I have the VisionTek GF2Ultra with 12.90 drivers. In games like Half Life, Soldier of Fortune, Deus Ex, Undying, dark areas or dark skies look awful, with clear banding of shading (much like the screen looks when you are using 256 colors, such as in Safe Mode). But everything else that is brightly lit looks great, with excellent detail and color. It seems limited to dark skies and dark areas (i.e., in crawlways, or a dark corridor). Any ideas? I have the vid card set to the default settings in the vid card control panel which is the standard looking Nvidia panel. I am guessing that something is set wrong. I have tried 16 and 32 bit color enabled and play on the highest resolution.
another forum, someone suggested it was to do with texture compression settings in the games. I found that in Soldier of Fortune, there were settings under video for texture format and transluscent texture format, and in both cases, the default setting was DXT Compressed. I changed both to "high" (choices were low, med, high, S3 compressed, and DXT compressed) and the wierd dark sky problem is gone and the moon light is now smooth and the clouds look like clouds, just in case anyone else runs into this issue...
If you are using Direct3D for rendering, try switching to OpenGL. I was having similar problems in Tribes 2 and Half-Life. Switching also made it run better. The GeForce 2's run OpenGL a lot better than earlier cards. Unfortunately, this won't help you if you're already using OpenGL
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Thanks for responding. I tried HalfLife in OpenGL, but it looked worse than in D3D... Do you know of any software or hardware settings that can disable texture compression, because the difference in Soldier of Fortune was like day and night in the nighttime sky rendering.