Game interaction with CaptureAge slows playback speed down and makes casting really difficult

:arrow_forward: GAME INFORMATION

:point_down: These details are CRITICAL; DO NOT skip them or your issue may not be reviewed.

  • GAME BUILD #: 101.101.58259.0 8059288
  • OPERATING SYSTEM: Windows 10

:arrow_forward: ISSUE EXPERIENCED

When spectating matches using the game alone, playback is fine, and even in late game situations the game will stay at above 30fps, it stays live with <10 cycles/ticks (what do you call these, the +X number when hitting F11 next to network data) at any given time. However when launching Capture Age to spectate matches, all team games after like 20 mins, and even some mid/late game 1v1s start playing back at under 1.7x, and looks super sluggish. Meanwhile the game client goes to under 10fps, even on a tiny window.

If I am spectating a game that I started watching from the beginning, with Capture Age on, and then I fall behind by, say 500 ticks, there is no way for me to FFW with CA open. If I close CA then I can FFW and catch up to live again, with playback staying at normal speed. If I open CA again after catching up, it’ll start falling behind again with playback falling under 1.7x.

I have noticed also a few things:
- Playing the same game back as a recording instead of live results in much more stable playback. It’ll still slowdown in occasions, but not nearly as frequently or as badly, so there is something going on with live games (anticheat maybe?)
- This is anecdotal, but I’ve noticed the slowdowns usually begin when battles start happening around, in special with ranged units.

I already had slowdowns in the previous patch but mostly in like very late game, massive TG situations (think of 4v4 BF), however since the new patch I’m experiencing the same slowdowns even when watching mid game 1v1s which didn’t happen before as much. All of this without CA having changed at all between patches so there MUST be something going on in the way the game shares/manages assets for playing a game back using Capture Age.

I have already talked to the CA team, and I was told there isn’t much control over this issue on their end.

My PC specs:
Ryzen 5 1600
Nvidia GTX 1650 Super
32GB DDR4 2666MHz
500GB NVMe SSD (at 80% capacity)

System usage is never near maxed out regardless of whether CA is open or not. With the game alone you can see system usage down below in the screenshot section. With the game + CA running you can see no single CPU thread is maxed out, memory usage is low and GPU usage also has headroom.

:arrow_forward: FREQUENCY OF ISSUE

:point_down: How often does the issue occur? CHOSE ONE; DELETE THE REST!

The issue happens 100% of the times I spectate team games, and around 50% of the times I spectate 1v1s.

:arrow_forward: REPRODUCTION STEPS

:point_down: List CLEAR and DETAILED STEPS we can take to reproduce the issue ourselves… Be descriptive!

Here’s the steps to reproduce the issue:

  1. Spectate a team game live using Capture Age
  2. Wait until slowdowns start happening at around mid/late game
  3. Close CaptureAge to be able to FFW and catch up again
  4. Open Capture Age again and start falling behind
  5. Try spectating the same match as a recorded game instead and notice how it’s not anywhere as bad as live spectating.

:arrow_forward: EXPECTED RESULT

:point_down: What was SUPPOSED to happen if the bug you encountered were not present?

Playing the game back using CaptureAge shouldn’t be any worse than playing the game back without using it unless system resources were maxed out. Currently not even a single CPU thread goes above 80%, GPU is hardly stressed and RAM usage isn’t an issue either.

:arrow_forward: IMAGE

:point_down: ALWAYS attach a PICTURE (.jpg, .png, .gif) or VIDEO (.mp4, YouTube link) that highlights the problem.

CA slowdown visible by CA’s minimap. Reporting <1.7x playback speed. Game cycle data counter +500 and low fps. System resources still with plenty of headroom.

Game running maximized without Capture Age. It allowed me to FFW to live. FPS looks good and cycle game data is <+10.

Playing that same game back but this time as a recording instead of live. This time having CaptureAge open at the same in-game time as before still allows me to play the rec back at a bit over 1.7x, even though when spectating live this was absolutely impossible.

:arrow_forward: GAME FILES (SAVE / RECORDING)

:point_down: Attach a SAVE GAME (.aoe2spgame) or GAME RECORDING (.aoe2record) of the match where you encountered the issue. Link it below if using an external file service.

Any live TGs should work.
My Black Forest testing above was conducted using the previous build branch, since it was unplayable using the current build. However, the issue still exists in the current build, and is much worse and starts becoming noticeable much earlier. It even happens during 1v1s a lot more frequently.

This NEEDS A SOLUTION urgently. During February Return of the Clans is taking place, a $5k 3v3 tournament I and many others must be able to cast live. While the public update preview might include changes to aid performance for players, the game’s connection with CaptureAge still results in slowdowns when spectating.

The issue still persists even on the latest patch. Casting even 3v3 recs results in slowmo playback with the CPU GPU and RAM having still plenty of headroom (even individual cpu threads)