Red Dead Redemption (RDR2)

Haven’t played in a year, has anything changed as far as graphics optimization? Settings experts please join me.

This was my go-to guide to get locked 30FPS on my GTX970. I now have a 1070, and with the same settings I get just under 70fps average so I'm able to vsync to a locked 60 which is great. I'm wondering if there's anything I can tweak here that would give a decent visual boost for not much performance loss. Thanks.

P.S. just to refresh myself, if I want to tweak the settings.xml file I need to edit it and then set it to read only so the game doesn't change it back right?

—————–Resolution: 1920×1080

Refresh Rate: 30


Vsync: ON

Triple Buffering: Ideally ON as it helps with frame pacing, but set everything else first and make sure you can maintain 30 fps beforehand because this can use resources.

Pause Game On Focus Loss: ON

Constrain Mouse Pointer: ON

Quality Preset: CUSTOM

Texture Quality: ULTRA

Anisotropic Filtering: x16

Lighting Quality: Medium

Global Illumination Quality: HIGH

Shadow Quality: HIGH

Far Shadow Quality: MEDIUM


Reflection Quality: MEDIUM

Mirror Quality: HIGH

Water Quality: CUSTOM

Volumetric Quality: CUSTOM

Particle Quality: HIGH

Tessellation Quality: ULTRA




Graphics API: Vulcan

Near Volumetric Resolution: LOW

Far Volumetric Resolution: MEDIUM

Volumetric Lighting Quality: MEDIUM

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Unlocked Volumetric Raymarch Resolution: OFF

Particle Lighting Quality: HIGH

Soft Shadows: OFF (they look terrible)

Grass Shadows: HIGH

Long Shadows: ON

Full Resolution SSAO: OFF

Water Refraction Quality: MEDIUM

Water Reflection Quality: HIGH

Water Physics Quality: HALF

Resolution Scale: OFF

TAA Sharpening: Full.

Motion Blur: This is optional, but I chose to leave it on. Whipping the camera around at 30FPS can look pretty choppy and this effect hides it. I imagine this is why consoles use it.

Reflection MSAA: OFF

Geometry LOD: 4 out of 5

Grass LOD: 6 out of 10

Tree Quality: ULTRA (reported issues by people if it's lower than this)

Parralax Occlusion Mapping Quality: HIGH

Decal Quality: ULTRA

Fur Quality: HIGH

Tree Tessellation: OFF

Optional: Some say that modifying the deepsurfaceQuality>kSettingLevel to Ultra in the .xml file in "DocumentsRockstar GamesRed Dead Redemption 2Settings" gives free visual improvement to the ground as well.

  • the async compute thing sometimes works, sometimes doesnt
  • there's a line in the xml "deepsurfaceQuality>kSettingLevel" that some say setting to ultra gives free visual improvement
  • Ultra textures are a must, anything else looks like crap
  • I say soft shadows should be off, I don't know why you would want this. But yes, if you insist use ultra.
  • lighting quality should be medium for most.
  • tessellation quality should be ultra
  • taa should only be on medium, high just makes things blurry.
  • you can edit the sharpness value in the xml to something higher than 1.0, but you have to make the file read only or it will reset
  • the nvidia sharpening definitely sharpens, but makes things look grainy too so you can experiment with that.
  • vulkan seems to be the better choice in 95% of cases
  • volumetric lighting takes a huge toll, near should be set to low for most people, the rest on medium.
  • unlocked volumetric raymarch should be off
  • water refraction should be medium, and water physics half or less
  • 6/10 for grass lod seems to be the sweet spot, any higher and it starts doing extra shadow calculations that add very little for a high cost
  • tree tessellation should be off
  • tree quality should be ultra, any less and there can be a shimmering effect
  • i believe there's still a bug if you have particle effects higher than medium which will make train smoke disappear
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