Valve engineers have implemented an interesting new feature in the latest Dota 2 update. The experimental feature has been designed to cut down on the input lag some players notice when playing with the game’s vertical sync (also known as VSync) graphics feature switched on.
In a post on the Dota 2 dev forums, Valve’s Jay Stelly explained that the new feature “will attempt to schedule simulation and rendering to coincide with the start of the new frame on your monitor.” This will prevent the game from delaying frame rendering, which causes a noticeable lag, in order to sync up with a monitor’s refresh rate.
Being one of the top eSports games in the world, every action in Dota 2 is of the utmost importance, making frame rate a rather big deal in high-level competitive matches. Changes that affect the speed at which players can see and respond to actions have rather huge consequences, for the more casual players as well as the professional ones. How Valve deals with these consequences will in turn inform how other developers approach the business of running successful eSports.
The new feature is simply experimental and currently only available as a console variable. If the tests are successful, the feature will be added to the main UI. The use of the new feature does require you to have a PC that can maintain a framerate that’s higher than your refresh rate though, and that is usually 60 frames per second or higher.
We’re excited to see if this new feature will be implemented in the long run, or if it’ll be a failed experiment for Valve. We’re also wondering how many players will actually use the feature, as it might affect their gameplay.
Source: Dota 2 Dev ForumsRelated: Dota 2, Features, MOBA, News, Update, Valve