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Why do I have such terrible graphics performance when I play the Missing Link DLC or Director's Cut editions of Deus Ex : Human Revolution?

When I play the original DX:HR, I can play full screen at 1920×1200 resolution with high graphics settings.

When playing either The Missing Link or the new Director's Cut, the game is unplayably slow. Setting a lower screen resolution and turning down the graphics settings helps, but the game looks very bad.

How can I improve performance of DX:HR; The Missing Link, and DX:HR; Director's Cut?

I am playing on a Dell XPS 17 laptop (L702x) with nVidia/Intel switchable graphics, i.e. nVidia Optimus which switches between integrated and discrete graphics cards.

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These problems with DX:HR are due to:

  1. a bug in DX:HR, which is easy to correct via registry settings.

  2. an nVidia driver issue when using switchable graphics, which is easily corrected in the nVidia driver settings.

1. Registry Settings

Two registry fixes are required.

  1. Set HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Eidos\Deus Ex: HRDC\AllowJobStealing to 0.

  2. for NVIDIA owners - set registry key HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Eidos\Deus Ex: HRDC\Graphics\AtiForceFetch4 to 0.

2. nVidia driver settings

If you are playing on a laptop with nVidia switchable graphics, i.e. switchable Intel integrated/nVidia discrete graphics cards, you will need to apply this fix.

The issue is that the nVidia driver determines when to switch to the high-performance nVidia graphics card based on the name of the program executable being run. DXHR.exe is on the list of "programs requiring high-performance graphics", but DXHRML.exe (the Missing Link) and DXHRDC.exe (Director's Cut) are not on this list.

The solution is to manually tell the nVidia driver that you would like DXHRDC.exe to be run using the high-performance graphics card.

  1. Open the nVidia Control Panel.

    enter image description here

  2. Under Select a Task, open the 3D Settings > Manage 3D Settings pane.

    enter image description here

  3. Click the Add button to add a new program. Find your DXHR executable - mine is located at D:\Steam\steamapps\common\Deus Ex Human Revolution Director's Cut\DXHRDC.exe.

    enter image description here

  4. Tell the nVidia driver that you always want to run DXHRDC.exe using the High-performance nVidia processor.

    enter image description here


After applying these fixes, I am able to play the Director's Cut at the same graphics settings as the original Deus Ex: HR - that is, full-screen 1920×1200 at high graphics settings.

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