How to run Half-life 2 on a Geforce 2...

Discussion in 'PC Games' started by metamorphosis, Jan 13, 2006.

  1. metamorphosis

    metamorphosis Member

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    From http://mattbentley.muzic.net.nz/guides/hl2_geforce2_guide.htm :

    This can be considered a weird kind of followup to my old 'ati doom3 guide' (http://mattbentley.muzic.net.nz/guides/ati_doom3_guide.htm) a few years back. Yes, It's doable!
    I did it because my Radeon 9800 Pro died at some point and I haven't gotten around to replacing it- gonna wait until things get better - yes, you miss out on pixel shaders, bump mapping, etcetc... but it still looks good and you get a pretty damn fine framerate (depends on scene, hovers around 50fps but can get as high as 70fps or as low as 20). Here's how you do it:

    1. Optimise the bejesus out of your system. Tons of guides on this around so just Google it-
    2. Overclock the hell out of your video card (use rivatuner and hotkey it).
    3. Nvidia no longer supports geforce 2's in their drivers. However, omega drivers don't have this constraint - download and install the most recent 'performance' nvidia omega driver.
    4. Set performance settings to 'high performance' in the nvidia tweak menu. Then go into the nvidia control panel under control panel/display/settings tab/advanced button/Geforce tab. Go to Performance and Quality settings and change vertical sync to 'off'. Then go to the 'refresh rate overrides' and change the refresh rate for 800x600 to your monitor's optimal (maximum) refresh rate (85hz & upwards is best).
    5. Set antialiasing to '2x' in the nvidia tweak menu - no antialiasing looks badddd...
    6. Set anisotropy to 'off' in the nvidia tweak menu - doesn't make a huge difference IMHO anyway, and reduces performance quite significantly.
    7. Install and update halflife 2.
    8. Play in offline mode.
    9. Set resolution to 800x600. Set antialiasing to 2x. Set shadow detail to low and shader detail to high. Set filtering to trilinear and vertical sync to off. Set textures to 'medium' or 'low' and models to 'medium'. Setting textures to medium can occasionally slow down the fps, particularly with heavy volumetric lighting scenes, but it looks way better.
    10. Add the following commands to the halflife 2 shortcut: "-heapsize 512000 +map_background none +exec c:\games\steam\mytweaks.cfg". Note: the 512000 is for users with 1GB of system ram or more - if you have less, set it to half your system ram size, expressed in kilobytes (in this case, 512000 kilobytes).
    11. Make a text file called "mytweaks.cfg" under the steam directory- then edit it and insert the following into it:
    snd_mixahead 0.7
    cl_forcepreload 1
    sv_forcepreload 1
    cl_smooth 0
    cl_ragdoll_collide 1
    r_fastzreject 1
    muzzleflash_light 0
    r_decals 1000
    r_maxmodeldecal 25
    dsp_enhance_stereo 1
    mat_bloom 0
    r_lod -2
    mat_clipz 1

    It actually looks pretty good. Better than my friend's geforce 3, anyway - they're both on the same internal hl2 engine path though, so that's not saying much...
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    Enjoy!
    m@

    [EDIT:] Updated, plus, screenshot!
     
    Last edited: Jan 14, 2006
  2. Modafroman

    Modafroman Member

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    what kind of fps do you get?
     
  3. OP
    OP
    metamorphosis

    metamorphosis Member

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    Depends on scene, but tends to hovers around 50fps - can also get as high as 70fps or as low as 20-
    m@
     
  4. h0uSe

    h0uSe Member

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    I still dont understand why people want to play HL2 on crappy old video cards...
     
  5. Modafroman

    Modafroman Member

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    because they cant afford/dont want to upgrade for whatever reason?
     
  6. h0uSe

    h0uSe Member

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    They cant afford an upgrade so they go and buy a $100 game?

    edit: Not here to argue, forget i said anything.
     
    Last edited: Jan 13, 2006
  7. sabretooth

    sabretooth Overdue for a new title

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    That doesn't look half bad, actually. Nice work.
     
  8. kona_boy

    kona_boy Member

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    good work man. i like that sorta stuff
     
  9. OP
    OP
    metamorphosis

    metamorphosis Member

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    Because the games aren't great enough to bother forking out oodles of cash every single year in order to play them top-notch.
    m@

    p.s I do like this game. I just don't think I should have to upgrade every time I want to play something... especially when some games seem to do a great job of getting good performance out of 'obselete' (i.e two years old) 'hardware'-
     
  10. congoh

    congoh Member

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    Also, you may have 2nd comp you have made from hand-me-down parts that you use for web surfing that now can be used for quick & dirty HL2 DM.

    Good stuff :D. Thanks for the guide.
     
  11. Aegis

    Aegis Member

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    That looks awesome for a geforce 2. Just goes to show how well the Source engine scales on older systems.
     
  12. power

    power Member

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    odds are hl2 came with his radeon card....

    also can't just forcing dx7 make this work?
     
  13. D-TwiZzY

    D-TwiZzY Member

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    lol cool i get 50-70ish fps with my 6600gt on high settings though
     
  14. ratsock

    ratsock Member

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    Come back when you're running Battlefield 2 on the same card :p

    lol, eitherway. Nice one dude. Interesting to see that even the older cards can keep up to a certain extent
     
  15. Fortigurn

    Fortigurn Member

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    I agree, I admire this kind of ingenuity. :thumbup:
     
  16. OP
    OP
    metamorphosis

    metamorphosis Member

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    HL2 was separate- bought my radeon b4 the HL2 deal came through-
    directx7 path will be used regardless of whether you force it, for a GF3/ lower, as I understand it- if you try to force it on the command line (-dxlevel 9) HL2 will change the level back down to 7 upon loading a game..
    Cheers all :)
    m@
     
  17. GreasyBear

    GreasyBear Member

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    I rememebr when I had my old Geforce 2 to play HL2. It ran quite well I reckon, just no flashy effects.
     
  18. OP
    OP
    metamorphosis

    metamorphosis Member

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    Yeah, I do wonder what I'm missing out on- what does it looks like with a "proper" card???
    BTW, updated the guide again- a few more settings I forgot about,
    m@
     
  19. GreasyBear

    GreasyBear Member

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    Pretty much the lightning doesn't look like white string, people's faces have more detail (this prob belongs to detail anyway), you'll notice straight away that the water is water, and not the brown murky crap we see :)
     
  20. OP
    OP
    metamorphosis

    metamorphosis Member

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    Lightning? Oh, right, the stuff from the souped-up gravity-gun? Thought that looked pretty cool regardless but good-to-know.
    Yeah, the water looks like poo pretty much-
    :) m@
     
    Last edited: Jan 14, 2006

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