Tech company Nvidia crunched the numbers and confirms in a new study that a higher frames per second (FPS) and faster monitor refresh rates — like the ones experienced while using its own GTX and RTX graphics processors — can give players an edge in battle royale titles like “Fortnite” and “Apex Legends.”
OK, sure, that sounds pretty obvious (and self-serving). But, how did Nvidia determine that exactly? It worked with some pro gamers to conduct directed aiming and perception tests and found that even a handful of milliseconds of reduced latency (the result of faster GPUs, of course) leads to consistent benefits.
In battle royale titles specifically, a higher FPS means the player can see the next frame more quickly and respond to it, Nvidia said. Higher FPS on a monitor with a faster refresh rate also makes images appear smoother. Moving targets are easier to aim at, and players are less likely to see microstutters as they pan their crosshairs across the screen.
One common metric of player performance in online battle royale titles is the kill-to-death (K/D) ratio, or how many times you kill another player divided by how many times other players kill you. Nvidia charted the K/D performance of players in “Fortnite” and “PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds” for each generation of its GPUs. Using the GTX 600-Series as a baseline, it calculated the relative increase in K/D ratio for each successive generation. Players using the latest GeForce RTX 20-Series cards saw their K/D ratio increase 53% compared to people using the GTX 600-Series cards.
Nvidia also studied how K/D and GPUs are related to monitor refresh rates, since a higher FPS only benefits a player when the monitor can keep up. It compared the difference in K/D ratio for the median player using GeForce GTX 10-Series and GeForce RTX 20-Series GPUs with 60 Hz, 144 Hz and 240 Hz monitors, respectively. It also limited the sample to players using 1080p resolution. The data reportedly showed gamers who use a high refresh monitor of 144 Hz or above have significantly higher K/D ratios.
Ultimately, Nvidia said gamers seeking an edge in battle royale titles, whether they’re amateurs or pros, should optimize their systems for 144+ FPS and pair it with a 144 Hz monitor.
“This data doesn’t mean that simply upgrading your GPU will make you a better player,” the company said. “But however you cut it, it is easy to see a relationship between the hardware used and a player’s kill/death ratio: having the right hardware enables the highest FPS and lowest latency, and that can help you reach your full potential on the battlefield.”