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Trying the Game Call of Duty: Black Ops in Stereoscopic 3D Mode…

November 10th, 2010 · 41 Comments · Stereo 3D Games

The game Call of Duty: BlackOps is now officially released and since it is a stereo 3D ready game, meaning that it should not only be a 3D Vision Ready for the PC, but also has stereo 3D support in the versions made for PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 consoles. So what I did was to do a quick test of the game on all currently available stereo 3D solutions for the PC, because I do not have any of the two consoles to try it on, but if you do you are welcome to share your experience with the native stereo 3D support on those consoles…

Starting with 3D Vision, Call of Duty: Black Ops works great in stereo 3D mode, just make sure that you have the latest drivers installed that do come with a 3D Vision profile for the game. That however is to be expected, considering the game was announced to be 3D Vision ready, although in the profile it is rated as Excellent (there are some minor issues still to be cleared). However running the game in stereo 3D mode with 3DTV Play on a 3D HDTV has revealed a strange issue that you can see on the screenshot above, when taking aim through the iron sight or the scope of the gun the lower half of the screen becomes blurred. That issue has been reported and Nvidia will hopefully soon fix the problem, but before that happens you better stick to playing the game with 3D Vision on a 3D LCD monitor.

Call of Duty: Black Ops, like the other 3D Vision-ready games also has the convergence level preset by the developer, apparently to the best level they’ve decided to stick with, but some people do want to be able to adjust the convergence to their own liking and not just the depth level. However the user Arioch over at the Nvidia forums has found out a way to overcome this potential problem and again be able to tweak the convergence level. In order to do that you will need to open the “config.cfg” file inside the player folder in the game directory under Steam (“\Steam\steamapps\common\call of duty black ops\players\”). Look for the setting “seta r_use_driver_convergence” and change the default value from “0” to “1”.

I’ve also decided to test Call of Duty: Black Ops on the HP Envy 17 3D laptop that uses AMD’s stereoscopic 3D solution along with a pair of shutter glasses to see how well the game runs there. Of course I tried with both the iZ3D Driver and the TriDef 3D software to see the level of compatibility offered by both solutions with the same hardware. The iZ3D driver ran the game without problems, although I’ve noticed that there are some issues with the stereoscopic 3D rendering of the game – the shadows were rendered incorrectly, the normal crosshair and text markers were rendered in 2D making them appear on screen depth, which makes the game uncomfortable to be played in its full glory in S3D mode. The result with iZ3D was worse, as running the game with a default profile I was able to get only to the menu, which was rendered well in stereo 3D, however when starting the game all I got was a blank screen. Also trying with both solutions to play the game on a 3D HDTV resulted in getting only blank screens. So apparently some work needs to be done here to fix and improve S3D support too.

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41 responses so far ↓

  • 1 kalafior // Nov 10, 2010 at 15:28

    am i right? There is no Native S3D Support (side by side) in PC version for 3dtv?

  • 2 Bloody // Nov 10, 2010 at 15:58

    No, the PC version doe snot have a native S3D support for 3D HDTVs, you either need to use the Nvidia 3DTV Play or AMD’s HD3D technology along with iZ3D or TriDef to be able to play it on a 3D TV.

  • 3 John3D // Nov 10, 2010 at 17:39

    I tested the PS3 format last night and was pleasantly surprised how much fun it was.
    There were no settings to mess with it automatically from boot up started in stereo mode. Menu’s and all stereo was great.
    720p resolution had smooth fps from what I noticed.
    Multi player was impressive as well after a short time getting used to playing competitively in stereo.

  • 4 Bloody // Nov 10, 2010 at 17:42

    John3D, what 3D TV you played it on and did the PS3 version have any options for controlling the level of depth or you have to stick with a predefined value?

  • 5 Ray // Nov 10, 2010 at 17:54

    Did anyone else notice that the graphics of the game itself seem to have taken a major step backwards? I felt like I was playing a shooter from 2007/2008.

  • 6 John3D // Nov 10, 2010 at 18:04

    @Bloody, I’m using a 63″ c8000 Samsung plasma.
    Default TV settings needed some tweaking to lower the ghosting.
    (if anyone has TV setting tips for lowering ghosting let me know)

    As far as the PS3 game settings, I left them default for now. I was happy with the default depth value.

  • 7 tritosine // Nov 10, 2010 at 21:34

    Ray // Nov 10, 2010 at 17:54


  • 8 Bloody // Nov 10, 2010 at 22:25

    Developing a game for console and then porting it to PC is not the best choice with the console hardware already being few generations old… but still it is not all about the graphics, or at least it shouldn’t be ;)

    I’ve also noticed more visible ghosting when running the PC version on a 3D TV than on the 3D LCD monitor and that kind of surprised me as it is usually quite the opposite.

  • 9 mihabolil // Nov 10, 2010 at 23:25

    i noticed rare (ignorable) croshair/iron sights “bugs”
    yes the textures are a bit “poor” compared to METRO 2033
    but far better than MoH

    I can’t stop playng it all day :))

    Call of Duty RULZZZZZZZZZZ

  • 10 Martin Andersson // Nov 11, 2010 at 11:45

    The game pretty much sucks. Anyway, Bloody, won’t you release your custom convergence settings? I’m not that fond of the 3D effects in this release, I mean numerous of other games that aren’t even 3D Vision ready have better performance with depth and popouts than do this title. I’d love it if you released your customized settings =)

  • 11 Jonathan Jenkyn // Nov 11, 2010 at 13:47

    I have a major issue with some of these FPSs in 3D particularly those that have scoped weapons. In reality when you use a scoped weapon you close one eye to remove the obvious parallax issues that come in to play when aiming accurately with the sights. In S3D the scene is generated by changing the point of view for each eye with respect to the actual central position… so in fact closing either eye will not get you the correct line of sight to correctly pop the top of the bad-guys head off. IMHO game designers should be (when a scoped weapon is being used) black out one of the eyes (user configurable dependant on preference) and drop the whole scene to 2D (like what it would in reality!) so you can aim correctly. TF2 suffers from this as does Borderlands etc… I assume this game is no different!

  • 12 MarkyD // Nov 11, 2010 at 15:26

    @Jonathan : As far as the PC is concerned (I cannot speak for how the consoles handle 3D), the 3D effect is created in the graphics driver and not by the game. The game renders a single 3D scene and the driver does the clever bit of generating the two separate images needed for depth.

    To implement what you suggest, the driver would need to support being able to turn off either the left or right image, or to switch temporarily into 2D under software control.

    All games will be affected similarly.

  • 13 MarkyD // Nov 11, 2010 at 15:32

    Alternatively, just close one eye when you use the scope :)

  • 14 chris // Nov 11, 2010 at 15:58

    bloody are you tempted to upgrade your 480 rig to 580’s or like me ( with 1 x 480 ) your happy with just a 5-10 fps difference ?

  • 15 Bloody // Nov 11, 2010 at 16:22

    Jonathan, The thing with iron sights rendering in 3D is a bit of a problem, because of the unnatural way it is being implemented in stereo 3D as compared to the way we do it in the real world (you close one eye to easily match the two markers). However that does not mean that if properly implemented in stereo 3D you cannot use adequately the iron sights in 3D with both eyes. The switching between 2D and 3D will take some time to happen (try disabling and then enabling the 3D Vision by pressing the button on the IR emitter quickly) and your eyes will need some time to readjust after the switch from 3D to 2D, you need time to close your other eye. We are talking about some milliseconds here for each of these, but when you combine them and you may get something like a half a second or even a full second for example additional delay and that is not good for competitive gaming…

    Chris, maybe just a little bit, more if the water cooling blocks from GTX 480s fit over the 580s, but my totally depleted upgrade budget screams No-No.. :)

  • 16 Franco // Nov 11, 2010 at 16:48

    Guys, what is this talking about upgrading to GTX 580 if you already have a GTX 480 which is a killer video card.
    Come on!!!!! Look at this so called 3D Vision ready game Call of Duty Black ops, yes I definatelly agree with Ray, it does look like a 2007/08 game. Its the same freaking graphics from Call of Duty Modern Warfare and World at War.
    Those games are based on consoles, they don’t give a damn about expensive PC hardwares, it all about selling to the majority which are console owners.
    So, why do we worry so much about enhancing our high end PC’s if the game industy is focusing towards consoles which have their capacity already on it’s limits.
    It’s really rare nowadays to find games like Metro 2033, Just Cause 2 that really takes advantage of a high end PC.
    I’m really looking foward for Crysis 2 release, cause I know Crytek is very inovative and are going to present us with a new engine, considering the cryengine 2 is still miles ahead of any engine we find in today’s games.

    About COD Black Ops, I can only say I’m frustrated, I really thought COD series would take a step foward in graphics and effects, but it’s the same crap. A fun game with different scenario and story, but everything else is the same, just another console port. I regret I bought this.
    It’s fun until I finish single player and as I don’t play multi, it’s a waste of money for me. And unlike others, I think graphics plays a big role when you spend money on high end video cards. We are not console users, so why we buy expensive hardware to get games that look old enough????


  • 17 Franco // Nov 11, 2010 at 16:59

    BTW, I was going to try COD Black Ops with 3DTV Play but I can’t make my wireless Xbox 360 joy to work with this game. Andrew from Nvidia said this game supports gamepads, but I don’t know if it’s just wired or also wireless????
    I really would like to know how I make my wireless joy work with this game, do I have to enable some option in game’s settings and menu? If so, what option and where?


  • 18 Bloody // Nov 11, 2010 at 19:31

    The game is not very playable with 3DTV Play at the moment, because of the bug with the blur of the lower half of the screen pictured above.

  • 19 mihabolil // Nov 11, 2010 at 22:42

    Franco, The game is fully compatible with Xbox 360 wireless controller, guaranteed.
    Just enable it, there is option.

  • 20 Bloody // Nov 11, 2010 at 23:15

    Looking at the config file, besides the convergence setting, there are a few other options that are worth mentioning:

    seta com_maxfps “85”

    Apparently the game is limited up to 85 fps by default, useful to change if you want to play at 120Hz in “plain” 3D mode for example.

    seta r_multithreaded_device “0”

    Set to use just one core even if you have a multi-core processor.

  • 21 Simon Daysh // Nov 12, 2010 at 01:21

    Hi I’m new to all this 3D stuff but wondered if someone could help.
    I’m running a GTX480 and active shutter Nvidia glasses and the single player campain on Black Ops looks crap, the picture isn’t lined up and there seems to be a black flicker on the shadows. However the Mutiplayer is fine?? am i missing something in the set up? HELP

    Thank You


  • 22 Ali // Nov 12, 2010 at 03:24

    For me this is the best game that runs in 3D perfectly and I have played every game that’s out there but none runs in 3D like this game.
    Using 3D Vision.

  • 23 Franco // Nov 12, 2010 at 03:49


    Have you played Batman AA, Just Cause 2 and Metro 2033? If you haven’t, try them out, I’m sure your opinion will dramatically change once you give it try. You have no idea how better those games look in 3D compared to Black Ops.

    COD Black Ops has definatelly improve it’s support for 3D, but besides that it’s the same engine, same graphics, another console port and that pisses me off.
    I’m having fun playing this game, but once I finish single player, I won’t play it again. COD games are to linear for me, I bought it cause I thought the graphics has improved but I was wrong.

    I’m not having any performance issues like some have pointed out in Nvidia forums, but I have SLI GTX 480, if I had performance issues in 3D than this game woudn’t be playable for the majority.
    I have unlocked convergence, but I;m not touching it cause It’s hard enough to aim with the scope with the standard convergence, and the times I messed with it only got worst. Besides that the game has great support for 3D, but better graphics would mean a world of diference.

    Please, where is the option to enable wireless joystick support?? I can’t find it in the game’s options????

  • 24 Martin Andersson // Nov 12, 2010 at 08:21

    Bloody, why would I set “seta r_multithreaded_device” to 1 even if I have a multicore?

  • 25 Bloody // Nov 12, 2010 at 11:04

    Simon, Update to the latest drivers that come with a profile for the game, you are probably using older 3D Vision drivers…

    Martin, It might improve performance when using more than a single core, however I did not have the time to test that, I did try increasing the fps limit and it works.

  • 26 Dorayaki // Nov 12, 2010 at 12:51

    Did anyone else find that some guns have misaligned scopes in S3D mode? Such as the M72 LAW. Can’t believe they didn’t test the game out in S3D before launching it. Especially after touting how 3D “Ready” it is.

  • 27 bikas // Nov 12, 2010 at 14:00

    bloody can you plz help me.
    I have a gtx 460 connected to my PS50C7000 by Hdmi 1.4
    I never played a Pc game 3d before.
    I try to run this COD in 3d, but ppl are asying that i still need the Nvidia Kit to play it? is it true? With only my Plasma 3d is not possible to paly games in 3d?
    In game options when i change the Hz to 24, it automaticaly asked my to put my 3d samsung glasses . But no real 3d image during play. But I did saw that gun lens zoom error like posted in the image.

    Also in nvidia control panel i have 3d enabled but i cannot use the setting below, like depth etc.. they are in grey.

  • 28 Bloody // Nov 12, 2010 at 15:05

    Dorayaki, can you please post some stereo 3D screenshots of the issue?

    Bikas, to play games in stereo 3D mode you need the 3DTV Play, it is currently available in the drivers as a free upgrade only if you have 3D Vision kit and the IR emitter is plugged in the computer. Some time later this month Nvidia should also release a standalone version of the 3DTV Play software that will not require the user to have the 3D Vision kit, but that will be sold for $40 USD.

  • 29 bikas // Nov 12, 2010 at 15:33

    Bloody, but in BLuray playback with cyberlink power dvd 10 I can watch 3d movies with nvidia vision option selected. Why not working with pc games?
    And why do I get the blur error like you?

    What you are saying is that later november there will be special drivers for ppl with 3dtvs and without 3d vision kit? this will be a software release for 40$. is that it?
    This is very strange. you have a 3d tv plasma and u need to pay 40$ to nvidia fives you the compatible drivers? I just spent 160 euros in a new gfx, I should get this for free!

  • 30 Bloody // Nov 12, 2010 at 15:37

    Yes, you only get Blu-ray 3D playback without the IR emitter plugged in, something that apparently also goes through the 3DTV Play, but you don’t get the full functionality of the 3D Vision (rendering the games in stereo 3D mode).

    It is not a different driver, just the fully functional 3DTV Play software, you are still going to use the normal drivers with that software installed on top to allow the additional functionality.

  • 31 bikas // Nov 12, 2010 at 15:49

    Ok so it works like the iz3d and tridef. This 3d play software will give me like a side by side image during game play so I can choose tha mode on my plasma.

    If so i dont need the 3d play I can buy this other 2 right? but maybe 3d play is better to use with my gtx 460 card right?

  • 32 Bloody // Nov 12, 2010 at 16:12

    It is not Side by Side with half horizontal resolution (squashed) , but instead is full resolution with both frames packaged in a specific format that is understood by HDMI 1.4(a). iZ3D and TriDef do support only 3D HDTV output with an ATI/AMD video card and not with NVIDIA.

  • 33 bikas // Nov 12, 2010 at 16:15

    ok, I guess I have to wait for the software and pay 40$ :(

  • 34 3dtvworld // Nov 12, 2010 at 16:24

    I played this on xbox360 in stereo 3d on my samsung 58 inch plasma and was surprised at the 3d effect. Although not quite as deep with regards to the 3d effect as say avatar, it still was ok…frame rate was fine but the res dropped to 720p which was noticable on a 58″ screen. Overall I rate the 3d a 7/10 for the console version of this game. Will post a full review on my site this weekend. Check it at 3dtvworld.com.au

  • 35 tritosine // Nov 12, 2010 at 21:28

    seta r_multithreaded_device “0″

    Set to use just one core even if you have a multi-core processor.

    hahah- thats consolitis ^2

  • 36 Dorayaki // Nov 13, 2010 at 14:44

    Hi Bloody :) Sure no problem dude, I have uploaded 4 images pertaining to 2 anomalies that I found while running BlackOps in S3D. The links are below, they are jps files but uploaded as jpg just because the image host site doesn’t allow jps extensions.

    Basically in the level Revelations and if I am not mistaken, a few other similar indoor environments, there is texture pop-in (or rather, in this case pop-out lol) happening at the edges of the screen. Any geometry that crosses out of the borders of the screen edge disappears. Only happens when in 3D vision mode. It looks like the game engine forgets to take into account the offset camera’s scope of view and “thinks” those polygons are out of view.

    Look at the right most edge of screen, a part of the wall disappears:

    Moving the mouse slightly and the texture pops back in:

    Next issue is that some weapon scope do not line up properly (Btw I did not edit convergence).

    Turning the depth values way down solves the issue of course, but that pretty much kills all stereoscopic effect.

    Also reflections still render at wrong depth, which I have to say is quite disappointing to see in a game that is programmed to be 3D friendly.

    Still, despite all that I actually really enjoyed the whole game in S3D, imho it was pretty good especially since there was no more need for enabling Nvidia’s 3D crosshairs like in MW2. Batman AA still remains the best Nvidia 3D Vision experience I have had thus far though, but at least it is good to see developers adopting the idea of preparing games for S3D.

  • 37 Dorayaki // Nov 13, 2010 at 15:00

    Oops sorry this was supposed to be the 4th link:

    Btw Bloody I just realized this was your blog after having some time to read up more stuff and check the “About” section. I am very new to S3D stuff and the 3D Vision is my first stereoscopic solution and experience outside from the theater. I have to say your blog is bloody amazing man (no pun intended lol). Your articles are very informative and interesting and the layout is simple and accessible. I’ve seen some other forums etc regarding S3D but your blog looks to be the best source for information about 3D vision, especially with all the media links you post for stereo content. Damn, you have way more links than even Nvidia’s own site for stereo content to utilize with their kit…Is Nvidia paying you anything? Well I think they should lol. Anyways, as a new S3D user, I am really glad to have found your site. Great job again and keep up the awesome work dude! ;)

  • 38 sync // Nov 19, 2010 at 04:02

    Is there a guide out there getting this to work with an ATI card for COD black ops?

  • 39 somy // Nov 20, 2010 at 23:22

    Hi, I’ve just purchased the XBOX game, I have a 3D screen, but at the game options menu the “Stereoscopic 3D Mode Settings” is disabled, Do you know what should I do in order to select this option?

  • 40 Larry // Apr 10, 2011 at 19:02

    I’ve just spent £1000 on a 3D laptop, and £35 on Call of Duty black opps. The 3D vision is so bad that the eyes feel like they’re 3ft apart. The menu with the words CAMPAIGN, MULTIPLAYER, ZOMBIES, SETTINGS, QUIT shows CAMPI on the left eye and IGN on the right eye. Last time I opened my eyes in the real world, I could see most of everything through either eye. This is crap.

  • 41 Coit // Dec 20, 2011 at 01:34

    All it looks like to me is the 2 pictures side by side with my 3D TV and 3D glasses on….

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