Dota 2 Runs Well On Low-End Hardware
Free-to-play multiplayer games are only profitable if as many people as possible have access to them. So, it's hardly surprising that Dota 2 is not a particularly demanding title. It's really meant to run well on the lowest common denominator. Our little exercise today demonstrates just how little rendering horsepower it need.
At low (but still attractive) detail levels, gaming at 1920x1080 is smooth enough on both AMD's mobile A10-4600M with integrated Radeon HD 7660G graphics and Intel's Core i5-3210M with HD Graphics 4000. As far as discrete cards go, the GeForce G 210 is the only model we tested that couldn't handle this title's entry-level options. Meanwhile, the Radeon HD 6450 delivers frame rates in excess of 45 FPS throughout our benchmark run.
Crank up the detail settings as high as they'll go and you'll want at least a Radeon HD 6670 DDR3 or GeForce GT 630 GDDR5 for at least 30 FPS at 1920x1080. A GeForce GTX 650 or Radeon HD 7750 are better choices for that combination of details and resolution, though. And if you want more than 45 FPS at 2560x1600, get a Radeon HD 7770 or GeForce GTX 650 Ti.
The game is also pretty forgiving when it comes to processor performance. A dual-core AMD chip running faster than 2.5 GHz should suffice, and anyone with a modern Intel CPU clocked at 2 GHz or higher should be fine as well. Ideally, I'd say an LGA 1155-based Pentium or Phenom II X4/FX-4000-series processor running at 3 GHz should keep you up above 50 FPS.
As far as hardware goes, this game doesn't give you much to worry about. At this point, the only question is how Dota 2's main competition, League of Legends, compares. To answer, I'll be putting that game through a similar set of tests, so stay tuned to Tom's Hardware for the results.