Just a couple of days ago preliminary benchmarks for idís Doom 3 were released onto the net, putting the Nvidia cards well ahead of ATiís offerings. Whatís most interesting about these benchmarks is that fact that neither Nvidia nor ATi had any access to the final Doom 3 code thatís in the shipping version. This means that these benchmarks are not factoring in any driver optimizations as weíve seen with other games.
Whatís most noteworthy is the fact that the Nvidiaís midrange GeForce 6800 GT easily keeps pace with ATiís Radeon X800XT PE, which is ATiís high-end graphics card. Apparantly the features Nvidia has been touting finally show their true potential with a next generation game such as Doom 3. Weíll have to see to what level ATi manages to up their performance, or whether theyíll be in the backseat from now on, with Nvidia crowned the king of 3D graphics once more.
On a related note, the FarCry version 1.2 patch that was just released has been pulled from Ubisoftís website again, there were severe issues with ATi cards, with screen- and texture corruption as a result. Nvidia cards, especially the 6800 series, saw a healthy speed and image quality boost due to a NV40 code path now available. So it all looks to come together for Nvidia these days, Doom 3 runs best on Nvidia hardware, as does FarCry with the latest patch, the ball is firmly in ATiís court now, letís see what they counter with.