I've got specs that basically match the recommended settings provided in the readme:
Core i5 2.66 GHz
Radeon 6550M 1GB
Auto-detect puts me on high settings, but it runs so slow it's unplayable. It runs fine if I turn down some settings but even with everything at its lowest when I'm moving around a lot it suddenly turns choppy, I'm guessing because it can't load the new environment fast enough.
Is there a way to fix this? The same problem happens if I play it windowed. Should I play it in DX9 mode instead of 10/11?
I agree it sounds like its streaming the data too slowly. If you right click the game in your steam list and right click the game name, select properties, then local files and click defragment cache files. Alternatively you could try defragmenting the entire HDD using windows defragmenter or a 3rd party app such as perfectdisk or Diskeeper. However if you have a SSD and not a standard HDD do not defrag as it will do more harm than good. Also make sure both your graphics and sound drivers are up to date as a driver issue could also present with this kind of issue. It hapened to me while driving in GTA4 and a newer driver fixed it completely. If none of this helps then do as you suggested and try DX9 mode, it may help and TBH it doesn't really make much difference.
Steam said I had 0% frag in the cache, and Windows said I had 0% frag on my HDD, so I don't think it's that. I checked in device manager and it said my video card drivers are up to date, not sure where else to look since AMD's website is kind of convoluted but I'm assuming Windows is right so it's not that either. DX9 mode didn't fix it either.
I double-checked with Fraps, I generally get about 25-30 fps walking around but if I'm driving or in a helicopter it drops to about half that or lower for 5sec, then it goes back to normal for about 5sec, and etc.
Could it be an overheating thing? It's a laptop, I have it on a stand so it gets more air but it still heats up fast.
I'd check the AMD site, windows is hopeless at determining if you have the latest drivers. Did you install the drivers you have now from the AMD site? If it's the one#s windows installed on its own they usually aren't as good. You should also check soundcard drivers and chipset drivers are up to date.
Edit: Also when you lowered the settings did you also lower the resolution? If not try that its possible the graphics card just can't output a stable framereate at that res.
It works! I found a utility on AMD's site and got a newer graphics driver and now it's running with a consistent 30fps. Thanks for the help.