Steady FPS drop

For the last month or so I have ben playing Far Cry 3. When I started out I just left all the video settings on "optimal". After a week or so I started experiencing a drop in FPS, so I lowered settings. This helped, but then the FPS drop returned. Eventually I got to the point where I had to turn all the settings to low including turning many effects completely off. Still the FPS drop returned. The game is now virtually unplayable.

What could be causing this? My machine could handle it just fine at first. Why the steady decrease in FPS? Could it be malware?
Any suggestions are appreciated.

For reference, I have:
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 460 (1GB)
4 GB Ram
Intel Core 2 Duo CPU E6750 (2.66 GHz)
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More about steady drop
  1. Time travel back to a a few days and try to remember what all software and drivers you had installed recently. Try to roll-back. On N-Vidia Control Panel, change the setting to "Application Controlled" and not Performance, or Visuals.
    Also, you can try the other way round. Install all the latest updates.
    And, you should try going back to Optimal Settings, and play for sometime.

    De-fragment your game drive too, as it might be the cause.

    Best of Luck. :)
  2. Thanks for the tips.
    I installed a new driver before starting to play Far Cry 3. I just checked and Windows told me it was up to date. However, I went to and that told me there was a newer version.... odd that Windows does not know this.

    Anyway, I installed the newest driver and this seems to have fixed it. Much thanks. I will have to play for a bit more to make sure the issue does not return again as it has in the past though. I just am confused as to why it would work fine with the previous driver, but slowly decay to a nearly unplayable state.
  3.'s back. It's as if it decays over time. So no matter what I do, the FPS drop returns.
  4. Do not lower the settings. Simply bear with the lag for some time. Lowering settings like resolution puts stress on your CPU, which you will not like here.
  5. Hmm, I don't really understand why lower settings would put stress on the CPU. Resolution is actually one of the settings I have left alone. But I could try putting them back to optimal. Also not sure how bearing with the lag for some time would help either.
  6. Yeah, optimal settings didn't help.
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