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World of Warcraft playable on an Intel GMA 950?

Now this all depends on your definition of playable. For me, it’s a constant frame rate of 30 or above, with no drops below that… which in this case means WoW isn’t. Sure it runs, but it’s on lowest settings, with pretty much everything turned off, at 800×600 res, and the frame rate varied between 15 to 40.

I found that if I avoided any of the towns, or any area with more than 5 polygons, I’d be ok since it was seemed to run at 25+ fps… but how likely is that?

Still if I’m reaaaaalllllyyyy desperate for a game, it’s doable.

wow player said,

December 8, 2006 @ 9:59 am

i have intel gma 950 and i played wow pretty well on default settings

Paul said,

December 8, 2006 @ 12:26 pm

Thanks Mr. Player. I agree it runs “pretty well”, but as I said it’s not really playable.

someguy said,

December 27, 2006 @ 12:37 pm

We have two notebooks w/ intel 950 gpus in this house the one w/ the the Mk-36 (512MB) stutters pretty bad while the one with the Core duo t2050 (1024MB) plays well on decent settings.

Paul said,

December 29, 2006 @ 1:26 pm

Someguy, just out of interest what res are you running it at?

someoneElse said,

December 30, 2006 @ 1:01 am

Instead of saying that it runs “pretty well”, it would be more helpful to post an average frame rate.

I have seen people play games at 5 fps (frames per second) and call it “playable”. I am in agreeance with Paul… 30 fps should be considered the minimum acceptable performance for any game.

anon said,

January 2, 2007 @ 5:18 am

hmm i’m playing at 30-40fps using an ATI X700 card and I’m nearly always top in damage and kills in a lot of intensive environments such as WSG, AB, and AV. Raiding is not a problem either. The real difference was upgrading to at least 1GB of RAM, especially on a laptop.

I did a Rank 14 grind on a rogue with a built in intel graphics card i believe the gma 900 or so and it was very much playable at 20fps. The main problem was loading all of the players into memory. I could tell alliance was attacking our base in WSG because the game would freeze for 1-2 seconds to load them.

To each their own I suppose.

Paul said,

January 2, 2007 @ 9:42 am

I could tell alliance was attacking our base in WSG because the game would freeze for 1-2 seconds to load them.

That’s not really playable then is it? But as you say that sounds like a memory issue. Both the machines I play WoW on have 2GB so it isn’t an issue for me.

Jago said,

January 8, 2007 @ 4:32 pm

1) amount of Ram
2) CPU
3) GPU

In that order, are things that matter for WOW perfomance the most, I got more of a perfomance increase by going from 1GB to 2GB ram than I got by going from Opteron 144 with a 6600GT to C2D E6400 with a 7950GT.

Guenter said,

February 20, 2007 @ 11:53 am

I use for office a lenovo thinkpad r60e with gma 960 and 1,5 GB RAM.
Just for fun I installed world of warcraft (a sony-notebook is my game-machine) and was surprised about the speed. Sure, the Sony is fast and brillant, but the r60e with gma950 and 1,5 GB does its job pretty well.

Guenter, Vienna, Austria

Jeremiah said,

September 1, 2007 @ 10:15 pm

I am late this conversation, however Jago is totally correct. WoW is RAM + CPU intensive, followed by GPU. WoW does not utilize DirectX10, so having the latest and greatest is really overkill for WoW.

I have a laptop that is Intel Duo Core T2080 (2×1.73ghz), 2 GB RAM, and the GMA 950. I can play hooked up to my external monitor (1680×1050) just fine. I do turn down some of the settings, like draw distance, but I do get a typical 30ish FPS except maybe in very very populated areas of Orgrimmar where there might be as many as 50 or so people running around.

GMA 950 sucks at playing todays games, but WoW it’s not a problem assuming your other components are decent.

Paul said,

September 5, 2007 @ 10:41 pm

Strange, you chaps must have magical, super duper GMA 950’s.

Jeremiah, the laptop I had at the time was an Intel Core 2 Duo T7200 2.0 GHz, 2GB RAM and the GMA 950. So technically more powerfully than what you’re running and I wouldn’t say it was playable. But as I’ve been saying everyone has a different idea of whats “playable”.

Manning said,

October 26, 2007 @ 7:56 pm

20 fps isn’t playable. 30 is barely playable. That’s my opinion I guess, but I can’t stand to see a game hitch at all. Console games don’t hitch, so computer games shouldn’t either is the way I look at it. I know there are tons of different computer combinations to worry about, but if you buy something for gaming it should have gaming stuff in it. Not necessarily be a $2k computer, but you can have a decent gaming rig for $850 to $1k.

GMA Intel, or anything on-board is not designed with gaming in mind and will run like they didn’t have gaming in mind when they made it. Dedicated GPU memory is the only way to go with gaming, and no less than 256mb for WoW really.

I have run WoW on many, many different PCs and laptops, and I would never go with less than a 7600Go with 256mb of RAM dedicated to the card, or for the ATI side, an X1700. Anything less will just not perform that great. I mean I dip into the 20fps range with those in spots, if that tells you anything. Plus those PCs had Core 2 Duo chips and 2 gigs of RAM!

Outland is a whole different story too, seems to be more hardware intensive than the regular WoW.

Vizel said,

December 2, 2007 @ 12:50 am

Here, I ran that game with my (well, it’s not mine anymore it is my brother’s now) good old laptop which has 1.5 Celeron M processor, 512 Ram, Intel 855 GMA and I ran that game 800 X 600 resolution with graphics low settings (not the lowest) 12-19 fps and yes, it looks kinda bad, but it certainly wasn’t “unplayable” even at 12 frames per second. (well, it was in comparison to my current machine which runs 30 fps minimum 1280 X 800 with graphics settings to highest without AA’s and all that stuff)

hi said,

December 30, 2007 @ 8:23 am

you know guys there is no reason why you cant’ play wow on a pc i play it on a pc and of course it runs good i would also like to make a statement:laptops aren’t really for gaming.

Haplem said,

January 28, 2008 @ 10:09 pm

I beg to differ. I have a toshiba P105-S9722. It is most definetly designed for gaming. With a GO 7900GS 256MB GDDR3, I can run any game, at medium (crysis included) and get decent 30+ framerates. As for WoW, I get 55-60 fps maxed out at 1440*900 (my native res)

Paul said,

January 28, 2008 @ 11:40 pm

I agree with you Haplem, you can buy very well endowed laptops for gaming. It just costs a bit more than buying a conventional gaming PC.

Oh and Vizel, 12 fps is not playable. A slideshow would be faster!

pual said,

February 9, 2008 @ 12:24 am

wrong i ran it with 1mg and it ws good

Paul said,

February 9, 2008 @ 10:16 am

That’s great pual. I ran it on it on an Apple II at 3840×2400 and it were well fast.

Darius said,

February 20, 2008 @ 7:32 pm

First of all i have a macbook 2 ghz duo core, gma950, 1 gb ram and i must say that wow is playable please do not listen to PAUL his head is up his rear telling ppl with gma950’s (thats who this thread is for right, am i missing something oh but the hardcore gamers came in and advertised there hardware for what ) trying to get info that the game is not playable. understand anyone who put a wow disk on downloaded the game (on a gma950) isnt expecting the ultimate 3d experience, but the game is very much playable and not just with defaults, here is some advice, turn the grass and grass ratio down (who needs grass yeah its cute but this a macbook not a pro) turn weather down, other video settings can be tweaked to your liking. now if your in a highly populated place, in big groups, or getting into raiding then i would recommend turn everything down to enjoy your play (because this is where the debate of if its playable comes into play) does turning everything down mean you cant enjoy wow hell no, who cares about draw distance and how real the rain looks and the grass texture when your raiding a town you care about if you live or die and your stats. when i first played wow on default settings i was happy, then i turned some of the fx up and was impressed about how beautiful the game CAN be with full settings but its not a requirement. All you hardcore gamers guess what this IS NOT a hardcore gamer forum we dont care about your fancy video cards because everyone reading this HAS A FREAKING MACBOOK WITH GMA950! get a life you losers advertise your gf or your wifes body figure lets take a look at those numbers

Paul said,

February 20, 2008 @ 9:10 pm

/me removes head from own rear, reads Darius waffle and says… What?”

So you turn all the gfx off and then it becomes playable. OK, well you’ve just proved a GMA 950 isn’t for gaming. And who seriously wants to play a game with everything turned down low? (That’s a rheotrical question)

Also, an advert for my wife will be appearing shortly. Thanks for commenting!

Paul said,

February 20, 2008 @ 10:20 pm

Oh and one other thing:

All you hardcore gamers guess what this IS NOT a hardcore gamer forum we dont care about your fancy video cards because everyone reading this HAS A FREAKING MACBOOK WITH GMA950!

You’re correct, it’s not a hardcore gamer forum, it’s my blog, so people can chit chat about whatever they like. And my post was originally about a Dell Inspiron 640m, not a Macbook, which incidentally now have GMA X3100’s in. And they still can’t pull the skin off a rice pudding when it comes to decent frame rates in WoW.

Pauked.com » Someone is wrong on the Internet said,

February 20, 2008 @ 11:12 pm

[…] have I just been doing an hour ago? Arguing with some asshat on my World of Warcraft playable on an Intel GMA 950? […]

Crusisredux said,

June 10, 2008 @ 8:30 pm

The GMA950 doesn’t have it’s own FPU, and instead relegates all of those functions to the CPU. You’ll find the 3D rendering performance of your system is directly related to your System ram and processor speed. As someone said above with a fast dual core processor thae Graphics experience of this chipset improves a good bit. Running WoW with my Core Duo T2350 and 3 Gigs of ram without issue including full raids at 1024×768 averaging 35 or so FPS consistently.

Is it as pretty as it can be? No. Is it on par with my desktop rig, no. Does it get the job done, for sure.

I also have had good experience with Eve Online, though the Frame Rate there does drop to a less than desirable speed with larger fleet engagements (Explosions, etc.)

Just me 2 Cents. If you are shopping for a new laptop and want to play WoW, look at the X3100 or better yet something with a low end discreet card, like the 8400 GS from Nvidia

Paul said,

June 10, 2008 @ 10:57 pm

Crusisredux, thanks for your post. It’s a pretty concise explanation of the pro’s and con’s of the GMA950.

Neil said,

June 16, 2008 @ 5:10 pm

Considering my main computer has two XFX nvidia 8600GT cards in SLI formation and I get around 100 – 120 FPS in Orgimmar I’m going to start crying when I install WoW on my laptop tonight…

It’s a tiny little celeron processor and a GMA gfx card but I didn’t buy it for WoW. It was just for email/internet and I paid £300 for it (will buy a nice shiny laptop with a dedicated GPU when I have the moola)

I’ll just see what it’s like really, most of the time I’ll be playing on my actual computer (especially when I get to Outland. I think if I try and run Outland on my laptop it’ll grow legs and throw itself out of the window just to put itself out of the misery and pain..)

So I’ll report back and tell you what kind of teeny tiny FPS I get!

DeadNeo said,

July 28, 2008 @ 6:28 pm

I never quite understood the thought that it has to be at least 30fps to be playable. Honestly, wow doesn’t exactly require a high FPS to play, I’ve played WoW at <10fps in AV once and I was doing pretty well. It was annoying, but I’d say 20fps is definitely enough for most things in WoW :\

Solymnar said,

November 1, 2008 @ 2:12 pm

Frankly I’d agree with darius on this one.

The questions was if WoW is “playable” with the Intel 950 graphix chip. The answer is that it is “if the cpu and ram are decent”. 30fps on an MMO consistently is GREAT! And more than enough to allow you manuver and play the game with your internet connection being the main culprit behind lag.

Most people playing modern MMOs are playing at consistently UNDER 30fps and somehow seem to manage… For a FPS yeah 30+ is damn important…for an MMO 30+ all the time in considered by most to be a luxery and certainly not required.

Nate said,

November 16, 2008 @ 5:17 pm

Im also not sure why everyone thinks that 30 fps is the minimum “playable” framerate… I don’t see people here bitching about your television not being “watchable” because the frame rate is only 25fps… 20 should be more than enough to consider it being at least “playable”

Paul said,

November 17, 2008 @ 3:50 pm

Heh, two years on and still getting comments on this subject. They don’t even make the GMA950 anymore! So last word on the subject before I close commenting, less than 30fps isn’t playable.

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