More graphics options to improve performance
I have been running Arena on a system without a GPU lately. While I expect the performance to be lousy, I have noticed that some boards are worse than others. For instance, playing on the crystal and lava board associated with Ikoria cuts my frame rate to a quarter, making the game nearly unplayable.
If there were an option in the graphics prefs to force an environment override to something simpler, the game would be open to a wider selection of hardware configurations.
In addition, options to turn off some of the effects might be welcome, not only for performance purposes, but also to make the game more accessible to people with visual impairment. Even without any vision problems, I initially found all the effects and animations bewildering, and I delayed installing Arena for almost a year because after having watched a game on Youtube, I just couldn't make sense of it.
Obviously, this should all be optional on the player's side—it's a beautiful game, and when I am eventually able to procure a new graphics card, I'll definitely appreciate the spectacle once again!
For reference, my current PC has the following specs:
Intel Core i7-8700K @ 3.7GHz
32 GB 3000 MHz RAM
Windows 10 Pro
Integrated Intel graphics adapter
Adding my suggestions here as there are already many open bug reports related to performance.
I play the game on either a Pixel 7 or on my Core i7 Laptop running Fedora Linux and the game through wine.
- slow initial loading, the amount of loading/initializing/downloading/ etc. at every game startup is horrendous
- combined with the frequency at which the game hangs and you have to close and restart it you often lose a game simply by this delay.
Some additional suggestions
- disable animations as suggested here (this includes the animation of the play button)
- disable automatic refresh of news etc.
- option to disable the emotes/pets/sleeves and any other eye-candy that adds CPU/memory consumption but is not related to actual gameplay
- replace the Mulligan interface with cards overlayed of each other and a scroll bar and a deck with a simple 2 row "table" allowing the user to tap a card to select it.
Some suggestions as a workaround until the above suggestions can be implemented:
- add a connectivity icon, often it is not clear yet that the connection is lost and you lose valuable time to reconnect waiting on some reaction
- at startup check for an ongoing game. If a game is found disable any more loading to speed up reconnecting to the game as much as possible
- in the chat options add a 'lost my connection' kind of message