVMe SSD for a good experience, but that day is coming, and I don't think it's far off. Alan Wake 2 is probably the closest so far. It can have some pop-in even on SATA SSDs, and if given the leeway it can pull up to 2.7 GB/s. [https://www.tomshardware.com/video-games/pc-gaming/alan-wake-2-punishes-your-ssd-at-27-gbs]

 

On the bright side, NVMe SSDs have basically caught up to SATA SSDs in cost. In my opinion lack of PCIe bandwidth or m.2 slots are the only compelling reasons to use SATA drives now.

Now that NVMe SSD has reached read-write speed of 12GBps, I wonder if games are able to utilize the speed.

I have tested installing some games on a gen4 SSD, and with HWInfo to monitor the read speed, I get the following results:

  • Shadow of Tomb Raider: peak read speed of 117MBps.
  • Far Cry 5: 377MBps
  • Dark Souls 2, RIDE 4, etc 200~MBps.

I'm sorry because I only have old games. But with that data, I conclude that at least for now a SATA SSD is more than enough for games.

The problem is, newer games have shown to require SSD as install drive, like Alan Wake 2, Lords of The Fallen, and Phantom Legacy. Now I want to know what is the peak read speed with those games. Do they really need an ultra fast SSD?

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Your games arn't really new enough to make any real conclusions about the current state of affairs.

 

However, as gaming is mostly random (meaning non sequential) reads, and new NVMe drives arn't actually that fast at random reads cause the limiting factor is the nand flash chips and not the PCIe interface, any SSD will be almost as good (for gaming) as any other right now.

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Common build advice: 1) Buy the cheapest (well reviewed) motherboard that has the features you need. Paying more typically only gets you features you won’t use. 2) only get as much RAM as you need, getting more won’t (typically) make your PC faster. 3) While I recommend getting an NVMe drive, you don’t need to splurge for an expensive drive with DRam cache, DRamless drives are fine for gamers. 4) paying for looks is fine, just don’t break the bank. 5) Tower coolers are usually good enough, unless you go top tier Intel or plan on OCing. 6) OCing is a dead meme, you probably shouldn’t bother. 7) "Bottlenecks" rarely matter and "Future-proofing" is a myth. 8) AIOs don't noticably improve performance past 240mm.

 

useful websiteshttps://www.productchart.com - helps compare monitors, https://uk.pcpartpicker.com - makes designing a PC easier.

 

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I'm a PhD student working in the fields of reinforcement learning and traffic control. PCs are one of my hobbies and I've built many PCs and performed upgrades on a few laptops (for myself, friends and family). My personal computers include 3 windows (10/11) machines and a TrueNAS server (and I'm looking to move to dual booting Linux Mint on my main machine in future). While I believe I have an decent amount of experience in spec’ing, building and troubleshooting computers, keep in mind I'm not an expert or a professional and I make mistakes.

 

Favourite Games of all time: World of Tanks, Runescape, Subnautica, Metroid (Fusion and Dread), Spyro: Year of the Dragon (Original and Reignited Trilogy), Crash Bash, Mario Kart Wii

 

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Other: LTT Screwdriver, LTT Stubby Screwdriver, IFIXIT Pro Tech Toolkit, Playstation 1 SCPH-102, Playstation 2 SCPH-30003, Gameboy Micro Silver OXY-001, Nintendo Wii U WUP-001(03), Playstation 4 CUH-1116A, Nintendo Switch OLED HEG-001, Yamaha RX-A4A Black AV Receiver, Monitor Audio Radius (4*90s, 1*200s, 2*270s, 1*380s), TP-Link TL-SG105-M2, Netgear GS308, IPhone 14 Pro Max 128GB Space Black, Secretlab TITAN Evo (Black SoftWeave Plus Fabric), 2*CyberPower BR1200ELCD-UK BRICs Series, Samsung 40" ES6800 Series 6 SMART 3D FHD LED TV, UGREEN USB 3.2 Gen 2 10Gbps M.2 NVMe SSD Enclosure, SABRENT 3.5" SATA drive docking station

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8 minutes ago, Kepalajamuran said:

Now that NVMe SSD has reached read-write speed of 12GBps, I wonder if games are able to utilize the speed.

I have tested installing some games on a gen4 SSD, and with HWInfo to monitor the read speed, I get the following results:

  • Shadow of Tomb Raider: peak read speed of 117MBps.
  • Far Cry 5: 377MBps
  • Dark Souls 2, RIDE 4, etc 200~MBps.

I'm sorry because I only have old games. But with that data, I conclude that at least for now a SATA SSD is more than enough for games.

The problem is, newer games have shown to require SSD as install drive, like Alan Wake 2, Lords of The Fallen, and Phantom Legacy. Now I want to know what is the peak read speed with those games. Do they really need an ultra fast SSD?

My understanding is that for most games you don't need the fastest SSD. NVMe speeds things up but current SSDs are so fast that the benefit is only observed by our slow senses when doing an extended task,  such as reading and writing huge files, such as for audio and visual work.  If you regularly work with large files, then you want to not just have really fast speeds but also have a large enough DRAM cache or it'll bottleneck, which is the difference between the Western Digital SN700 and the SN850X. 

I've been using computers since around 1978, started learning programming in 1980 on Apple IIs, started learning about hardware in 1990, ran a BBS from 1990-95, built my first Windows PC around 2000, taught myself malware removal starting in 2005 (also learned on Bleeping Computer), learned web dev starting in 2017, and I think I can fill a thimble with all that knowledge. 😉 I'm not an expert, which is why I keep investigating the answers that others give to try and improve my knowledge, so feel free to double-check the advice I give.

My phone's auto-correct is named Otto Rong.🤪😂

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Most games I'm aware of that require SSDs are random performance limited. This might change if DirectStorage takes over, though that will take a few years. These Gen 4 and Gen 5 SSDs therefore only really make sense for productivity when they can be utilized, since games will run just fine on standard drives. 

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2 minutes ago, RONOTHAN## said:

Most games I'm aware of that require SSDs are random performance limited. This might change if DirectStorage takes over, though that will take a few years. These Gen 4 and Gen 5 SSDs therefore only really make sense for productivity when they can be utilized, since games will run just fine on standard drives. 

Which is why the best gen 3 and SATA SSDs are also fine for many gamers, right?

I've been using computers since around 1978, started learning programming in 1980 on Apple IIs, started learning about hardware in 1990, ran a BBS from 1990-95, built my first Windows PC around 2000, taught myself malware removal starting in 2005 (also learned on Bleeping Computer), learned web dev starting in 2017, and I think I can fill a thimble with all that knowledge. 😉 I'm not an expert, which is why I keep investigating the answers that others give to try and improve my knowledge, so feel free to double-check the advice I give.

My phone's auto-correct is named Otto Rong.🤪😂

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4 minutes ago, RONOTHAN## said:

Most games I'm aware of that require SSDs are random performance limited. This might change if DirectStorage takes over, though that will take a few years. These Gen 4 and Gen 5 SSDs therefore only really make sense for productivity when they can be utilized, since games will run just fine on standard drives. 

I also suppose that an OS doesn't need the fastest, either. 

 

In what scenarios are non-NVMe SSDs better?

I've been using computers since around 1978, started learning programming in 1980 on Apple IIs, started learning about hardware in 1990, ran a BBS from 1990-95, built my first Windows PC around 2000, taught myself malware removal starting in 2005 (also learned on Bleeping Computer), learned web dev starting in 2017, and I think I can fill a thimble with all that knowledge. 😉 I'm not an expert, which is why I keep investigating the answers that others give to try and improve my knowledge, so feel free to double-check the advice I give.

My phone's auto-correct is named Otto Rong.🤪😂

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7 minutes ago, RevGAM said:

Which is why the best gen 3 and SATA SSDs are also fine for many gamers, right?

6 minutes ago, RevGAM said:

I also suppose that an OS doesn't need the fastest, either. 

 

In what scenarios are non-NVMe SSDs better?

 

Well, as I have experienced both running games & OS on SATA SSD & then upgrading to NVME Gen 3 then to Gen 4

 

They did save me some miliseconds to 1 second in loading and boot time. The SATA to Gen 3 i mean, Gen 3 to Gen 4... not so much.

Not too sure of the exact number, I don't fancy holding a stopwatch each time my game loads or my pc boots xD

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5 minutes ago, RevGAM said:

I also suppose that an OS doesn't need the fastest, either.

OSs and many programs are built to start up with sequentual reads and therefore can take advantage of NVMe drives on boot. But the difference isn't as large as you'd think.

 

5 minutes ago, RevGAM said:

In what scenarios are non-NVMe SSDs better?

7 minutes ago, RevGAM said:

Which is why the best gen 3 and SATA SSDs are also fine for many gamers, right?

SATA SSDs are only better if they are cheaper, no point paying more for less performance.

I might be experienced, but I'm human and I do make mistakes. Expand for common PC building advice, a short bio and a list of my components and other tech. I edit my messages after sending them alot, please refresh before posting your reply. Please try to be clear and specific, you'll get a better answer. Please remember to mark solutions once you have the information you need.

 

Common build advice: 1) Buy the cheapest (well reviewed) motherboard that has the features you need. Paying more typically only gets you features you won’t use. 2) only get as much RAM as you need, getting more won’t (typically) make your PC faster. 3) While I recommend getting an NVMe drive, you don’t need to splurge for an expensive drive with DRam cache, DRamless drives are fine for gamers. 4) paying for looks is fine, just don’t break the bank. 5) Tower coolers are usually good enough, unless you go top tier Intel or plan on OCing. 6) OCing is a dead meme, you probably shouldn’t bother. 7) "Bottlenecks" rarely matter and "Future-proofing" is a myth. 8) AIOs don't noticably improve performance past 240mm.

 

useful websiteshttps://www.productchart.com - helps compare monitors, https://uk.pcpartpicker.com - makes designing a PC easier.

 

He/Him

 

I'm a PhD student working in the fields of reinforcement learning and traffic control. PCs are one of my hobbies and I've built many PCs and performed upgrades on a few laptops (for myself, friends and family). My personal computers include 3 windows (10/11) machines and a TrueNAS server (and I'm looking to move to dual booting Linux Mint on my main machine in future). While I believe I have an decent amount of experience in spec’ing, building and troubleshooting computers, keep in mind I'm not an expert or a professional and I make mistakes.

 

Favourite Games of all time: World of Tanks, Runescape, Subnautica, Metroid (Fusion and Dread), Spyro: Year of the Dragon (Original and Reignited Trilogy), Crash Bash, Mario Kart Wii

 

Main PC: https://uk.pcpartpicker.com/user/will0hlep/saved/NByp3C

 

Secondary PC: https://uk.pcpartpicker.com/user/will0hlep/saved/cc9K7P

 

TrueNAS Server: https://uk.pcpartpicker.com/user/will0hlep/saved/m37w3C

 

Laptop: 13.4" ASUS GZ301ZE ROG Flow Z13, WUXGA 120Hz, i9 12900H, 16GB DDR5, 1TB NVMe SSD, 4GB RTX 3050 Ti, TB4, Win11 Home, Used with: 2*ThinkPad Universal Thunderbolt 4 Dock, Logitech G603, Logitech G502 Hero, Logitech K120, Logitech G915 TKL, Xbox Elite Wireless Controller Series 2, Logitech G PRO X Gaming-Headset (with Blue Icepop in Black), {specs to be updated: two monitors}

 

Other: LTT Screwdriver, LTT Stubby Screwdriver, IFIXIT Pro Tech Toolkit, Playstation 1 SCPH-102, Playstation 2 SCPH-30003, Gameboy Micro Silver OXY-001, Nintendo Wii U WUP-001(03), Playstation 4 CUH-1116A, Nintendo Switch OLED HEG-001, Yamaha RX-A4A Black AV Receiver, Monitor Audio Radius (4*90s, 1*200s, 2*270s, 1*380s), TP-Link TL-SG105-M2, Netgear GS308, IPhone 14 Pro Max 128GB Space Black, Secretlab TITAN Evo (Black SoftWeave Plus Fabric), 2*CyberPower BR1200ELCD-UK BRICs Series, Samsung 40" ES6800 Series 6 SMART 3D FHD LED TV, UGREEN USB 3.2 Gen 2 10Gbps M.2 NVMe SSD Enclosure, SABRENT 3.5" SATA drive docking station

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Just now, RevGAM said:

I also suppose that an OS doesn't need the fastest, either. 

 

In what scenarios are non-NVMe SSDs better?

I wouldn't necessarily say non-NVMe SSDs are ever better, it's more just they're adequate, and for most anything the standard user does (aside from an OS) spinning rust is still fine. They're only just starting to become obsolete. As for SATA drives, for most instances a half decent SATA SSD is plenty, and personally I find them more convenient, though with how they've been priced recently they haven't really made sense to buy for a few years now. 

 

5 minutes ago, RevGAM said:

Which is why the best gen 3 and SATA SSDs are also fine for many gamers, right?

Yeah, they're still fine. Only reason my system is on Gen 4 drives is because at the time of purchase they were cheaper than the comparable Gen 3 or SATA offerings. I have still yet to tell a difference between a 980 Pro and a 850 Evo without pulling out CrystalDiskMark or a stop watch, so it's just not something I'd actively care about getting faster. 

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Require? pretty much none. There are some that slightly benefit from having an NVMe like Alan Wake 2 that pushes the read speeds a little more than other games when you enter the "mind place". Other games could have some load time advantages by like 1 or 2 seconds with some ifs and buts. This is going to supposedly change when direct storage is properly implemented in games but no need to make purchasing decisions based on that.

 

Even on PS5 games aren't properly using the SSD, I wish they did becuase the ones that do really make a difference in removing loading screens like in Demon Souls, Spider Man 2, GOWR, Ratchet and Clank.

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To my knowledge, there is not yet a game that requires an NVMe SSD for a good experience, but that day is coming, and I don't think it's far off. Alan Wake 2 is probably the closest so far. It can have some pop-in even on SATA SSDs, and if given the leeway it can pull up to 2.7 GB/s. [https://www.tomshardware.com/video-games/pc-gaming/alan-wake-2-punishes-your-ssd-at-27-gbs]

 

On the bright side, NVMe SSDs have basically caught up to SATA SSDs in cost. In my opinion lack of PCIe bandwidth or m.2 slots are the only compelling reasons to use SATA drives now.

¯\_(ツ)_/¯

 

 

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8 minutes ago, BobVonBob said:

On the bright side, NVMe SSDs have basically caught up to SATA SSDs in cost. In my opinion lack of PCIe bandwidth or m.2 slots are the only compelling reasons to use SATA drives now.

Yeah, pretty much this. right now the only reason to buy a SATA SSD is if you want to save up your PCIe slots and the theoratical bandwidth. Or if you really need to save 20 bucks

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Some I can think of Forza Motorsport '23, Alan Wake 2, Starfield, Starcitizen. There are some more but yeah makes sense and good new games require it. Just need DirectStorage to be default across the board.

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38 minutes ago, RONOTHAN## said:

I wouldn't necessarily say non-NVMe SSDs are ever better, it's more just they're adequate, and for most anything the standard user does (aside from an OS) spinning rust is still fine. They're only just starting to become obsolete. As for SATA drives, for most instances a half decent SATA SSD is plenty, and personally I find them more convenient, though with how they've been priced recently they haven't really made sense to buy for a few years now. 

 

Yeah, they're still fine. Only reason my system is on Gen 4 drives is because at the time of purchase they were cheaper than the comparable Gen 3 or SATA offerings. I have still yet to tell a difference between a 980 Pro and a 850 Evo without pulling out CrystalDiskMark or a stop watch, so it's just not something I'd actively care about getting faster. 

Yeah, I ran into the same problem - suddenly SATA SSDs are about the same price as M.2s. Now, I've just bought my 4th M.2, so my mobo is full and I'll have to start buying SATA. Oh well! Are they any more stable for long-term data storage than M.2s when they're disconnected?

I've been using computers since around 1978, started learning programming in 1980 on Apple IIs, started learning about hardware in 1990, ran a BBS from 1990-95, built my first Windows PC around 2000, taught myself malware removal starting in 2005 (also learned on Bleeping Computer), learned web dev starting in 2017, and I think I can fill a thimble with all that knowledge. 😉 I'm not an expert, which is why I keep investigating the answers that others give to try and improve my knowledge, so feel free to double-check the advice I give.

My phone's auto-correct is named Otto Rong.🤪😂

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1 hour ago, Kepalajamuran said:

Now that NVMe SSD has reached read-write speed of 12GBps, I wonder if games are able to utilize the speed.

I have tested installing some games on a gen4 SSD, and with HWInfo to monitor the read speed, I get the following results:

  • Shadow of Tomb Raider: peak read speed of 117MBps.
  • Far Cry 5: 377MBps
  • Dark Souls 2, RIDE 4, etc 200~MBps.

I'm sorry because I only have old games. But with that data, I conclude that at least for now a SATA SSD is more than enough for games.

The problem is, newer games have shown to require SSD as install drive, like Alan Wake 2, Lords of The Fallen, and Phantom Legacy. Now I want to know what is the peak read speed with those games. Do they really need an ultra fast SSD?

Did we answer your questions, Fungus Head?

 

(That's what Kepala jamuran basically means.)

I've been using computers since around 1978, started learning programming in 1980 on Apple IIs, started learning about hardware in 1990, ran a BBS from 1990-95, built my first Windows PC around 2000, taught myself malware removal starting in 2005 (also learned on Bleeping Computer), learned web dev starting in 2017, and I think I can fill a thimble with all that knowledge. 😉 I'm not an expert, which is why I keep investigating the answers that others give to try and improve my knowledge, so feel free to double-check the advice I give.

My phone's auto-correct is named Otto Rong.🤪😂

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49 minutes ago, Jon-Slow said:

Even on PS5 games aren't properly using the SSD, I wish they did becuase the ones that do really make a difference in removing loading screens like in Demon Souls, Spider Man 2, GOWR, Ratchet and Clank.

It stands to reason though, any game which might have a PC port is not going to make as good use out of it as it then makes the PC version more of a PITA.

 

Basically once they really want to optimise for the consoles, we'll see PC ports requiring DirectStorage and sucking on SATA.

Ratchet & Clank portals really highlight this on the PC version if you have it installed on a SATA drive.  It still works, but it kinda ruins the experience.  If/when they port Spiderman 2 I think that's going to require DirectStorage and NVME. 

 

Although to be fair on consoles, the reason its a big deal is they have so much less RAM than PC and it allows them to create games which otherwise would not work with so little memory.

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20 hours ago, Kepalajamuran said:

Now that NVMe SSD has reached read-write speed of 12GBps, I wonder if games are able to utilize the speed.

I have tested installing some games on a gen4 SSD, and with HWInfo to monitor the read speed, I get the following results:

  • Shadow of Tomb Raider: peak read speed of 117MBps.
  • Far Cry 5: 377MBps
  • Dark Souls 2, RIDE 4, etc 200~MBps.

I'm sorry because I only have old games. But with that data, I conclude that at least for now a SATA SSD is more than enough for games.

The problem is, newer games have shown to require SSD as install drive, like Alan Wake 2, Lords of The Fallen, and Phantom Legacy. Now I want to know what is the peak read speed with those games. Do they really need an ultra fast SSD?

Bagaimana, teman? Apakah sudah dapat jawabannya?

I've been using computers since around 1978, started learning programming in 1980 on Apple IIs, started learning about hardware in 1990, ran a BBS from 1990-95, built my first Windows PC around 2000, taught myself malware removal starting in 2005 (also learned on Bleeping Computer), learned web dev starting in 2017, and I think I can fill a thimble with all that knowledge. 😉 I'm not an expert, which is why I keep investigating the answers that others give to try and improve my knowledge, so feel free to double-check the advice I give.

My phone's auto-correct is named Otto Rong.🤪😂

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Starfield is the most obvious example that is supposed to be virtually unplayable on an HDD.

 

This is, in part, due to the sheer amount of loading screens and fast travelling which are egregious enough on a fast SSD.

 

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