art of rally the hitchhiker’s Guide

art of rally the hitchhiker’s Guide 1 -
art of rally the hitchhiker’s Guide 1 -
troubleshooting guide for art of rally (and other games)



Maintained by: miketsukami bo. 
Last update: 2021.05.09 
Full document including burninrubber0’s guide is available to read or download in a .doc/.pdf format at OneDrive:!AmiE_iy7lJpniLURFMFzCvVdRAyNRg?e=precEj 
I have tried to keep the essence of the complete guide when summarizing it here, but for more elaborate explanations, additional information and more possible Linux fixes, please check out the OneDrive document. 
If you’re going to share this somewhere, please use the link to this guide or to the OneDrive document, as I plan to keep them updated with new and relevant information when it’s available. Feel free to ping me on Discord as well: 


art of rally (aor for short) is the first game I’ve been involved so much. At the time for writing this guide I’ve spent more than 200 hours both with the game and the community. I’ve had an amazing experience and playing has improved my driving across all racing games and also made me realize things that improved my life outside of the game. 
Therefore, I really feel bad when someone shows up and say they’re having performance issues and are unable to get the satisfying experience that I have. To help those people I decided to create this troubleshooting guide. 
Please note that it’s nearly impossible to include all systems and setups with step by step instructions for each one. This means you’ll need to have basic knowledge of how to get around your own system (well, maybe more than basic when it comes to Linux). 
This is by no means a comprehensive guide and it’s more of a checklist with things to do if you’re experiencing poor performance in games. If it’s unable to solve your issues I hope that it will at least give you an idea what else to try. On the flipside this guide may help you improve your overall performance in games, as most of the included tips are not exclusive to art of rally. 
In case you find a solution that’s not mentioned in this guide, please share it with us and I will gladly include it here or in the Appendix section of the OneDrive document. 
Let’s go! 


I would like to make it clear that despite having minimalist design and simple textures aor is a proper 3D game. Once you understand that, it’s no surprise that when you increase the resolution or aim for a high frame rate on a high refresh rate display aor will become a little hungry beast. That’s why first we’ll make sure that our graphics settings are appropriate. 
The first thing you need to adjust is the advanced settings in graphics settings in the options menu. Most of them are set to “auto” by default. You don’t want that even if your hardware is powerful. Take your time to select the settings that give you best performance. Don’t be afraid to try different combinations! 
Some useful tips for decently powerful systems are: 
· bloom – turn this off 
· ambient occlusion – lower it to medium 
· shadow distance – set this to none or highest – any other setting currently uses more resources than it should 
· anti-aliasing – funselektor recommends fxaa for performance, but depending on your system you might have better results with taa. There is flickering in the water outline with taa, which is unfortunately just how taa works. However, taa makes the overall image smoother which is especially useful if you’re running the game at a lower resolution than your display’s native resolution and don’t want to see those huge pixels. 
· distance blur – if you lower the quality and/or vegetation distance and trees popping up on the horizon distract you, turning distance blur on might help remedy this 
· vegetation renderer – it’s set to indirect by default 
In the Appendix section of the OneDrive version of this guide I have included example settings working well for both a low-end a high-end machine. 
If you have time and want to customize the visual experience to your own linking, please go through burninrubber0’s amazing Art of Rally Optimization Guide and give them some love. 
You can find the Steam guide here: 
And the original reddit post here: 


In my 200 hours I have noticed that art of rally is very particular about frame rate and refresh rate synchronization. In the complete version of this document there is a short summary of what vsync, G-sync and Freesync do. 
Important: Make sure that you’re using either vsync or G-sync/Freesync and never both at the same time. 
aor needs at least 45fps to look smooth. I a*sume most people still have 60Hz displays, so in those cases ideally you want to run the game at at least 60fps, so that you could make use of vsync. For lower end setups I recommend turning vsync on even when you’re able to reach higher frame rates, because 60fps with vsync usually makes the game look a lot smoother than 90fps without vsync. 
If you’re using vsync, make sure to disable G-sync/Freesync in the respective (Nvidia or AMD) control panel even when your monitor doesn’t support either. Also disable framerate cap in aor’s graphics options (set it to ∞). 
Sometimes having vsync on in game and vsync on in the GPU control panel at the same time may cause issues, so you should set vsync to “off, unless application specifies” for AMD or the equivalent for your system. 
G-sync / Freesync 
If you’re using G-sync/Freesync disable vsync in the respective control panel and in-game. With G-sync/Freesync you might benefit from using the framerate cap option in aor. 
If you’re still experiencing stuttering with G-sync, you can try adding the “-window-mode exclusive” launch parameter to the game. 
Here’s how to do it in Steam: 
GOG Galaxy: 
And if you’re not using gog galaxy, adding the launch parameter to the Target field of the game’s shortcut should have the same effect. Here’s a guide for doing it in Windows: 
Thanks to fidelio for this tip. You can find the original Steam post here: 
Other notes 
Please also keep in mind that GPU control panels usually have global options and per application options, which sometimes contradict each other. Make sure that you have set the correct options in both place. For AMD I recommend creating a new profile for aor with all options set to their default values. In theory the same should work for the Nvidia settings as well. 
If your system has both an integrated and a dedicated GPU, make sure that the game is not running off the integrated GPU. This is an old issue with dual GPU laptops that is rare nowadays, but it could also happen on your desktop. For example, if you have an Intel CPU with integrated Intel HD graphics, but also have a Nvidia GeForce installed always check that games are configured to run using the Nvidia GPU. You may need to look at both the Intel control panel and Nvidia control panel and make sure the settings in both align. 


Windows often has a mind of its own, so in this section there’s an abundance of things to look out for. 
General Tips 
I’ve rephrased the list to fit aor, but you can take the action appropriate to your setup based on the list below: 
* Disable Game Bar in Windows Settings 
* Disable “Steam overlay while in-game” in Steam settings or for GOG players untick “Overlay” in Game Features in the GOG Galaxy Settings. Same for any other overlay you might be running – try to disable it for one gaming session and see if it affects the performance. 
* Apply the above to other applications running in the background. The greatest offenders are usually Windows Update or your Anti-virus software. You can use the Windows Task Manager to see which applications gobble up system resources. 
* Make sure “Compatibility Mode” is disabled on the .exe file for art of rally. 
Thanks to goodnews for suggesting some of these fixes. You can check out the aor Steam thread: Or the original Dirt Rally guide and thread: 
Windows Update issues 
Aside from all other issues with Windows update, the April 2021 updates broke performance in all games. At the time of writing this, you might still be a victim if this, so you have one of the following updates you can try uninstalling them: 
– KB5001330 for Windows 10 version 2004 (20H1) 
– KB5001337 for Windows 10 versions 1930 and 1909 
– KB5000842, which was made available in late March 
Thanks to Proporo for reporting the Windows update issue. The original report from Discord: 
Here’s also a news article about this issue: 


In the processes tab of Windows Task Manager make sure that “Radeon: Host Service” isn’t hogging GPU resources. User Geco reported that killing the process fixed performance issues for them in this Steam comment: 
Suggestion 1 
· In NVIDIA GeForce experience settings: Disable in-game overlay. 
· In NVIDIA Control Panel > Configure Surround > PhysX: Select your graphics card in PhysX. 
· In Manage 3D Settings: Find art of rally in programs (most likely under Steam) > [Add] 
· In the settings for the program select the following: 
▫ CUDA – GPUs: [Use these GPUS] > Choose your graphics card model 
▫ Maximum Pre-Rendered Frames: 1 
▫ Power Management mode: Prefer Maximum Performance 
▫ [Apply] 
Suggestion 2 
Completely Uninstalling Geforce Experience might improve performance. 
Suggestion 3 
Thanks to Boy_Narf for this one: 
When using G-sync: 
1. In Nvidia Control Panel set the fps limiter to max refresh rate –3 
2. Enable G-sync 
3. Disable vsync in-game and in Nvidia Control Panel 
Suggestion 4 
Another tip for vsync from TigerC2605: 
Turn vsync off in-game, but enable vsync in Nvidia control panel. 


Long loading times: 
Check if there are too many (i.e. hundreds of) screenshots your aor screenshots folder. If there are, move some of them to a different folder. 
This shouldn’t affect screenshots made by Steam, GOG and other software if they are saved in a folder different than the default aor one. 
Note: In my experience screenshots made in-game have a bit better quality, so always keep a copy of those. External tools can take screenshots of the in-game menus and leaderboards though, so it’s handy to know how both work. 


Currently there are no macOS specific tips. 
It is known that crowds don’t work on macOS. Currently there is no fix. It’s a limitation of the operating system and it’s up to Apple to improve support in the future. 


DISCLAIMER:Before using any the mentioned commands, please try to familiarize yourself with what they do. 
Using them without understanding might break your system! 
The great thing about Linux is that everyone can take a distribution or a piece of software and make their own version. This is also the worst thing, because there are too many variables when trying to troubleshoot a problem. Therefore in this section I’ll just list a bunch of stuff that you should look into. If you find a fix on your own, please get back to me, so I can update the guide. 
Therefore I will share here only how I managed to improve aor performance on my setup. In the OneDrive document there are more possible fixes for different Linux systems and GPUs. 
I’m using Kubuntu 20.04 on a Ryzen 4500U APU, so for me it was imperative to upgrade to the latest available kernel 5.10. I also used oibaf’s ppa to update to the latest mesa drivers (version 21.2). Doing this stopped aor from crashing, allowed me to use both indirect and instanced rendering in game and also drastically improved performance. Depending on how well your hardware is supported you might be fine without updating your kernel but look into getting the latest GPU drivers anyway. 
Additionally, I managed to improve frame drops by disabling TearFree before running aor. 
I used the following command in the terminal: 
xrandr –output eDP –set TearFree off 
where eDP is my output device (display) identifier. 
After the gaming session, you can turn TearFree back on with: 
xrandr –output eDP –set TearFree on 
If you have a display with Freesync you’ll have to enable variable refresh rate compatibility. You can do that with the following command: 
xrandr –output eDP –set “vrr_capable” 1 
There are still some occasional frame drops, but now art of rally is very much playable. Even though I read through more than 50 posts and articles on the topic I couldn’t find a better solution for my system. Stutter and frame drops in Linux while gaming have been an issue for more than 10 years and I’ve observed it across various systems, so if you had success with playing games stutter-free, please share your experience. 

Written by Miketsukami Bo

Here we come to an end for art of rally the hitchhiker’s Guide to hope you enjoy it. If you think we forget something to include or we should make an update to the post let us know via comment, and we will fix it asap! Thanks and have a great day!

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