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Engine Stuttering


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Hi Guys!

I have a user who complains about "engine stuttering" where the music starts skipping and the game seems to stick and then speed up to catch up. I guess there's nothing that interesting there, but he says that if he opens the task manager in the background that the stuttering stops. Any ideas why this might be?

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If the engine loses focus, i.e. Opening a browser while playing, it will turn down the fps.

Perhaps, having the task manager open affects whether the engine thinks it has focus, and lets it run at full fps.

If that's the case, it should say so in the logs (at least with a high level of logging).

Another possibility could be malware or other stupid shit, that hides when task manager is open.

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I asked him some questions and he gave me some answers. You can find the original conversation here:



I've been researching this for you. Here's a few things to try:

1. Make sure you have the latest drivers installed for your GPU.

2. Don't overclock anything

3. Make sure Windows automatic updater or malware scan isn't happening when you're playing.

4. Uninstall Geforce experience if you have it. It causes problems.

Some other thoughts:

1. The game slows down when it loses focus by design. It might be periodically losing focus for some reason - if only for a split second. The task manager might stop this for some reason.

2. There might be Malware or some other program that hides itself when the task manager is open. This seems like a stretch, but someone suggested it to me so I thought it's worth mentioning.


1. I always use the latest AMD drivers. 18.4.1 in my case for AMR R7

2. Nothing is overclocked. Never use that, system always works good already. Don't play very resource demanding 3D apps.

3. I experience major slowdowns when windows update in the background indeed. It wasn't the case while playing Pirate Code.

4. I don't use Gforce, I have AMD, but the radeon app is always open in the taskbar. I will try to kill that process complete to see if it changes something. However when I do not give the game a profile in the AMD app it should bypass it anyway.

1. It's a total different experience. Taskbar open means a smooth normal experience as how I play all my games last ten years. Taskbar closed is constant stuttering. It's actually unplayable withou it.

2. I do regular scans and almost know from every running service what it is, but indeed there can be something in the background that interfers. I wonder if it is unwanted malware or a unwanted windows service or process.....Anyway closing all other background apps, antivirus, antimalware, browser, folders etc etc doesn't make the game runs normal for me.


How would you guys go about debugging something like this? Should I give him a copy of the game with profiling on or something? Not even sure how to use it but I'm always open to learn something new.

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