Nier: Automata on Game Pass/Windows Store is a different port to the Steam version, doesn't need the fan fix

2B, a playable character from Nier: Automata
(Image credit: Square Enix)

If you bought the version of Nier: Automata released on Steam in 2019, the 'Game of the YoRHa' edition, you'll remember the controversy. We called it "playable but disappointing" thanks to issues including locked framerate, stretched UI in ultrawide, awkward keyboard-and-mouse controls, and problems with resolution that could only be fixed by downloading a separate program to enable borderless windowed mode. Some players experienced stuttering and even crashes. 

No patch was released for any of these issues. Modders eventually came to the rescue with FAR, the Fix Automata Resolution tool, which not only fixed the bugs but also improved the visuals.

On March 18, Nier: Automata was added to the Game Pass for PC subscription service and put up for sale on the Windows Store. It's not the Game of the YoRHa edition, however, but the 'Become As Gods' edition released on Xbox One in 2018, with the DLC bundled in. Though it doesn't have the Valve Character Accessory (a set of big red valves you could jam into 2B's head), it's the same game—except that it comes with borderless windowed mode as standard so it runs at the right resolution, there's an option to enable FidelityFX CAS, and players aren't reporting any of the stutters or crashes that affected the previous PC release.

While it still has a framerate capped at 60, this does seem like an overall substantially better port than the one released on Steam. That version, enhanced by the FAR mod and its visual improvements, is currently the best available way of playing Nier: Automata on PC, but it's a shame that work was necessary in the first place.

Jody Macgregor
Weekend/AU Editor

Jody's first computer was a Commodore 64, so he remembers having to use a code wheel to play Pool of Radiance. A former music journalist who interviewed everyone from Giorgio Moroder to Trent Reznor, Jody also co-hosted Australia's first radio show about videogames, Zed Games. He's written for Rock Paper Shotgun, The Big Issue, GamesRadar, Zam, Glixel, Five Out of Ten Magazine, and, whose cheques with the bunny logo made for fun conversations at the bank. Jody's first article for PC Gamer was about the audio of Alien Isolation, published in 2015, and since then he's written about why Silent Hill belongs on PC, why Recettear: An Item Shop's Tale is the best fantasy shopkeeper tycoon game, and how weird Lost Ark can get. Jody edited PC Gamer Indie from 2017 to 2018, and he eventually lived up to his promise to play every Warhammer videogame.