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Bioshock 2 Custom Convergence Settings for 3D Vision Users

February 15th, 2010 · 20 Comments · GeForce 3D Vision


The game Bioshock 2 that was released a few days ago was one of the eagerly awaited titles for this year and that was not only because of the big expectations after the first BioShock game, but also because the sequel was supposed to be stereoscopic 3D-ready game (still quite a few of these are available). Supposedly one of the 3D Vision optimized games, but interestingly enough there was nothing mentioning Nvidia 3D Vision readiness about the game, although there is a 3D mode option available inside the game. Bioshock 2 is based on Unreal engine and we all know that this is not the perfect game engine to offer best stereoscopic 3D compatibility, but it seems that the developers did put some effort into making it perform good in S3D mode.



One very important thing you should be aware of is the fact that Bioshock 2 is indeed a 3D Vision-ready title (it has a built-in control over 3D Vision!) and that brings one specific to the activation of the stereoscopic 3D mode in the game. The first time you run Bioshock you won’t be able to enable the stereo 3D mode by pushing the button on the Nvidia IR transmitter or pressing CTRL+T, you’ll need to first go into the game’s Graphic Options menu and enable the 3D Stereo Vision, then restart the game and after doing that you should be able to freely activate and deactivate the S3D mode. It seems that some people are unaware of that requirement or at least just enable the 3D Stereo Vision mode and do not restart the game and complain that the S3D mode is actually not working in Bioshock 2, which is clearly not the case…



When you activate the 3D Vision stereoscopic 3D mode in Bioshock 2 it looks Ok, but you might notice some issues with lighting and shadows, especially if you increase the depth level a bit more. So playing a bit with convergence is something that needs to be done in order to minimize the negative effects you might experience otherwise and here are my preferred custom convergence settings that I found to give me best results. Just import the right Reg file from the archive below depending on your OS type (32-bit/64-bit) run the game and set the depth level to minimum, then after a bit you can try increasing it a few steps to see if it is Ok with you prefer to leave it at the lowest setting. My custom convergence settings are optimized to provide a bit of pop-out effect of the objects very close to you like for example your drill or when you are next to something on the wall that sticks out. Also the 2D crosshair which might be a problem for some people fits better with these convergence settings as you are not distracted by it seeming double or something like that when it passes over objects with more depth. With these settings you should also have less ghosting and issues with the rendering of lights and shadows like you normally might have. As usual please share your comments on how the custom convergence settings worked for you and if you liked them or not…

Download my custom 3D Vision convergence settings for the game Bioshock 2

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20 responses so far ↓

  • 1 PahnCrd // Feb 15, 2010 at 21:01

    Bioshock 2 is pretty awful in 3d stereo for it supposedly being a 3d ready game. Heck, you can’t even disable the crosshair, now that’s just lazy. There is supposed to be a patch soon to fix the 3d, but I’m not exactly holding my breath anymore.

  • 2 Bart P. Skibbenheims // Feb 15, 2010 at 21:13

    “One very important thing you should be aware of is the fact that Bioshock 2 is indeed a 3D Vision-ready title and that brings one specific to the activation of the stereoscopic 3D mode in the game.”

    No … no it isnt. It has a button to turn 3d mode on in game. But the game is NOT 3D Vision ready. If you HAVE to play a minimum depth so the crosshair doesnt split into two and make you ill then the game is NOT 3D Vision ready. This is like a basic basic BASIC necessity in a shooter before the game can be claimed to work right in 3D. Playing at minimum depth means I may as well turn 3D Vision off cause once something is just a few paces infront of me it doesn’t look 3D at all.

    Something else, I had 3D Vision mode coming on fine (I won’t say 3D Vision was working cause the game is NOT 3D Vision ready) then I applied your reg file and now it wont even kick 3D mode on. Glasses stay off. Hit the emitter and for a half a second the glasses flash on you see the green text saying game isn’t recongized and then goes back off.

  • 3 Bart P. Skibbenheims // Feb 15, 2010 at 21:30

    Hate to double comment, but also please be aware that also the game, when it does run in 3D, artifacts HORRIBLY for many of us. (Not my temps they are stopping at 63)

    I played with drivers and was able to minmize it … but not totally allieviate it. Unacceptable really. What was even more goofy is the drivers I found were best for 3d … wouldn’t run in 2d at all. Instant crash.

    Now I understand this is the computer world and the many different possible hardware configurations out there attributes to the varying experiences we all have but … seriously this game is a mess. Broke my damn heart.

  • 4 fish99 // Feb 15, 2010 at 23:50

    I’m holding off on buying Bioshock 2 until the 3D is fixed. 2K’s record with fixing the first Bioshock was pretty poor.

  • 5 Bloody // Feb 16, 2010 at 02:22

    Just having an in-game option to control 3D Vision is enough to call it a 3D Vision ready title (meaning it is prepared to take advantage of 3D Vision, but not meaning it will perform great and without any issues when this mode is activated!), but the developer probably rushed things a bit to have the game on time on the market and that is why it does not perform very well with stereoscopic 3D mode enabled. At least that is at thew moment and we are all hoping to have a patch soon to address the various issues…

    As for the Stereo 3D effect, it can be achieved with different combination between the “common” depth level control and convergence level, so even at minimum depth level set from the IR transmitter you can still have a nice depth feeling with correctly set convergence level ;)

  • 6 Craylon // Feb 16, 2010 at 14:53

    I think a pretty cool article would be to compare a handfull of games in regard towards their s3d readdyness.

    I didn’t like the game so much but I was pretty amazed by all these configuration options like projection size, distance to screen and so on the game avatar had and I wonder how much this improves the s3d quality against 3d readdy or normal titles.

    good candidates imho for such a comparison would be avatar (optimized for s4d) vs. batman aa or resident evil (marketed as 3d ready) vs a standard title using the ut engine i.e.

  • 7 coppershark // Feb 17, 2010 at 00:56

    2k’s attempt at a 3d ready game is shockingly poor. They had, and still have details about Bioshock 2 being made from the ground up as a 3d title on their website and yet it has ALL of the exact same graphical hiccups and problems that the first game title had. Seriously folks this should worry us all a bit, if this is what the gaming industry call a 3d optimised title then our glasses are going to start gathering dust. I have sent 2K a pretty damning verdict on my experience with their 3d effort I suggest that you do the same. I mean, seriously, a 3d game must either have the option to turn off the 2d crosshair at least, this is pretty fundamental stuff. A large disappointment, and if 2k are going to be as slow fixing this as they were with fixing the audio issues in the first Bioshock, well let’s just say don’t hold your breath…

  • 8 Mentaur // Feb 17, 2010 at 04:01

    Thanks a lot for the reg file – it worked really well for me. The mistake with Bioshock 2 is to have the depth high. Running it at about 15% gives you a decent enough feeling of depth and the shadow maps don’t cause too much of a problem. Likewise the crosshair. Everything then looks really good. I’m usually all for 50% plus depth but it isn’t that realistic in a lot of games to do that anyhow. With the convergence setup in the reg file I think the game is really extremely playable with 3D Vision and I am enjoying it a lot.

  • 9 Jay // Feb 21, 2010 at 17:17

    Hi, thanks sir it’s working great for me as well. I spent a lot of time trying to make my own settings but this on is just fine. Now the game is completely playable in 3d vision for me.

    So just thank !

  • 10 Ferry // Feb 21, 2010 at 23:07

    One stupid question,if someone can help me out here…?

    Where do I need to put these .reg files ?
    With regedit ?..where ? how ?

    As of now I like playing Bioshock 2 more when 3d is turned of,so I really like to try this Reg file.

  • 11 Bloody // Feb 21, 2010 at 23:09

    Just double click on them and the settings inside will be imported into your registry, it is as easy as that… ;)

  • 12 Ferry // Feb 21, 2010 at 23:41

    Thanks Bloody !

  • 13 jay // Feb 22, 2010 at 12:31

    I was a bit disapointed to when I firtst saw the reg file ^^

  • 14 hardkotian // Feb 22, 2010 at 12:44

    Didn’t you notice Bioshock plays on 85Hz in all graphical modes! Even with “Refreshlock” programm I can’t forced it to play at 100Hz… Does anybody know how to solve this?

  • 15 Ferry // Feb 27, 2010 at 12:22

    It looks very good with this reg file…
    I also turned of High detail post processing,..to get rid of the emitting lights.
    Also turned of the quest arrow…

    Now everything looks great ,and I have the depth run at 50%

  • 16 Ferry // Feb 27, 2010 at 21:11

    Hardkotian…,here I have my refresh rate in windows at 100Hz.
    Bioshock plays it at 100 hz/fps aswell,without 3dstereo.
    Bioshock in 3dstereo,runs at 2 times 50hz./fps
    Can your computer handle 100 fps ?

  • 17 Josh // Mar 8, 2010 at 09:46

    This looks much better than the default settings, using 196.21 drivers. Thanks for posting this!

  • 18 edible // Mar 15, 2010 at 16:28

    3d custom convergence settings are amazing!
    I have a question: what does the registry key “time” do?

    thx again

  • 19 Bloody // Mar 15, 2010 at 16:31

    It does… absolutely nothing. Just a reference to when the custom settings were saved. :)

  • 20 Ratcat // Mar 20, 2010 at 15:03

    I played Borderlands in 3D which is not 3D ready and it is far better that BS2 b4 I added your registry entry (64 bit) I had my own convergence keys set at [ – and ]+ and it worked so well the quest arrow sat amost over my keyboard now it blurs out to double !! ghosting is horrible in BS2. There are some positives to your reg file but before, I didnt have to look at that stupid Bell helmet I converged so far out it dissappeared now Its back , still, its not bad. The only problem with high convergence is that you are really short and almost crawling. Dad gives me as much to spend on a PC as I want so I have the best of everything even 8 GB of Ram on a quad core 3.6 with nothing running under processes that shouldnt be (he is a computer technician) I have a two GB video card GTX285 sposed to be the best there is, cost $900.00 yet Bioshock runs just as well on my friends core 2 with 2 GB RAM and a 512 card.but my friends PC seems to render in nicer colours. Just goes to show even the best PC in the world like mine (a brats computer) with w7 64 bit wont work any better than a mid-range PC. Maybe he has later vid drivers or something, cant wait for a patch!!

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