S.T.A.L.K.E.R.: Shadow of Chernobyl uses the ‘X-ray Engine’ to power the graphics. It is a DirectX 8/9 Shader Model 3.0 graphics engine. Up to a million polygons can be on-screen at any one time, which makes it one of the more impressive engines on the market today. The engine features HDR rendering, parallax and normal mapping, soft shadows, widescreen support, weather effects and day/night cycles. As with other engines that utilize deferred shading (such as Unreal Engine 3 and CryENGINE2), the X-ray Engine does not support anti-aliasing with dynamic lighting enabled. However, a “fake” form of anti-aliasing can be enabled with the static lighting option; this format utilizes a technique to blur the image to give the false impression of anti-aliasing. The game takes place in a thirty square kilometer area, and both the outside and inside of this area is rendered to the same amount of detail.
Benchmark Results: All of the GeForce 8800 GTS 512MB graphics cards did fine at resolutions of 1920×1200 and 1280×1024 in the DirectX 9 game title S.T.A.L.K.E.R. with full dynamic lighting and maximum quality settings. The XFX GeForce 8800 GTS 512MB Alpha Dog XXX Edition graphics card was faster than the other cards in this benchmark thanks to the higher clock frequencies that are factory set. The XFX GeForce 8800 GTS 512MB Alpha Dog XXX Edition was 4.6% faster than the Albatron 8800GTS-512X at 1280×1024 resolution and 2.8% faster at 1920×1200 resolution.