Downscaling In Fallout 4 Is As Easy As Editing One File

Part of the joy of playing on PC is being able to run in whatever resolution you want. Especially if you’re one of those people who like taking really, really pretty screenshots. 10 FPS? That’s 10 gorgeous screenshots per second in some people’s books.

If you’re not obsessed with going into 200 FPS town, and you want to squeeze as many apocalyptic textures as possible into one screen, downscaling is the way to go. Fortunately, it’s really easy to do in Fallout 4.

Basically, downscaling is when you render a game at a resolution that’s greater than what your monitor can normally display and then your GPU rescales it to fit within your screen. As 1440p and 4K gaming has become more viable, it’s started to become more popular.

Most people have ridiculously powerful CPUs and GPUs, but they don’t necessarily have a 4K monitor or thereabouts (particularly if you’re a fan of the 120hz/144hz gaming monitors, which can be astronomically expensive beyond the 23″-24″ models).

Fortunately, that’s where downscaling comes into play. Traditionally you’d need to create custom resolutions in the control panel for your driver software, and then you’d open up the game of your choice to see whether it would run the game at that resolution.

In Fallout 4, however, you can simply edit the Fallout4Prefs.ini file. Gabi, who was responsible for showing users how to uncap the frame rate and tweak the FOV in Fallout 4, has put in a further note on how people can enjoy Bethesda’s latest RPG in greater resolutions.

Downscaling is also possible on AMD cards. One other solution is to simply edit the Fallout4Prefs.ini located in C:Users[name]DocumentsMy GamesFallout4 along with the same file name located in where you installed steam then open steamappscommonFallout 4Fallout4 (or if you didn’t use the default installation location, simply go to where you installed Fallout 4 then open the Fallout 4 folder within that): Then change the below values to the highest values your pc can handle.

iSize W=YYYY
iSize H=XXXX

You’ll note that these are the same settings you would have tweaked to enable ultra-wide widescreen support. The trick with downscaling, however, is to make sure that you don’t bugger up the ratio. “In other words if you have a 16:9 monitor which is most people, you want your value of YYYY divided by XXXX to equal 1.78,” Gabi wrote.

Custom resolutions that you might want to try on 16:9 monitors, which I’ve had some success with on my personal rig in the past in other games, include: 3680×2070, 3600×2026, 3200×1800, as well as the staples of 3840×2160 (4K) and 2560×1440 (1440p).

Those using the GeForce Experience middleware for NVIDIA cards can also just use the in-built DSR slider, if you want to go down that route. It’s more helpful to be able to do it manually, however, particularly in a future with DX12 where multi-GPU setups with AMD and NVIDIA cards are perfectly valid.

What are your favourite Fallout 4 screenshots so far?

The Cheapest NBN 1000 Plans

Looking to bump up your internet connection and save a few bucks? Here are the cheapest plans available.

At Kotaku, we independently select and write about stuff we love and think you'll like too. We have affiliate and advertising partnerships, which means we may collect a share of sales or other compensation from the links on this page. BTW – prices are accurate and items in stock at the time of posting.


20 responses to “Downscaling In Fallout 4 Is As Easy As Editing One File”