Guide on how to fix Skyrim's shadows.

#31FaithIsIgnorantPosted 11/20/2011 3:29:01 AM
Alternatively you can set your shadow setting to "ultra" then lowering the shadow distance in the ini.

Shadow distance affects the resolution of the shadows, the closer the setting the sharper the shadows. It's hard coded and no way around it at the moment.

Shadows settings also affects performance in the game greatly, so personally although I hate to see blocky shadows, I'll rather it over lower fps.
#32RascycXPosted 11/20/2011 3:37:28 AM
Keep your iShadowMapResolutionSecondary at 1024 to avoid some performance loss. These are the far shadows and it's not really as noticeable. Try to keep the primary at 4096 if possible though.

The real issue here is that Skyrim isn't using a lot of cascades. There are two cascades, the primary and the secondary. The entire shadow map is stretched over the distance set by fShadowDistance. Note that when you switch to medium this gets set to 2500. When at ultra it's set to 8000. Whatever the distance is, the shadow map is getting stretched. The higher the distance, the more stretching, the more pixelation. In the ideal world you'd have more cascades to minimize any stretching, but that isn't the case in Skyrim (yet anyway).

Lowering the distance remedies that problem, at the cost of not seeing shadows at the cut off distance. Thankfully shadows "fade" in instead of popping, so it's not completely jarring if you use a setting of 2500.

I'm pretty comfortable at a setting of 4000, but ymmv. Test at your leisure.
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-<>- Ras -<>-
#33MASKOAAAPosted 11/20/2011 3:40:38 AM
My shadows look fine without any mods....is this the fault of older hardware?
Perfect outline of my character on the wall....perfect outline of the rope balcony.
http://i.imgur.com/D5zBr.jpg
http://i.imgur.com/2LOs0.jpg
#34ProdicalxPosted 11/20/2011 3:41:00 AM
Why repost when you can bump the old thread!?
#35operationerPosted 11/20/2011 3:42:23 AM
Tried this, it makes dungeons lag like hell with light sources. Not going to fiddle around with the settings when the game is tested already by professionals which I paid for. Unless there is a respected group out there that really does improve it or fix it extensively without bad things happening, like what I mentioned above.
#36Joga_BonitoPosted 11/20/2011 3:43:35 AM
worked for me

the shadows graphic option will revert back to ultra BUT the shadows will look much better (they did for me at least and i was playing with ultra shadows before this fix)
#37schadowPosted 11/20/2011 3:48:08 AM
operationer posted...
when the game is tested already by professionals

Professional testers playing the game for 30 minutes is just not good enough.
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I am not a fan of golf, but you don't see me wasting my life complaining to golf fans about how much I hate life
- Nintendological
#38Warhawk7137Posted 11/20/2011 3:49:02 AM
Kills my FPS indoors.
#39kbe2k2Posted 11/20/2011 4:00:12 AM
@RascycX thanks for the explanation it makes a bit more sense now.
#40Artemicion82Posted 11/20/2011 4:17:49 AM
When I set mine on ultra the ishadowdistance by nature is already at 2500, but the shadows still look bad, no matter what fix I use, so I'm pretty much at a loss as to what is causing it, just have to wait for a real patch to fix the problem.