The third game in the Watch Dogs franchise is finally here, and it’s even better than I expected it to be. On top of being able to recruit the entirety of London into DedSec, and play as them, the game looks gorgeous. However, while there are limits on console graphical settings, the game’s PC version is open for optimization. Getting your settings just right is an art, though, so you’ll need a little guidance. That’s why in this guide, we’ve compiled the best Watch Dogs: Legion settings for FPS.
The Best Settings for Changing FPS in Watch Dogs: Legion Yourself
These are the best settings for FPS in Watch Dogs: Legion without sacrificing too much of the good visuals. If you’d still be lagging with the recommended settings, lower them further or simply go as low as possible on each setting.
- Window Mode – You need to switch this to Fullscreen Mode. This ensures that the game is your PC’s top priority, with nothing else going on in the background.
- Graphics Quality – Set this to Custom. It should detect what graphics card you have and optimize the game for your build as a result.
- Ray Traced Reflections – You can turn this Off. It makes the game prettier but will hold back the frames if it’s on.
- Post-Process Anti-Aliasing – Put this to TAA. It buffers frames in the background to provide a silky smooth output.
- DirectX – If you can enable DirectX 12. This provides developers with more control over how the game interacts with your CPU and GPU.
- Environment – Set this to High. It’ll keep the game looking good without burning out your resources.
- Geometry – Try to run this at Very High. It’s not the top performance, but you shouldn’t need it unless you have a very high-end PC.
- Texture Filtering – Put this setting at High. It’s important to keep textures crisp so that you don’t notice any visual flaws.
- Texture Resolution – This should be Ultra. If not, you may notice textures popping in, or see some low-quality ones on show.
- Headlight Shadows – Keep this set to your car. It’s not massively important for realism in the game, and you’ll barely notice it.
- Shadows – It’s important to set these to Very High. Without it you’ll notice distracting, poor quality shadows.
- Motion Blur – Please set this to Off. Most people find it nauseating anyway, but it can also downgrade the overall visuals of the game.
- Bloom – You can set this to On. All it does is make the game look slightly more beautiful.
- Depth of Field – You definitely want this On. The game looks odd with it turned off.
- Ambient Occlusion – This needs to be On. Every environment will look strange without it.
- Subsurface Scattering – Set this to High. You’ll see lighting effects take a huge hit if not, which is worse than low FPS.
- DLSS – Balanced or Performance if possible. These are middling settings, so they won’t burn through resources. Turn it off if your build can’t enable it though.
- Temporal Upscaling – Set this to 100. It won’t make the game look as good as possible, but it’ll keep it looking decent without sacrificing frames.
- Extra Details – This should be at 0%. Turning it up will just make your frames drop.
The number of FPS you can get out of Watch Dogs: Legion is largely dependent on your PC build. I understand that all PCs are built differently, but there is a baseline we can work with here. That is the minimum requirement to run Watch Dogs: Legion. You can see them here. Working with these, If you don’t want to change all of the above settings, I can recommend that you change the following:
Most Important Settings for FPS
- Texture Filtering
- Texture Resolution (Providing VRAM is Limited)
By altering these settings, you’ll be able to tweak your FPS in the game until you find that sweet spot where you get the most. You can test your FPS in the game’s Quality settings tab. There’s a benchmark test that will run a short portion of the game and then report on what the FPS was for it. The benchmark test will also provide data on other settings.
Tips and Tricks for the Best FPS Settings in Watch Dogs: Legion
Above I’ve outlined the best settings for Watch Dogs: Legion if you’re looking for high FPS. I’ve also listed the settings you need to be concerned with adjusting if you want to min/max those settings for your PC build. Next, I will cover a few tips and tricks that you can use to boost those frames quickly.
Turn FPS Limit Off
By default, Watch Dogs: Legion has an FPS limit turned on. Don’t worry. You can turn it off very easily. The setting is in the Options menu under Video. You need to select the Display tab and navigate to the Video Adapter section. You should see the name of your graphics card displayed here. It will also display the total VRMA available to you.
This is the section where you should see a setting marked ‘FPS Limit.’ Turning this off will prevent the game from limiting the number of frames it displays per second.
A word of caution here. The FPS Limit setting is there to protect your PC from overclocking itself. If you turn it off, and your PC can’t handle that kind of processing, it could result in some overheating.
It’s important to know that the FPS Limit setting is also there to help you maintain a consistent FPS throughout all your hours with Watch Dogs: Legion. Turning the setting off will allow you to get more frames, but it also leaves space for the game to drop frames too.
Keeping the FPS Limit turned on ensures a steady FPS for hundreds of hours of game time. Turning it off will only give you more frames if you have the processing power to back it up.
Turn RTX Off
Your PC might not be able to process ray tracing at all. You’ll know if it can by the graphics card you’ve got. An easy way to tell is if that card has ‘RTX’ in its name. If not, then I’d say you probably can’t take advantage of ray tracing.
By turning this setting off, you’re telling your PC to push more processing power to other areas of the game. this will create a smoother experience on all levels. However, if you adjust the settings outlined above and turn RTX off, you’ll be seeing the maximum number of frames possible.
Here is a clip of streamer Shroud demonstrating the power of turning off RTX.
This is the final tip I have for you when it comes to getting the most frames out of Watch Dogs: Legion. You need to navigate to the Video settings once again but now enter the Quality tab. On the bottom-left of the screen, you should see an option for Auto-Detect.
To turn Auto-Detect on, you need to press TAB with it selected. This will enable the game to choose the best settings for you based on your hardware. It might seem lazy, but the game will know what your PC is capable of better than you in most cases.
With this setting turned on, you may even be able to run the game with RTX on. Once again, it’s dependent on your PC build. The game will choose the best settings possible though, and that’s what you want.
Trust Your PC
That is the end of our guide on the best Watch Dogs: Legion settings for FPS. I hope that you manage to use them to have the best-looking experience possible. Don’t forget that you need to work with the game and your PC on this. You can turn all the setting sup as high as possible, but unless you’ve got the hardware to back that up, you may end up breaking your machine. Trust the settings, and work with what you’ve got.
Don’t forget that in some cases people want low FPS as well.
If you’d like to read more about maxing out FPS in other games, check out our guide for Rogue Company here.