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Games that support multiple-cores

Oct 2, 2007
Does utilizing 100% of all cores of a CPU mean that it's multi-threaded? Can we use that to measure how efficiently coded a game is for multi-core CPU's? Games are fundamentally linear in nature so its understandable that we won't see much use of extra cores now. Since the current trend today is multi-core CPU's what are programmers doing today to utilize these extra cores? I

I've read the article on Anandtech from Valve hardware day conference regarding fine, coarse, and hybrid multithreading, and was excited to see how Half-Life 2 Episode 2 would work on my quadcore Q6600. The game runs very smooth but looking at task manager only 1 core was being utilized at 100% while the other 3 saw minimal usage. It seems to me either HL2 EP2 is not multi-threaded, or it is multi-threaded but only uses extra coarse when needed? (heavy physics happening or when bridge collapses?) its really hard to tell, but the game runs smooth.

Medal of Honor: Airborne saw the task manager showing 2 out of 4 cores running at 100%. the game uses UT3 engine. Game runs smooth on my computer even with just 2 cores running 100%.

Xbit-Labs article showed Lost Planet - Extreme Condition showing almost linear increase in FPS on a quad-core after setting concurrent operations to 4. I dont have Lost Planet yet, but I plan to buy it to test it on my system.

Intel shows a Demo called Ice Storm Fighters that utilizes 4 cores, i didnt see the CPU usage, but the demo showed FPS lagging after the affinity was set down to single core. If anyone knows where to get this demo, i'd like to test it out on my own computer.

Crysis looks like it will utilize quad core.

I would like to see what experiences other people with quad-core systems have had when playing games.


Aug 22, 2004
Alan Wake won't even run on a single-core, unless it's a P4 with HT, and even then won't run well.


Aug 10, 2002
You could try downloading the new Unreal Tournament 3 demo. It uses my 2 cores at 100%.