EA and Omega Force have released a first, much-needed patch to improve the PC performance of their hugely enjoyable monster battler Wild Hearts - but early reports from players suggest it hasn't actually managed to fix performance very much.
Word of Wild Hearts' performance woes began to spread even before its official release last week, when EA Play early access players started reporting everything from low frame-rates and persistent stuttering to sluggish pop-in across all platforms.
In response, Omega Force pledged to address performance concerns, saying it was "working continuously to improve performance and optimise the game" on all platforms, and that it would be releasing a PC patch this week to fix a CPU bottleneck problem it claimed should "improve performance across mid-high end CPUs".
That patch has now arrived, addressing the aforementioned 'unintentional CPU cap', some missing or delayed sounds, an RX 7900 XTX rendering issue, and a save corrupt bug, as well as making 16:9/1080p the default setting on initial start-up.
Unfortunately, early word from PC players post-patch doesn't appear to be good, with many in the Wild Hearts subreddit reporting no noticeable (or limited) performance improvements after applying the update. This tallies with my own experience too, the game still exhibiting significant stuttering and sluggish pop-in at 1080p/60fps regardless of graphics settings - and that's on a system well above EA's recommended specs.
It's disappointing news, especially given that Omega Force has created an absolutely stellar entry in the monster hunting genre with Wild Hearts - I called it a "thoughtful, incredibly energising twist on a beloved formula" in my review last week - and it's a game that deserves so much better on the performance front.
Alongside today's PC update, Omega Force has also pushed a small update to PS5, intended to fix a crash that would happen on systems with more than 100 users on their block list. The developer says it's working to get the audio and save/load fixes seen in today's PC patch deployed to PS5 and Xbox Series X/S next week, and will share more "as soon as we can".