Astral sooo slow on some machines

Hello everyone,

I’m relatively new here, but since playing in Astral, my group has been seeing some issues with the platform. Certain players have seen the CPU and their GPU absolutely spiked, even to the point that their whole system slows to a crawl. Astral itself will often become unresponsive (click for a die roll and nothing happens for long minutes, etc.). Some of this is clearly related to dynamic lighting. However, dynamic lighting is hard to give up when Astral doesn’t have another easy way to hide parts of the map until they should be viewable by the players (at least that I’ve found).

In any event, it would be nice to have some pointers about system settings, browser settings or Astral settings that could make it playable for those players. Any guidance would be greatly appreciated.

Thank you!

Hello @SnowyRiver

There is a known issue if the system has integrated graphics and a dedicated GPU.

On Windows, go to Settings / System / Display

Now scroll to the extreme bottom of the page and select Graphics Settings.

Click the Browse button and browse for your browser. Add it to the list, then click on your browser in the list.

Click on Options

Choose High Performance and click Save.

This should really improve performance massively.

Hi @LaMorte .

Thanks for the reply. I’ll definitely have my players try this.

One of my players is pretty tech-savvy, and here is something that he had to say about it:

"When I set performance flags, it looks like it is trying to poly render the whole map in a frame. So, basically on a big map or one with lots of elements, your computer is trying to render 10 screens of video even if you are only looking at a little corner of it.

That is sort of why roll20 doesn’t have the issue. They wait until you stop moving, then render the changes. Astral is constantly rendering (very badly given the processor load… they apparently don’t differentiate between static objects and the active layers. But they could be using some new html feature i am not aware if)

So on Astral, small maps with lots of stuff or big maps with some stuff would have issues. Chunking apart the maps is the only solution I see."

Does this sound like it is falling into the known issue that you’re talking about?

Once again, thanks!

That could be an issue with the GM using a single very large image as a map. Astral needs to load the entire map into video memory then to render.

What we suggest, and what I do, is to slice any large map images into squares or rectangles in an image editor, then put it back together like a puzzle in Astral’s map editor.

Astral uses occlusion, so only map layers that are visible in a user’s window are loaded into memory for rendering. It makes a massive difference on older machines, like the 10 year old i3 laptop I use for testing.

Some more performance tips are available here:

Many hours of problem solving have gone into that page.

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Great. Thank you so much. I want to make my games a great experience for my players, and the performance issue has been a frustrating one. If I can figure this out, this will make a huge difference!

I often pull out the i3 to test maps, especially the large ones.

Another not: Chrome has been giving many people performance issues recently. I suggest Opera, Opera GX, or shudder The New Edge. It has actually become my go to browser for working on Astral.

To add to that info, there’s a complete walkthrough of the NVIDIA bug and steps to resolve it here: