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Graphics is one of the game's many visual settings which allows for the game's rendering of an assortment of features to be adjusted to match computer specifications.

There are currently three different options for graphics to be set to, in order of computing expense: Fast, Fancy and Fabulous!, each bringing their own dedicated visual improvements.

Differences between settings[]

This section is missing information about
  • currently Java Edition centric - Bedrock Edition differences need to be researched
  • "reduces the amount of visible rain or snow" according to its description as of 1.18.1 - demonstrate?
  • darkness vignette presence - MC-241321
  • world border vignette presence - MC-54988
  • I've heard it affects fog rendering but don't know exactly how
  • it definitely affects or affected rain somehow (https://twitter.com/Dinnerbone/status/527075906595340288)
  • any other differences I may have missed
  • possibly the fabulous world border bug (MC-187669). 
Please expand the section to include this information. Further details may exist on the talk page.

Summary[]

Setting Leaves Translucency
Fast Opaque Flawed
Fancy Transparent Flawed
Fabulous! Transparent Good

Detailed analysis[]

Leaves[]

The difference between fast graphics leaves and fancy graphics leaves.

When graphics are set to Fast, leaves are rendered as completely opaque blocks when placed in the world. (In item form, they still appear transparent.) This is likely meant to improve framerates by treating leaves more like full, solid cubes, and allowing their faces to be culled by each other, resulting in the game having to render less faces in forested areas; this, however, does not happen.[1]

Leaves do not use a separate texture file for their appearance in Fast graphics - rather, all transparent regions in the texture are set to fully opaque, and appear black.[more information needed]

Leaves are the only block subject to this - other transparent cubes such as spawners are still rendered transparent, likely due to their comparative rarity.

Translucency[]

When graphics are set to Fast or Fancy, the game makes compromises on the rendering of many translucent elements of the game.

A notable example of this involves viewing the world through translucent blocks such as stained glass, tinted glass and ice. When this is done, the game will not attempt to render particles, rain, snow or clouds behind the block.

There are also many, much more subtle cases which can be seen. Experience orbs have many associated cases - for example, they can block the rendering of their own shadows, as well as of other entities, including entity-rendered blocks such as chests, as well as non-entity-rendered translucent blocks such as stained glass, and other things like the outlines of targeted blocks.

The effects seem to be time-specific, and often differ depending on the age of the entities in question - different effects can be sighted for experience orbs which existed in the world before the entity behind them than experience orbs which came into existence afterwards.

More obscure cases can be sighted as well, such as with the dying animation of the ender dragon, the world border, and structure block annotations. Untested cases involve F3+G chunk borders and shulker bullets. Blocks such as tripwire, slime blocks and honey blocks may cause even more strange effects.

History[]

This section is missing information about
  • Ice, water used to render weird in fast graphics around 1.2.5 (MC-8082)
  • MC-29432. 
Please expand the section to include this information. Further details may exist on the talk page.
Java Edition Infdev
20100615Added the graphics setting, with "fast" and "fancy" options.
Currently, only clouds are affected.
20100616-1Leaves are now affected by the graphics setting.
Java Edition Beta
1.5Added an overlay texture for the sides of grass blocks to make their side texture appear colored identically to their top texture. This overlay is only used in fancy graphics, and fast graphics ignores it.
Unknown
?Fast and fancy graphics now controls entity shadows.
Java Edition
1.4.612w50aDropped items which are 2D now use a three-dimensional model in fancy graphics mode, compared to the flat 2D shape they used previously (and still use in fast graphics).
1.814w04aItems no longer rotate at all due to a bug. This makes items only visible when facing north when fast graphics are enabled.
14w04bItems are no longer visible at all on Fast graphics.
14w05aItems are once again visible on fast graphics. They now face the player on all three axes, rather than only the horizontal axes, making them clearly visible from above.
14w25aGrass blocks now always use the side overlay, regardless of graphics setting. This is without a doubt due to the overlay section being made to be its own model element in the model file, rather than a setting for each face, possibly also making it less expensive to render.
"2D" items now always appear 3D, regardless of graphics setting. This must be due to the introduction of proper, customizable item models in this version, as opposed to being auto-generated by the game in previous versions.
However, said "2D" items still do not rotate on Fast graphics - only on Fancy graphics do they rotate.
Leaves no longer have different texture files for fast and fancy graphics - rather, the transparent texture is always used, and blank regions are filled in with an average color.[more information needed]
Leaves now appear transparent on Fast graphics in item form (held, dropped, framed or worn on a player's head),[more information needed] and their particles also have transparency. Graphics settings only affect them when placed.
14w25bLeaves now render black in their transparent regions in fast graphics.[more information needed]
1.8.1pre4Dropped items now rotate on fast graphics.
Entity shadows are no longer controlled by fast/fancy graphics - they now have their own setting.
Clouds are no longer controlled by fast/fancy graphics - this has been merged into the clouds on/off option, which has become off/fast/fancy itself.
1.16Pre-release 1Added the Fabulous! graphics setting,
Pocket Edition Alpha
v0.1.0The game has two toggles for graphics settings: "Fancy graphics" and "Lower graphics quality." Both toggles are off by default.
"Fancy graphics" currently only affects the rendering of leaves.
"Lower graphics quality" decreases the render distance from four chunks to two chunks and prevents the "Fancy graphics" toggle from being enabled.
v0.6.0Added clouds, which are only visible if "Fancy graphics" is enabled.
v0.7.0Render distance is now controlled independently of other graphics settings, and the "Lower graphics quality" toggle has been removed.
Cloud visibility is now controlled by the "Beautiful skies" toggle instead of fancy graphics.
v0.8.0build 2The fancy graphics toggle is now enabled by default.
Clouds now appear opaque if fancy graphics is off.
The following changes have been made to entity lighting in fancy graphics:
  • All entities now produce circular stencil shadows on blocks below them.
  • Lighting on entities is now dynamic and is no longer the same light level on all sides.
  • Lighting on each entity is now tinted based on how much sky light and block light is on it.
  • Light direction on entities now depends on the position of the sun. This does not affect stencil shadows.

References[]

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